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Thursday, January 24, 2013

BP: The Milwaukee Walk of Shame?

Welcome to the 21st Century: A perfect world of total pleasure.  With just one catch…

The Brewers opened Miller Park in 2001. As part of the effort to connect this 21st century stadium to Milwaukee’s baseball past, the Brewers installed the Walk of Fame the same year. Inductees in the Walk of Fame are honored with large, home-plate shaped plaques placed in the grounds around Miller Park… The inaugural class consisted of the inner-circle of Milwaukee baseball greatness: Hank Aaron, Robin Yount, Paul Molitor, and Rollie Fingers. That’s a “no brainer” class if there ever was one.

Over the next few years, members of the Wisconsin media voted in more Brewers greats… in five years, twelve men had been selected to the Walk of Fame: three front-office types, eight members of the 1982 Brewers (including their manager), and Hank Aaron. Not even the Veterans Committee in its Frankie Frisch-heyday could boast that kind of record.

But with the 1982 Brewers nearly tapped out, what would happen to the Brewers Walk of Fame in 2006? Unsurprisingly, it was a shutout… And it has continued like that. Since 2007, only two men have been selected to the Walk of Fame: Lew Burdette in 2010 and Johnny Logan in 2013, both former Braves…

the current Walk of Fame is failing miserably at achieving the goal of connecting 21st century Brewers fans to Milwaukee baseball history. While the Brewers aren’t exactly the Yankees or Cardinals when it comes to all-time greats, there is no reason to hold the Walk of Fame to that kind of standard. Lighten up and help young fans see the players of their (or their parents’) childhood.

The District Attorney Posted: January 24, 2013 at 05:15 PM | 67 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: awards, brewers

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   1. eddieot Posted: January 24, 2013 at 06:37 PM (#4354423)
For perspective, here is the Phillies Wall of Fame. About as non-discriminating as one can get.

Robin Roberts 1978
Richie Ashburn 1979
Chuck Klein 1980
Grover Alexander 1981
Del Ennis 1982
Jim Bunning 1984
Ed Delahanty 1985
Cy Williams 1986
Granny Hamner 1987
Paul Owens 1988
Steve Carlton 1989
Mike Schmidt 1990
Larry Bowa 1991
Chris Short 1992
Curt Simmons 1993
Dick Allen 1994
Willie Jones 1995
Sam Thompson 1996
Johnny Callison 1997
Greg Luzinski 1998
Tug McGraw 1999
Gavvy Cravath 2000
Garry Maddox 2001
Tony Taylor 2002
Sherry Magee 2003
Billy Hamilton 2004
Bob Boone 2005
Dallas Green 2006
John Vukovich 2007
Juan Samuel 2008
Harry Kalas 2009
Darren Daulton 2010
John Kruk 2011
   2. zack Posted: January 24, 2013 at 06:59 PM (#4354432)
Over the next few years, members of the Wisconsin media voted in more Brewers greats…


I think I see the problem...

And I'm not even joking. The media vote for greats, winners, and players THEY have fond memories of.
   3. Greg K Posted: January 24, 2013 at 07:18 PM (#4354453)
A Blue Jays Wall of Fame, starting in 1992 every year must elect one. Retired player with the highest WAR as a Blue Jay wins.

1992 Lloyd Moseby
1993 Jim Clancy
1994 George Bell
1995 Ernie Whitt
1996 Tom Henke
1997 Kelly Gruber
1998 Rance Mulliniks
1999 Dave Stieb
2000 Jimmy Key
2001 Juan Guzman
2002 Tony Fernandez
2003 Devon White
2004 Doyle Alexander
2005 Pat Hentgen
2006 Roberto Alomar
2007 John Olerud
2008 Roger Clemens
2009 Fred McGriff
2010 Carlos Delgado
2011 Shannon Stewart
2012 Shawn Green

Apologies to other Jays fans as the players were selected off the top of my head, I'm sure I'm forgetting some (especially from the 80s). Willie Upshaw is set to go in for 2013 unless Orlando Hudson retires...or one of the many, many names I'm forgetting is more deserving.

Note that this would never, ever happen, as any Wall in Toronto that had Clemens' name on it and not Joe Carter's would be burned to the ground.
   4. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: January 24, 2013 at 08:30 PM (#4354495)
well, as someone who believes in a small hall in all matters of recognizing the very good this author clearly believes in a trophy for standing in one place for more than a minute wihtout soiling one's pants.

look, who precisely is being overlooked here? the milwaukee baseball teams have had a small number of players who either excelled while in milwaukee or are long-time players in the city and hence identified with the city/team.

i would prefer folks show some restraint.
   5. Walt Davis Posted: January 24, 2013 at 09:16 PM (#4354507)
Did I read that wrong? Is Eddie Mathews not on their wall of fame? Cuz that's nuts.

That aside, as HW notes, who's missing? Braun, with 32 WAR, is already 3rd on the Brewers career WAR list. Prince, at 15 WAR, is #13 just ahead of Corey Hart. I guess they could put in Cirillo or Jenkins and I'd love to see somebody recognize Jose Valentin. On the pitching side, well Chris Bosio, Bill Wegman, Mike Caldwell and Moose Haas are #s 3 through 6. Heck Cal Eldred is #9 and even Scott Karl slots in at #15.

