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Saturday, February 01, 2020

Curtis Granderson announces retirement after 16-year career

Curtis Granderson has announced his retirement after a 16-year career.

“As I close out this wonderful chapter in my life and step away from my days on the field, I know that my role in this game is only just getting started,” Granderson said in a statement.

Granderson spent the prime of his career split between the Detroit Tigers, New York Yankees and New York Mets.

A three-time All-Star, Granderson slashed .249/.337/.465 for his career with 344 home runs and 937 RBIs.

 

QLE Posted: February 01, 2020 at 01:02 AM | 63 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: curtis granderson, retirement

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   1. vortex of dissipation Posted: February 01, 2020 at 03:11 AM (#5920937)
A good man.
   2. SoSH U at work Posted: February 01, 2020 at 08:55 AM (#5920945)

A good man.


A universally held opinion, it seems to me.
   3. The Honorable Ardo Posted: February 01, 2020 at 09:25 AM (#5920950)
My favorite player.

I saw two of his 23 triples in 2007. (One was in Justin Verlander's first no-hitter, which I was lucky enough to attend.) No one has hit more than 23 triples in a season since Kiki Cuyler in 1925.

I also saw him play for Triple-A Toledo in 2005. Talk about moments that make you feel old...
   4. Blastin Posted: February 01, 2020 at 10:20 AM (#5920957)
Love Granderson. Shame he missed out on a ring a few times (loses with Detroit, joins Yankees a year after 09, loses with Mets in 15, not on roster of the cheat-series in 17).

It was amazing to watch him turn into a power hitter overnight in late 2010. Definitely wouldn't have expected him to end up with 344 HRs back then.
   5. asinwreck Posted: February 01, 2020 at 10:34 AM (#5920958)
I always hoped he would have a stint with the White Sox, but it wasn't to be for a player beloved in Chicago for what he did and what he continues to mean for local baseball.
   6. Benji Gil Gamesh VII - The Opt-Out Awakens Posted: February 01, 2020 at 10:35 AM (#5920959)
I know that my role in this game is only just getting started,” Granderson said in a statement.
Coach/managerial aspirations? MLB HQ role?
   7. Dock Ellis Posted: February 01, 2020 at 11:07 AM (#5920962)
A pleasure.
   8. eric Posted: February 01, 2020 at 11:38 AM (#5920967)
While those 23 3B were an outlier for his career, he was a pretty consistent 8-10/year guy for a while there, which is still a good total these days. He finished with 95 in his career, which made him the active leader until this announcement.

One thing that seems unusual, and perhaps a result of Tiger stadium layout peculiarities, is how many three-baggers he had in relation to his SB totals. The year he had 23 3B he only stole 26 bases. The following year he went 13/12, meaning, yes, he actually had fewer steals than triples. For his career he was 95/153 for a 0.621 ratio. I'm guessing once you put some bounds on it (since, say, 1950, to exclude the big-park, low-steals 30's/40's; and with minimum, say, 50 of each, to exclude guys with like 1 of each) that's gotta be near the top.

Although, at that point, maybe it's even less impressive than it was when I started thinking about it? It just feels like an odd combination of high-triples and medium-low-steals.

But, yes, he was a guy I enjoyed to watch and always kept up with what/how he was doing. Great career, and enjoy your retirement!
   9. SoSH U at work Posted: February 01, 2020 at 11:47 AM (#5920970)
For his career he was 95/153 for a 0.621 ratio. I'm guessing once you put some bounds on it (since, say, 1950, to exclude the big-park, low-steals 30's/40's; and with minimum, say, 50 of each, to exclude guys with like 1 of each) that's gotta be near the top.


Jim Rice: 79 3B, 58 SB - 1.36.

   10. TJ Posted: February 01, 2020 at 11:49 AM (#5920971)
One thing that seems unusual, and perhaps a result of Tiger stadium layout peculiarities, is how many three-baggers he had in relation to his SB totals.


