Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo
You are here > Home > Baseball Newsstand > Baseball Primer Newsblog > Discussion
Baseball Primer Newsblog
— The Best News Links from the Baseball Newsstand

Friday, January 04, 2013

Don Mattingly Hall of Fame Q&A

Ooof! Just strained my lower back reaching to get Mattingly to 3,000 hits in five years.

Q. Was there ever a time when you felt like you would be a Hall of Famer?

A. When I retired, I was 34. If I had kept playing another five years, I may have ended up with 3,000 hits and reached some other milestones and gotten in. I made the decision for my boys because I wanted to be around. When you do that type of thing, you know what you’re doing, you know you’re not going to make the Hall of Fame. If I was worried about making the Hall of Fame, I wouldn’t have retired.

Q. What impact do you think the back injury had on your chances of being a Hall of Famer?

A. I was pretty good for a short period and, when I got banged up and hurt my back, it kind of robbed me of some things, things I wasn’t able to do after that. That’s just the way it is. There are a lot of guys who are probably in my boat, good players who got banged up and found it hard to be productive after that. For me, it was hard just to stay on the field. I was on the DL once a year, maybe twice, for the last five years. When you do that, it’s really frustrating because you start rolling a little bit and the next thing you know, you’re on the shelf. Couple that with my kids and everything and it’s enough.

Repoz Posted: January 04, 2013 at 04:39 PM | 113 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: yankees

Reader Comments and Retorts

Go to end of page

Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

Page 2 of 2 pages  < 1 2
   101. SoSH U at work Posted: January 06, 2013 at 01:38 PM (#4340038)

Does this spin not seem like a significant disadvantage? Both righties and lefties have their momentum taking them away from the throw, and given how deep shortstops play, it's a long throw, a lot longer than the equivalent throw in softball. I assume second basemen get away with it because they're often throwing to 2nd.


There's another factor at work here. When the second baseman goes to his left and makes such a pivot, the turn his body must make to make the throw to second isn't that far. The shortstop could make a similar play on the runner at second. However, the pivot required to make a throw to first is much farther (due to the angle of the bases compared to the shortstop's position on the diamond), and thus would gobble up more of those precious milliseconds that make the difference between safe and out.
   102. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: January 06, 2013 at 01:46 PM (#4340048)
gobble up more of those precious milliseconds that make the difference between safe and out


That's the whole issue right there. A good lefty throwing athlete can look incredibly smooth playing SS, but still be taking longer to make the plays than a righty thrower who looks bad.
   103. valuearbitrageur Posted: January 06, 2013 at 02:49 PM (#4340084)
I know that 375lb Carlos Lee is thrilled to be the highest ranked WAR defensive player in the NL in 2011, but I just can't give WAR any credibility because its defensive numbers defy common sense as calculated at this time. Maybe at some point in the future this flaw will be fixed. Maybe not.


I know Darin Erstad was thrilled to be 2nd in the AL with a .355 BA in 2000, but I just can't give batting average any credibility because its offensive numbers defy common sense at this time. Maybe someday in the future this flaw will be fixed. Maybe not.
   104. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: January 06, 2013 at 04:29 PM (#4340149)
late 80s, I was at BP at County Stadium for a Yankees game, jammed up against the dugout getting autographs (as a kid) and kid next to me hands Mattingly a baseball card to sign, Mattingly calmly says, 'son, can I see your other cards?' Kid isn't sure what do do, and slowly hands Mattingly his little stack, Mattingly flips through slowly, finds his card and signs it and hands the kick back his stack. To this day, I'm not sure which card the kid originally handed him, I'm guessing Don Slaught.
   105. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: January 06, 2013 at 10:57 PM (#4340420)
The reason I feel this way is that the defensive numbers awarded by WAR are so absurd across the spectrum that the statistic is compromised in it's entirety. I have read many other opinions on this board and know that I am hardly alone in this belief.


