April 5, 2009

Metallica, Koko B. Ware and Pedro Martinez walk into a bar...

As Opening Day arrives (and The Hall of Very Good’s Milestone Preview comes to a close), it is important that we acknowledge those superstars that are still out there every day making a difference and, in some cases…looking for their next gig.

On Saturday night, two monumental Hall of Fame inductions went down.

First, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland…wait, Cleveland?!? Anyway…the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland opened its doors to Jeff Beck, Little Anthony & The Imperials, Bobby Womack, Run-DMC and Metallica.

Next, on the eve of Wrestlemania XXV, the WWE welcomed Ricky “The Dragon” Steamboat, “Cowboy” Bill Watts, Koko B. Ware, Howard Finkel, the Funks, the Von Erichs and “Stone Cold” Steve Austin.

I’m not really sure which one is more of an honor or which one rivals the Baseball Hall of Fame, but let’s be honest, now that Koko B. Ware (with his colorful personality, pet bird and no championships) has made it into the WWE Hall of Fame…can Cooperstown throw a bone Ron Santo’s way so I can stop listening to Cubs fans complaining?

Now…on to more pressing issues.

Even with Curt Schilling officially retired, “Pudge” Rodriguez in Houston and Garry Sheffield released by the Tigers and then picked up by the Mets three days later, there are still some big names out on the free agent market that are closing in on some pretty historic numbers.



MOISES ALOU

Tired of the nagging injuries, Moises Alou told the world that, following the recent World Baseball Classic, he was going to be done. Of course, he has yet to make this official.

Should a team take a chance on the 43 year-old slugger (he hit .342 in 102 games for the Mets over the last two seasons), they’ll get a .303 career batting average, just under 2200 career hits and 332 home runs.


JIM EDMONDS

If the eight-time Gold Glove recipient proved anything last year with the Cubs is that he can still play. “Jimmy Baseball” enters 2009 with 382 home runs and no job. Those 382 bombs are more than Hall of Famers Joe DiMaggio, Ralph Kiner and Tony Perez. Edmonds also has a .284 career batting average with five seasons above the .300 mark.


LUIS GONZALEZ

In 2001, “Gonzo” hit .325 with 57 home runs and 142 RBI and led the Diamondbacks to a World Series title. Still serviceable at 41, Gonzalez was an every day player last year for the Marlins and hit .261.

With 354 home runs, it isn’t likely that Gonzalez will get to 400. That being said, he is nine hits from 2600 and 61 RBI from 1500. Only one player that is Hall eligible (Harold Baines) has more than 1500 RBI and has yet to be enshrined in Cooperstown. There are NO Hall eligible players with more doubles than “Gonzo” that have yet to get called to the Hall.


PEDRO MARTINEZ and FRANK THOMAS

It’s pretty safe to say that the world knows the story of both Pedro Martinez and Frank Thomas by now. Alou, Edmonds and Gonzalez…maybe not so much.

Martinez has the lowest ERA among active starters in the Majors and the second most strikeouts. His three Cy Young Awards and pinpoint accuracy make him a legend, yet he is still out there trying to find work.

“The Big Hurt”, on the other hand, has had the quietest off season since he broke into the bigs. With a career batting average of .301, 521 home runs, 1704 RBI and close to 2500 base hits…there is no reason Thomas needs to suit up again as his legacy is locked and loaded.

At 40, Thomas has not set a deadline to decide his future and will wait until the All-Star break before making any other determinations.

So if you go into Opening Day with any thoughts, know that there are still some baseball stories out there that are yet to be completed.
Also...Metallica fought the crusade against Napster (which, let’s face it, was the forerunner to ALL the downloadable mp3 sites out there), yet feel Guitar Hero is a great way to promote themselves.

Allow me to clarify.

basically, they wanted to keep diehard fans away from sharing their music (live shows and what not) online, yet have no issue with 13 year-olds banging away to “For Whom the Bell Tolls” on a plastic “guitar” in their parents living room.

Maybe I’m getting old...here's to a great 2009!



BallHype: hype it up!

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