Saturday, January 10, 2009

Hawk For Hall - 2009

Here’s the annual “Andre Dawson Belongs in the Hall Of Fame” rant.

Yes, I confess his straight offensive numbers don’t matchup. His .323 OBP is brutal for Hall standards. Dawson also came short of the “magic” numbers of 500 bombs (438) and 3,000 hits (2774). Plus, his post season numbers are pretty sorry, albeit in limited chances.

Here’s my argument: As a batter, you have three ways to excel: at the plate, in the field, and on the bases. Dawson did all three while making 8 trips to the All-Star game, collecting 8 Gold Gloves, winning one MVP, and twice finishing second. Let’s break it down.

At The Plate
Again, this phase of the game alone doesn’t get him in - but he was certainly no slouch. 438 bombs (34th all time), Top 10 in total bases ten times, Top 10 in slugging 8 times, 4 Silver Sluggers, and Top 10 in OPS 6 times.

In The Field
Here’s where it gets interesting. Forget the numbers. It’s like most voters log onto, plugs in a candidate’s name, calculates the numbers, and makes a decision (Unless your Pedro Gomez, who seems to have his own critiera of voting.). Well, the various fielding stats (fielding %, putouts, range factor, etc.) don’t tell the entire story. I know baseball has a stat for seemingly everything but NODPG (Number of dips per game), but how about these: How many times did runners NOT tag up from 3rd because the lazy fly ball went to Dawson and his howitzer-like right arm? How did this effect the 3rdbase coach looking to send a guy? How about runners from 2nd trying to score on a single? Not “how many times did Hawk gun the sorry slug out,” rather “how many times did the 3rd base coach say ‘F-it, not against Hawk’” because of Andre’s cannon? Same with guys going from 1st to 3rd on a single. Do they have stats for this? No.

On The Basepaths
A power hitter with 314 steals? That’s rare. How rare, in fact? The list of guys with over 400 dingers and 300 steals: Willie Mays, Bacne Bonds, and Andre Dawson. End of list. And like fielding, statistics don’t tell the whole story. How many times did he score from 2nd when the average player (or even most HOFers) wouldn’t have…especially a power hitter? 1st to 3rd? Score from 1st on a routine double?

To Conclude
His OBP is terrible, I know, I know. But, again, there’s three phases of a batters game – Offense, defense, running the bases. Jim Rice is another borderline guy who usually gets a few more votes than Dawson. Their offensive numbers are very similar (and Rice compiled these in Fenway, not the graveyard in Montreal), but Dawson absolutely destroys him in the other two categories. Destroys him! Do that not count? Doesn’t excelling in defense and base running supplement very good batting numbers that are slightly short? I say yes. And by the way…Andre did all this with shredded knees from playing on Olympic Stadium’s green concrete for 11 years. Plus, his intangibles would probably grade off the charts – great teammate, leader, played hurt, a true professional, sweet fro, solid ‘stache, etc.

Boston Mayor Peter Gammons usually votes for about 8 guys on his ballot – never Dawson. Maybe during his two years in Boston, Hawk asked him questions like: “Why is your face on the $20 bill,” or “When did you start using George Washington’s dentures.” I just can’t figure out how Gammons (or anyone) doesn’t think Dawson is one of the 8 best guys not in the Hall. Whatever.

Thank you for your time - End of rant.


Wrigleyville said...

alas, it will not happen once again - and for a very simple reason (beyond some of his stats being on the bubble):

the hall of fame balloting system is designed such that people who are generally not very good at their jobs are voting on people who are very, very good at theirs.

Anonymous said...

happy to see dawson not elected again, just cause i know it pisses off WV ;)

ClownShipLollypop said...

They had a crazy Cub's - Pirates game on late last night on the MLB network from 1991. (I was half asleep). It was tied 7-7 in the
10th inning when Dawson belted a grand slam.

The Pirates came back with 6 runs in the bottom of the 10th to win. Awesome game.

brad said...

Clown - you see that 82 Brewers show on the MLB Network? It was pretty sweet.

D'Amico's one good year said...


I was watching that, too. My little niece just kept shouting "Yay, baseball!"... It felt good. Part of me wants them to show non-classic games... You know, like a meaningless Brewers game against a horrible team from the late 80's/early 90's so we can laugh and marvel at some of the names.

ClownShipLollypop said...

Brad, no I missed that. I had heard it was going to be on, but forgot to check. If you see it's going to be on again post it! MLB network has been pretty awesome so far.

it was interesting to see Bonds before roids and how thin he was.

God I miss baseball...

OutWest said...

Denied again....He got 67% and is inching up....if Rice can make it, Hawk will too....Here's hoping for a 2010 call for the Hall!!

Also, here's hoping for Artis Gilmore in the B-Ball HOF soon!!