MLBTR states that Freddy Garcia has signed a minor league deal with the Mets as he continues his comeback. So cross him off the list as a potential #5 for the Yanks. (Are you getting as p-o’d about Pettitte as I am? Damn it Andy… )
Interesting talk about Jeff Kent today. Most talking about him as a HOF but then Colin Cowherd read an email saying not. If Kent does get in it won’t be on the 1st ballot, that’s for sure. Granted Kent wasn’t a great fielder, but Cowherd said only 5x an all-star in 17 years in the majors. Still, I look at the position. If Kent played LF, not a HOF, but he was a 2B. At 2B, he put up offensive numbers rarely seen by 2B. Granted if given the choice between Robbie Alomar or Kent, I’d take Robbie. Same with Hornsby, Sandberg, Mazeroski (not the bat, but what a glove), Eddie Collins, Jackie Robinson, etc. I don’t know about that enabler bit. That Kent only benefitted from Bonds behind him. Surely it didn’t hurt, but give Kent his offensive due. .290 with 377 HR and an OPS+ of 123 is pretty damned good for a 2B, as is 8 100-RBI seasons.
Looks like the Celtics are out of their funk.
Now Mark McGwire’s brother is coming out against his brother Mark, saying that McGwire started with the steroids in 1994. As ESPN News has on as I write this, the Pre- and Post-1994 numbers on McGwire are quite different. McGwire did have good seasons before 1994 (49 HR as a rookie in 1987) and he also had some clunkers, despite the power. 1989-1991, .235-.231-.201. And in 1989 the A’s won the WS, 1990 the pennant. Granted the HRs were 33, 39 and 22 but not HOF numbers at all then. He bounced back with a solid 1992 before injuries cost him most of 1993 and 1994. Those who want to put Big Mac in the Hall have to admit that his pre-1994 numbers do not merit HOF consideration. Granted he had nice power numbers, but those BA’s of 1989-1991 are sickly. It’s the post-1994 numbers (1995-2000) that do. Those, combined with the pre-1994 give the 583 HR. Even at that, the career BA was just .263. Reggie had a .262 with 563 HR but Reggie’s numbers don’t bear the brand of suspicion that McGwire’s does. The accusations by McGwire’s brother won’t help his cause. What’s that? You choose your friends but your family you are stuck with? It’s sad. McGwire’s power should override his BA, and that 162 OPS+ is superb. But he (and Bonds, Clemens, etc.) wear the scarlet letter. You wonder with the problems that McGwire had, if he could have come back at all from the injuries if not for the juice. If he couldn’t have, then there would definitely be no HOF talk about him.
But with the McGwire/Bonds controversy, you wonder what Maris’ family thinks. I know what ex-YFCR co-host Joe thinks. He’s a huge Maris fan.
Speaking of, do you know McGwire never won the MVP award? The year he hit 70, 1998, he finished 2nd. Sammy Sosa (another story there … 600 + HR and more suspicion) won the award that year.
You hate to play judge and jury. But you also hate the suspicion. Not only that… the “cheating” belittles the accomplishments of a Mays or Aaron. Trying to compare Sosa’s 609 HR to Mays 660 or Griffey’s 611 is not fair to Mays or Griffey. Not fair at all.
I see that Dante Lavelli, a great Browns WR from the late 1940s/early 1950s, passed away earlier this week.