Comerica Park is a triples haven. Line drives or long flies that get up the right-center field alley and out into the triangle of the fence are automatic triples. Even Sean Casey got one out there. Granderson was built for Comerica triples- a good line drive hitter with enough speed to make it easily to third base. It was always fun to see, since Grandy had a funny way of running. We loved watching him play and I hope Detroit finds a place for him in the organization.
   11. jingoist Posted: February 01, 2020 at 12:09 PM (#5920977)
Well, maybe he had a lower ratio of steals to triples because he was already on 3rd base with only home to go 23 times that year.
   12. KronicFatigue Posted: February 01, 2020 at 12:23 PM (#5920979)
I haven't had many players I've actively rooted for as an adult, but Curtis made the cut. A good man, but also a nice/friendly man, which don't always go together. Always had a smile on his face and has done a great amount of community work. Loved his style of play, love that he learned how to hit lefties and developed power.

   13. eric Posted: February 01, 2020 at 12:44 PM (#5920982)
Jim Rice: 79 3B, 58 SB - 1.36.


Er, with a minimum of 60 each :). Actually the person I was looking at when coming up with that threshold was Wade Boggs, he of 61 3B and 24 SB. Must be something with Fenway. I bet Boggs is up there almost no matter where you draw your cutoffs--just gotta exclude the 1/0 and 0/1 types, or similar.
   14. The Yankee Clapper Posted: February 01, 2020 at 02:10 PM (#5921000)
A very good, occasionally great, player. Sharp guy, by all accounts, who seemed to enjoy & appreciate the game. It’s not the ideal time in the hiring cycle for most teams, or broadcasters, but someone will probably snap him up if he wants to start his non-playing career right away. If he wants to take a little time off, he may have multiple offers by next offseason.
   15. Kiko Sakata Posted: February 01, 2020 at 02:42 PM (#5921004)
I always hoped he would have a stint with the White Sox, but it wasn't to be for a player beloved in Chicago for what he did and what he continues to mean for local baseball.


My son got to play a game at Curtis Granderson Stadium at UIC a few years ago. Gorgeous facility with a phenomenal view of downtown Chicago past the outfield (click the link in #5). It is a shame that he never got to play for a Chicago team. Hopefully baseball hasn't heard the last from him.
   16. bbmck Posted: February 01, 2020 at 03:24 PM (#5921011)
Debut since 1951 there are 237 players with 10+ 3B, 10+ SB and at least as many 3B as SB including 6 members of 500+ HR Club: Jim Thome 26/19, Harmon Killebrew 24/19, David Ortiz 19/17, Willie McCovey 46/26, Ernie Banks 90/50 and Eddie Mathews 72/68. 20+/20+ and you're down to 90 players with 66 players debuting 1951 to 1975 missing only 1969. Debut since 1976 or 1979:

C: None
2B: Tim Flannery 25/22
3B: John Castino 34/22, Wade Boggs 61/24, Bobby Bonilla 61/45, Bill Mueller 22/20, Matt Carpenter 27/25
SS: Cal Ripken Jr 44/36, Ernie Riles 20/20, Kurt Abbott 23/22, Neifi Perez 61/57, Alex Gonzalez (debut 1998 with MIA) 31/30, Stephen Drew 63/41, Zack Cozart 24/21, Brandon Crawford 38/31, Adeiny Hechavarria 36/35

1B/DH: Harold Baines 49/34, Dmitri Young 29/25, Todd Helton 37/37
CF: None
LF/RF: Raul Ibanez 51/50, Andre Ethier 34/29, Seth Smith 31/22, Corey Dickerson 29/23, David Peralta 35/29, Randal Grichuk 20/20

Wade Boggs 61/24 is the most recent debut of 20+/20+ and at least twice as many 3B as SB, Ted Simmons 47/21, Willie Horton 40/20, Joe Torre 59/23, Roger Maris 42/21, Bill Mazeroski 62/27, Jerry Lumpe 52/20, Gino Cimoli 48/21, Brooks Robinson 68/28 and Roberto Clemente 166/83 debut since 1951.

Joe DiMaggio 131/20 is the most recent debut of 20+/20+ and at least three times as many 3B as SB, Cecil Travis 78/23 and Joe Vosmik 92/23 also debut in the 1930s. Charley Jones 102/20 and Tom York 89/20 debut in the 1870s and their SB totals are uncertain.