   6. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: January 24, 2013 at 09:20 PM (#4354511)
but you need to let some time pass on the likes of braun and fielder

and putting pitchers like bill wegman in any hall of fame is just silly talk
   7. jobu Posted: January 24, 2013 at 09:32 PM (#4354518)
You could argue that no one with greatness and longevity is really being overlooked. The first names that come to mind for me are Fred Haney, Teddy Higuera, Ben Oglivie, Mike Caldwell, and Dan Plesac.
   8. GregD Posted: January 24, 2013 at 09:40 PM (#4354528)
Robin Roberts 1978
Richie Ashburn 1979
Chuck Klein 1980
Grover Alexander 1981
Del Ennis 1982
Jim Bunning 1984
Ed Delahanty 1985
Cy Williams 1986
Granny Hamner 1987
Paul Owens 1988
Steve Carlton 1989
Mike Schmidt 1990
Larry Bowa 1991
Chris Short 1992
Curt Simmons 1993
Dick Allen 1994
Willie Jones 1995
Sam Thompson 1996
Johnny Callison 1997
Greg Luzinski 1998
Tug McGraw 1999
Gavvy Cravath 2000
Garry Maddox 2001
Tony Taylor 2002
Sherry Magee 2003
Billy Hamilton 2004
Bob Boone 2005
Dallas Green 2006
John Vukovich 2007
Juan Samuel 2008
Harry Kalas 2009
Darren Daulton 2010
John Kruk 2011


You know I was ready to snark, but that's not crazy. There are some guys put in there to make sure eras don't get overlooked (Thompson, Callison, Taylor strike me as weakish) some guys who aren't super-great players but are understandably deeply identified with the team (Bowa, Boone) and some guys who had important peaks but quick drop offs (Daulton, Kruk). Juan Samuel is a little puzzling to me, but otherwise? I wouldn't sweat it.
   9. vortex of dissipation Posted: January 24, 2013 at 09:49 PM (#4354537)
Thompson, Callison, Taylor strike me as weakish


Sam Thompson played ten years for the Phillies, in which time he put up a batting line of .334/.388/.509, for an OPS+ of 144. During that time, he led the NL in hits, doubles, home runs, RBI, and slugging two times each. Hardly seems like a weak selection to me.
   10. eddieot Posted: January 24, 2013 at 09:49 PM (#4354538)
I agree GregD. It's a freaking brick wall in RF. No need to sweat it. It's fan friendly and does exactly what I think the Brewers walk was meant to do. My post was not meant to criticize, rather call atenntion to the fact that these things are for the fans.
   11. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: January 24, 2013 at 09:50 PM (#4354539)
i cannot begin to quantify the disdain i hold for this article posted.

its degree of stupidity is stupefying.

seriously, we are going to honor everyone? for anything?

i have emailed the author but expect no response. it's a hallmark of bpro that unless you are kissy-kissy, smoochy-smoochy you get a lame 'thanks for writing' and then silence
   12. OCF Posted: January 24, 2013 at 10:02 PM (#4354550)
Sam Thompson played ten years for the Phillies, in which time he put up a batting line of .334/.388/.509, for an OPS+ of 144. During that time, he led the NL in hits, doubles, home runs, RBI, and slugging two times each. Hardly seems like a weak selection to me.

We elected Sam Thompson to the Hall of Merit in "1930". For the most part, I didn't support him, although he would have been just off my 15-man ballot the year he was elected. Sure, his is the weakest case of the three 1990's Philadelphia outfielders. He's not Delahanty or Hamilton.

Just for fun, check the 1894 season statistics. The entire Philadelphia regular outfield - including their fourth outfielder - batted .400. Yes, 1894 was a completely insane year. But it's still something to see.
   13. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: January 24, 2013 at 10:04 PM (#4354551)
That Phillies list is something else, given that it includes the four most vilified players in that franchise's history, including one who was booed while being carried off the field on a stretcher.
   14. The District Attorney Posted: January 24, 2013 at 10:14 PM (#4354562)
Ugh, sorry, I screwed up the link. Here it is.

I also probably screwed up the excerpt. I believe Mathews and Spahn are on the Walk; BP is down right now so I can't confirm.
   15. John Northey Posted: January 24, 2013 at 10:20 PM (#4354570)
I think a team HOF should be one guy every two years with rare exceptions otherwise you start to get into weak players after awhile.

The Jays are a fairly new team (under 40 years old) and do a 'level of excellence' which has been around since 1996 when George Bell & Dave Stieb were put up there (Stieb made a comeback 2 years later). Inductions have been rare - the initial 2 in '96, Joe Carter & Cito Gaston in 1999, Tony Fernandez in 2001 (before his final ML game), Pat Gillick in 2002, Tom Cheek in 2004, and Roberto Alomar & Paul Beeston in 2008. The only retired number is Roberto Alomar's #12 (outside of #42 of course) as the Jays seem to be following the Tigers rule of HOF or no retiring of the number.

Basically 2 representatives of each successful era of Jays baseball. The 1980's (Stieb & Bell), the 1990's (Carter & Alomar), a guy who hit 3 eras (Fernandez in the 80's/93/late 90's), the 3 who built the WS teams (Gaston/Gillick/Beeston) and the teams radio broadcaster when he was dying (Tom Cheek). I suspect Carlos Delgado will be going up there soon, as will Roy Halladay when he retires. Basically, to get there you had to be a very good player who was viewed as key to an era, or part of the builders of the back-to-back World Champs or being honoured by the HOF (Cheek was thought to be a lock back then, took over 8 years to happen though).

I think a team favorites (which a team HOF would become) would include guys like Ernie Whitt, Jesse Barfield, Lloyd Moseby, John Olerud, Fred McGriff, Jimmy Key, Tom Henke, Jim Clancy, Pat Hentgen, with Shannon Stewart and Vernon Wells (when he isn't on a ML roster anymore) being reps for the more recent eras.

