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cheeses_h_rice
03-22-2002, 12:17 PM
There's an article in today's Wall Street Journal by Allen Barra about players who were steaming along but seemingly need one last push for Hall of Fame status. Frank Thomas was one of the 5 (others were Ken Griffey Jr., John Smoltz, Edgar Martinez and Kevin Brown).

Here's what he said about Frank:

We know quite a few people who would consider Mr. Thomas a Hall of Famer right now. After all, he has a .319 career batting average, 348 home runs, nine seasons with more than 100 RBIs, and has led the league in on-base average four times.

If it were only that simple for the Big Hurt. The current White Sox roster lists Frank at 275 pounds. That weight at least partly explains what makes him a terrible base runner and a barely adequate fielder -- he'll probably DH for the Sox this year. Therefore, his claim for a spot in the Hall of Fame has to be based on hitting, and he's slowing down there. In 1998 he had his worst full-season batting average -- .265; the next year he was up to .305 but hit just 15 home runs and had his first non-100+ RBI season. In 2000, he hit .328 with 43 home runs, but last year injuries held him to a .221 batting average in just 20 games. If he stumbles through three or four more injury-riddled seasons, will the voters remember that for most of the '90s he was as good a hitter as Stan Musial was?

I think what is pertinent about Frank's recent sub-par years is the fact that he was hurt in all of them. When he's healthy, he's ALWAYS been on. Let's hope he stays healthy in '02, and '03, '04, etc.

PaleHoseGeorge
03-22-2002, 12:42 PM
Originally posted by cheeses_h_rice
There's an article in today's Wall Street Journal by Allen Barra about players who were steaming along but seemingly need one last push for Hall of Fame status. Frank Thomas was one of the 5 (others were Ken Griffey Jr., John Smoltz, Edgar Martinez and Kevin Brown).

I think what is pertinent about Frank's recent sub-par years is the fact that he was hurt in all of them. When he's healthy, he's ALWAYS been on. Let's hope he stays healthy in '02, and '03, '04, etc.

It appears Berra completely missed Frank's biggest claim to HOF status--his seven-year hitting streak that is unmatched by anyone in baseball history. Even Ted Williams falls short, albeit for WWII military service.

.300+ BA, plus
20+ homeruns, plus
100+ rbi's, plus
100+ walks, plus
100+ runs scored, AND
do this for SEVEN CONSECUTIVE SEASONS.

If that's not HOF material, I don't know what is. If he dropped dead tomorrow he ought to be first-ballot material.

The WSJ really ought to stick to reporting and editorializing business news.

:hurt
"The more you know about baseball, the more you love me."

:shammy
"And the LESS you know about baseball, the more you love ME!"

Nellie_Fox
03-22-2002, 12:56 PM
Based on what I saw on WGN last week, if Frank is weighing 275, I've never seen anyone carry that much weight better. His gut is absolutely flat.

RichH55
03-22-2002, 07:20 PM
I still don't understand why you get less points for being a DH than a poor fielder.........Its not the players fault that the DH is there....and the simple fact that you are in the field...DOES NOT make you a good fielder, so give points for being a good fielder, but don't subtract for being a DH

MarqSox
03-22-2002, 08:08 PM
Originally posted by cheeses_h_rice
There's an article in today's Wall Street Journal by Allen Barra about players who were steaming along but seemingly need one last push for Hall of Fame status. Frank Thomas was one of the 5 (others were Ken Griffey Jr., John Smoltz, Edgar Martinez and Kevin Brown).


I would be absolutely shocked if Junior wasn't a first-ballot HOFer. His hitting his first 7 or 8 years was incredible, only rivaled by Frank, and his defense was as good as I've ever seen. He's gonna finish with well over 400 homers, perhaps as many as 600 if he gets his act back together. As for the other 3, I never considered Smoltz or Brown serious HOF material -- they'll get a few votes -- and Edgar is about as iffy as anybody this side of Harold.

Mathew
03-22-2002, 10:49 PM
Originally posted by Nellie_Fox
Based on what I saw on WGN last week, if Frank is weighing 275, I've never seen anyone carry that much weight better. His gut is absolutely flat.

I'd be insulted as Frank to be grouped with all of those guys except Jr. He still hold one other record. Most stolen bases by a 275+ ball player.

WinningUgly!
03-23-2002, 12:59 AM
Originally posted by RichH55
I still don't understand why you get less points for being a DH than a poor fielder.........Its not the players fault that the DH is there....and the simple fact that you are in the field...DOES NOT make you a good fielder, so give points for being a good fielder, but don't subtract for being a DH

I wish the old timers would just get over the whole anti-DH thing. Like it or not, it's been a part of baseball for 25+ years. Last time I checked, I didn't notice an "*" next to every team that has won a world series since the DH has become part of the game. Why hold it against the individual players filling the role?

Nothing against Ozzie Smith, he deserves to be in the HOF, but he is in the hall only because of his defensive ability. Why should someone like Frank Thomas be looked down upon for dominating offensively only?

Nellie_Fox
03-23-2002, 01:35 AM
Originally posted by WinningUgly!
Nothing against Ozzie Smith, he deserves to be in the HOF, but he is in the hall only because of his defensive ability. Why should someone like Frank Thomas be looked down upon for dominating offensively only?
I'm a guy who loves defense(especially up the middle,) but you make a very good point. And, really, Ted Williams would probably be a DH in today's game.

Paulwny
03-23-2002, 09:14 AM
Originally posted by WinningUgly!

I wish the old timers would just get over the whole anti-DH thing. Like it or not, it's been a part of baseball for 25+ years.

I believe sport's writers select players for the HOF. The old timer's committee selects players who weren't voted for until x number of years has passed and these players are no longer on the ballot. This is how Fox was voted into the HOF.

ScottyTheSoxFan
03-23-2002, 06:56 PM
:kermit
"This isnt the hall of fame hump is it?"

Huisj
03-23-2002, 07:17 PM
Here's something I'd just thought of . . . what if Thomas had been drafted by a national league team instead of the sox, and he had had pretty much the same career as he has had, with the one exception being that he had played first all the time instead of DHing. Would people still be questioning his HOF credentials if he had spent the last 10 years as a lousy fielding first baseman instead of a DH? Also, he probably wouldn't have had quite the same stats as he has had because he would have missed more games like when he DH'd earlier in his career that one year when he had a messed up shoulder or something and couldn't throw--would he have instead missed that whole season?

When you look at it that way, it almost seems like your HOF chances would be better if you were in the NL than in the AL, simply because there is no option of being a DH in the NL, so the old farts that vote wouldn't hold it against you. I

I say you can't penalize someone for playing by the rules--and the rule says you can DH, and if a DH carries a team with his hitting (and helps out by letting a fielder better than himself play in the field), it makes no sense to screw them.

PaleHoseGeorge
03-23-2002, 08:11 PM
Originally posted by Huisj

When you look at it that way, it almost seems like your HOF chances would be better if you were in the NL than in the AL, simply because there is no option of being a DH in the NL, so the old farts that vote wouldn't hold it against you.

This is a sport that used to think wearing moustaches or colored shoes was too outlandish. It will take another 100 years or so before the neanderthals who still think the N.L. game is superior will finally treat any DH with respect.

Oh sure, but they had no problem with astro-turf in virtually every N.L. ballpark...

Gimme a break!

:gulp: