Who's Gonna Make the Hall? What About Andre?

VFLOAB will be watching closely to see who, if anyone, gets the call from the Baseball Hall of Fame today at 2 EST. From what people over on ESPN.com are writing, it seems like Bruce Sutter will probably get a call. There also seems to be a good chance that Goose Gossage will get a call from the Hall. Having never seen them play, VFLOAB wishes them the best because both seem like Hall material.

There also seems to be an outside shot that Jim Rice will finally get the Hall Call today, and VFLOAB finds it hard to argue that he shouldn’t be in the Hall just by looking at his stats and what others say. He was pretty clearly the most feared hitter from 1975 to 1985 in the American League and racked up an MVP during that time too. His almost 2,500 hits, 1,500 RBIs and 400 home runs should be enough to get the job done. But we shall see.

Of course, if Rice is a Hall of Famer, then Andre Dawson should be a shoe in, but for some reason it appears that he’ll be on the outside looking in. His career numbers are all better than Rice’s (2,774 H, 438 HR, 1,591 RBI, 314 SB, 8 Gold Gloves, 1 MVP) and VFLOAB clearly remember the Hawk being the most feared hitter in Chicago in the late 80s. In fact, VFLOAB remembers Dawson being the bigger name and better player than teammate and Hall of Famer Ryan Sandberg.

While our love for the Cubs here is about on par with our love for all things Maoist China, Dawson in our eyes, is a Hall of Famer for his career stats and being one of the top five hitters of the 1980s. Plus no one wore that “Lake Michigan” Cubbie blue away uni better than The Hawk. No matter, we’re surprised that Dawson isn’t getting talked up more by the media, but that’s probably because he hasn’t been around as long as Sutter, Gossage, or Rice.

(Is baseball the only sport that doesn’t pay homage to those who have changed the game? The relief pitcher has become one of the most important elements of a baseball team over the last 25 to 30 years, yet there are only two relief pitchers I the Hall (Eck started for all those years remember). So guys like Sutter and Gossage, who were trailblazers in the development of bullpens and relief pitchers get the shaft because… well I don’t know why. It’s not like there are five guys pitching in the majors today out of the pen that are sure Hall of Famers (in fact, only Rivera is a shoe in at this point). So why all the hate from the baseball writers on relief pitchers?

We’d also like to say that if Don Mattingly played baseball in Chicago, let alone Seattle, no one would even think about voting him into the Hall of Fame. The fact his name even comes up is a complete joke.

VFLOAB also agrees with others that Tommy John should be in the Hall just because he has a surgery named after him. There’s a reason why Lou Gehrig is in the Hall of Fame remember, and it isn’t because of his ability to play first base or hit behind Babe Ruth. The guy didn’t even hit 500 home runs! Okay, we’re stopping, the joke isn’t that funny anyway.

(Not to bust on Gehrig too much, but seriously, how much of his success does he own to hitting behind Ruth? Sure he had great 1936 and 1937s when Ruth was gone, but didn’t he see better pitches because he hit behind Ruth? Can Bill James or someone at Baseball Prospectus fire up some numbers and figure this out?)

Before we take off, we’re going to guess that both Gossage and Sutter get the call today. Seems like Rice is a year away, and once Rice gets in, Dawson will follow.


Anonymous said...

Never in my life have I heard someone belittle a player's performance because he hit behind someone. That is the most absurd thing I ever heard. What would you rather do if Gehrig came up with men on, pitch to him or pitch around him to face Bob Meusel?

One of the big knocks against Maris in 1961 was that the Yankees moved him ahead of Mantle, not behind him. Maris had 0 intentional walks in 1961 batting ahead of Mantle.

Now if you want to talk about how overrated Pippen is because he played with Jordan, that's an entirely different question...

Otter said...

No, you make a really valid point and are probably more ‘on base’ (sorry) than what I was thinking.

But remember Ruth has a career .474 OBP; he was one first (or had just cleared the bases) almost half the time that Gehrig came to the plate.

I don't know, just a thought and something that I think maybe someone over at Baseball Prospectus might be interested in researching. Obviously both benefited from the other being such a great hitter (much like Manny and Ortiz in Boston right now).

Otter said...

Just occured to me that checking out Bonds and Kent might be a smart thing to do too... anyway, Kent a pretty good hitter in his own right, was much better hitting behind Bonds when Bonds was getting on base half the time (2000-2002).