So that is 16 players and 4 non-players I see easily for the team in a team HOF. So one for every 2 years it has existed - just by chance actually as I didn't try to match it. Heavy on the 83-93 teams but that was the only time playoff teams occurred. Much like for the Brewers I guess. When your team gets into the playoffs odds are a lot of good players would be on it.

Today's era would add Jose Bautista but that's about it at this point. Others could join him (Romero if he gets his act back together, Lawrie maybe, one of the new guys if they perform well here).
   16. morineko Posted: January 24, 2013 at 10:20 PM (#4354571)
It's a Milwaukee Baseball Walk of Fame, so putting in really good Milwaukee Braves is OK with me.

I had the misfortune of becoming a Brewers fan post-1982 and pre-2006 so outside of the guys who were on the '82 team there is not much awesome to be found at all. Plesac was fine until he stopped closing--and then went elsewhere. The only players with anything resembling longevity on those teams are Bill Wegman and Geoff Jenkins, and the best thing I can think about telling my niece about them is that "they didn't leave Milwaukee until they were forced to go." I tell her about Molitor, and Yount, and Ben Sheets (too soon for him to be on any Walk of Fame, but if there's anyone from this era to go in, it's him) and the Nieves no-hitter and the Sabathia one-hitter, and the 2008 pennant race--but what else is there to be excited about?

Besides, it's no different from other teams' private Halls of Fame, like the Twins. '65 team, '87 team, '91 team, and Rod Carew and Brad Radke.
   17. OCF Posted: January 24, 2013 at 10:23 PM (#4354572)
Of course the overall quality of that Phillie list is staggering. Go small hall - advocate a Hall of Fame maybe half the current size. How many on this list make that? Alexander, Delahanty, Carlton, Schmidt, probably Hamilton and Roberts. Then there are all the ones beyond that that are either Hall of Fame or Hall of Merit at its current size: Klein, Bunning, Allen, Thompson, Magee. And Cravath is a long-argued borderline case.

And, of course, a team Walk of Fame absolutely should be honoring HOVG players like Callison or long-timers like Bowa. Since I assume that Milwaukee has already picked up its own long-timers (like Gantner), I take HW's objection to be that there's no one eligible who looks like that, either.
   18. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: January 24, 2013 at 10:31 PM (#4354575)
ocf

my objections are based in reason and common sense both of which escape the article's author

i could be more scathing in my dismissivness but am working to maintain a modicum of internet decorum
   19. Ulysses S. Fairsmith Posted: January 24, 2013 at 11:43 PM (#4354614)
. . . the Tigers rule of HOF or no retiring of the number.

The Tigers have retired Willie Horton 's number 23.
   20. John Northey Posted: January 25, 2013 at 12:19 AM (#4354638)
Really Ulysses? I could've sworn they had a HOF rule but I guess I was wrong. Dang. Checking their site he is the only guy who isn't a HOF'er...says he was a 'hometown hero'. Do the Red Sox have that rule?
   21. SoSH U at work Posted: January 25, 2013 at 12:35 AM (#4354646)
well, as someone who believes in a small hall in all matters of recognizing the very good this author clearly believes in a trophy for standing in one place for more than a minute wihtout soiling one's pants.

look, who precisely is being overlooked here? the milwaukee baseball teams have had a small number of players who either excelled while in milwaukee or are long-time players in the city and hence identified with the city/team.

i would prefer folks show some restraint.


I've got no issue with a small Brewers Hall, but that ship has sailed. It already includes Don Money, Jim Gantner and Rollie Fingers, he of the four whole seasons in Milwaukee. If those are some of your enshrinees, then Brewer-only Teddy Higuera is an obviously worthy candidate (even if he had the temerity not to play for the 82 club).

   22. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: January 25, 2013 at 12:47 AM (#4354649)
I remember right after Gantner retired there was a push by some fans (perhaps some in media) to retire his number. Instead he was awarded the naming of a 'Gantners Garden', a fairly sorry 'terrace' which was sort of a makeshift exterior space between the top of the grandstand level and the old mezzanine level of County Stadium. I didn't and don't support the 'retiring' of his number, but it was kind of a shitty 'honor' for a guy who was really beloved by most fans in Milwaukee (and he is a WI native).
   23. Booey Posted: January 25, 2013 at 12:49 AM (#4354650)
Really Ulysses? I could've sworn they had a HOF rule but I guess I was wrong. Dang. Checking their site he is the only guy who isn't a HOF'er...says he was a 'hometown hero'


So the Tigers haven't retired anyone's number from the '84 team? Trammell? Whitaker? Morris?

Wow.
   24. SoSH U at work Posted: January 25, 2013 at 12:57 AM (#4354656)
Do the Red Sox have that rule?


They did, but they broke it to retire Johnny Pesky's number. As they damn well should have. I think the standards should be high, but they should be franchise specific. I think Pesky, based on his lifelong connection to the club, is a far better candidate to have his number retired in Boston than a guy like Rice or even Boggs.
   25. Jay Z Posted: January 25, 2013 at 01:00 AM (#4354659)
Oglivie should probably be in the Walk Of Fame, he was as good as Gorman if not as popular.

After what is in there, you have a bunch of guys who were with the Brewers for a limited amount of time, or good for a limited amount of time. George Scott, Sixto Lezcano, Greg Vaughn, Richie Sexson, Jeromy Burnitz, etc. etc. etc.
   26. Fred Lynn Nolan Ryan Sweeney Agonistes Posted: January 25, 2013 at 01:59 AM (#4354671)
A Blue Jays Wall of Fame, starting in 1992 every year must elect one. Retired player with the highest WAR as a Blue Jay wins.