Oh, that's fine. I don't have a problem with problems with WAR. In Mattingly's case, though, you can use OPS+ (as a very solid stand in for performance in an historical context) and see the same clear, downward trajectory starting in his age 26 or age 27 seasons.

WAR is a useful shorthand for a discussion here, where 'my personal observations' (and yours) necessarily and quite rightly don't carry much weight. If you want to argue that a 1Bman who comes up short in WAR or OPS+ can compensate with multiple GGs and (possibly) counting, have at it, but if it didn't help Keith Hernandez, who was simply a better fielder, I doubt it should help Mattingly.

Mattingly had a good rep on defense because he looked smooth out there, rarely made an error, had a nifty fielding percentage (better than Keith's!). In his prime he was a solidly above average; in the last years of his career, still solid but probably a little below average; certainly not terrible. There's very little about his defense that pushes him any real distance towards election, if his bat holds up. But, if you can point to a metric suggesting otherwise, I'd like to see it. I don't think it's a closed question.

I've also noticed that WAR for position players other than catchers seems to tally very nicely with our perceptions of HOFers. Guys around 60 almost always seem, prior to any consideration of WAR, to have been guys who deserve serious HOF consideration. Guys around 65 invariably have solid cases by nearly every other measure, and no guys at 70 seem like they should be even borderline. OTOH, players around 55 WAR usually seem at best borderline, and it's hard to think of a position player at other than catcher with 50 bWAR who belongs in the Hall.

It's a very useful tool for evaluating a career in that regard.

There's no mention in Wikipedia that he was found guilty of assaulting and harassing women.

Scroll down to "Retirement, accolades, and controversy" and follow the links.


I followed the links. I found no report of any findings of guilt, which was my specific point. Sure, it sounds sordid, but my experience with what people claim tells me Puckett could have been anything from a run of the mill cheat (he seems not to have disputed the accounts of the woman claiming to be his mistress), to an unconvicted serial rapist. I don't have a dog in this fight, but I do tend to notice when people throw around declarations of guilt when my recollection is they weren't found guilty.

   106. Ray (RDP) Posted: January 06, 2013 at 11:11 PM (#4340435)
I followed the links. I found no report of any findings of guilt, which was my specific point.


I don't know what links Matt wanted you to follow. Puckett was acquitted of all charges in the false imprisonment/criminal sexual conduct/assault case.
   107. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: January 07, 2013 at 12:31 AM (#4340470)
I was ignoring the "found guilty" thing because no one ever holds to that standard in normal discourse, only when they're seeking to make a point on the internet. My point was that the information from which VA was drawing his conclusions was well linked within the wiki.
   108. Ray (RDP) Posted: January 07, 2013 at 12:36 AM (#4340474)
I was ignoring the "found guilty" thing


Well, that's all well and good, but we'd just as soon have you stick to normal word usage when responding to a point.

That said, I agree with you that despite the acquittal, the underlying facts and testimony as a whole reflected horribly on Puckett.
   109. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: January 07, 2013 at 01:23 AM (#4340503)
I was ignoring the "found guilty" thing because no one ever holds to that standard in normal discourse, only when they're seeking to make a point on the internet. My point was that the information from which VA was drawing his conclusions was well linked within the wiki.


This verges on trolling, which is unlike you, so I assume we've hit a nerve. The discussion in question, which you invited yourself into (nothing wrong with that, but), went,

Puckett was no where near a HOF player, he only had 48 bWAR, not even top 250 all time, and wasn't likely to pile up a lot more. He got in because everyone thought he was a great guy, except the women he was assaulting and harassing.


There's no mention in Wikipedia that he was found guilty of assaulting and harassing women. (That's as far as I've looked into it.( Do you know something to the contrary?


In the 'normal discourse' to which you refer, people generally mean what they say, and it's very clear that "There's no mention in Wikipedia that he was found guilty..." does in fact mean, "There's no mention in Wikipedia that he was found guilty..."

