Dear Johnny Damon

by JohnBowen

Dear Johnny Damon,

You’re not a Hall of Famer. You’re not particularly close – at least you shouldn’t be.

One time in your entire career have you ranked in the top-10 in WAR.

Once a piece, you’ve led the league in runs scored, stolen bases, and triples. You’ve received MVP voted in just four different seasons, largely because you played in big markets, and never once have you placed higher than 13th. Like Bob Wickman, you’re a 2-time all-star.

You are not a Hall-of-Famer by any objective measurement, but what you are is a millionaire. Actually, you’ve banked about $110,439,000.00. That’s a lot of money.

Do you really want to price yourself out of a job because you aren’t seeing any 5 million dollar offers? That strikes me as unwise.

And here’s why: you have 2723 career hits.

That’s a pretty good number and heck, you’ve had a pretty good career. For fifteen years, you’ve been a solid force atop lineups who has managed to play 140+ games year-in and year-out. Those qualities have given you the opportunity to accumulate a lot of hits, 2723, in fact! That’s sandwiched between Roberto Alomar and Lou Gehrig for 57th all-time.

The difference, of course, is that those gentlemen are all-time greats and you, Mr. Damon, are not. Your career, even with all those hits, while impressive, make you much more like Rusty Staub, Vada Pinson, Al Oliver, and Harold Baines than your Alomars and Gehrigs.

Thing is, for no good reason whatsoever, and another 277 hits will rubber-stamp your induction into the MLB Hall of Fame (even though, as I previously mentioned, you’re no Hall of Famer). That’s 138.5 hits per year. You’ve done that every year since….whoa, 1998? Batting at the top of the order for good teams and staying healthy will do that for you.

It doesn’t matter that your career as a ballplayer is still not the stuff of legends – not even close. But 3,000 hits – a completely arbitrary number of hits, by the way – would get you to baseball immortality. Even though you’d be the worst player with 3,000 hits with the exception of Lou Brock – even though Cap Anson still, to this day, has a better arm than you – you’d most likely be enshrined.

This is a no-brainer for you. Hang around for two more years. Take less money – you already have enough, even if your ex-wife took half of it (did you not get a pre-nup? Seriously?). Sign with a team where you can be guaranteed to play every day – the A’s or Mariners, perhaps? Actually, you might draw too many walks doing that, considering the severe lack of protection you’d receive. Either way, holding out for 5 million dollars is not the best long-term solution for you.

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153 Responses to “Dear Johnny Damon”

  1. Raul Says:

    Damon isn’t a hall of famer.

    But the notion that 3,000 hits is “just an arbitrary number” is about as fucking stupid as saying 700 homers is “just an arbitrary number”.

  2. John Says:

    What’s the difference between someone with 2900 hits and 3000?

    Basically nothing.

    So why is it the difference between HOF-and not?

    That’s the freaking definition of arbitrary.

    Why do round numbers mean more?

  3. Chuck Says:

    “So why is it the difference between HOF-and not.”

    It’s not.

    There are nine players with career totals between 2900 and 2999 and eight are in the HOF, and the only one who isn’t is not yet eligible.

  4. Cameron Says:

    And he won’t. Counting guys who were clean, the highest hit total to not make the Hall of Fame is Harold Baines’ 2,866.

  5. John Says:

    Fine.

    2866. Or 2722.

    Fact of the matter is that 3000 hits is simply a round number. If Damon plays full time and gets to 3000 in the next two years, he’ll hurt his teams, but HELP his HOF candidacy, and will likely put him over the top.

    Which is idiotic.

  6. Cameron Says:

    I dunno. Three guys who hit 3,000 aren’t in the Hall of Fame, worse percentage than the 2,900 club. Granted, one is permanently ineligible, one isn’t eligible yet, and one’s on steroids. However, it’s not a big lock.

    Also of the guys who DID hit 3,000, they all earned it. Who are the weak ones in that group? Lou Brock? Paul Waner? Paul Molitor? These guys are still Hall of Fame worthy. Johnny Damon, even if he hit 3,000 can’t carry most of these guys’ jocks.

  7. John Says:

    Brock is the only guy who probably shouldn’t be in.

    Palmeiro, I’m torn on. I could give a shit about the roids, but he wasn’t really ever a dominant player.

  8. Cameron Says:

    The one you could probably make the best case against, but it’s still a case I wouldn’t feel comfortable trying to make. Guy was a force for some pretty good Cardinals teams.

  9. Cameron Says:

    Time to piss off Chuck!

    Of the 6 headlines on nba.com’s homepage, 3 of them are about Jeremy Lin.

  10. Raul Says:

    “but he wasn’t really ever a dominant player”

    …just like Tim Raines.

  11. John Says:

    Yeah, he was only the 2nd best leadoff hitter ever. What does dominant mean to you?

  12. Raul Says:

    Jeremy Lin has himself a good game today.
    28 points, 14 assists, 5 steals.

    Still, he had 7 turnovers. The Knicks as a team had 16.
    Understand that your PG is more likely to give up turnovers than your Center, but Lin needs to improve in this area.

    I would be concerned that the Knicks aren’t using Amare Stoudamire in the best way. He’s not getting many scoring chances and you would think he would — given the attention that Lin is receiving now.