Same thing, because I was curious, and starting in 1976...
BEHOLD - THE WALL OF ASTROS LEGENDS:

1976 Don Wilson
1977 Jim Wynn
1978 Larry Dierker
1979 Turk Farrell
1980 J.R. Richard
1981 Doug Rader
1982 Mike Cuellar (!)
1983 Denny Lemaster
1984 Joe Morgan
1985 Bob Watson
1986 Cesar Cedeno
1987 Ken Forsch
1988 Jose Cruuuuuz
1989 Joe Niekro
1990 Art Howe
1991 Terry Puhl
1992 Mike Scott
1993 Bill Doran
1994 Nolan Ryan
1995 Glenn Davis
1996 Dickie Thon
1997 Kevin Bass
1998 Denny Walling
1999 Rusty Staub
2000 Dave Smith
2001 Ken Caminiti
2002 Danny Darwin
2003 Jim Deshaies
2004 Shane Reynolds
2005 Jeff Bagwell
2006 Richard Hidalgo
2007 Craig Biggio
   27. Moeball Posted: January 25, 2013 at 02:07 AM (#4354675)
Well, when you're a long time fan of a crappy franchise that has rarely looked like they knew what they were doing, you get used to really low standards. The Padres, for example, have had so few highlights over the decades that they are desperate for something to celebrate. Thus, they retired Steve Garvey's #6, apparently for his heroics in the 1984 NLCS, although it could represent the number of children he's fathered or the number of women involved.

Of course, this is the same team that was ecstatic over "winning" the NL West in 2005 with an 82-80 record. It was only due to the idiocy of divisional play that they were in the postseason at all ("hurray for us, our season didn't end in June like it usually does"). To further the idiocy, the players were so excited that in the celebratory pileup on the mound after the clincher, their best pitcher, Jake Peavey, was injured. I told several other fans this team had no business being in the playoffs. They didn't believe me but St. Louis sure did. Not only did the Padres get swept, they fell behind 8-0 in Game 1, 6-1 in Game 2 and 7-0 in Game 3 as the Cards cruised to the sweep without breaking a sweat.

At least the city of Milwaukee once had a team that won a championship, so that's something.
   28. Walt Davis Posted: January 25, 2013 at 02:11 AM (#4354679)
but you need to let some time pass on the likes of braun and fielder

and putting pitchers like bill wegman in any hall of fame is just silly talk


Sorry I wasn't clear -- I was agreeing with you. Too soon on some eventually deserving guys and otherwise a bunch of dreck. The pitching side is particularly underwhelming although Teddy Higuera would be fine.

Team halls will always be a bit dicey. Thinking just in WAR terms:

60 puts you in the real HoF give or take
But of that 60, often no more than 1/2 to 2/3 is with any one team. So even an overall HoFer might have a team WAR of only 30.
The criteria for a team hall are obviously lower than the real HoF
So, yeah, probably somewhere around 15 WAR with the team should probably put you in the conversation.

That would be 15 WAR over a reasonably short period of time (5 years?), 25 WAR over 10 years maybe? This generally assumes a couple of really good "memorable" seasons driving the WAR. An MVP or CYA is pretty much automatic induction. 2-3 AS games must be close to automatic.
   29. Moeball Posted: January 25, 2013 at 02:13 AM (#4354680)
That Phillies list is something else, given that it includes the four most vilified players in that franchise's history, including one who was booed while being carried off the field on a stretcher.


I'm forgetting my Philly history - I can figure Dick Allen as one of the 4 - who are the other 3? And how do you define "most" vilified in a city where the fans booed the greatest third baseman in history for almost all of his career? Their standards are so outside the realm of reality they would boo Jesus Christ for dying on the cross and waiting 3 days to come back. "What a wuss - a real man would have come back the next day!"
   30. Moeball Posted: January 25, 2013 at 02:26 AM (#4354682)
BEHOLD - THE WALL OF ASTROS LEGENDS:

1977 Jim Wynn
1984 Joe Morgan
1999 Rusty Staub


I've always been fascinated how the Astros in the '60s had these 3 players, all of whom:

1)Could hit for pretty good power
2)Had pretty good batting eyes (all had seasons in their career where they walked 100+ times)
3)Were totally unsuited for playing in the Astrodome

Particularly in the cases of Morgan and Staub, nobody in MLB had any idea how good these players were until they got out of the Astrodome which was absolutely strangling their stats.
   31. Fred Lynn Nolan Ryan Sweeney Agonistes Posted: January 25, 2013 at 03:15 AM (#4354688)
3)Were totally unsuited for playing in the Astrodome

Was there ever any such thing as a hitter totally suited for playing in the Astrodome?

I like to think about some kind of alternate history where a bored NASA employee invents "moneyball" in 1962, understands park effects better & sooner than anybody else, and somehow gets a job with the 'Stros - who then spend 10 years trading one-year-wonder pitchers for undervalued hitters, before anybody figures out what's going on. But.... no.
   32. OCF Posted: January 25, 2013 at 03:53 AM (#4354694)
Fun fact about Jim Wynn. In 1969 (the year he drew 148 walks), Wynn had a 1.039 OPS in the Astrodome and a .848 OPS on the road. The home runs were about the same, but he hit for a much higher average, hit more doubles and triples, and drew more walks at home.