Therefore, "Do you know something to the contrary?" means, clearly, "Do you know of anything that tells us Puckett was in fact guilty..."

It's also clear you mean to bully me into agreeing with you and declaring that Puckett was a terrible person. Let me assure you that you cannot bully me. I've already said what I have to say on his character, and barring facts new to me, I stand by that.

I was ignoring the "found guilty" thing

Well, that's all well and good, but we'd just as soon have you stick to normal word usage when responding to a point.


Yes. Thank you, Ray.
   110. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: January 07, 2013 at 01:31 AM (#4340510)
I followed the links. I found no report of any findings of guilt, which was my specific point.

I don't know what links Matt wanted you to follow. Puckett was acquitted of all charges in the false imprisonment/criminal sexual conduct/assault case.


I don't either, and I don't find Matt's point, below, supportive of VA's accusation:

My point was that the information from which VA was drawing his conclusions was well linked within the wiki.


Since, as you note, Puckett was (investigated and) acquitted of the harassment and abuse charges, the information Matt links to strongly suggests the reverse of VA's conclusion.
   111. Ray (RDP) Posted: January 07, 2013 at 01:47 AM (#4340523)
This verges on trolling, which is unlike you, so I assume we've hit a nerve.


The nerve is that liberals have never met a sexual assault victim who was lying.

That said, re-reading what you posted above, VA simply said Puckett was 'assaulting and harrassing' women, which indeed does seem to be the case from a fair and objective consideration of the facts. I don't know why you decided that whether he was 'found guilty' was so important; an acquittal doesn't make the underlying facts and evidence go away.

But yes, Matt saying "read the links" did strongly suggest that Puckett was found guilty, which was deceptive.
   112. bjhanke Posted: January 07, 2013 at 02:00 AM (#4340528)
1) I agree that Mattingly sounds very very sane about his career value and Hall chances. It does make me think more highly of him than I had, not that I thought he was a jerk or anything, but I didn't know that he was that self-aware.

2) Thanks to all for the lefties in the infield comments. Particularly Walt's #82 and #85 and the ones responding to it, which involve people who have actually SEEN lefty infielders, which is more than I can say (I, personally, am a lefty catcher, at such low levels as I can play at all, because I run too slowly to even play first, but I can hit).

3) Bill James made a comment, way back, about successful athletes with "Kirby Puckett" bodies. I started tracking such athletes, and the one thing they have in common is that they are all fast as hell, at least the ones I've found. For example, the current, and presumably forever, holder of the record for the 100-yard dash, which has been replaced by the 100-meter, is a guy named Ivory Crockett who went to the same high school (Webster Groves, MO) that I did. He's built just like Puckett. So was Mel Gray, the superspeed wide receiver for the St. Louis Cardinals football team, before they moved to Arizona. It was widely said (I have no idea whether it was true) that he was the fastest man in the game at the time. Billy Hamilton, the 1890s one, was built like Puckett. But I know of NO successful professional athletes who are built like Kirby (roughly 5' 8" and about 170 pounds) who are even just OK fast. They all can really really run. It actually looks like there may be a genetic "sweet spot" for speed at that approximate build. - Brock Hanke
   113. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: January 07, 2013 at 02:08 AM (#4340531)
The nerve is that liberals have never met a sexual assault victim who was lying.


Hmm. As a lefty left of Karl Marx, I'd like to disagree. It may be broadly true, though. A forum I blundered into and where I questioned the accuracy of a 24 year old's 20 year old 'recovered' memory was notoriously left wing, and the abuse I got was remarkable for its color, its creativity, and its universality.

That said, re-reading what you posted above, VA simply said Puckett was 'assaulting and harrassing' women, which indeed does seem to be the case from a fair and objective consideration of the facts.