81 players debut since 1951 and have 10+/10+ and at least as many 3B as SB on the road. 65 of them debut 1951 to 1976 missing only 1965 and 1969 as debut years. Debut since 1977 or 1979:

C: None
2B: Tim Flannery 14/10, Yolmer Sanchez 12/11
3B: John Castino 11/11, Wade Boggs 32/13, Jack Howell 10/10, Bobby Bonilla 34/20, Matt Carpenter 12/10
SS: Cal Ripken Jr 29/23

1B/DH: Harold Baines 24/16, David Segui 11/10, Tino Martinez 13/13, Dmitri Young 12/11
CF: None
LF/RF: Glenn Wilson 14/14, Troy O'Leary 10/10, Raul Ibanez 24/22, Andre Ethier 23/19

Wade Boggs 32/13 is the most recent debut with 10+/10+ and at least twice as many 3B as SB on the road by 15 years. Joe Rudi 28/11, Tom Haller 21/10, Ron Santo 28/13, Joe Torre 38/12, Jerry Lumpe 20/10, Brooks Robinson 36/15 and Bill Skowron 26/10 also debut since 1951 with 34 players since 1908 only counting partial career for those who debuted before 1908.

Joe Torre 38/12 is the most recent debut with 10+/10+ and at least three times as many 3B as SB on the road by 10 years. Gus Bell 36/10, Jim Hegan 30/10, Joe DiMaggio 58/17, Johnny Mize 49/10, Cecil Travis 37/11, Joe Medwick 55/13, John Stone 47/14 and Jim Bottomley 80/25 since 1908.
   17. Booey Posted: February 01, 2020 at 03:50 PM (#5921014)
Random Granderson related trivia time!

In 2007 Granderson had 38 doubles, 23 triples, and 23 homers, one of only 7 seasons of 20/20/20 in MLB history. Name the other 6 players.

Hint: no one has done it more than once

I like this factoid because it's not dominated by any specific era when conditions were favorable to a certain statistic (think .400 seasons from 1920-1925 or 60 HR seasons from 1998-2001). Pretty much no one was hitting 20 HR in the dead ball era when 20 triples were common, and hardly anyone hits 20 triples in the lively ball era when homers are common, and the few that have were mostly speedy, no power guys (Willie Wilson, Lance Johnson, Christian Guzman). So this feat has always been very unlikely, in any era.
   18. McCoy Posted: February 01, 2020 at 03:53 PM (#5921015)
Ryne Sandberg was 1 triple and 1 home run away. When he got close and everyone was taking about it he called it pinball baseball. Would have been the first in the NL since Willie Mays. Though Brett had done it a few years before.
   19. Booey Posted: February 01, 2020 at 04:07 PM (#5921019)
Mays (1957) and Brett (1979) are two of them (probably the most obvious two).
   20. Walt Davis Posted: February 01, 2020 at 04:15 PM (#5921020)
I would think Hornsby must have done it. If Ruth ever had 20 triples, he's an obvious candidate. DiMaggio maybe.

And that's me 0 for 3. Hornsby missed by two triples in 1921 and did have 20 the year before but just 9 HR. Ruth's career high was 16, DiMaggio's was 15 (did lead the league).

I didn't think he did (esp given the Sandberg comment) but I'm surprised that HoJo had so few triples.

EDIT: And of course Ichiro could have if he wanted to. (career high 12 triples and 15 HR did come in the same season so he obviously didn't want to.)
   21. Walt Davis Posted: February 01, 2020 at 04:21 PM (#5921021)
Just looked it up and Wow! Two came in the same season.
   22. Booey Posted: February 01, 2020 at 04:22 PM (#5921022)
Yeah, Hornsby was one of 3 guys that I was sure had done it...but actually didn't.
   23. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: February 01, 2020 at 05:17 PM (#5921028)
This used to be a very common trivia question. Jeff Heath did it, Granderson & Rollins did it in the same year. Also Jim Bottomly
   24. Sweatpants Posted: February 01, 2020 at 05:36 PM (#5921029)
Is the last one Goose Goslin?
   25. Booey Posted: February 01, 2020 at 05:53 PM (#5921031)
Goslin isn't one. I'd be surprised if anyone who isn't already familiar with the question got the last one (or first one, I guess it should be).
   26. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: February 01, 2020 at 06:14 PM (#5921032)
Goslin isn't one. I'd be surprised if anyone who isn't already familiar with the question got the last one (or first one, I guess it should be).

not that this will help anyone to get the answer, but the first one also had 20 SB. Mays, Granderson & Rollins also did that
   27. Booey Posted: February 01, 2020 at 06:25 PM (#5921033)
Rollins and Granderson doing in it the same year always seemed crazy to me, because unlike, say, McGwire and Sosa both passing Maris in the same year, there was nothing about the era that seemed like it would make such a feat any more likely to occur. After happening only once in the previous 50 years, it just randomly happened twice in one season. And no one has come close since.
   28. Booey Posted: February 01, 2020 at 06:25 PM (#5921034)
Edit: double
   29. Booey Posted: February 01, 2020 at 06:25 PM (#5921035)
Edit: And triple! WTF?!
   30. Greg Pope Posted: February 01, 2020 at 07:44 PM (#5921044)
Edit: double

Edit: And triple! WTF?!

