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Thursday, January 23, 2020

Larry Walker’s Hall plaque to feature Rockies cap, not Expos

NEW YORK (AP) — Larry Walker’s Hall of Fame plaque in Cooperstown will have a Colorado Rockies cap, not a Montreal Expos hat.

Walker spoke with Hall officials after he was elected Tuesday in his 10th and final appearance on the Baseball Writers’ Association of America ballot.

Born in Maple Ridge, British Columbia, Walker made his big league debut with the Expos in August 1989 and signed with the Rockies ahead of the 1995 season. He was traded to St. Louis in August 2004 and retired after the 2005 season.

“It’s a hard decision, being a Canadian,” Walker said.

So, will this please the people of Denver, alienate those of Montreal, both, or neither?

 

QLE Posted: January 23, 2020 at 12:48 AM | 40 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: caps, expos, hall of fame, larry walker, rockies

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   1. Sweatpants Posted: January 23, 2020 at 12:56 AM (#5918573)
A run with an MVP award and three straight batting titles versus one in which he forgot how many outs there were and led the league in doubles once. I can't imagine anyone thought there would be a debate here.

Edit: It was three batting titles overall, but they weren't consecutive. I forgot that Tony Gwynn won it in the MVP season.
   2. Rally Posted: January 23, 2020 at 06:54 AM (#5918581)
Good for him. Expos are well represented given their short history with Raines, Carter, and Dawson. Glad the Rockies have one now.
   3. "RMc", the superbatsman Posted: January 23, 2020 at 08:00 AM (#5918586)
Exactly how much say does a player have in the cap-on-the-plaque thing?
   4. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: January 23, 2020 at 08:57 AM (#5918598)

He played more than half his career in Colorado. This was a no-brainer.

Exactly how much say does a player have in the cap-on-the-plaque thing?

I think the Hall will defer to a guy's wishes if you could make an equally compelling case for more than one team. Otherwise, not so much.

If McGriff makes it via the VC in a couple of years, he will be an interesting case.
   5. Steve Parris, Je t'aime Posted: January 23, 2020 at 09:05 AM (#5918599)
Would fans in British Colombia have rooted for the Expos over the Mariners? I have to think if they went all in on Canada they would be Jays fans, and if they wanted a more local team they'd go with the M's.
   6. Rusty Priske Posted: January 23, 2020 at 09:11 AM (#5918602)
Of course he is going in with a Rockies cap. The Expo fans can still be proud of him, but come on.
   7. The Duke Posted: January 23, 2020 at 11:06 AM (#5918650)
Do you think they might make make McGriff wear an expos hat? That would be odd
   8. . Posted: January 23, 2020 at 11:09 AM (#5918651)
The whole thing about the plaque cap is ####### really stupid.
   9. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: January 23, 2020 at 11:12 AM (#5918653)
The more important questions is, will he be shown in a SpongeBob jersey?
   10. gef, talking mongoose & vexatious litigant Posted: January 23, 2020 at 11:16 AM (#5918657)
I was very disappointed just now to discover via Google that my memories of McGruff the Crime Dog wearing a fedora were inaccurate.
   11. Jose Is Absurdly Chatty Posted: January 23, 2020 at 11:16 AM (#5918658)
The more important questions is, will he be shown in a SpongeBob jersey?


In my mind he always will be.
   12. kubiwan Posted: January 23, 2020 at 11:16 AM (#5918660)
Do you think they might make make McGriff wear an expos hat?


I thought it was well-established that he would be wearing a Tom Emanski hat. After all, they did win back-to-back-to-back AAU national championships!
   13. Lassus Posted: January 23, 2020 at 11:19 AM (#5918664)
Where's his NY-PENN Utica Blue Sox hat on his plaque?
   14. Ziggy is done with Dominican discotheques Posted: January 23, 2020 at 11:24 AM (#5918669)
Unless Pete gets re-instated, I have to assume that this is the last Expos HOFer. (Of course I might be forgetting someone, but I don't think so.)
   15. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: January 23, 2020 at 11:31 AM (#5918672)
Hey now. Bartolo is still working on a comeback. He could get to 300 wins. But he did have a PED suspension, didn't he?
   16. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: January 23, 2020 at 11:35 AM (#5918675)
I thought it was well-established that he would be wearing a Tom Emanski hat.


Did any of you ever watch those Tom Emanski videos, and if so, were they any good?
   17. crict Posted: January 23, 2020 at 11:42 AM (#5918677)
Unless Pete gets re-instated, I have to assume that this is the last Expos HOFer. (Of course I might be forgetting someone, but I don't think so.)


