January 8, 2013
Jack Morris Responds to Critics
We're on the eve of the Hall of Fame announcement and, it would seem, we're inching closer and closer to the inclusion of Jack Morris among those enshrined.
And, like almost anything, plenty of people are against it.
I've often wondered what the former pitcher thought about his detractors. Well...wonder no more.
"If I sense anything from the writers that have always been anti-Jack, they're pointing to the fact that I'd have the highest ERA in the Hall of Fame," Morris told MLB Network Radio. "Let me ask you this: When did we decide that earned-run average was more important than wins?"
What Morris is referring to, of course, is his career 254 victories and, of course, three World Series rings.
"I want to know any general manager, any coach or any player that bought into the fact that earn-run average was more important than wins," the Mustached One continued. "If they would've told me that when I was in the minor leagues, I'm sure I could've been among the league leaders in ERA. That wasn't my objective."
Here's the deal...dude had a pretty long stretch of being victorious. Let's not dispute that.
From 1979 to 1992, Morris managed to string together 233 of his career 254 victories. That's more than 40 more than Bob Welch, the next guy in line, and his 192. And for the record, Morris' 254 wins is more than Hall of Famers Bob Gibson, Juan Marichal and Whitey Ford among plenty of others.
In the 80s alone…Morris won a decade best 162 games, compiled a .577 winning percentage and exhibited his amazing consistency by finishing in the top ten of the Cy Young Award voting in half of the decade’s contests. He finished in the top five in 1991 and 1992 as well.
Ah, but then there's that pesky 3.90 ERA.
He never led the league (much less came close to it) and make no bones about it, he gave up a ton of runs. However, his teams produced behind him and regardless of his ERA, Morris virtually always managed to stay below the league average.
Morris was, arguably, one of the stronger starters of his era and, really, isn't that how a guy should be judged?