Golf clap.
   31. PreservedFish Posted: February 01, 2020 at 09:14 PM (#5921048)
BTF: Booey 1/0
   32. Booey Posted: February 01, 2020 at 09:31 PM (#5921049)
Since I'm sure it's on the tips of all your tongues anyway, the 7th guy (or first, actually) is the immortal Frank Schulte.

Here's the complete list (2B/3B/HR):

1911 - Frank Schulte (30/21/21)
1928 - Jim Bottomley (42/20/31)
1941 - Jeff Heath (32/20/24)
1957 - Willie Mays (26/20/35)
1979 - George Brett (42/20/23)
2007 - Curtis Granderson (38/23/23)
2007 - Jimmy Rollins (38/20/30)

As jmac said, Schulte, Mays, Granderson, and Rollins also had over 20 SB's, making them the only 4 members of the 20-20-20-20 club.

Hornsby, Gehrig, and Musial are 3 guys I was sure had done 20-20-20 but actually didn't. Their 20 3B season(s) were all at the beginning of their careers before they were regularly hitting 20+ homers.
   33. Born1951 Posted: February 02, 2020 at 01:49 AM (#5921062)
Granderson is the only player with at least 23 in each category.
   34. . Posted: February 02, 2020 at 10:51 AM (#5921085)
Twenty-three triples is like a double-elongated middle finger superbird to oafball, but I liked Curtis for way more than that. Just an extremely likable player ... which is probably why pretty much everybody liked him.

And ... gasp! ... he played the game the right way.
   35. jingoist Posted: February 02, 2020 at 10:55 AM (#5921086)
When I have seen him interviewed on TV, he comes across as an urbane and thoughtful fellow who could do broadcasting work in his sleep.
I believe him when he says that he has only begun his MLB career.
   36. JJ1986 Posted: February 02, 2020 at 11:08 AM (#5921088)
The Mets need a quality control coach.
   37. eric Posted: February 02, 2020 at 11:51 AM (#5921095)
Jeff Heath also had a 31/18/21 season, which is the closest any of those seven has to a second 20/20/20 season. In fact, none of the other seven has anything better than a 13x3 season (Willie x2, Grandy, Brett). Triples are hard.
   38. PreservedFish Posted: February 02, 2020 at 12:01 PM (#5921098)
Twenty-three triples is like a double-elongated middle finger superbird to oafball,

I think one of the things that's striking about Granderson is how universally beloved he was despite his oafball approach. He was a .236 hitter after leaving Detroit, with a billion strikeouts. Very frustrating offensive approach to watch.

How much of it just comes down to the fact that he was always smiling? I loved him too, but I don't think I realized until lately how intelligent and well-respected he truly was. I always just saw him as a guy that was having fun and it helped me have fun too.
   39. PreservedFish Posted: February 02, 2020 at 12:03 PM (#5921099)
Has any hitter ever had 20 3B and 20 HR without 20 2B?
   40. flournoy Posted: February 02, 2020 at 12:15 PM (#5921106)
Only one guy.
   41. depletion Posted: February 02, 2020 at 01:56 PM (#5921130)
If he doesn't go into a front office or a non-baseball venture he should definitely be an announcer. Not just for baseball. I don't think I've ever heard an athlete string together more perfectly worded and spoken sentences than Curtis.
   42. Walt Davis Posted: February 02, 2020 at 03:52 PM (#5921139)
We will never know if he could have kept it up for an entire season but in 2019, Buxton had the only season of 250+ PA with more doubles than singles. Or if you prefer, he did it for 295 PA and the next closest such "season" is Rizzo 2011 at 153 PA. Kirk Nieuwenhuis did it twice in seasons of 141 and 130 PA.