Unless I missed somebody, there will be no former Expos on the BBWAA ballot until Bartolo is eligible.

I guess the VC could someday vote in Graig Nettles or Dennis Martinez. A manager or executive could also be voted in, say Terry Francona or Felipe Alou.
   18. Adam Starblind Posted: January 23, 2020 at 11:57 AM (#5918684)



Hey now. Bartolo is still working on a comeback. He could get to 300 wins. But he did have a PED suspension, didn't he?


Yeah, but LOL. Bartolo being Bartolo.
   19. John Northey Posted: January 23, 2020 at 11:58 AM (#5918685)
Heh. I was a big Expos fan but I knew it was Rockies all the way. Vlad Sr was a debate, but Walker isn't.

McGriff is an odd one - probably a no team hat. 5 years each for Toronto, Tampa Bay, and Atlanta.

Toronto pluses: WAR of 19.4, OPS+ of 153 his highest figures for any team in both cases by a good margin, MVP votes 3 times, one Silver Slugger, a HR title, once led league in OPS and OPS+ (6th in MVP voting that year), one playoff appearance

Atlanta pluses: 3 All-Star games, 2 times MVP votes, his top OPS score (1.012), half year there led to his highest HR total in a single season (37, 19 in Atlanta), his highest RBI total for a single season (107), became more famous there I think with his charge to help them in 1993 resulting in a 4th place MVP finish, he also played the most games there (636 vs 578 in Toronto and 577 in Tampa)

Tampa Bay pluses: 1 All-Star game, 100+ RBI 3 of his 4 full seasons there, gave him his final ML chance. Yeah, I'm stretching here.

SD pluses: just 3 years but MVP votes every one of them, top 10 all 3 years. 100+ RBI's all 3 years. So he did good but his team didn't.

Cubs: just 2 years, not enough to consider

Dodgers: just 86 games near the end.

No question it is a Toronto vs Atlanta battle. As a Jays fan I'd rather he went in as a Jay (annoyed how Halladay's wife wanted a no team cap when it seemed obvious he was going in as a Jay), but I can see a strong case for Atlanta as well. I figure it'll come down to what each team offers him to go in as one of them.
   20. SoSH U at work Posted: January 23, 2020 at 12:07 PM (#5918689)
Tampa Bay pluses: 1 All-Star game, 100+ RBI 3 of his 4 full seasons there, gave him his final ML chance. Yeah, I'm stretching here.


It's also his hometown, and where he wanted to retire. Depending if he's still ticked off about getting dealt to the Cubs, that could be his preference.
   21. Adam Starblind Posted: January 23, 2020 at 12:24 PM (#5918694)
I figure it'll come down to what each team offers him to go in as one of them.


Because Wade Boggs attempted to go in as a Devil Ray in some kind of bargain, they no longer go with what the player asks for.
   22. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: January 23, 2020 at 12:27 PM (#5918697)
Because Wade Boggs attempted to go in as a Devil Ray in some kind of bargain, they no longer go with what the player asks for.


They might use it as a tiebreaker, though, if he has a clearly expressed preference.
   23. Adam Starblind Posted: January 23, 2020 at 12:32 PM (#5918702)

They might use it as a tiebreaker, though, if he has a clearly expressed preference.


Yeah, but if it were part of a drug deal, so to speak? I think they might make him a Dodger for spite.
   24. JJ1986 Posted: January 23, 2020 at 12:40 PM (#5918707)
I think McGriff is a Brave - he hit really well in the postseason for them (especially 1995) and his signature moment was the ASG home run as a Brave. I'm mildly against no-team hats and think they should be limited as much as possible.
   25. Steve Parris, Je t'aime Posted: January 23, 2020 at 12:54 PM (#5918717)
Because Wade Boggs attempted to go in as a Devil Ray in some kind of bargain,


I believe that's known as a Faustian bargain.
   26. Adam Starblind Posted: January 23, 2020 at 12:56 PM (#5918718)



I think McGriff is a Brave - he hit really well in the postseason for them (especially 1995) and his signature moment was the ASG home run as a Brave. I'm mildly against no-team hats and think they should be limited as much as possible.


I remember him most for the trade of McGriff and Tony Fernandez for Joe Carter and Roberto Alomar. That was incredible. More or less a challenge trade, I can't think of anything else like it.
   27. Rally Posted: January 23, 2020 at 12:57 PM (#5918719)
I think the Hall will defer to a guy's wishes if you could make an equally compelling case for more than one team. Otherwise, not so much.


