Results tagged ‘ Tony Gwynn ’
With Cal Ripken and Tony Gwynn ready to make a Central New York appearance at the Hall of Fame this summer, the Hall of Fame Veterans Commitee has the ability to add a player from the past.
The field includes really good players who captured batting titles, MVP awards, Cy Young Awards and set records by hitting home runs (Roger Maris), or stealing the most bases (Muarry Wills). The problem with all of these players – **** Allen, Bobby Bonds, Rocky Colavito and others – was that they didn’t play for more than 8-10 years at the All-Star level.
Gil Hodges for example was with Mr. Brooklyn Dodger from 1949-1957, seven straight 100 RBI seasons, when driving in 100 runs meant something, numerous NL Pennants and a World Series Championship in 1955. But after the Dodgers left Brooklyn and moved to Los Angeles, Hodges was medicore at best.
Wes Farrell won 20 games six times in eight years with the Indians and Red Sox but was below average the rest of his career. Tony Oliva hit .300 or better in six of his first seven years, but injuries never allowed him to play a full season after that.
After scanning the list of possible players we here at Inside the Chiefs believe that there are only three players who deserve votes:
Pittsburgh Pirates great Al Oliver, who batted over .300 11-times during his career that included 2743 hits and a .303 career batting average.
Thurman Munson who in 9 1/2 season had 1508 hits and a .292 batting average. It’s hard to believe that Munson would not have played another 10 seasons, especially with the DH rule and achieved 3000 hits in his career.
Cecil Travis was a shortstop for the Washington Senators in the late 30′s and 40′s who batted .300 or better in his first seven seasons. In 1941, his last full season in the Major Leagues, he batted .359 after batting .332 the year before. At 28 years old and in his prime, he left baseball in December of 1941 and joined the US Army where he served for the next three years. He returned to baseball in 1945 but was never the same. Clearly one of the best players of his era, Travis should receive something for giving up a Hall of Fame career in exchange for serving his country.
What do you think!
The results for the 2007 Hall of Fame are a week away and we here at “Inside the Chiefs” have our take on this years nominees: of the 32 players eligable we have eliminated 13 right off the bat: Gone are Dante Bichette, Bobby Bonilla, Scott Brosius, Jay Buhner and Ken Caminiti. All were nice players but not Hall of Fame material. Eight others, Albert Belle, Eric Davis, Paul O’Neill, Dave Concepcion, Wally Joyner, Bret Saberhagen, Devon White and Bobby Witt were a step above our first group but hardly need to stay on the ballot in future years.
The remaining nineteen players only Tony Gwynn and Cal Ripken are assured of the 75% and above for induction. That gives us 17 players that careers were good enough for consideration but could fall short once again.
Let’s break it down by position: Starting pitchers, Bert Blyleven, Jack Morris, Orel Hershiser and Tommy John. Two played in Minnesota and two played in Los Angeles most of their careers. Both Blyleven and Morris were dominant during their era with Morris getting a slight edge due to World Series titles. Tommy John, like Jim Kaat pitched for 26 years and never was the best pitcher on his own team. Hershiser was, but had his career cut short due to heavy work load early in his career.
Our Pick: 1. Morris, 2. Blyleven 3. Hershiser, 4. John. Both Hershiser and John should be off the ballot with Morris and Blyleven still holding out hope.
Relief Pitchers:Rich Gossage and Lee Smith. It’s hard to argue on either one not going in. Both were dominant with Gossage establishing himself as the most feared pitcher in the game in the late 70′s and ealry 80′s.
Our Pick: 1A. Gossage 1B. Smith. Both should receive 50% or more of the vote with Gossage having an outside shot of sneaking in this season.
Infielders: The two shortstops Tony Fernandez and Alan Trammell played during the same period and were clearly the best in the American League in the 80′s even though Cal Ripken also played in the AL during the same time. Tramell received only 18% of the vote last season and is in danger of losing his place on the ballot. Fernandez his equal probably won’t receive much more support. The other three infielders all played first base. Don Mattingly was very good, but with only 13% of the ballot in 2006 seems destined to be gone. Steve Garvey was also very good and played on championship clubs, something Mattingly never accomplished. Garvey though never put up first baseman numbers. McGwire cheated big time and that’s enough for this voter to say no way.
Our Picks: 1. Trammell 2. Garvey 3. Fernandez 4. Mattingly 5. McGwire. None of these five will ever see the Hall of Fame, but four of them played really good during their careers.
Outfielders: Six big time names, Harold Baines, Dave Parker, Andre Dawson, Dale Murphy, Jose Canseco and Jim Rice. All six one MVP Awards, Rookie of the Year, HR, and RBI titles, etc.. Rice and Dawson have nearly made it each year falling just short. Parker and Murphy combined, never get more than 25% of the vote. Canseco and Baines are on the ballot for the first time.
Our Pick: 1. Jim Rice, 2. Andre Dawson 3. Dave Parker 4. Dale Murphy 5. Harold Baines and 6. Jose Canseco. Rice and Dawson deserve to be in now. Parker had an equally great career and won World Series titles but will still fall short. Murphy played in Atlanta and they never won when he was there. Baines spent much of his career as a DH, but so did Paul Molitor. Canseco like his bash brother McGwire cheated, but at least he admitted it.
Our top 10 Votes:
1. Tony Gwynn
2. Cal Ripken
3. Jim Rice
4. Andre Dawson
5. Rich Gossage
6. Lee Smith
7. Alan Trammell
8. Jack Morris
9. Bert Blyleven
10. Tony Fernandez