August 4, 1984…Tom Seaver gets his 300 victory at Yankee Stadium on Phil Rizzuto Day. That same day, Rod Carew notches his 3000th hit.
May 1, 1991…Rickey Henderson becomes the “greatest of all time” by surpassing Lou Brock’s all-time steals mark. Later…Nolan Ryan gets his seventh no-hitter. And speaking of milestones, Henderson would later become Ryan’s 5000th strikeout victim.
September 6, 1995…Cal Ripken Jr. surpasses Lou Gehrig on the consecutive games played list.
Recently, we’ve seen some GREAT milestones as well…June 28 comes to mind. That’s the day that Frank Thomas hit his 500th home run and a few hours later Craig Biggio got his 3000th hit.
Now, given the fascination that baseball has with numbers…I’m confused by the TV coverage this past Sunday. Jim Thome knocks out his 500th in dramatic fashion…fair enough. Meanwhile, Todd Jones earned his 300th save and, for some reason, was compared favorably to what Thome accomplished.
You heard me…ESPN was actually trying to fool us into thinking that Jones' 300 saves was a milestone worth noting. Is it notable because 300 sure sounds like a lot of saves? Is it notable because he now sits twentieth on the all-time saves list whereas Thome now sits twenty third on the home run list?
Is it notable because he’s now tied with Hall of Famer Bruce Sutter?
My guess is that it is a combination of the three, but let’s be honest…any list where you rank BEHIND Doug Jones and Tom Henke doesn’t make you worthy of a milestone mention.
NOW…this is the point where, typically, I would break off and do some sort of side by side comparison of Sutter and someone like Trevor Hoffman or Mariano Rivera. All the while, I’d be making some snide comment about how Bruce Sutter doesn’t belong in the Hall of Fame. OR, better yet, if Sutter is in the Hall, why can’t Lee Smith or Jeff Reardon seem to get any votes…much less free parking when in Cooperstown?
I’ll be honest, it’s not worth my time…or yours.