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

Monday, August 12, 2019

Giants reveal they’ll retire Will Clark’s No. 22 jersey next season

SAN FRANCISCO—The Giants have kept some numbers on the “unofficially retired” list over the years and have tried to quietly nudge players away from wearing certain ones, but on Sunday they made it official for one of the most important players in franchise history.

Beginning next season, no Giants player will ever wear Will Clark’s No. 22 again.

The announcement was made Sunday as the Giants honored the 1989 team that went to the World Series in large part because of Clark’s contributions. A Giant for eight years, Clark was a five-time All-Star and finished in the top five in MVP voting four times.

He was the star of the late 80’s clubs and a player who helped a new generation fall in love with the Giants. In recent years, Clark has been a special advisor for the club and a regular at Oracle Park. He has always been open about what the honor would mean to him.

QLE Posted: August 12, 2019 at 08:18 AM | 31 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: giants, retired numbers, will clark

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.

   1. Chris Fluit Posted: August 12, 2019 at 10:07 AM (#5870489)
Good for the Giants and their fans. A much-deserved honor.
   2. Wayne Newton's pet monkey (gef, talking mongoose) Posted: August 12, 2019 at 10:18 AM (#5870494)
My first ever fantasy baseball draft choice, back in '92.
   3. salvomania Posted: August 12, 2019 at 10:34 AM (#5870499)
Clark's swan song with the Cardinals left no doubt he could have still performed at a very high level for a few more years. A trade deadline pickup in 2000 as a fill-in for the chronically injured Mark McGwire, Clark homered in each of his first four starts with the Cardinals and finished his two-month stint hitting .345/.426/.655, and followed that up with a similar line in the postseason (one best remembered by Cardinals' fans for Rick Ankiel's meltdowns), hitting .344/.441/.621 in two series.

He retired after the season, at age 36, despite hitting .319/.418/.546 over the full year.
   4. Ziggy is done with Dominican discotheques Posted: August 12, 2019 at 10:45 AM (#5870505)
"Will Clark, hall of famer" was a distinct possibility. He didn't have much of a peak, but he was consistently good, and even at the end was producing 2 WAR seasons despite frequent injuries. There's a chance he could have compiled his way to the hall.

But, from his SABR bio:

"it wasn’t concern about his ability to continue to play that led to his decision [to retire]. He and his wife, the former Lisa Ann White, had two small children, Ella and William III (Trey), a two-year-old who had been diagnosed with Pervasive Development Disorder, a form of autism. Clark felt he needed to focus his attention on helping Lisa care for Trey. The time away from the family during spring training and the regular-season road trips prevented Clark from providing the kind of stability he and Lisa wanted for their son. Years later, Clark would be a volunteer coach for Trey’s baseball team at a private high school near Baton Rouge."

Good job Will.
   5. jmurph Posted: August 12, 2019 at 11:13 AM (#5870529)
He was my favorite player for a long stretch as a kid, which is perhaps odd because I'm a Red Sox fan. But man, that swing.
   6. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: August 12, 2019 at 11:17 AM (#5870532)
he could still play:

highest OPS+ final season (min 400 PAs)

1 Shoeless Joe Jackson 172
2 Barry Bonds 169
3 David Ortiz 164
4 Will Clark 145
5 Mickey Mantle 143
6 Happy Felsch 143
7 Dave Nilsson 141
   7. Master of the Horse Posted: August 12, 2019 at 11:26 AM (#5870537)
Other version of Clark from some teammates. Wonder how some of feel about this recognition from the Giants.

The animosity took an ugly turn in Clark's second season. On a road trip to Philadelphia, he and Leonard got into a scuffle that ended up on the clubhouse floor. Clark won't discuss the incident, but one source who was in a position to know says that Leonard's young nephew had asked Clark for his autograph, and Clark had made a racial slur and told him to get out of his way. When Leonard heard about the episode and confronted Clark the next day, the two men went at it until teammates broke them apart.

Another time, Clark used a racial epithet in an argument with teammate Chris Brown, an incident for which he apologized to the entire team. "The thing with Chris Brown was done without thinking," says Craig. "Chris accepted his apology. Will has a very high level of intensity, and doesn't realize he's doing those things."