    The Mavs doubled Lin a few times and when they did, Lin was able to get the ball out to JR Smith and Steve Novak. And they hit their shots. But when they don’t, the Knicks will be in trouble.

    Typical D’Antoni team. They’ll score with teams, but when crunch time comes along against the best teams, they’ll get shut down.

    I should note that before the Knicks hired D’Antoni, I felt they should have gone with Mark Jackson or Avery Johnson.

  13. Raul Says:

    The way you base your arguments on your own imagined premises is quite comical, John.

  14. John Says:

    Seems like a glaring deficiency in his game, no?

  15. John Says:

    As comical as limiting your definition of greatness to BA/HR/RBI?

  16. Cameron Says:

    Those two guys inherited teams are something I want to watch. New Jersey kinda interests me if only because of Williams and Lopez. They’re gonna Brooklyn and they want Dwight Howard, and Williams and Howard will be interesting… But in all honesty, I mostly watch for Brook Lopez, who’s finally coming back from surgery next week.

    As for Golden State, these guys are just fun to watch. Sure, they can’t play defense for shit, but Curry, Ellis, Wright, and Lee just make it rain shots on bitches and it’s just fun.

  17. Raul Says:

    It might be, if I ever said greatness was limited to BA/HR/RBI…

    If you’re going to put words in my mouth, I’ll have to insist you be a bit more creative.

  18. Chuck Says:

    John..newsflash.

    Johnny Damon’s a better outfielder than Tim Raines.

    You keep pointing to “second greatest leadoff hitter ever” as being some holy shit important thing.

    Bob Boone was the second greatest #8 hitter ever..how come I’ve never seen you support his HOF candidacy.

  19. Chuck Says:

    The Knicks won today.

    If the season ended tomorrow, the Knicks would be in the playoffs.

    Jeremy Lin’s my favorite player.

  20. John Says:

    The leadoff hitter sets the table which is crucial. The number 8of hitter just sucks.

    Do you really not know this?

  21. Chuck Says:

    Good think you’re not a defense attorney John, because you really suck at this arguing thing.

    Was going out for the high school baseball team a result of getting cut from the debate team?

  22. Raul Says:

    What I did notice is how John uses counting stats to back Tim Raines, and uses them to disparage others.

    Jeremy Lin is a fun player to watch.

  23. Cameron Says:

    Glad you guys are kinda like me and can tell the difference between “fun” and “good”. To me, the Warriors are fun, but not good. Don’t know who I’d call good but not fun. Tim Duncan, maybe?

  24. Chuck Says:

    “Palmeiro, I’m torn on. I could give a shit about the roids, but he wasn’t really ever a dominant player.”

    And Raines was?

  25. Cameron Says:

    I dunno if you can really call leadoff guys dominant. Even Rickey didn’t put that much fear into guys. He could fuck a team up like none other, but I don’t think dominant is a fair word to apply to him.

  26. Chuck Says:

    “Even Rickey didn’t put that much fear into guys.”

    True, but he could hurt you if you made a mistake.

  27. John Says:

    Henderson isn’t in the HOF for 290 HR.

    He’s in the OF because he did his job perfectly – reached base and did the things necessary to score runs.

    Just like Raines.

    Whether or not Chuck realizes it is irrelevent, because he’s clueless about the notion that reaching base and advancing is integral to run scoring.

  28. Cameron Says:

    Right Chuck, he could catch good mistakes, but would you really call him dominant? That’s the best example I could think of for a leadoff guy and even then it’s a hard word to pin on him. Dangerous is much better, fits much nicer.

  29. Cameron Says:

    AJ Burnett is now officially a Pirate. Final amount of salary they took on was 13 million.

  30. Chuck Says:

    “Whether or not Chuck realizes it is irrelevent, because he’s clueless about the notion that reaching base and advancing is integral to run scoring.”

    And you’re clueless about what being a HOFer means.

  31. Raul Says:

    6.5 million per year for AJ Burnett.

    On one hand, it’s a good risk for the Pirates. On the other hand, they still have no shot of taking the NL Central.

    Either this is a veteran mentoring thing for Pittsburgh’s young pitchers, and/or hope by Huntington that Burnett bounces back in the NL and he can spin him to a mid-season contender.

  32. Cameron Says:

    Raul, it’s the fact that their rotation really needs shoring up. The only guys with locks in that rotation are AJ, Erik Bedard, and James MacDonald. There’s like, 5 guys competing for 2 rotation spots there. When James MacDonald has a guaranteed #3 spot and you have to compete for your job, that’s a big sign of how bad the starting depth is in Pittsburgh.

  33. Lefty33 Says:

    “Sign with a team where you can be guaranteed to play every day – the A’s or Mariners, perhaps?”

    There is no situation where he plays everyday at this point unless a team bus for ?? flips off the road in ST and there is a mass body count.

    “Either way, holding out for 5 million dollars is not the best long-term solution for you.”

    It’s not only the money it’s also the playing time.

    Ibanez put up better numbers than him against RHP last year in a similar number of PA’s and he is going to swallow his pride and take a P/T job that likely won’t pay him much over million dollars.

    Damon holding out for Luke Scott money (5-6 million) and a F/T job is what’s the problem.

    If he’s swallows his ego, and changes agents, no doubt he already has a job.