The featured case in the link Matt provided was the alleged episode of the woman in the restaurant, who claimed Puckett had followed her into a bathroom stall. That's the case I'm aware of, and I assumed it was the case to which you were referring when mentioned Puckett's acquittal. I see no reason why 'fair and objective consideration' of those facts lead us to conclude anything other than that Puckett was falsely accused. The other things in the article seemed to be based on Puckett's angry mistress's claims; a woman sufficiently barmy that she sought out Puckett's wife for mutual consolation.

What, then, are the facts you see a 'fair and objective consideration' of leading to a conclusion that Puckett was assaulting and harassing women?

I don't know why you decided that whether he was 'found guilty' was so important; an acquittal doesn't make the underlying facts and evidence go away.


No offense, but I can only say it in so many different ways, so,

I followed the links. I found no report of any findings of guilt, which was my specific point. Sure, it sounds sordid, but my experience with what people claim tells me Puckett could have been anything from a run of the mill cheat (he seems not to have disputed the accounts of the woman claiming to be his mistress), to an unconvicted serial rapist. I don't have a dog in this fight, but I do tend to notice when people throw around declarations of guilt when my recollection is they weren't found guilty.


I'm honestly not sure of your point, though. An acquittal does indeed cast grave doubt on the "underlying facts (aren't they 'testimony', or 'claims', though, rather than facts?) and evidence" (same objection)?

It's not like the purported evidence was a videotape of Puckett harassing and abusing a women (and VA did use the plural) that was undeniable, but only suppressed on a technicality. As I said, I'm open to facts, but it does seem like the facts are very much in dispute.

Btw--I'm more than a little surprised that a lawyer would wonder at the relevance of a court finding of guilty. That seems unlike you.
Page 2 of 2 pages  < 1 2

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

BBTF Partner

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
Kiko Sakata
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogPapelbon blows lead, gets ejected for crotch-grabbing at fans
(59 - 1:00am, Sep 16)
Last: Win Big Stein's Money

NewsblogOT: NBC.news: Valve isn’t making one gaming console, but multiple ‘Steam machines’
(813 - 12:15am, Sep 16)
Last: Win Big Stein's Money

NewsblogOT: Politics, September, 2014: ESPN honors Daily Worker sports editor Lester Rodney
(2507 - 12:09am, Sep 16)
Last: Shredder

NewsblogBowman: A year’s worth of struggles leads reason to wonder what changes are in store for the Braves
(10 - 12:03am, Sep 16)
Last: bigglou115

NewsblogA’s lose Triple-A Sacramento affiliate
(14 - 11:51pm, Sep 15)
Last: Win Big Stein's Money

NewsblogOMNICHATTER 9-15-2014
(78 - 11:46pm, Sep 15)
Last: RollingWave

NewsblogHeyman: Mariners have decided not to retain the ice-cream buying scout
(4 - 11:45pm, Sep 15)
Last: SoSHially Unacceptable

NewsblogSports Bog: Fans Switch From Skins to Nats
(62 - 11:41pm, Sep 15)
Last: boteman is not here 'til October

NewsblogCalcaterra: Derek Jeter got a bucket of crabs and a captain’s hat from the Orioles
(12 - 11:41pm, Sep 15)
Last: Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip

NewsblogOT: The Soccer Thread, September 2014
(219 - 10:43pm, Sep 15)
Last: frannyzoo

NewsblogOT August 2014:  Wrassle Mania I
(161 - 10:11pm, Sep 15)
Last: NJ in DC (Now with temporary employment!)

Newsblog10 Degrees: Why WAR doesn’t always add up
(340 - 9:46pm, Sep 15)
Last: cardsfanboy

NewsblogOT: September 2014 College Football thread
(245 - 9:20pm, Sep 15)
Last: spike

NewsblogJesus Montero gets heckled by Mariners cross checker during rehab stint
(67 - 9:09pm, Sep 15)
Last: Win Big Stein's Money

NewsblogKapler: Baseball’s next big competitive edge
(83 - 8:45pm, Sep 15)
Last: McCoy

Page rendered in 0.3631 seconds
52 querie(s) executed