December 7, 2010

Cooperstown 2011: Bert Blyleven

BERT BLYLEVEN
14th Year on Ballot  (2010 - 74.2%)

PLAYING CAREER:  Minnesota Twins (1970–1976), Texas Rangers (1976–1977), Pittsburgh Pirates (1978–1980), Cleveland Indians (1981–1985), Minnesota Twins (1985–1988) and California Angels (1989–1992)

ACHIEVEMENTS:  Career 287–250 record with a 3.31 ERA in 22 seasons.  Ranks fifth all-time in strikeouts (3701), eleventh in starts (685), ninth in shutouts (60) and 14th in innings pitched (4970).  Threw no-hitter September 22, 1977.  Twice an All-Star (1973 and 1985).  

WHAT THEY'RE SAYING ON TWITTER:

@zzazazzHow can Bert Blyleven not be in the Hall of Fame? He's 5th all time in Ks. The fifth all time in hits is in the hall.

@magranger:  Bert's the best! hope that's realized in january!

@TRAVELLMAN:  It is about time that Bert Blyleven gets into the Hall of Fame!!!.!!! 

HOVG THOUGHTS:  For some reason, Blyleven has become the sexy pick of everyone who has an opinion on who does and who doesn’t belong. That being said…I don’t know that he should be up there on the Cooperstown stage come July. Yes, I know, I know, I just went on and on about Harold Baines the other day and now…I’m slamming Blyleven. The guy was a compiler. A damn good compiler…but a compiler nonetheless. Of his 287 victories, only once did he top 20 victories…and that was in a season where he went 20-17. And while he has more strikeouts than all but four pitchers, let’s look at the bigger picture…how many times did Bert lead the league in ERA? Wins? What about winning percentage? How many Cy Young Awards did this cat bring home? Zero. He was an All-Star twice, but c’mon…so was Esteban Loaiza. And frankly, when do you suppose the last (or first) time someone not named “Blyleven” uttered the words…"I sure do hope Bert’s on the hill today" on their way to the ballpark?

All that aside...Blyleven will probably get the call January 5 to be inducted this upcoming July.


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