    He fails to understand the new reality of the CBA’s effect on payroll spending.

    “Yeah, he was only the 2nd best leadoff hitter ever. What does dominant mean to you?”

    Just because he may have been 2nd best does not make him dominant.

    If I run the Boston Marathon and finish in second place eight seconds behind the winner that’s a hell of a lot more impressive than if I finished twenty minutes behind the winner.

    What Raines compiled looks so small compared to Henderson that it’s irrelevant.

    I will say this:

    With the way how the BBWAA seems to now love these Lazarus votes with guys like Rice, Blyleven and possibly Morris I have changed my mind on Raines in that I definetly think he gets in on his 12th, 13th, or 14th ballot.

    That doesn’t mean he should be there but I think that he will get there by backing in simply due to the lack of quality canidates starting in 2017-2020 with the exception of Rivera.

  34. Raul Says:

    …tell the same bullshit story long enough and people come to believe it.

    That’s Tim Raines’ best chance to get elected.

  35. Mike Felber Says:

    Even I am not jazzed to have another Raines argument. But the naysayers here keep a-pokin’ at it like reflex monkeys! You know I am among many who find him worthy. It does seem unusual that more lead of guys are not. While he is not close to Ricky ’cause he was somewhat better, & for forever.

    It would be shooting fish in a barrel to say Raines clearly was better at any measure of peak value than Damon. I guess I will write the paragraphs if anyone stands against that notion. But I guess I cannot enjoy the debate as much as his near namesake…

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QPgPDRtc2FM

  36. Chuck Says:

    It’s both frustrating and somewhat irritating for someone like John, who claims to “know” baseball, to hang his hat on an argument while knowing all along he’s holding the short end of the stick.

    Tim Raines is not a Hall of Famer.

    http://baseballhall.org/hall-famers/members/searchable-data?lname=r&cat=All&negro=All&pos=All&team=&state=All&class%5Bvalue%5D%5Byear%5D=&class%5Bvalue%5D%5Bmonth%5D=0&class%5Bvalue%5D%5Bday%5D=0&class%5Bvalue%5D%5Bhour%5D=0&class%5Bvalue%5D%5Bminute%5D=0&class%5Bvalue%5D%5Bsecond%5D=0

    Until his name appears on this list, there’s really no point in discussing it.

    At least not until January.

  37. JohnBowen Says:

    “What Raines compiled looks so small compared to Henderson that it’s irrelevant.”

    What Dave Winfield compiled looks so small compared to Mickey Mantle that it’s irrelevant.

    I guess Winfield’s not a HOFer.

    Oh, and Chuck goes back to his all-familiar justification for why Tim Raines shouldn’t be in the HOF…because he isn’t there already.

  38. JohnBowen Says:

    Yankees went ahead and signed Raul Ibanez to a 1-year, 1.1 million dollar deal, which could become up to 4 million with incentives.

    Away from the Citizen’s Bank Launching Pad, Ibanez hit .210/.261/.317 last season.

    .246/.321/.384 the year before that.

    Also, he’s 40.

  39. JohnBowen Says:

    Not that it’s a bad deal. This is exactly the kind of thing that a team with money can (and should) afford to do.

  40. Cameron Says:

    1.1? Man, I was expecting about 2.5 or 3. Don’t know how they worked that one.

  41. JohnBowen Says:

    Well, there’s some incentives to push it up to 4.

  42. Chuck Says:

    “Oh, and Chuck goes back to his all-familiar justification for why Tim Raines shouldn’t be in the HOF…because he isn’t there already.”

    Which pretty much defeats your premise that he is..what you feel about him as a player is meaningless..until he has a plaque.

    Then your opinion matters.

    Until then, you’re just mouth farting.

  43. Cameron Says:

    I’d imagine. It’s still a less total value than what I thought it’d be. Every fucking contract has incentives if you dig down deep enough. I read contracts every now and then. That’s how I know Carlos Pena actually made 20 million in Chicago. 10 on the contract, five as a signing bonus, five as exit pay.

  44. Chuck Says:

    Not sure where you’re getting that Cameron.

  45. Raul Says:

    Happy 32nd birthday, Ryan Langerhans! How does this guy stay in the league? He is a solid minor leaguer, though.

    Happy 29th birthday, Justin Verlander! The reigning MVP is 107-57. Virtually no shot at 300 wins but perhaps 250 if he’s lucky.

    Happy 28th birthday, Brian McCann! McCann is kind of a forgotten man in baseball. It seems like a lot of the attention regarding catchers goes elsewhere to unproven/mediocre players (I’m looking at you, Jesus Montero & Buster Posey). Maybe it’s because he plays in Atlanta.

    Happy 40th birthday, Shane Spencer! Spencer, as you know, erupted in his debut with the Yankees in 1998. The glory was short-lived and Spencer would be out of baseball by 32. Word is he’s a minor league coach somewhere.

  46. Chuck Says:

    Spencer’s career ended because he had problems with the sauce.

    When you’re an All-Star, getting into bar fights and showing up hungover all the time is part of the deal, when you’re the 25th man on the roster, it’s the only deal.

    Hitting coach for Class A Lake Elsinore in the Cal League for San Diego.