That's my understanding. Mike Piazza could make a case for either the Dodgers or Mets and the HOF would mostly likely be fine with it. But if chose to be a Marlin, that would get overruled.
   28. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 23, 2020 at 01:01 PM (#5918721)
McGriff could just have a blank hat, or no hat. Several players don't have a team hat. e.g. Yogi Berra has a cap, but is in profile, so no visible logo.
   29. Rally Posted: January 23, 2020 at 01:03 PM (#5918724)
McGriff is a tough call. He played 5 years for the Jays, Braves, and Rays. The Blue Jay years are his best by OPS+ and WAR. Most of his postseason was with the Braves, plus he has more games and PA there than anywhere else. In 3 years with the Padres he has more WAR than his TB years, and about as much as his ATL years.
   30. Omineca Greg Posted: January 23, 2020 at 06:42 PM (#5918845)
Would fans in British Colombia have rooted for the Expos over the Mariners? I have to think if they went all in on Canada they would be Jays fans, and if they wanted a more local team they'd go with the M's


There were fans of all three teams in BC.

The Expos being the earliest, and for awhile the only team, gave them a leg up. They retained some of their popularity even when the Blue Jays and Mariners started.

The Blue Jays immediately grabbed a lot of the fans though, and pretty quickly they dominated the baseball fandom in British Columbia. The people who stuck with the Expos were hardcore fans, definitely it was cooler to be an Expos fan. If you saw somebody wearing an Expos cap and struck up a conversation with them, there was a very good chance they were passionate about the team. With Blue Jays fans it was more random, some keeners, some more casual fans.

There was never any real rivalry between groups, the people who enjoyed baseball tended to support all the teams, but with an emphasis on one team or the other. Expos fans would consider themselves more legit; no DH, into it for longer, that sort of thing. But in a country where hockey is king, any baseball fan is your ally.

When the Mariners were having a good season, they'd be popular, but they were definitely the third ranked team.

British Columbians can be very provincial. They'll be jealous of Toronto and Montreal's places in the country's hierarchy of World Class cities. Even now, according to the GaWC, Toronto is Alpha, Montreal is Alpha minus, and Vancouver is Beta plus. And depending on your political opinions, that might change things. Without getting into it, watching Canadians fight about who lives in the best city is like watching a MMF hamster love triangle; yeah, the two male hamsters are clawing and scratching and biting like it's the most important thing in the world. But in the end, all the winner gets is a few seconds ####### another hamster. All the loser misses out on is...well, you can figure it out. Canadians remind me of horny hamsters sometimes.
   31. flournoy Posted: January 23, 2020 at 08:40 PM (#5918860)
Seriously though, male Syrian hamsters have some big ol' balls.
   32. puck Posted: January 23, 2020 at 09:17 PM (#5918874)
So, will this please the people of Denver, alienate those of Montreal, both, or neither?


It absolutely will please Coloradans. This is the Rockies' first hall of famer.

People here are always feeling slighted. (Is there anywhere this isn't true?, but still, they do.) Broncos fans are always complaining there's not enough Broncos in the HoF. So this is big.

Plus this is probably the highlight of 2020 for the Rockies unless Bridich harasses someone and gets fired.
   33. cardsfanboy Posted: January 23, 2020 at 11:09 PM (#5918908)
A run with an MVP award and three straight batting titles versus one in which he forgot how many outs there were and led the league in doubles once. I can't imagine anyone thought there would be a debate here.


Not that I disagree with you, but as Maddux pointed out, the team that drafted you, and spent 4 years developing you, might have a bit more weight than just the few years you were on their major league roster.

People getting upset about hats, while ignoring the team that drafted and developed you, is a bit ridiculous to be honest.
   34. Sweatpants Posted: January 24, 2020 at 12:24 AM (#5918926)
He didn't get an Expos hat, so I can't imagine that anyone's upset.

It's nice for a player to remember who brought them into the big leagues, but that should be more of a tiebreaker than a major factor in the choice. Ryne Sandberg's not a Phillie, Roberto Alomar's not a Padre, Nolan Ryan's not a Met (okay, given the team that he he did choose, maybe he's not the best example), and Randy Johnson's not an Expo. Obviously Walker did more with the Expos than any of those guys did with their original clubs, but he did less with them than Maddux did with the Cubs.

