Though I prefer the original line-up, I did get an opportunity to meet the Van Hagar lineup (thanks to winning a contest at the local music shop) on October 19, 1986 during their 5150 tour, which for a guitar-playing teen was a dream come true!
Former Brave Bob Horner had a meteoric rise much like Van Halen's, as well as a career that somewhat parallels that of the band. Horner was the 1978 Golden Spikes Award Winner (the first to win the award), which is given to the top collegiate baseball player each year, and MVP of the 1977 College World Series. Taken by the Braves with the first overall pick in the June 1978 amateur draft, Horner went straight to the majors upon signing his professional contract-and never appeared in the minor leagues. During his rookie season, Horner hit 23 home runs (which led all N.L. third basemen) and won the N.L. Rookie of the Year Award. The slugging third baseman would go on to be a productive hitter, when he was healthy. Various injuries plagued Horner throughout his career, limiting him to only 960 games while in a Braves uniform (from '78 to '86)-and only twice did he even appear in 140 games during a season. When collusion took place prior to the 1987 season, Horner was forced to go to Japan, where he played for one season. It was a move that reminds me of that of Van Halen once Diamond Dave was fired and Hagar was hired: it just wasn't the majors, baby.