  47. Raul Says:

    Manny Ramirez told ESPN’s Pedro Gomez on Monday that he has agreed to a deal with the Oakland Athletics.

    Sources tell Gomez the deal is worth about $500,000. Ramirez is obligated to serve a 50-game suspension without pay before beginning play for the A’s due to violating baseball’s drug policy for the second time. With no rainouts, the first game Ramirez would be eligible to play is June 2 at Kansas City.

  48. Cameron Says:

    Chuck I was just surprised it’s 1.1 base pay. I thought it’d have been about 2.5 or 3 base pay with incentives. Didn’t think he’d be that cheap.

  49. Raul Says:

    Ibanez could hit 15 homers this year and Cashman would still get no credit because he’s not Friedman.

  50. Chuck Says:

    Pena’s contract was ten million, five payable during during the season and a five million deferred payment which was paid on January first.

    I can’t find anything which refers to a signing bonus or an “exit payment” (which would actually be pretty dumb, even for the Cubs).

  51. Raul Says:

    OMG, Adrian Gonzalez was traded to the Red Sox!! He’s gonna hit 45 bombs in that park!!

    ….he hit 27 last year.

  52. JohnBowen Says:

    Holy shit.

    Adrian Gonzalez was fucking spectacular last year.

    You have to be a goddamn retard to find fault in the Gonzalez acquisition.

    “Ibanez could hit 15 homers this year and Cashman would still get no credit because he’s not Friedman.”

    Why would that be impressive?

  53. Raul Says:

    1. Gonalez was great. But people like you were saying he’d hit 45 bombs. He didn’t. Problem?

    2. 15 homers from a part-time 40 year old player would be pretty damn impressive. So yeah.

  54. JohnBowen Says:

    “Gonalez was great. But people like you were saying he’d hit 45 bombs. He didn’t. Problem?”

    Problem was that he had a great season. Who cares how he delivered greatness?

    “15 homers from a part-time 40 year old player would be pretty damn impressive. So yeah.”

    If I signed Julio Franco to a deal and he hit 3 HR at the age of 55, that would be pretty damn impressive, but it wouldn’t make it a great signing.

  55. Raul Says:

    “Who cares how he delivered?”

    I was addressing a specific point. Again. Problem?

    John @ Post 54: “If I signed Julio Franco to a deal and he hit 3 HR at the age of 55, that would be pretty damn impressive, but it wouldn’t make it a great signing.”

    John @ Post 39: “Not that it’s a bad deal. This is exactly the kind of thing that a team with money can (and should) afford to do.”

    LOLOLOL
    The douchiness is strong with this one, Obi-Wan…

  56. JohnBowen Says:

    Never said it was a bad deal. Just said that Ibanez hitting 15 HR wouldn’t make it a good one.

  57. Raul Says:

    Riiiiight.

    15 homers from a 40 year old guy who might get 310 plate appearances this year…sh*t happens erryday.

  58. Cameron Says:

    Ah, I misread a detail of the Pena contract. I know there was five on the signing bonus, I must have confused the five deferred for another five altogether.

  59. Raul Says:

    Gotta cancel my vacation to Syria.
    Biloxi, it is…

  60. JohnBowen Says:

    When you look at the game through the narrow lens of “how many home runs were hit”, you miss some stuff. Or you know. Lots of stuff.

    Ibanez hit 20 last year, and he sucked ass.

  61. Raul Says:

    http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/ticket/million-mustache-march-planned-april-encourage-growth-facial-134239007.html

  62. Raul Says:

    LOL @ 60

    Grabbing at those straws, huh.

  63. Chuck Says:

    “When you look at the game through the narrow lens of “how many home runs were hit”, you miss some stuff. Or you know. Lots of stuff.”

    When you look at the game through the narrow lens of “how many bases he stole”, you miss some stuff. Or you know. Lots of stuff.

  64. JohnBowen Says:

    Chuck doesn’t think reaching base is an important thing.

    So he’s basically missing the entire fucking game.

  65. Raul Says:

    lol, how many times are you going to put words in peoples mouths?

    It would be like me constantly saying “John thinks scouts are worthless”

  66. JohnBowen Says:

    When a player reaches base at a .385 clip, and you think his entire legacy boils down to a historically significant number of stolen bases (which, you also throw out, as if they don’t mean anything), that’s the logical conclusion.

  67. Raul Says:

    YOU’RE THE ONE WHO DWELLED ON HIS STOLEN BASES THOUGH.

    Dude. You literally spent weeks talking about his stolen base percentage.

  68. Chuck Says:

    “you think his entire legacy boils down to a historically significant number of stolen bases”

    That’s your entire argument.

    You’ve never ONCE mentioned Raines without his SB totals.

    Not once.

  69. JohnBowen Says:

    …and that’s a big part of why he’s a HOFer.

    So is his ability to reach first base.

    If your interpretation of Tim Raines is that he’s no different from Vince Coleman or Willie Wilson, then you don’t know baseball.

    Period.

  70. Raul Says:

    When it’s Tim Raines, you wanna compare him to leadoff hitters.
    When it’s anyone else, you wanna compare him to their contemporaries or others in the position.

    How convenient.
    I guess that one time you leadoff a game makes or breaks the game.

  71. Raul Says:

    …except he actually led off like half his career.

