Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Griffey Jr. and 600, What Does It Mean?

First of all, congrats to Griffey for his 600th home run. It's easy to feel good for him. He's an entertaining player, by all accounts a good guy, and there's no evidence thus far that he juiced. But this accomplishment, significant as it may be, has been affected by the time period when Junior played. We've become desensitized to home run milestones reached by players whose salad days were in the steroid era. Unfortunately, Griffey falls into that category.

I think the steroid era forces us to really look whether a player was really one of the best of that time and not just at arbitrary numerical milestones. Here is my list of players from the past 15 years or so who will get HOF attention, and whether I think they will be in or out. For the sake of brevity, I will not be looking at pitchers for now, only power hitters who have reached 400+ home runs. I am basing my lists on whether I believe they are the top players of their era regardless of numbers. Feel free to argue with me. In fact, I hope you will. Let me know who I'm forgetting about.

In: Ken Griffey Jr., Sammy Sosa, Alex Rodriguez, Manny Ramirez, Frank Thomas, Barry Bonds.

Out: Mark McGwire, Juan Gonzalez, Jim Thome, Rafael Palmiero, Gary Sheffield, Jeff Bagwell.


Peter said...

Curious to know if you're going to let Clemens in too if Bonds and Sosa get in?

Joey said...

How do you explain the 2002-2004 with the serious injuries. Do you chalk it up to old age? Usually, I would say it was age but unfortunately, in this era you have to consider steroid use as a possible factor.

I can see that Bonds was a great player before steroids, but I think Sosa was above average player before steroids not great. Also, MLB is really tough on who gets into their Hall (unlike football) so I don't think Sosa gets in.

Dennis said...

I don't think Sosa gets in either. As for Bonds, I think even 2 years ago he still would have got in, but now, I don't think so.

But don't underestimate Thome and Bagwell. When a player is a "good guy" who got along with the media and has the right skin hue, things can happen.

Dan said...

Perhaps, I should've clarified. These are the folks who I think should and shouldn't be in based on how I view their careers. Whether or not I think they will get in is a different story.

In my opinion Clemens should be in as well. My criteria doesn't take into account 'roid use. In my system I just assume that everyone did something.