Over his career, he was .250/.366/.436 overall but .263/.382/.457 in the Astrodome.
   33. Jittery McFrog Posted: January 25, 2013 at 04:14 AM (#4354695)
An alternative would be to honor great player seasons rather than great player careers. You could induct a few each year, a Yount season here, a Sheets 2004 there.
   34. Greg K Posted: January 25, 2013 at 05:51 AM (#4354700)
I think a team favorites (which a team HOF would become) would include guys like Ernie Whitt, Jesse Barfield, Lloyd Moseby, John Olerud, Fred McGriff, Jimmy Key, Tom Henke, Jim Clancy, Pat Hentgen, with Shannon Stewart and Vernon Wells (when he isn't on a ML roster anymore) being reps for the more recent eras.


Ah! I knew I was forgetting someone in my compiled list.
   35. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: January 25, 2013 at 08:42 AM (#4354714)
That Phillies list is something else, given that it includes the four most vilified players in that franchise's history, including one who was booed while being carried off the field on a stretcher.

I'm forgetting my Philly history - I can figure Dick Allen as one of the 4 - who are the other 3?


Mike Schmidt, Puddinhead Jones and Del Ennis were handled mercilessly by the Philly Phans every time they weren't in a hot streak. Ennis was the one who was booed while being carried off the field in a stretcher.

And how do you define "most" vilified in a city where the fans booed the greatest third baseman in history for almost all of his career? Their standards are so outside the realm of reality they would boo Jesus Christ for dying on the cross and waiting 3 days to come back. "What a wuss - a real man would have come back the next day!"

Yeah, that was kind of my point, which was more about Phillie Phans than about the players they excoriated.



   36. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: January 25, 2013 at 09:20 AM (#4354723)
I think the Giants have some kind of deal where if you play for the team a certain number of years you make the wall of fame. I think that makes sense as even less that good players will have had their fans if they stick with a team long enough and it takes the subjectivity out of the decision making.

Having just googled it the criteria are having played 9 years for the team or 5 years if you made an all star team during those 5 years. It's how you get Johnnie LeMaster on your wall but I still think it's a fine idea. Marvin Benard also made it and I'm kind of shocked to discover he actually did appear for the Giants in 9 different seasons.

Giants Wall of Famers:
Felipe Alou
Gary Lavelle
Jim Barr
Johnnie LeMaster
Rod Beck
Jeffrey Leonard
Vida Blue
Kirt Manwaring
Bob Bolin
Juan Marichal
Jeff Brantley
Willie Mays
Bobby Bonds
Mike McCormick
Bob Brenly
Willie McCovey
John Burkett
Stu Miller
Orlando Cepeda
Greg Minton
Jack Clark
Kevin Mitchell
Will Clark
Randy Moffitt
Jim Davenport
John Montefusco
Chili Davis
Robb Nen
Dick Dietz
Gaylord Perry
Darrell Evans
Rick Reuschel
Tito Fuentes
Kirk Rueter
Scott Garrelts
J.T. Snow
Tom Haller
Chris Speier
Atlee Hammaker
Robby Thompson
Jim Ray Hart
Matt Williams
Mike Krukow
Jeff Kent
Rich Aurilia
Shawn Estes
Marvin Benard
Jason Schmidt
   37. OsunaSakata Posted: January 25, 2013 at 09:23 AM (#4354724)
No love for John Anderson? Who else should represent the 1901 Brewers?
   38. BDC Posted: January 25, 2013 at 09:58 AM (#4354742)
The Texas Rangers don't have a Wall of Fame. They have a Hall of Fame, and I think I was there once for an event but have almost zero memory of the place; nor do they even list the members on their website. Wikipedia has them as:


Charlie Hough
Johnny Oates
Nolan Ryan
Jim Sundberg
Buddy Bell
Ferguson Jenkins
Tom Vandergriff
Mark Holtz
John Wetteland
Rusty Greer
Hannah Reese
Toby Harrah
Rubén Sierra
Tom Grieve
Kenny Rogers
Eric Nadel

My God but that's a motley crew. To my mind the most worthy of the bunch are Holtz and Nadel, both radio announcers. I'm not sure who Hannah Reese is. One factor is that they have never kept stars for full careers; Greer had the longest Rangers-only career (or will once Michael Young plays his first game for Philadelphia). I do admire the Rangers for not retiring numbers very readily. They've retired two: Ryan mostly honorary and Oates in memoriam.
   39. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: January 25, 2013 at 10:12 AM (#4354751)
Rollie Fingers, he of the four whole seasons in Milwaukee.

fingers is associated with getting the club into two post seasons and won both an mvp and a cy young

fingers hit a high peak with milwaukee

as to higuera he had some good years but a brief career. no post-season. no awards.

one could make a case for higuera as he is still regarded warmly by brewer fans

i think the author of this article was looking to embarrass milwaukee for not honoring everyone and anyone

i find this stance bizarre and will continue to reiterate this point.

i would rather a ted higuera be on the outside looking in versus an ernest riles have a spot in the brewer hall of fame.

if that makes me a mean old man or even a racist then i accept those designations unfair or no
   40. jobu Posted: January 25, 2013 at 10:22 AM (#4354758)
Now that Tony Plush is going to Japan, he is eligible for Milwaukee Walk of Fame induction.

Upon reflection, I think it's pretty clear that Fred Haney (two pennants, one WS championship, close to .600 winning percentage) and Teddy Higuera belong in there, by the standards established by team halls of fame.

"Hannah Reese" is the name that really sticks out for the Rangers Hall of Fame. Google offers few clues as to who that is. My guess is someone along the lines of Tom Vandergriff, who played a key role in getting the Rangers established in Arlington.