  72. Raul Says:

    Not even arguing, I just find this pretty funny.

    Leading Off Game

    Raines: 1,398 games, .288/.363/.416
    Lofton: 1,705 games, .301/.391/.435

    Pretty goddamn obvious who the better leadoff hitter was.

  73. John Says:

    Another HOFer that Chuck thinks isn’t, but remember that Lofton did his shit in a different era.

    Take Raines’s career, subtract 1000 walks, add 400 hits, subtract 300 stolen bases and add 100 CS.

    This player is worse than Tim Raines. Easily. His teams would score far fewer runs and win fewer games.

    But this player would have a .300+ average and 3000 hits.

    So he’d be in on the firat ballot and would get your vote. Despite being a worse ballplayer.

  74. Raul Says:

    “His team would score far fewer runs and win fewer games”

    Depends on who’s batting behind him, and who’s pitching, and who’s playing defense.

    I mean, sure, we can all just create parameters to support what we believe.

  75. Chuck Says:

    Tim Raines was a great base stealer.

    Tim Raines was respectable at getting on base.

    THOSE TWO THINGS ALONE DO NOT MAKE HIM A HALL OF FAMER!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Jesus effin’ Christ, it shouldn’t be this difficult.

  76. Raul Says:

    btw, adding 400 hits to Tim Raines’ career actually does mean quite a bit.
    and I think you’re assuming 400 more singles, which is just silly.

  77. Chuck Says:

    “This player is worse than Tim Raines. Easily. His teams would score far fewer runs and win fewer games.”

    How so?

    I assume you’re referring to Lofton, who could play the OF better in a wheelchair than Raines.

    So, add in the runs Raines’ defense COST his team, not such a slam dunk anymore, is it?

  78. Raul Says:

    Over/Under 14 wins for Stephen Strasburg in 2012?

  79. Chuck Says:

    Over

  80. Lefty33 Says:

    “I thought it’d have been about 2.5 or 3 base pay with incentives. Didn’t think he’d be that cheap.”

    He’s getting paid for what he is and for what he can actually contribute at this point.

    If anything I’m shocked that there is that much incentive money being offered.

    The initial rumor I was reading was that the Yankees initial offer for Ibanez was way less than a million in base salary.

  81. Raul Says:

    Who’s got the brighter future?

    The Mariners or the Athletics?

    BTW, it would be a heck of a thing if Strasburg wins more than 14 this year.

  82. Lefty33 Says:

    @ 71- Exactly Raul.

    John always wants to argue that Raines was a great leadoff hitter except that he spent over 3800 PA’s as a non-leadoff hitter.

    Pretty fucking funny to continue to argue that a guy was the second greatest at something he didn’t even do for over a third of his career.

  83. Lefty33 Says:

    “If your interpretation of Tim Raines is that he’s no different from Vince Coleman or Willie Wilson, then you don’t know baseball.”

    Except that Wilson and Coleman spent a lot more of their careers as a leadoff hitter than Raines.

    You should really stick to comparing him to his contemporaries.

  84. Chuck Says:

    Mariners…easily.

    Hernandez, Hultzen, Paxton, Walker.

  85. Raul Says:

    What’s the news on Nick Franklin?

    He gonna be ready this summer?

  86. Lefty33 Says:

    “Ibanez hit 20 last year, and he sucked ass.”

    Not really.

    He sucked ass against LHP and it was Charlie’s fault for trying to play him everyday because of how afraid he is in playing guys under 30.

    If Ibanez can put up the same numbers this year that he did against RHP in ‘11 for a million dollars that will be the steal of the offseason.

  87. Chuck Says:

    I like Franklin, he hit a bomb off a 96 from Gerrit Cole in the Rising Stars game and I don’t think the ball got more than 20 feet off the ground the whole way out.

    The ball just makes a different sound coming off his bat.

  88. Cameron Says:

    Raul, if Strasburg stays healthy, the guy can win 14 in his sleep. The real bet is the over/under on 10 K/9 with him. He posted 14 K/9 or so in his limited rookie year and about 11 or so when he came back. Let’s see if he can keep it up.

    And John, perspective on Ibanez here. Those numbers may look bad, but they’re in two different frames. Ibanez last year made 575 PA, played the field every day, and made north of 12 million dollars. This year he can make 4 million at most and is gonna probably get 300-350 PA with limited time in the field.

    Those numbers from the Ibanez last year? Total fucking waste. Under the new contract, it ain’t that bad.

  89. Cameron Says:

    @87 I always love those players. Like Mike Stanton. You hear the ball come off that bat and it just sounds beautiful. …Then again, I can apply that trait to Kila Ka’ihue, so it doesn’t mean so much to me.

  90. Raul Says:

    Tweet from TheFakeESPN:

    50 years ago today marks the Mets first spring training, and a 40-120 season. Mets say it feels like only yesterday that they were terrible.

  91. JohnBowen Says:

    “John always wants to argue that Raines was a great leadoff hitter except that he spent over 3800 PA’s as a non-leadoff hitter.

    Pretty fucking funny to continue to argue that a guy was the second greatest at something he didn’t even do for over a third of his career.”

    George Brett is considered an all-time great 3B, despite playing well over a third of his games at 1B and DH.

