I "get" all this.While a lot of people say, ”Everybody used steroids during that era,” Schlling’s name hasn’t been associated with that.
So out of that list, I vote Schilling only.
No, he’s not a nice guy. But being a nice guy isn’t on the list of qualifications — see Ty Cobb, who would make Schilling look like a founding member of both the NAACP and the ADL.
No on the steroid guys — Bonds, Clemens and Palmeiro. If Mark McGwire were on the ballot, I’d say no to him for the same reason.
I think Murphy is a borderline case at best for the reasons you cite. In a way, he's like Don Mattingly in that he had an immense peak value but he didn't do enough on the front and back end of it to push his numbers into the "sure fire HOFer" zone. Keep in mind that I wouldn't put Jim Rice in the Hall, either - and for largely the same reasons.Murphy is close. I could be persuaded. Incredibly nice guy, numbers are close, his teammates love him. But his main success was over a relatively short period, and I’m not sure that‘s sustained enough to warrant membership. I do remember that he wasted a few years as a catcher before hitting his stride in the outfield. Numbers might have been more persuasive if he’d always been a CF.
I like the idea of the best eligible player not already in the Hall.I "get" all this.
I don't even argue with it because it IS a principled position.
Schilling is - to me - borderline but the post-season puts him over.
I think Murphy is a borderline case at best for the reasons you cite. In a way, he's like Don Mattingly in that he had an immense peak value but he didn't do enough on the front and back end of it to push his numbers into the "sure fire HOFer" zone. Keep in mind that I wouldn't put Jim Rice in the Hall, either - and for largely the same reasons.
This is my acid test:
1) Is he the best eligible player for the Hall of Fame who is not in the Hall?
Here, of course, is where one has to make a decision on steroids. For the purpose of this post, I'll adopt your assumption regarding the juicers and re-word the question - "Is Dale Murphy the best eligible player for the HOF who is NOT in the Hall AND IS NOT SUSPECTED OF JUICING?"
To me, no, he isn't, for a few reasons:
a) Schilling is a better overall selection
b) I'd also take Lou Whitaker (2B) ahead of Murphy
c) Murphy isn't even the best non-elected Atlanta Braves CF eligible since Andruw Jones beats him in nearly every category.
Andruw - and Murph both - fell right off the cliff, Andruw more insanely. When you compare them, Andruw played all of 16 more games than Murphy did (a pretty fair comparison) and had about 450 fewer plate appearances.
Andruw scored 5 more runs, 33 more doubles, 36 more HRs, 23 more RBI, and a slightly higher OPS.
Murph had about 280 more hits, 3 more triples, 95 more walks, a BA 11 points higher, a slightly higher OBP, and grounded into more double plays.
They were about the same stealing bases, had the exact same number of Ks, and Jones beats him on the WAR scale, 62.7 to 46.5.
Jones played for much better teams, but he also played in a harder park all but his first two months. And Murph was a fine fielder but Jones was on his way to being the greatest defensive CF in the history of game when he just plummeted.
Andruw MIGHT someday make the Hall when they re-visit him. He saved more runs (239) than any outfielder in the history of baseball, which might be enough. But he also hit .210 after age 30.
And bear in mind Murphy's number was the one I wrote in my royal blue 1980s Braves baseball hat. I love the guy, I just can't see him as the best eligible player at this point.
I also think Luis Tiant belongs ahead of Murphy as well.
2) Is he the best player at his position eligible who is not in the Hall?
I just covered that.
Even adjusting the offensive numbers, Murph doesn't beat Andruw overall.
He might at this point, however, be second.
Yeah, Stephenson's stats are inflated by the era in which he played.I like the idea of the best eligible player not already in the Hall.
A lot of people would say Riggs Stephenson (played in the Ruth era, lifetime .336 hitter over a 14-year career), but I think that ship sailed when a campaign several years long failed to garner the necessary votes. Apparently, he was a great hitter, but a liability in the field, and that's probably what kept him out.
Regarding Clemens, there's also the inconvenient affair with Mindy McCready that started when she was 15 and he was the married father of two and almost 30.
I know there are a lot of unfaithful husbands in the Hall. But jiminy, when they're also child molesters, that's just several bridges too far.
I don't dispute it I just think it is completely irrelevant. Do you know how many people in all of the Big 3 HOF's (NBA, MLB, NFL) benefitted statistically from being on "better teams"? My god at the examples that could be given of people whose statistics were due in part to "being on better teams". That's why I think it's irrelevant.This has got to be the first time in my life I've been accused of trying to DISCREDIT (are you serious?) Fred McGriff by.....checks notes....TELLING THE TRUTH
McGriff DID play on better teams?
Do you dispute that fact?
You can't penalize a player for natural across the board changes in the game. Which your #1 falls direclty into that. Again, there's natural changes in all sports (better equipment, ball park changes, rule changes, golf courses getting smaller, bigger, etc.) that apply to everyone who plays during that time. All the homeruns hit out of rightfield at Yankee stadium, are we deducting those hr's from the players who are in the hall of fame in which those homeruns are a part of their HOF numbers just because you had other players who never got the opportunity to hit there? I don't think so.All I'm doing is providing context.
I'll be very interested to see if you attempt to make the argument that McGriff was ever considered the best FIRST BASEMAN in baseball, much less the BEST ALL-AROUND player.
