January 8, 2013
The Hall of Fame Class of 2013...by the Numbers
So, while not everyone agrees on whether or not Morris is Hall worthy, I think we can all agree...whether you’re a metrics guy, a black/gray ink guy or something else, it’s the numbers that make you a fan.
4192 hits, 56 games and 61* (or for that matter 70...maybe 73?) home runs all mean something to someone. And while we wait to see who going to get enshrined in Cooperstown next, here are some more numbers to play with.
Say what you want to about Julio Franco...but the guy could hit. During his 26-year professional career, the journeyman amassed an impressive 4229 hits. Of course, he had to enlist the United Nations to do it. Franco collected his hits in the Majors (2586), Minors (618), Mexico (316), Japan (286), the Dominican (267) and South Korea (156).
While fellow ballot mates Bernie Williams and Curt Schilling made names for themselves in the postseason, Jeff Cirillo had to wait his entire career to get that one at bat. The infielder made the playoffs in his last season, 2007...after 1617 games in the bigs.
With their last pick of the 1988 draft, the Los Angeles Dodgers selected then-first baseman Mike Piazza in the 62nd round...1390th overall. Suffice it to say, no one drafted after Piazza made the big leagues.
If the old addage "a walk is as good as a hit" is true...how good is being hit by a pitch? 285 times during his 20-year big league career, Craig Biggio found himself on the business end of an HBP. It should come as no surprise that the former Houston Astro is the modern day leader in that department.
As if four World Series wins with the New York Yankees isn't impressive enough...Bernie Williams is also the career leader in postseason RBI with 80. Tops among active players? Williams' former teammate, "Mr. November" himself...Derek Jeter with 61.
Assuming he won't get the 75% of the vote necessary for induction, Dale Murphy stands to become the 35th player to drop out of Hall of Fame consideration after appearing on the ballot for the maximum 15 years.
In 1986, Roger Clemens became the first pitcher in history to strikeout 20 batters in a nine inning contest. Ten years later, he'd duplicate the deed. Interestingly enough, only one other player has accomplished the amazing feat...Clemens' fellow Texan Kerry Wood.
On May 23, 2002, Shawn Green was an offensive machine. The outfielder hit a record-tying four home runs and, probably more impressive, collected 19 total bases...breaking Joe Adcock's 1954 record.
Alledgedly battling a pretty mean hangover, New York Yankees pitcher David Wells shut down the Minnesota Twins in order May 17, 1998 to record baseball's 15th perfect game.
Say what you want about Jack Morris (and many people do), you can't question his consistency and durability. Dude was the epitome of a pitching "Iron Horse". Matter of fact, this innings hog (he had eleven seasons of more than 235 innings pitched) holds the record for most consecutive opening day starts with 14.
During their storied careers, Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens nave each been awarded their league's top honors seven times. Amazingly, only twice (2001 and 2004), did Bonds take home the MVP Award the same season that Clemens won the Cy Young Award. On a lighter note...of the two, only Clemens has won both awards since, well, no one ever let Bonds take the mound.
In the brief history of the Florida/Miami Marlins, one man has become synonymous with the Fish...Jeff Conine. And rightfully so. Only Luis Castillo has played more games in the teal and black. That said, no one has more grand slams than Conine...he's the franchise leader with six.
Unlike Jeff Cirillo who spent nearly his entire career not playing in the postseason, Kenny Lofton and David Wells played baseball in October a number of times. And for a number of teams. The duo appeared in the playoffs for six different franchises...although they never appeared on a postseason roster together. Maybe more impressive...Lofton played postseason ball for the Cleveland Indians during three different tours of duty.
So there you have it, gang…your Hall of Fame election by the numbers. Now sit back, relax and wait for the Class of 2013 to become official!