    Same thing, really.

  92. JohnBowen Says:

    “Depends on who’s batting behind him, and who’s pitching, and who’s playing defense.”

    “btw, adding 400 hits to Tim Raines’ career actually does mean quite a bit.”

    Just make Tim Raines have the exact same, identical career, playing in the exact same place with the exact same teammates against the exact same opponents during the exact same games.

    Except now he has 400 more hits, and 1000 fewer walks.

    New Tim Raines now has a career line of .304/.326/.435 with 3,000 career hits (I assumed he’d hit xbh’s at the same rate)

    Based on his career rates for RBI/hit, Raines now has 150 more career RBI.

    But, because he reached base 600 fewer times, he has now scored 237 fewer runs (based on runs scored per time on base).

    So, new Tim Raines – who has 3,000 hits and a .300 career average, making him a HOF shoe-in – is actually 87 runs less valuable than original Tim Raines who, according to you guys, “isn’t even close.”

    That’s without even looking at what happens if you take away the stolen bases which would obviously impeded his ability to score as many runs.

  93. JohnBowen Says:

    “I assume you’re referring to Lofton, who could play the OF better in a wheelchair than Raines.”

    I was referring to Faux Tim Raines, who I just described in the previous post.

  94. Cameron Says:

    John, you ever assume that he could hit 400 more hits AND keep all those walks? No one else talks about taking his walks away but you. Also, they the 1,000 walk to 400 hit ratio? It strikes me as something that you pulled out of your ass.

  95. JohnBowen Says:

    It’s a made-up player.

    If he had 400 more hits and kept the walks, he’d obviously be a much better player, and of course a HOFer. He’d obviously be a much better player if he hit 800 HR too, but that doesn’t show anything.

    What I showed was that a WORSE player would be inducted, no questions asked.

  96. Chuck Says:

    “Also, they the 1,000 walk to 400 hit ratio? It strikes me as something that you pulled out of your ass.”

    We’ve been telling him that for three years.

    If Raines had spent his whole career in Toronto instead of Montreal, then we’d probably be having the same argument for him that we’re having now for Edgar Martinez.

    Then, and only then, could we be basing his HOF argument strictly on his offensive contributions, as opposed to now, where we have people like John who conveniently forget how FUCKING TERRIBLE he was as an outfielder.

    Edgar Martinez will never see the Hall of Fame because he didn’t play defense.

    Tim Raines will never see the Hall of Fame because he couldn’t play defense.

    I don’t give a shit how many meaningless bases he stole, and I don’t give a shit about how many walks he had, or how many lines of coke he snorted between pitches, and none of that shit.

    Tim Raines played 23 years and was great for a handful, and very good for another handful, and a piece of shit for a dozen.

    He sucked longer than he was good.

    Get in line and buy a ticket, Timmy boy.

  97. Lefty33 Says:

    “George Brett is considered an all-time great 3B, despite playing well over a third of his games at 1B and DH.

    Same thing, really.”

    Not even close to the same thing.

    Your argument with Raines always revolves around his SB and him being the second best leadoff hitter of all-time even though he wasn’t a leadoff hitter for over a third of his career.

    Brett’s not in the HOF because of him being a 3B.

    He’s in because as Whitey Herzog once said:

    “He could hit snowballs on Christmas day.”

    Brett’s in because he was an amazing all-time great hitter and that didn’t change regardless of him playing 1600+ games at 3B, 461 games at 1B, batting 2nd, 3rd, 4th, or 5th.

    With Raines you can’t argue that he’s the second best at a niche when he didn’t he do that niche for over a third of his career.

    Lazy and silly argument and you know it.

  98. Cameron Says:

    No John, you hypothesized it, not proved it. Don’t go around spouting admittedly made-up scenarios and then claim them as fact.

  99. JohnBowen Says:

    Ok, but just so I’m clear, you’ll also be standing against Jeter’s HOF candidacy, right? Since he couldn’t play defense. And I mean, like actually couldn’t play defense. Like, has been one of the worst fielding shortstops FUCKING EVER.

    Raines was worth -0.2 WAR as a LF. Basically average.

    League average range factor for LF during his career was 2.11 and he was at 2.09.

    So the average LF would get to approximately 2 more balls per season. Wupty fucking do.

    In 1983, he had a season with fucking 21 assists.

    He could field perfectly fine, especially for a player who dominated the offensive side of the ball as hard as he did. You’re just using that as an excuse because you’ve been proven wrong, time and time again that he didn’t contribute enough on the offensive side of the ball.

  100. JohnBowen Says:

    “No John, you hypothesized it, not proved it. Don’t go around spouting admittedly made-up scenarios and then claim them as fact.”

    Are you denying that Faux Tim Raines would be inducted on the first ballot? 3000 hits, .300 average. Slam-dunk.

  101. JohnBowen Says:

    “Brett’s not in the HOF because of him being a 3B.”

    But he’s considered one of the all-time great 3B, is he not?

    http://baseball.about.com/od/majorleaguehistory/tp/Top-10-Third-Basemen-In-Major-League-Baseball-History.htm

    Huh. Yes, he is.

  102. Cameron Says:

    3,000 hits, .300 average? Yeah, but he isn’t Tim Raines. That doesn’t help you prove that Tim Raines is a Hall of Famer, it turns into a completely different argument.