Rusty Greer, to me, is the quintessential team hall of fame member. He clearly belongs in the Rangers Hall as a long-term fan favorite, even if he is nowhere near consideration for Cooperstown. He's the Jim Gantner of the Metroplex.
   41. Jose Is The Most Absurd Thing on the Site Posted: January 25, 2013 at 10:28 AM (#4354763)
It doesn't make you a mean old man but I think there is something good about nodding to your history. The Red Sox have all kinds of people in their Hall from the greats (Williams, Yaz, Boggs) to the not-so-greats (Marty Barrett, John Valentin). The other thing the Sox do that I like is they honor an event every election; Roberts' steal, Brunansky's catch, stuff like that.

As great as the true superstars of a club are I think it's the more ordinary players that connect with the fans that make a team meaningful to its fans. Tim Wakefield will never get into Cooperstown but the Sox Hall will certainly induct him. I imagine Trot Nixon will be in there someday too. These aren't great players but I can see myself really enjoying the experience of explaining to someone why I loved rooting for these guys in 30-40 years.
   42. AROM Posted: January 25, 2013 at 10:32 AM (#4354765)
Rusty Greer, to me, is the quintessential team hall of fame member. He clearly belongs in the Rangers Hall as a long-term fan favorite, even if he is nowhere near consideration for Cooperstown. He's the Jim Gantner of the Metroplex.


I agree. For the Angels Garret Anderson is a no-brainer team HOFer, but should never be considered for Cooperstown. On the flip side, a guy like Gary Sheffield is a baseball HOFer, barring roid concerns, but bounced around so much that he may not be a HOFer for any of his teams (though maybe for the Marlins).
   43. AROM Posted: January 25, 2013 at 10:38 AM (#4354767)
Brewers do present a challenge here. For hitters, excluding the 82 team or active players, the leaders in WAR as a Brewer are:

Jeff Cirillo
George Scott
Geoff Jenkins
Sixto Lezcano
Jeromy Burnitz
Greg Vaughn
BJ Surhoff

I can't blame you if you don't want to induct those guys.
   44. AROM Posted: January 25, 2013 at 10:41 AM (#4354769)
On the pitching side Higuera is the obvious one, if he's not in already. Ben Sheets just retired, and would be a decent choice as well. Maybe Dan Pleasac?
   45. SoSH U at work Posted: January 25, 2013 at 10:53 AM (#4354774)
On the pitching side Higuera is the obvious one, if he's not in already.


He's not, which is what I find strange. You can be an exclusive club or you can honor Rollie Fingers and Jim Gantner*, but you can't reasonably be both.

There were only two retired players clearly better than Teddy in franchise history, even with his abbreviated career. Playoff appearances shouldn't count THAT much in this thing.

* I know, I know, local kid, good defender, played entire career with Milwaukee. It's nice, but it doesn't make him a better player than Teddy.
   46. Bitter Mouse Posted: January 25, 2013 at 11:18 AM (#4354790)
I think team specific HoF should have much different criteria than the baseball HoF, and I like the eccentric selections. Heck if it makes folks happy and drives interest in the players and other history of franchises, why not?

Of course I don't think it is worth getting worked up about it much either way.
   47. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 25, 2013 at 11:25 AM (#4354795)
The Royals are as old as the Brewers.

1986 - Amos Otis
1986 - Steve Busby
1987 - Paul Splitorff
1987 - Cookie Rojas
1987 - Dick Howser
1989 - Dennis Leonard
1989 - Hal McRae
1992 - Fred Patek
1992 - Larry Gura
1992 - Joe Burke - team exec
1993 - Ewing Kauffman
1994 - George Brett
1995 - Frank White
1996 - Muriel Kauffman - owner's wife (she owned the team after his death)
1996 - John Mayberry
1998 - Dan Quisenberry
2000 - Whitey Herzog
2000 - Willie Wilson
2003 - Jeff Montgomery
2004 - Denny Matthews - longtime broadcaster
2005 - Bret Saberhagen
2006 - Mark Gubicza
2008 - Art Stewart - longtime scout
2010 - Kevin Appier

I don't know why they come in spurts - some years have as many as three inductees, then they go years without an inductee.

Mike Sweeney I think is eligible this year and should get in next. Execs Cedric Tallis and John Schuerholz are probably the only other glaring omissions at this point. After that, maybe Bo Jackson gets in. Danny Tartabull could be deserving but he wasn't all that popular here. Mike MacFarlane, Joe Randa and John Wathan would be fringe candidates. Then Johnny Damon becomes eligible once he has been retired for three years.
   48. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: January 25, 2013 at 11:26 AM (#4354796)
jim gantner is adored in milwaukee. if that helps at all.

i stated one could make a case for higuera. but to say why fingers and not higuera is again to me just looking for a reason to criticize when the basis for criticism is rather tepid

none of these voters is looking at war. they are considering in terms of how milwaukee perceives the player



   49. AROM Posted: January 25, 2013 at 11:41 AM (#4354812)
none of these voters is looking at war. they are considering in terms of how milwaukee perceives the player


I get that. What I don't know is how they perceive Higuera. His career was brief but from 1985-88 years he was the best lefthanded pitcher in baseball. Never made the playoffs but the team did contend for 2 of those years.

Sometimes the media romanticize the players who had brief but dominant careers. If Yount and Molitor are the Honus Wagner and Babe Ruth of Milwaukee baseball, then Higuera is the Koufax.
   50. SoSH U at work Posted: January 25, 2013 at 11:49 AM (#4354821)
i stated one could make a case for higuera. but to say why fingers and not higuera is again to me just looking for a reason to criticize when the basis for criticism is rather tepid


I didn't bring it up. I don't care what the BP guy has to say. But I look at the Brewers Walk of Fame and conclude it's kind of a mess (not a major mess, but one that's simply hard to defend with any degree of logic). It includes one guy who was only there four seasons and whose contributions were overvalued at the time, a handful of guys who were there a longer stretch and we're various degrees of pretty good, and another local kid who played his entire career there but with limited amount of skill.

