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Discussion in 'Sports' started by Bro. Curtis, Jul 27, 2009.
Can't argue against Ricky Henderson being in the HoF. But Jim Rice ?
Ricky mentioned all his sports heroes as he was growing up...
Reggie Jackson, Hank Arron, Willie Mays.... and a couple more...
Seems all those he named had something in common... and its not that they all played baseball...
I don't hold Ricky's statement against him. He always was a nut in front of a microphone. His accomplishments on the field speak for themselves. A lot of his records may never be broken.
I think that Jim Rice's numbers were adequate to get into the Hall of Fame. He played when pitching was much better than it has been for the past couple of decades so, no, his numbers aren't as gaudy as today's sluggers:
BA from 1974-89: .298
382 home runs
At least 100 rbi 8 times
Over .300 average 7 times
Over 200 hits 4 times.
When pitching was better? By what measure? You're seriously not putting down pitchers from the late 90s and this decade because the batters they faced were juicing, are you?
Just my general observation from being a baseball fan for almost fifty years. If you disagree, that's fine. No big deal.
I don't doubt that you can make an argument that expansion has diluted the pitching a bit. However, the steroid factor must be...well...factored in, as CCROB pointed out.
Is no one going to talk about HOF voting in the other thread :smilewinkgrin:
I would argue that pitching is better now, considering we've been in the steroids era, and that, at the top, we've seen some of the greatest pitchers in the history of the game. As great as Pedro and Randy Johnson were, they would have been even more dominant had they pitched in the late 70s/early 80s. At the height of the steroid era, here's just a sample of what these 2 guys did.
In 1999, Pedro struck out 313 batters. In 2000, his ERA was 1.74 (!) and WHIP was .737 (!!!). And this in the tougher American League. From 1999-2002, Randy Johnson struck out over 330 batters and his ERA was under 2.65. Just sensational. I don't see a pitcher in the late 70s/early 80s who was anywhere close to being that dominant.
Tom, I wish I knew more about HoF voting, but I'd just be faking it.
I'm on the fence with Rice, I just don't think he had the #s. But as a life-long Red Sox fan, itis great to see his jersey retired.
That's because there are just as many pitchers on roids as hitters. We know Clemens did it. Nothing would surprise me. Even Maddux or Randy Johnson or Pedro. Not saying they did, but if it came out that they did - it wouldn't surprise me one bit.
Curtis, I agree with you about Rice - I always thought he was borderline. His hitting stats need to be discounted some due to playing in Fenway, and he just didn't bring any other attributes like speed or defense to be considered "great" in my book. He was a "great" hitter for about 3-4 years in the late 70's, but not sure that's enough to get him in.
Curtis, join in anyway. We're all just feeling our way around anyway...much like the HOF voters!
Andy is right on one point - it's not just the hitters who are juicing. That said, is P really better now, thanks to expansion and a myriad of other reasons? Ballparks are more hitter friendly, and the numbers are bearing out. But good P tends to be good, regardless. I'd like to see comparitive ERAs from each era.
I agree with Bill James. Rice wasn't a slam dunk, but his numbers were just strong enough. If he were bristly with reporters, no way he gets in. NO WAY. That helped him like it hurt other players. I'm thinking of Dale Murphy, who was in Knoxville recently doing autographs. He's finally figured out he has to talk to the press for a while, and that he has to give them what they want. Too late.
And do we really know the height of the Roid era?
No question about that. This is why I chose 2 guys that didn't have the look of being a juicer, but it's not like I would be shocked to find out that they were. In fact, at this point, there's only 1 guy in all of baseball that I would be shocked to find out was on the juice.
I think we have a good idea. I was listening to a podcast the other day where the podcast host said he was watching the '99 Home Run Derby and just about everybody was hitting 500 foot homeruns. In contrast, there wasn't a single 500 foot homerun in this year's Home Run Derby. I think the height of the steroid era was between 1999 and 2001. The steroid era really only started coming to an end when we realized that Barry Bonds was 37 years old and crushing homeruns at a rate that completely defied his age and all historical data for baseball players of a comparable age.
I don't doubt the years you reference are part of the steroid era. But can we definitively say that the years prior or after to them were not part? That's the conundrum. We don't know where to put the line. You even said yourself "I think...." and that's the best we can do. The juiced ball era is pretty well defined. The weak pitching eras and weak hitting eras are likewise. The roid era is harder to nail down, especially at its zenith. I don't know if we can know with certainty.
I didn't say they weren't, but the question was about the height of the steroid era and that's where I think it was. McGwire and Sosa were using in 1998 and as we've seen repeatedly this season, players were using as late as 2003.
Yeah, saw that about Ortiz and ManRam (is there any question he was potentially a perennial user?).
Will we ever know the true extent of the Roid era?
Just heard on Mike & Mike that Canseco is now saying the Hall of Fame includes a juicer, but he wouldn't say his name. Of course, we all know who he is talking about - none other than Rickey Henderson. Wouldn't surprise me. In fact, as nutty as Canseco is, I'm more apt to believe him than not.
As for the height of the roid era, I thik you have to include '98 in there - McGwire's 70 and Sosa's 66. I would say '97 - '02.
I think there are a lot of guys who have never used, while there are more that have used than are known. It's unfortunate that the MLBPA didn't stand up to stop this years ago. They have stood in the way, and have brought doubt on everyone.
Henderson was the best lead off man in the modern generation, if not ever. Rice was a very solid player, but his numbers were a bit weak. A case can be made either way.
At this point, the only player who would shock me if he's on the infamous list of 104 is Derek Jeter.
I actually think the steroid era really took off after other players saw what the juice did for McGwire and Sosa, culminating in Barry Bonds' 2001 season.