Both incidents were recalled during last year's World Series, when Clark had the poor judgment to refer to Leonard, by this time playing for Seattle, as "a tumor." Leonard responded by calling Clark "a prejudiced——."

At the very least, Clark certainly is thoughtless about the use of racially offensive words. But Clark vehemently denies being a bigot. "Some of my best friends are black," he says. "That has nothing to do with it."
   8. jmurph Posted: August 12, 2019 at 11:27 AM (#5870539)
Whoa! Well that's terrible.
   9. bobm Posted: August 12, 2019 at 12:05 PM (#5870554)
Giants reveal they’ll retire Will Clark’s No. 22 jersey next season


I guess the Wilpons lost touch with Keith Hernandez and do not know where to send an invitation, because otherwise they surely would have retired his number 17 by now.
   10. Master of the Horse Posted: August 12, 2019 at 12:13 PM (#5870556)
I don't know what is real or not about Clark as a person but have heard different stories and thought this place might know what is considered 'the truth'.
   11. salvomania Posted: August 12, 2019 at 12:44 PM (#5870574)
My impression is that he was something of a high-intensity jerk.

Apparently he has a high, shrill voice that was very irritating as well.
   12. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: August 12, 2019 at 12:45 PM (#5870576)
"Will Clark, hall of famer" was a distinct possibility. He didn't have much of a peak, but he was consistently good, and even at the end was producing 2 WAR seasons despite frequent injuries. There's a chance he could have compiled his way to the hall.

His peak was too short IMO, but it's worth noting that he's one of the guys whose peak looks better without the strike -- he was on pace for a .329/18/114 season with 5.1 WAR in 1994. Instead he had 13 HR, 80 RBI and 3.6 WAR.

Clark's in the HOM, for what it's worth.
   13. SoSH U at work Posted: August 12, 2019 at 12:54 PM (#5870578)
I guess the Wilpons lost touch with Keith Hernandez and do not know where to send an invitation, because otherwise they surely would have retired his number 17 by now.


Maybe they're waiting for the Cardinals to do it first, since he was better there for longer.
   14. Mefisto Posted: August 12, 2019 at 01:33 PM (#5870601)
@10: The stories you posted about Clark were widely circulated at the time. It's impossible to be certain, but they rang true to me.
   15. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: August 12, 2019 at 01:50 PM (#5870609)
I guess the Wilpons lost touch with Keith Hernandez and do not know where to send an invitation,
The probably refused to help him move.
   16. Karl from NY Posted: August 12, 2019 at 02:59 PM (#5870638)
I bet they retire Keith's number when he retires as a broadcaster. It'd be kinda weird to memorialize someone who's still a very visible and active daily face of the team, more so than Clark for SF. And then they'll be sure he completed his career without saying anything dumb enough that they'd have to fire him.
   17. Walt Davis Posted: August 12, 2019 at 05:38 PM (#5870680)
Clark was a very fine player but the Giants are a very old team and that Giants-specific resume seems a bit thin for a number retirement for a team that historic. B-R has Clark as 22nd in Giants' WAR, less than Bobby Bonds but more than Perry. Pretty sure this makes Clark the first non-HoFer (besides Barry Bonds who used his dad's number) to have his number retired by the team. But no skin off my nose. Remaining numbers in the 20s: 21, 23, 26, 28, 29.
   18. Mefisto Posted: August 12, 2019 at 07:14 PM (#5870702)
Jack Clark also wore 22. If you combine the Giants' careers of the 2 Clarks, you get a fine player. :)
   19. JJ1986 Posted: August 12, 2019 at 07:15 PM (#5870704)
I don't think anyone has worn 17 for the Mets for several years, although they used to give it out like candy cocaine.
   20. Man o' Schwar Posted: August 12, 2019 at 07:25 PM (#5870707)
I bet they retire Keith's number when he retires as a broadcaster. It'd be kinda weird to memorialize someone who's still a very visible and active daily face of the team, more so than Clark for SF. And then they'll be sure he completed his career without saying anything dumb enough that they'd have to fire him.