  103. JohnBowen Says:

    “Yeah, but he isn’t Tim Raines.”

    Correct. He’s WORSE than Tim Raines. By around 87 runs.

    If Player A is a HOFer
    And Player B is better than Player A

    What does that say about Player B?

  104. Cameron Says:

    …You know what? Fuck this? I actually had a long post to try and inject rational thought into this, but fuck it. If John has to railroad EVERY conversation into a Tim Raines Hall of Fame debate, I’m fucking done. This is a site to discuss baseball, not fucking Tim Raines.

    Chuck’s gone tomorrow, and so am I. If you guys are gonna talk about something different, email me at But if you’re gonna get hung up on bullshit like this, I can find another place to talk about baseball. I actually have an in to co-host a podcast with five hundred viewers and a spot to host my own full-time on the same site. I actually have an outlet, I don’t need this shit.

    See ya.

  105. Chuck Says:

    Tryin’ to get rid of me, Cam?

    LOL…gone Friday.

  106. Lefty33 Says:

    @ 102- Exactly Cameron.

    It turns it into a meaningless tangent.

    @ 101- Brett was an all-time great hitter who happened to play 3B.

    Short of him being a DH he was easily HOF material regardless of where he played.

    This notion of Raines dominating is a fantasy.

    Like Chuck said he was great for a third, average for a third, and sucked as a platoon bit player for a third.

    After 1987 he didn’t dominate anything and his last six years were a joke.

    Keep on diggin’.

  107. Raul Says:

    LMAO

    You just made shit up about Tim Raines walking 1,000 fewer times.

    And as established, Lofton was better than him at leading off. How the fuck is he the 2nd best leadoff hitter?

    There’s a fundamental problem with you constantly talking shit about how RBI are overrated, and then you set up this hypothetical career with hypothetical runs scored which are largely dependent on players getting those RBI.

    You’ve gotta be shittin me.

  108. Raul Says:

    Jeremy Lin had a pretty good game today.
    Unfortunately, Carmelo Anthony returned to the lineup and scored just 11 points with 6 turnovers on 4-11 shooting.

    The Knicks bench was abysmal as well.

  109. Raul Says:

    Knicks shouldn’t feel too bad.
    The probably the biggest reason the lost was that Deron Williams shot 8-14 from 3-point land. That’s not gonna happen every night.

  110. JohnBowen Says:

    @107, did you read the post?

    The whole point is that Tim Raines scores x number of runs per time on base and drives in y number of runs per hit.

    x and y are overrated numbers – they depend somewhat on Raines’s abilities, but also LARGELY on the abilities of his teammates. What x and y are isn’t the point – the point is that if you displaced Real Raines with Faux Raines and changed nothing else except for his walks and hits, fewer runs would end up scoring as a result. We can find out how many fewer runs by calculating the runs he would add by getting more base hits (y*# of extra hits) and subtracting the runs he would give away by not reaching base as much (x*(# less walks – # extra hits) ).

    The whole point is that the factors Raines could control – most notably, his ability to reach base and to get hits – are going to generate some number of runs for his team.

    If he reached base 600 fewer times but had 400 more hits, based on x and y, his teams would score 87 fewer runs.

    BUT YOU WOULD INDUCT THAT PLAYER INTO THE HOF, WITHOUT QUESTION because he had 3,000 hits and a .300 average, and in crazyland, those are the only things that matter.

    Would you not?

  111. JohnBowen Says:

    @104, the person who brought up Tim Raines wasn’t actually me, and that person is leaving Friday.

  112. Lefty33 Says:

    “This is a site to discuss baseball, not fucking Tim Raines.”

    At least this is a Baseball related debate.

    We could still be talking Lib. politics, dumpster diving, and OWS with Felber again.

  113. JohnBowen Says:

    When baseball starts again, we’ll talk baseball.

    You know what was on MLB network today? A Pujols press conference. Snore.

    We could talk about OWS…if there was an Occupy MLB movement, I assume the end-goal would be to have every team finish 81-81 each year regardless of how good the teams actually are.

  114. Raul Says:

    “you would induct him because he has 3,000 hits”

    You know who else has 3,000 hits? Craig Biggio. I wouldn’t elect him either.

    So your bullshit about 3,000 hits fails again.

  115. JohnBowen Says:

    Fine, but Biggio’s getting in on the first ballot and so would Faux Raines.

  116. Lefty33 Says:

    Since it’s the in thing to do, I’ll take my leave from the site as well.

    It actually has little to do with the TR debate, although the inane nature of the whole thing is mentally trying, and more to do with work/life issues that are going to probably not allow me to see a lot of Baseball this year anyway so I might as well take care of the inevitable.

    While I reserve the right to come back at some point and be my usual cunt-like self,
    if it happens at all it’ll be a while.

    But in case I don’t:

    Chuck, Raul, Cameron, and Bob thanks for some good times.

    Mike, get some help and quickly.

    Shaun, you are easily the biggest and most arrogant piece of shit to ever live.
    Oh yeah I almost forgot, Fuck You.

    John, while I’m sure it’s just a front that you write things the way you do online please learn to stop when you’re wrong because you really look really bad/stupid when you don’t.