I hope you also realize three other factors:
1) PARK FACTORS - namely, McGriff played during a time of easier home runs in ballparks (Murphy never had a single at-bat in Coors Field for starters)
2) if the number of players hitting HRs went up then McGriff's nearly 500 HRs is less impressive than Murphy's nearly 400 home runs in a time of fewer home runs
3) fewer runs scored PER GAME means Murphy's runs were MORE VALUABLE to his team
A person does not have to be considered the "best player in the game" to be worthy of the HOF. McGriff was one of the best all-around hitters in the game for years and went through the bulk of his career (both with the Braves and Blue Jays) where he was one of the most feared hitters in the game. The Braves didn't go out and make it a point to get him because they liked the way Chris Berman said his name on Sports Center after a HR. He was an elite hitter for most of his career and that is reflected in why his WAR is higher than Murphy's, even with Murphy's 5 gold gloves to McGriff's zero. Again, I would have loved to see how he would have been viewed as a hitter if not having to compete against steroid hitters.Simple question: did anybody EVER AT ANY TIME EVER suggest "Fred McGriff is the best player in baseball"? NO!!!
Did they with Murphy? YES!!!
So we're comparing a guy who played in one era and AT A MINIMUM was considered "the best player in his league, maybe all of baseball as a centerfielder" against a guy who was a solid hitter, definitely consistent, who played first base and averaged about 10 errors per season.
I think you're taking this too personally. I simply do not agree with all of the criteria you're using to justify your opinion. That's it. Nothing more, nothing less. No one is saying or suggesting you're falsifying information, I just think that some of your "evidence", and "contextualizing" is completely irrelevant, in my opnion. That's it. I've discussed those items and why I think so above. Your opinion isn't an authority or absolute, it's an opinion, regardless of how much you think of it.I've been on this board over 20 years.
Even with people who disagree with me, it's incredible given the details to which I pay attention that I'm being accused of SLANTING EVIDENCE here.
Where did I say I'd take McGriff over Hernandez? I never did. I think it is a travesty Hernandez isn't already in the HOF. I've been a Keith Hernandez advocate for the HOF for years. I pointed out Hernandez to show that if Gold Gloves carried as much weight with being in the HOF as you were trying to say, then he'd looooong been in there because he won 11 of them. But the reality is, and always has been, "hitting" is sexier and has had more importance placed on it than an elite fielder. You have some exceptions, like Ozzie Smith, but I do wonder if in today's game if Ozzie's defensive prowess would be enough to put him in the HOF as it did during the era he played. My guess is, no and that is a shame.Keith Hernandez won more MVPs than McGriff did, and he also won more batting titles.
In fact, I'd have to wonder why you'd ever take McGriff over Hernandez for the HOF.
Hernandez beats McGriff in WAR (60.3 to 52.2), scored only 200 fewer runs in 1500 fewer plate appearances, had 800 FEWER STRIKEOUTS (weren't you the one talking about hitting a baseball?), had a higher OBP, higher career BA, and the same number of sac flies in 1500 fewer at bats.
AND was a better defensive first baseman BY FAR.
He also won 2 rings to McGriff's one.
What did McGriff do better than Hernandez?
Hit home runs. And stay off drugs.
Again, I think you're taking this waaay too personal and to a level that I'm not. I just don't agree with some of your "reasons" and that's okay. There isn't a universally agreed upon and accepted set of criteria, whether it be raw stats or a method of contextualizations that include a million "what if's" and "if this would or if this wouldn't haves" to compare players across eras to come to an absolute decision on who's "Better". We all pick the ones we want to use and I just disagree with some of yours. That's it. In my opinion, both Murphy and McGriff deserve to be in the HOF, for different reasons, but both are deserving, nonetheless.Three different times in this post now, you've accused me of bad faith.
Adrian Beltre must not be eligible yet because I don't know how the hell you pick Scott Rolen for the HOF before him??And we now have Scott Rollen joining McGriff for induction this summer.
Sadly, the Hall has become a sick joke.
Beltre will go in next year, no doubt, in his first year eligible.Adrian Beltre must not be eligible yet because I don't know how the hell you pick Scott Rolen for the HOF before him??
Btw I've NEVER heard Rolen's name and thought 'Yeah he's a HOF'er'
Of course he has the stink of Philly all over him so maybe that's why...lol
Yeah Mattingly was incredible for a 6 year period in the Mid 80s but his Back issues (If I remember right) took away his power hitting around 1990 or so and reduced him to a 'Good' player for the rest of his career.Btw - the Yankee fans AGAIN predictably turned up with "But Don Mattingly has go to in!"
What a bunch of losers those idiots are. Had Mattingly kept up his 1984-88 pace for 4-5 more years, he'd have made it. He WAS perhaps the best player (certainly best 1B) in the game during those years - but injuries (sadly) did him in.
Andruw Jones is a fine example.Yeah Mattingly was incredible for a 6 year period in the Mid 80s but his Back issues (If I remember right) took away his power hitting around 1990 or so and reduced him to a 'Good' player for the rest of his career.
There have been a LOT of guys with great 6-7 year peaks and it's just not HOF worthy for that alone.
Though I agree if he doesn't get hurt then he probably puts up HOF stats. Even robbed of his power he still hit around .290 for the rest of his career.
I'm torn on Rolen, partly because he's nowhere close to the worst selection and also because THIRD BASE is the hardest position on the field to consider for the Hall. You can be a lousy batter at second and especially at short just so long as you're a fielding dynamo and you get in, but at third you have to be BOTH a slugger AND a slick fielder. Rolen DID win 8 Gold Gloves at third so he was clearly a great fielder.The baseball HOF has become the "Hall of the very good". Since Rolen's HOF announcement, there has been A LOT of pretty heated discussion of it on a national level and his election has drawn A LOT of criticism. IMO, one of the things that may be lost in plain sight is in the name itself, the Hall of FAME, which ironically enough, Rolen didn't have during his career.