I hope they don't wait like the Cubs did with Santo (who was also a broadcaster). If they want to honor him, do it when he's alive and can appreciate the accolades.
   21. Man o' Schwar Posted: August 12, 2019 at 07:32 PM (#5870711)
Jack Clark also wore 22. If you combine the Giants' careers of the 2 Clarks, you get a fine player. :)

Jack Clark (1975-1992): 1994 games, 8230 PAs, .267/.379/.476, 54.6 oWAR
Will Clark (1986-2000): 1976 games, 8283 PAs, .303/.384/.497, 55.6 oWAR

Throw out batting average, and you've got two pretty similar careers. I wouldn't have guessed that Jack Clark had about the same career value as Will Clark - I think of him as a slugger who had the one big season in the 80s but otherwise was just a pedestrian player. Not a guy with 50+ career WAR.
   22. Mefisto Posted: August 12, 2019 at 07:49 PM (#5870723)
Jack Clark with the Giants: 4300 PA, 134 OPS+, 30.7 WAR

Will Clark with the Giants: 4878 PA, 145 OPS+, 35.8 WAR

Solid HOF career between the two: 9200 PA, 140 OPS+, 66 WAR
   23. Moses Taylor, aka Hambone Fakenameington Posted: August 12, 2019 at 09:32 PM (#5870785)
I hope they don't wait like the Cubs did with Santo (who was also a broadcaster). If they want to honor him, do it when he's alive and can appreciate the accolades.

Santo was alive. They did it one of those last years he didn't make the HOF - 2003. Up until then, they'd only retired numbers after enshrinement (rumors Lee Smith will get his retired soon). He made the HOF after he passed.

His famous line from the ceremony was how that honor meant more to him than the HOF.
   24. Yonder Alonso in misguided trousers (cardinal) Posted: August 13, 2019 at 12:23 AM (#5870827)
I don't think anyone has worn 17 for the Mets for several years, although they used to give it out like candy cocaine.


According to BBRef it was last worn by Fernando Tatis in 2010.

I assume the Mets will retire 5 eventually, though I'm sure it won't be for at least a few years yet.

Anyway, on topic, Will Clark's Topps rookie card was one of if not the first I ever had. I think I still have it somewhere-- no doubt it will appreciate in value with this news.
   25. Hank Gillette Posted: August 13, 2019 at 11:03 PM (#5871175)
The animosity took an ugly turn in Clark's second season. On a road trip to Philadelphia, he and Leonard got into a scuffle that ended up on the clubhouse floor. Clark won't discuss the incident, but one source who was in a position to know says that Leonard's young nephew had asked Clark for his autograph, and Clark had made a racial slur and told him to get out of his way. When Leonard heard about the episode and confronted Clark the next day, the two men went at it until teammates broke them apart.

Another time, Clark used a racial epithet in an argument with teammate Chris Brown, an incident for which he apologized to the entire team. "The thing with Chris Brown was done without thinking," says Craig. "Chris accepted his apology. Will has a very high level of intensity, and doesn't realize he's doing those things."


It’s nice that he retired early to spend the needed time with his child, but you expect a parent to make sacrifices for their child. That does not atone for being a sh!t towards another child because of his color.

If we excuse everyone for repugnant behavior because they are “high intensity”, or because they are upset by what is happening to them, then we really can’t hold anyone responsible for their actions. Just because you have black friends does not excuse you for being a racist towards black people who are not your friends.

I bet his high, shrill voice would not be nearly as irritating if he wasn’t a racist a$$hole.
   26. Zonk, your King of All that Is Real Posted: August 13, 2019 at 11:49 PM (#5871189)
Heh, wasn’t Jack Clark considered very much an ass, too?
   27. Man o' Schwar Posted: August 14, 2019 at 12:19 AM (#5871193)
Santo was alive. They did it one of those last years he didn't make the HOF - 2003. Up until then, they'd only retired numbers after enshrinement (rumors Lee Smith will get his retired soon). He made the HOF after he passed.

I must have been thinking of the statue (and the actual HOF).
   28. Man o' Schwar Posted: August 14, 2019 at 12:26 AM (#5871195)
Anyway, on topic, Will Clark's Topps rookie card was one of if not the first I ever had. I think I still have it somewhere-- no doubt it will appreciate in value with this news.