Maddux, by the way, chose not to honor the team that drafted and developed him with his cap choice.
   35. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: January 24, 2020 at 10:45 AM (#5918995)
I was in Seattle one weekend a few summers ago, when the Blue Jays were in town. People drove down from BC in droves to support Toronto. I've never seen so many people in Jays' gear.
   36. Flynn Posted: January 24, 2020 at 11:04 AM (#5919005)
Broncos fans are always complaining there's not enough Broncos in the HoF.


To be fair, they have a point. Randy Gradishar probably has more 1st and 2nd team All-Pros than anybody not in the Hall except for kickers and Jim Tyner, who killed his wife and kids and himself about five years after he retired.

There's five Broncos in the PFHOF, plus Gary Zimmerman (who played about 40% of his career with the Broncos and 60% with the Vikings). That seems pretty low for a team with three Super Bowl titles and eight AFC championships. The Chargers have 7, plus Fred Dean (same 60-40 split, this time with the Niners) and have won one AFL title and one AFC championship. The Dolphins have 9. The Patriots have five and Ty Law's the only person inducted into the Hall with a Patriots Super Bowl ring.
   37. bachslunch Posted: January 26, 2020 at 03:23 AM (#5919318)
@36: Randy Gradishar (4 first team all pro selections and 7 pro bowls) is by far the major Bronco PFHoF Senior snub and definitely belongs in. Others with a reasonably good case are WR Lionel Taylor and LB Karl Mecklenburg. Other Senior-eligible players get mentioned sometimes, but none are legitimate snubs. Among regularly eligible options, Steve Atwater is the only legitimate Bronco snub and is likely to get in the next few years (again, guys like Rod Smith sometimes get mentioned, but don’t belong in).

Unfortunately, this doesn’t stop Broncos fans from thinking they’re being roundly cheated or something — a delusion that affects many NFL fandoms, but this one in particular. And given that induction into the PFHoF is an individual honor, there’s no correlation between team postseason success and number of Hall inductees. Otherwise, there’d be no Cardinals or Chargers in Canton. Happens sometimes. And there’s already one flat-out bad Bronco HoFer in Floyd Little, with Pat Bowlen being pretty borderline as well.

As for Canton snubs with multiple 1st team all pro selections, there are actually quite a few with more than Gradishar’s four besides Tyrer. These include Lavvie Dilweg and Al Wistert and Ox Emerson and Dave Grayson (6) and Chuck Howley and Del Shofner and Jimmy Patton and Riley Matheson and Maxie Baughan and Dick Barwegen and Duane Putnam (5). All are among the PFHoF’s worst omissions.

   38. bachslunch Posted: January 26, 2020 at 04:24 AM (#5919319)
And while we’re on the subject of that HoF, the special Senior/Coach/Contributor make-up class that was supposed to be a celebration of the centennial of the NFL was a disgraceful disaster worthy of Frankie Frisch and Jerry Reinsdorf.

The Coach choices were marginal if potentially defensible, thought the worst snub (Clark Shaughnessy) didn’t even make the final consideration group.

The Contributor choices were actually good, though they somehow couldn’t find room for Ralph Hay, the owner who founded the league in the first place. And while Paul Tagliabue is defensible, his election was being blocked by a clutch of voters who had banded together and were determined to keep him out because of his inaction on concussion issues; speculation has run rife that the decision to not allow a vote on the final slate was done to bypass this group and push him in.

The Senior list was mostly horrible, almost as if they picked the ten WORST options. Electing Jim Covert and Ed Sprinkle over Lavvie Dilweg and Al Wistert is like choosing Lloyd Waner and Tommy McCarthy over Arky Vaughn and Johnny Mize. Moreover, guys like Dilweg, Wistert, Ox Emerson, and Verne Lewellen will reportedly never get more than this single chance for consideration even though they were four of the best options available among the 20 finalists.

If you’re wondering why I’ve lost interest in this HoF and the NFL at this point, that’s why. There are too many other things in life I can enjoy and spend my time on.
   39. CubsInSeven Posted: January 26, 2020 at 08:56 AM (#5919326)
@22 - except when they don't. Andre Dawson wanted to wear a Cubs hat on his plaque but was denied by the HOF and they chose the Expos.
   40. SoSH U at work Posted: January 26, 2020 at 09:15 AM (#5919328)

@22 - except when they don't. Andre Dawson wanted to wear a Cubs hat on his plaque but was denied by the HOF and they chose the Expos.


That wasn't anywhere close to a tie.

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