Lots of seasons now with more XBH than singles, not all oafballers -- including 2 by Granderson. Most unlikely name is surely Scott Schebler.
   43. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 02, 2020 at 04:41 PM (#5921145)
Probably my favorite non-Ichiro player of the last 2 decades that never played for the Royals. First ballot inductee for the Hall of Guys That Seemed Like Really Good Dudes.
   44. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: February 02, 2020 at 06:06 PM (#5921154)
When Granderson was a Yankee his strikeouts used to drive me nuts, but it was still impossible not to like him.
   45. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: February 02, 2020 at 06:27 PM (#5921155)

A very easy player to root for. You never truly know what players are like off the field, but Granderson is as likely to be one of the good guys as any of them.

His Mets contract looked like a disaster at first, but it’s not an exaggeration to say he led them to a World Series the following year (he led the position players with 5 WAR, just 0.2 behind deGrom for the team lead).
   46. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: February 03, 2020 at 09:08 AM (#5921273)
Always smiling and wears his socks old school. How can you not like him?
   47. Ithaca2323 Posted: February 03, 2020 at 10:47 AM (#5921294)
I've firmly believed one could make a very cromulent HOF case for Granderson. His reputation is sterling, and he has done plenty of charitable work, and served as an international ambassador for the sport.

His playing record falls short on its face, but not laughably so. He accumulated 47 bWAR in 8,000 PAs, but IMO that is not so far below that his off-the-field work could not push him over. I think there needs to be a serious conversation about what we want the character clause for the Hall to be. If the answer is "anything other than a weapon for writers to punish players whose playing records are far over the HOF line," then we need to start somewhere. Why not Granderson?
   48. cookiedabookie Posted: February 03, 2020 at 12:30 PM (#5921315)
I think there needs to be a serious conversation about what we want the character clause for the Hall to be. If the answer is "anything other than a weapon for writers to punish players whose playing records are far over the HOF line," then we need to start somewhere.

It hasn't yet worked for Dale Murphy
   49. The Yankee Clapper Posted: February 03, 2020 at 12:51 PM (#5921318)
His playing record falls short on its face, but not laughably so. He accumulated 47 bWAR in 8,000 PAs, but IMO that is not so far below that his off-the-field work could not push him over. I think there needs to be a serious conversation about what we want the character clause for the Hall to be. If the answer is "anything other than a weapon for writers to punish players whose playing records are far over the HOF line," then we need to start somewhere. Why not Granderson?
Nice guys get to move from the Hall Of The Very Good to the Hall of Fame isn’t a workable standard, and it’s far too late to append such a revision to the entry criteria. It’s not a diss to Granderson that he was, as far as we know, a fine fellow with a long MLB career, but not quite a Hall of Famer.
   50. Der-K's emotional investment is way up Posted: February 03, 2020 at 01:57 PM (#5921330)
Good player, good dude - always liked this dude. Best of luck to him!
   51. Cris E Posted: February 03, 2020 at 02:38 PM (#5921337)
Kirby Puckett would like to take this opportunity to point out yet one more difference between the HoF and HoM.
   52. Karl from NY Posted: February 03, 2020 at 02:45 PM (#5921339)
it’s not an exaggeration to say he led them to a World Series the following year (he led the position players with 5 WAR, just 0.2 behind deGrom for the team lead).

You could say Granderson led them to the playoffs, but it was Daniel Murphy going super saiyan that got them to the World Series. Granderson was ordinary in those playoffs.
   53. RoyalFlush Posted: February 03, 2020 at 04:43 PM (#5921373)
Not sure why, but Granderson is a KU basketball fan. So he's good in my book. Hope he enjoys his next career.
   54. PreservedFish Posted: February 03, 2020 at 05:06 PM (#5921380)
His playing record falls short on its face, but not laughably so. He accumulated 47 bWAR in 8,000 PAs, but IMO that is not so far below that his off-the-field work could not push him over. I think there needs to be a serious conversation about what we want the character clause for the Hall to be. If the answer is "anything other than a weapon for writers to punish players whose playing records are far over the HOF line," then we need to start somewhere. Why not Granderson?