Those 1987 sets were loaded with rookie cards - Maddux (I think he was only in Donruss), McGwire, Bonds, Palmeiro, Larkin, Kevin Brown, David Cone, Canseco, Bo Jackson, Will Clark, Jamie Moyer, Ruben Sierra, Devon White.

Too bad they made about a billion of each one.
   29. . Posted: August 14, 2019 at 09:47 AM (#5871228)
Chris accepted his apology.


Beginning and end of the matter. Was then, is now.

   30. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: August 14, 2019 at 12:43 PM (#5871281)

Heh, wasn’t Jack Clark considered very much an ass, too?

I don't think Clark got along with any manager he ever played for (except, according to Wikipedia, Billy Martin - go figure). He also feuded with Tony Gwynn and publicly accused Pujols and Verlander of using steroids.
   31. Zonk, your King of All that Is Real Posted: August 14, 2019 at 01:45 PM (#5871305)
I don't think Clark got along with any manager he ever played for (except, according to Wikipedia, Billy Martin - go figure). He also feuded with Tony Gwynn and publicly accused Pujols and Verlander of using steroids.


Well - I know you can get really bad interactions if you put two ######## together, but I can see the occasional pairing (Martin and Clark in this case) being simpatico.

(Jack) Clark does look like he rubbed almost everyone the wrong way - managers and teammates.

That's what makes it odd to me that he got a sportstalk radio job (that's where the Pujols/Verlander accusations came up). On one level, I guess, conflict and jerkwads make for good conflict radio. But then, I'd think you also need some element of a fanbase for the jerkwad and Clark doesn't seem like that sort of guy.

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

News

All News | Prime News

Old-School Newsstand


BBTF Partner

Dynasty League Baseball

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
Infinite Yost (Voxter)
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogOnly 20 Years Old, Soto ‘Way Above His Years’
(15 - 1:37am, Aug 26)
Last: The Yankee Clapper

NewsblogJustin Verlander responds after Astros block Free Press from media session
(52 - 11:15pm, Aug 25)
Last: Howie Menckel

NewsblogOMNICHATTER for the weekend of August 24-25, 2019
(79 - 11:13pm, Aug 25)
Last: Dromedary pretzels, only half a dinar (CoB).

Sox TherapyA Little More Acceptable
(7 - 9:43pm, Aug 25)
Last: Biff, highly-regarded young guy

NewsblogOT Soccer Thread - A New Season is Upon Baldrick
(595 - 9:37pm, Aug 25)
Last: Biff, highly-regarded young guy

NewsblogOT - NBA thread (Playoffs through off-season)
(6553 - 9:17pm, Aug 25)
Last: Booey

NewsblogShould We Always Deride the Concrete Donut?
(12 - 8:49pm, Aug 25)
Last: Gazizza, my Dilznoofuses!

Hall of MeritMost Meritorious Player: 1919 Discussion
(11 - 5:58pm, Aug 25)
Last: MrC.

NewsblogTom Brady’s bid to trademark ‘Tom Terrific’ rejected
(10 - 2:41pm, Aug 25)
Last: Edmundo got dem ol' Kozma blues again mama

NewsblogIs Mike Trout really better than Derek Jeter?
(54 - 2:33pm, Aug 25)
Last: Rally

NewsblogBaseball fans trashed the MLB Players' Weekend black-and-white jerseys
(32 - 2:25pm, Aug 25)
Last: Howie Menckel

NewsblogOT - 2019 NFL thread
(8 - 1:22pm, Aug 25)
Last: kubiwan

NewsblogAdeiny Hechavarria gives Mets a million reasons to remember game-changing double
(3 - 12:13pm, Aug 25)
Last: Captain Supporter

NewsblogOT - Catch-All Pop Culture Extravaganza (August 2019)
(268 - 11:44am, Aug 25)
Last: Lassus

NewsblogOT - 2018 NFL thread
(1333 - 9:06am, Aug 25)
Last: puck

Page rendered in 0.3699 seconds
46 querie(s) executed