The Braves clean-up hitter who most belongs in the HOF

Sorry, it ain’t Murph. He was a special player, and an all-time Brave, but not a baseball immortal.

Tom Emanski agrees

Tom Emanski agrees

There’s a better case to be made for Fred McGriff, a first-time candidate on this year’s ballot:

HR: McGriff, 493; Murph, 398

RBI: McGriff, 1550; Murph, 1266

BA: McGriff, .284; Murph, .265

Murphy was better defensively and has two MVP awards. But McGriff finished in the Top 10 in MVP balloting six times, twice more than Murphy. And in 50 postseason games, the Crime Dog batted .303, with 10 homers and 37 RBI.

Jayson Stark says McGriff belongs in Cooperstown..

“Fred McGriff’s greatest years came BEFORE the numbers exploded on us in 1993. This man was a difference-maker before the world went haywire on us. So how come so many people are lumping him in there with the rest of the PED generation? I understand that those 12 seasons from 1993-2004 comprise two-thirds of McGriff’s career. But let’s look at the numbers he put up early in his career, when 30-homer seasons were a feat for real, live middle-of-the-order mashers, not No. 6 hitters: From 1988-92, McGriff had four seasons with an adjusted OPS-plus of 153 or better, more than anyone else in either league. Both of his two home run titles came in that span (1989 and ‘92). He finished in the top four in his league in home runs, OPS and home run ratio in all five of those years. And how many other players could say that? How about zero.”

–CB

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12 Comments on The Braves clean-up hitter who most belongs in the HOF

  1. Viva Rufino Linares // December 1, 2009 at 5:10 pm //

    I could not agree more. Murph is my all time favorite, but the Crime Dog was a dangerous offensive player.

  2. Viva Rufino Linares // December 1, 2009 at 5:56 pm //

    I know it’s off topic but did anyone see this

    http://bats.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/11/30/chip-caray-and-tbs-part-ways/

  3. Viva Rufino Linares // December 1, 2009 at 5:58 pm //

    Nevermind it was in the last post

  4. rankin' rob // December 1, 2009 at 6:04 pm //

    I wish Crime Dog had hit those last seven dingers to get him to 500. The geriatric NY-Boston nitwits who cast the votes like round numbers.

  5. Think of all the young players whose baseball dreams have come true in part to his support for the Tom Emanski defensive drills video? Back to back to back National Championships don’t lie!

  6. Also, if he gets in he HAS to have that god-awful Baseball World hat on his plaque. Sorry Braves.

  7. PepeFreeUs // December 2, 2009 at 12:59 am //

    Dale’s case is based on a decade of dominant play. It should be enough to get him in but it won’t, which is to the voters’ lasting shame.

    Freddie’s career numbers are more impresive and he was more consistent. He gets in, even if he has to wait a little while (much like Andre Dawson.)

  8. If he had a decade of superior numbers, I’d agree that Murphy belongs in the Hall. But his period of dominance covers just five years, ’82 to ’87, the only seasons in which he had 100 RBI or more. Before and after that time he was not among the league’s best. I love the guy but am unconvinced that he belongs in Cooperstown.

  9. Is team Baseball World in the Al or NL? I’m confused.

  10. Jack Straw // December 2, 2009 at 8:14 am //

    Consistency is no longer properly valued. McGriff should be in on the first ballot.
    Why isn’t Big Lee Smith in the HOF?

  11. rankin' rob // December 2, 2009 at 12:48 pm //

    From Wikipedia re Lee Smith’s HOF votes: To be eligible for induction into the Baseball Hall of Fame, a candidate needs to receive votes on 75 percent of the total ballots cast by the Baseball Writers Association of America. However, if the candidate receives less than 5 percent, he is no longer eligible for future Hall of Fame consideration.

    Smith was first eligible for the ballot five years after he retired, and is allowed to be on the ballot through 2017 if he continues to meet the minimum vote threshold. In his first year of eligibility, 2003, Smith received 210 votes, or 42 percent of the 496 total ballots cast. The following year, Smith only received 185 votes, or 37 percent of the 506 total ballots cast. In 2005, Smith improved from the previous year’s results, and received a total of 200 votes, or 39 percent of the 516 total cast. Smith came closer to joining the Hall of Fame in 2006 by receiving 45 percent of the ballots cast, or 234 votes. In 2007, Smith’s received only 217 votes, just 40 percent of the 545 total ballots cast. Smith increased his total in 2008, with 235 votes, 43.3% of the total ballots cast.

  12. PepeFreeUs // December 2, 2009 at 5:20 pm //

    That’s six years, CB. And I would extend that back to 1980, the first year he started to capitalize on his talent.

    Run his numbers next to Mike Schmidt’s or anybody else’s for the decade of the ’80’s. Even with the two decline years of ’88 and ’89, he’s still among the elite.

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