I'd consider giving a HOF boost to someone of notably extraordinary character, but Granderson's claim of "he's a really great guy" seems to fall short of whatever standard one might reasonably use for it.
   55. My name is Votto, and I love to get blotto Posted: February 03, 2020 at 05:13 PM (#5921382)
Nomar Garciaparra saved those girls from drowning, he should get a HOF boost from that.
   56. SoSH U at work Posted: February 03, 2020 at 05:25 PM (#5921388)
I'd consider giving a HOF boost to someone of notably extraordinary character, but Granderson's claim of "he's a really great guy" seems to fall short of whatever standard one might reasonably use for it.


I don't think he's Hall material unless he does something noteworthy in the sport beyond his playing career (I'd like to see the Hall look at combo candidates), but I think this is selling him short.

On Thursday, the Marlins outfielder was named the Marvin Miller Man of the Year for the fourth time in his 16-year MLB career. Voted on by players, the award recognizes the player who’s garnered the “most respect based on his leadership on the field and in the community.”

As this thread demonstrates, I don't think I've ever seen a guy so universally admired in my 40 years of fandom. He has a combination of intelligence, community involvement and simple joyfulness that is extraordinarily rare.

   57. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: February 03, 2020 at 06:57 PM (#5921402)
   58. SandyRiver Posted: February 04, 2020 at 03:24 PM (#5921586)
Nomar Garciaparra saved those girls from drowning, he should get a HOF boost from that.

His 2003 season demonstrated that triples can be capricious. After hitting 8 in a 15-game span he had 12 thru game 67 with EBH of 20/12/. For the rest of the season he had 17/1/19 to finish at 37/13/28.
   59. Ron J Posted: February 04, 2020 at 03:43 PM (#5921593)
In the Historical Abstract James argues that Catfish Hunter got a nice guy boost. I can't think of any other player (Ross Youngs? But that's a Frisch VC pick and those are kinda random). And it's not exactly clear that Hunter got across the line thanks to this.
   60. Ziggy: social distancing since 1980 Posted: February 04, 2020 at 04:25 PM (#5921616)
I think there needs to be a serious conversation about what we want the character clause for the Hall to be.


I vote for "removed from the books".

Ross Youngs? But that's a Frisch VC pick and those are kinda random


Youngs was both a Frisch pick and got a "died early, what a shame" bonus. The best thing that Dale Murphy could have done for his hall of fame case would have been to die tragically after 1987. But then again these are also kind of random. Joss got it, and Puckett didn't even have to die to get it. But Munson is still on the outside.

And on topic: Granderson did seem like great fun. It's too bad he's hanging them up.
   61. RJ in TO Posted: February 04, 2020 at 05:34 PM (#5921623)
Kirby Puckett absolutely got a nice guy boost, as well as a freak injury boost (and a would have had 3,000 hits if not for the freak injury boost). It just turned out he actually wasn't a nice guy.
   62. Howie Menckel Posted: February 04, 2020 at 06:19 PM (#5921640)
for those who did not get to see Granderson play very often and might be a little amazed at the level of adulation.....

there are a lot of fans who think that being an MLB player would be the best job ever and if they only were so lucky, they would be noticeably giddy for every game. (one might speculate that the more athletic the fan as a youth, the more intense the feeling.)

well, then Granderson was your guy. always in a good mood, always hustling, always 'happy to be here.' the old Roy Campanella quote comes to mind - "You gotta be a man to play baseball for a living, but you gotta have a lot of little boy in you, too."

(Brandon Nimmo hits the same vibe, as does Pete Alonso of the current Mets.)

as for his TV interviews, if you channel-surfed in, you might think at first that he was the professional broadcaster - because he'd invariably express himself better than the other fella.

all that was enough to make Granderson wildly popular. the fact that he by all accounts is a model citizen and philanthropist is just a million bonus points. too bad that he's too honest and too much of a gentleman to run for political office, I fear.
   63. Dag Nabbit at ExactlyAsOld.com Posted: February 04, 2020 at 08:16 PM (#5921658)
In the Historical Abstract James argues that Catfish Hunter got a nice guy boost. I can't think of any other player (Ross Youngs? But that's a Frisch VC pick and those are kinda random). And it's not exactly clear that Hunter got across the line thanks to this.

If we're talking VC, we have to include Rick Ferrell, right? Isn't being a nice guy how he got in?

Then there's the question of where you draw the line between cronyism and being a nice guy. Harold Baines got in because of cronyism (Reinsdorf & LaRussa both championed him in the VC ballotting) but it Baines wasn't a nice guy, he wouldn't have been cronyed.

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