Meanwhile, a pitcher better than all but the franchise's two icons isn't included, simply due to the fact that he wasn't on the team in 1982.

I agree wholeheartedly with Bitter Mouse above, that a franchise honorary shouldn't be just a smaller version of Cooperstown, which is why I would support Johnny Pesky's number retiremenet long before I would a host of more talented players in Boston.

But the consideration has to be more in depth than "Was he a member of the club in 1982?" That's not eccentric or whimsical or fun. Moreover, I can't imagine it does a hell of a lot of good for the franchise's many fans who weren't around to enjoy the ride in 1982.

   51. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 25, 2013 at 11:58 AM (#4354832)

I get that. What I don't know is how they perceive Higuera. His career was brief but from 1985-88 years he was the best lefthanded pitcher in baseball. Never made the playoffs but the team did contend for 2 of those years.


That's not unlike Steve Busby in KC, who is in their club HOF, and was in fact in their inaugural class. He pretty much pitched just three seasons due to injury, but was brilliant in those three seasons. I wonder why Teddy is not beloved as Busby is in KC.
   52. jobu Posted: January 25, 2013 at 12:07 PM (#4354844)
So...the other "Jim Gantner All-Stars"--the signature fan-favorite players for each city that are CLEARLY not going to get a whiff from Cooperstown (perhaps guys who are sub-5% on first ballot)? First-cut thoughts (consider there to be a question mark after all of these):

ARI Steve Finley
ATL Bruce Benedict? Ultimately, I think it's going to be Andruw Jones--as good a player as he used to be, I think he'll be one-and-done with the BBWAA
CHC Mark Grace
CIN Don Kessinger? Glenn Beckert? Ronnie Woo-Woo Vickers for the Imodium(TM) Hall of Irritation?
COL Dante Bichette
FLA Jeff Conine
HOU Jose Cruz
LAD Bill Russell
MIL Jim Gantner
NYM Ed Kranepool
PHI Johnny Callison
PIT Manny Sanguillen
SD Nate Colbert
SF Robby Thompson
STL Ray Lankford
WAS Eddie Yost?

BAL Elrod Hendricks
BOS Johnny Pesky
CHW Ron Karkovice
CLE Jim Hegan
DET Willie Horton
KC Freddie Patek or Mike Sweeney (because Quiz deserves HOF consideration)
LAA Garret Anderson. Also, Jimmie Reese
MIN Kent Hrbek
NYY Frankie Crosetti? Paul O'Neill?
OAK Sal Bando
SEA Alvin Davis
TB Ben Zobrist? Jason Tyner Bobblehead?
TEX Rusty Greer. Could also be Jim Sundberg
TOR Tony Fernandez
   53. BDC Posted: January 25, 2013 at 12:14 PM (#4354848)
beloved as Busby

Busby is pretty beloved in Texas, too, where he has gravitated around the various Rangers broadcasting booths for many years. Simply a very likeable guy, spends a lot of time at events, talking with fans. Jim Sundberg, who's had a similar post-playing career, is also very gracious and personable.
   54. AROM Posted: January 25, 2013 at 12:30 PM (#4354874)
I wonder why Teddy is not beloved as Busby is in KC.


Teddy was a Mexican left handed pitcher, short compared to the norm of his position (under 6 feet tall) and featured a screwball. It's not that this profile of a pitcher is not loveable, quite the contrary. But you have to be original about it. His middle name was even Valenzuela.
   55. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 25, 2013 at 12:32 PM (#4354878)

KC Freddie Patek or Mike Sweeney (because Quiz deserves HOF consideration)


Frank White. Sweeney is actually fairly polarizing because of his large contract. Patek is well-liked but largely forgotten.

Hal McRae and Willie Wilson could also be considered.


STL Ray Lankford


I'd say someone like Willie McGee is more popular? Lankford kinda represents their early 90s suck years. Or maybe Joe McEwing. I kid.


SEA Alvin Davis


Jay Buhner


BAL Elrod Hendricks


Mark Belanger


ATL Bruce Benedict? Ultimately, I think it's going to be Andruw Jones--as good a player as he used to be, I think he'll be one-and-done with the BBWAA


Mark Lemke


CHW Ron Karkovice


Ozzie Guillen
   56. jobu Posted: January 25, 2013 at 12:36 PM (#4354882)
I'd say someone like Willie McGee is more popular [than Lankford]?
For sure, but Willie McGee achieved the distinction of being the most unattractive player to get 5% of Hall of Fame ballots from the writers. I probably included some 5%ers in the list above, but I knew about McGee.
   57. Devin has a deep burning passion for fuzzy socks Posted: January 25, 2013 at 12:43 PM (#4354890)
Speaking of fits and starts, here's the Mets Hall of Fame:

1981 Joan Payson
1981 Casey Stengel
1982 Bud Harrelson
1982 Gil Hodges
1982 George Weiss
1983 Johnny Murphy
1983 Bill Shea
1984 Ralph Kiner
1984 Bob Murphy
1984 Lindsey Nelson
1986 Rusty Staub
1988 Tom Seaver
1989 Jerry Koosman
1990 Ed Kranepool
1991 Cleon Jones
1992 Jerry Grote
1993 Tug McGraw
1996 Mookie Wilson
1997 Keith Hernandez
2001 Gary Carter
2002 Tommie Agee
2010 Frank Cashen
2010 Dwight Gooden
2010 Davey Johnson
2010 Darryl Strawberry
2012 John Franco

Typical, of the first 10 inducted, 1 was a player.

I'm assuming Piazza will be in shortly, although he's not actually the leader in position player WAR among retired non-inducted players. That'd be Edgardo Alfonzo. After him it's Piazza, HoJo, John Stearns(!), and Olerud.

If you look at just hitting, it's Piazza, HoJo, Alfonzo, Lee Mazzilli and Kevin McReynolds.

The top pitchers, by WAR are Al Leiter, Sid Fernandez, Jon Matlack, David Cone and Rick Reed.

If I had to guess, the most popular picks after Piazza would be HoJo and Cone. Leiter was tight with the Wilpons, maybe that will get him in. Ron Darling might be helped by his broadcasting gig.

[Edited to respond to the "Jim Gantner All-Stars"]
I'd go with Mookie Wilson over Kranepool for a fan favorite. Most of the comments I see on Kranepool are complaints about Met records he held, but that could be from hanging out here.
   58. GregD Posted: January 25, 2013 at 05:27 PM (#4355095)
CIN Don Kessinger? Glenn Beckert? Ronnie Woo-Woo Vickers for the Imodium(TM) Hall of Irritation?
I assume you just typed two lines of Cubs guys and put one next to CIN by accident?

For Cincinnati I think you'd be looking at Dan Driessen, maybe Bill Gullickson, Cesar Geronimo (unless you think Ken Griffey Sr is a Jim Gantner All Star, in which case he's pretty clearly the choice.) Chris Sabo was mighty popular, too. Eric Davis didn't get any HOF recognition (0.6%) but is not really the category you are asking about.

I would have guessed Glenn Hubbard as the captain of the Jim Gantner All Stars for Atlanta.
   59. jobu Posted: January 25, 2013 at 05:40 PM (#4355109)
I assume you just typed two lines of Cubs guys and put one next to CIN by accident?

Yeah, mulitasking. I think those are CIN choices, though I would actually say Joe Nuxhall for them. Or even Pete Rose.
   60. Misirlou's been working for the drug squad Posted: January 25, 2013 at 05:50 PM (#4355120)
1977 Jim Wynn
1984 Joe Morgan
1999 Rusty Staub



I've always been fascinated how the Astros in the '60s had these 3 players, all of whom:

1)Could hit for pretty good power
2)Had pretty good batting eyes (all had seasons in their career where they walked 100+ times)
3)Were totally unsuited for playing in the Astrodome

Particularly in the cases of Morgan and Staub, nobody in MLB had any idea how good these players were until they got out of the Astrodome which was absolutely strangling their stats.


They also had John Mayberry, who hit .181/.284/.350 for the Astros, and then hit .298/.394/.507 his first year with the Royals.
   61. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: January 25, 2013 at 05:57 PM (#4355129)
Teddy wasn't beloved in Milwaukee because: 1. His english wasn't great (unfair, but true), 2. He signed a big contract and ultimately got injured shortly thereafter. The lasting images are of him jogging on the warning track with a jacket on all the time and somebody I think got a shot of him rehabbing in a hot tub and that didn't go so well as he's cashing those big checks (signed 3 or 4 year deal at $3ish million a year). It's not that he was despised at all, it just didn't end well, after such a great little run, for a club that was frankly spinning its wheels at the time with a fairly decent roster.
   62. Walt Davis Posted: January 25, 2013 at 05:59 PM (#4355131)
The Cubs are a tough one. None of the nominees really click. It would probably be Reuschel but I don't recall him being very active around Chicago. Randy Hundley possibly? Jody Davis although I don't know that he comes back very often. Sarge even though he wasn't there very long. But Santo absorbed so much of that post-career love among Cub fans,* and was heavily involved in charity fundraising, there really wasn't much left.

* also Banks but he's clearly above Jim Gantner status. So was Santo of course but it took the HoF such a long time to recognize that he was adopted into that role by Cub fans.
   63. Walt Davis Posted: January 25, 2013 at 06:01 PM (#4355133)
The White Sox on the other hand probably have a ton of candidates. The Cub marketing was always about a superstar or two surrounded by embarrassment. The White Sox had lunch pail guys and probably had 5-6 fan "favorites" at any time.
   64. AROM Posted: January 25, 2013 at 06:08 PM (#4355139)
I've always been fascinated how the Astros in the '60s had these 3 players


I'm particularly amazed how the same team at the same time came up with perhaps the two smallest power hitters of all time.
   65. smileyy Posted: January 25, 2013 at 06:13 PM (#4355142)
For CIN, there's a case for Jose Rijo.
   66. Fred Lynn Nolan Ryan Sweeney Agonistes Posted: January 25, 2013 at 07:10 PM (#4355174)
I'm particularly amazed how the same team at the same time came up with perhaps the two smallest power hitters of all time.

Mel Ott being the king, I guess, of that particular court.
BB-Ref has Brian Downing listed at 5'10" and just 170#, which seems... unlikely.
   67. Misirlou's been working for the drug squad Posted: January 25, 2013 at 08:21 PM (#4355205)
The Cubs are a tough one. None of the nominees really click. It would probably be Reuschel but I don't recall him being very active around Chicago. Randy Hundley possibly? Jody Davis although I don't know that he comes back very often. Sarge even though he wasn't there very long. But Santo absorbed so much of that post-career love among Cub fans,* and was heavily involved in charity fundraising, there really wasn't much left.


Gotta go back a ways, but Phil Cavaretta and Charlie Grimm fit the bill.

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