    But at least you were amusing. Although it was amusing in the same way getting bone chips scoped out of your elbow without any sedative is amusing.

    Keep it frosty.

    Chow Brothers…….

  117. Chuck Says:

    I wonder if the Magic would do a Howard for Carmelo deal.

  118. JohnBowen Says:

    “I wonder if the Magic would do a Howard for Carmelo deal.”

    That strikes me as…insane? But I don’t really follow basketball.

  119. Chuck Says:

    “While I reserve the right to come back at some point and be my usual cunt-like self,
    if it happens at all it’ll be a while.”

    Dude…

    Supposed to head back East in August for some family shit, one of our stops was to visit my niece in Reading.

    Definitely was planning on looking you up and catching a ball game (and quite a few Yeunglings) while I was in the neighborhood.

    Plus, it’s killing me I haven’t figured out your “true identity” yet. Your user name provides two hints, but fuck me if I can put all the pieces together.

    Good luck with the work/life stuff..I feel your pain.

    Peace, man.

  120. JohnBowen Says:

    Southpaw, was in the Reds organization, I think in the 1980’s. Made it as high as AA, as I recall. Wore number 33, I’m guessing – but I have no clue how to look up Waterbury Reds uniform numbers.

  121. Cameron Says:

    From my rough research, I’ve come to the guess he’s either Mark Rothey or Nick Fiorillo. Can’t check names, but they’re the only ex Waterbury lefties living in Pennsylvania I can find.

  122. Cameron Says:

    Uh… That may have fallen apart, actually. Mark Rothey lives on the other end of Pennsylvania, one of the Nick Fiorillos I found is also on that end, and the one close to Reading is listed in his early 70s.

  123. John Says:

    Well this is kinda fun.

    Maybe google image-search those guys, look for 33.

  124. Cameron Says:

    I’m trying John, but the only jersey number I can find on these cards is an outfielder with a 20s number.

  125. Chuck Says:

    “but I have no clue how to look up Waterbury Reds uniform numbers.”

    I guarantee you he didn’t play for Waterbury

  126. Cameron Says:

    True… Waterbury stopped being Cincy’s AA afiliate in… 1986? Lemme see what I can pull from 87-89.

  127. Cameron Says:

    Ah, 1984. Waterbury stopped having a team in 86.

  128. Cameron Says:

    Uh… My only guess right now is Carl Grovom. Only Reds AA lefty from the 80s I can find without a uniform number. There was also Mike Moscrey, but I can’t tell if that’s a 33 or a 38 on his uniform. I think it’s a 38.

  129. Chuck Says:

    The Reds’ farm team played in Waterbury from 1980-1983.

    I worked for the EL from 1978-1982, and I LIVED in Waterbury.

    Pretty much can eliminate that from the search list.

    From 84-87, the Reds’ farm was in Vermont, still in the EL.

    One thing I found through my years is a lot of guys will set up shop in or around the city where they last played.

    You marry a local girl, some big shot business guy (or a future in-law) will set you up with a good job for some local team sponsor, and you live happily ever after.

    Lefty lives in the Allentown area, and starting in 1987 the EL has had teams in both Reading and in Harrisburg.

    My guess is while he may have played for the Reds in the EL, neither Waterbury nor Vermont was his last stop, and probably ended up finishing his career in Pennsylvania.

    I also think he’s about ten years younger than I am, so that would make the mid-eighties the most likely mid-point of his career, not the late seventies, early eighties.

    I’m off tomorrow and have a service appointment for my car..maybe I’ll try and convince my wife to borrow her iPad and can play around with the minor league database for awhile.

    I’ll tell you one thing..if he gives one or two hints, and not even biggies, I’ll figure it out pretty quick.

  130. Cameron Says:

    Uh… Closest I can get on that is Clay Daniel. He didn’t END in Pennsylvania, but he’s the only AA Cincy lefty from the 80s to play in Harrisburg and no one went to Reading.

  131. Chuck Says:

    I posted a note on his Bleacher Report page and told him he needed to come back for a couple of days so we can mess with him before his “retirement”

    Something tells me he’ll be doing the messing.

    Can take the player out of the game, but you can’t take the game out of the player.

  132. Mike Felber Says:

    You guys are like moths to the flame with Time Raines, lol! But Cameron, hopefully you see this: In this thread & generally John has not been bringing up Tim Raines. Chuck & Raul do, as a knee-jerk insult. Not that you either would or should yell at them or Lefty for starting & continuing the argument at length. Why flip about an academic argument that you are tired of? Just scroll through comments. Hopefully your new gigs 9congratulations) have not gone to your head.

    Lefty, sorry for your troubles. Though I would have taken your self-cunitifying (sic) comments to be amusing & healthy self deprecation, had you not been somewhat mean & petty to those you often disagree with. Not cool.

  133. Mike Felber Says:

    Quick notes: You cannot compare even so called saber stat lines fairly, like Lofton & Raines, without adjusting for era & park. This is pretty basic. Check the adjusted #s Raul.

    John, I agree with you on Raines, though he is not the worst omission ever. Some will not take the trouble to even comprehend what you INTENDED with your hypothetical.

    Though I reserved the right to respond when politics is broached. It is a lazy conservative cliche to think OWS wants to mandate equal results for all. They say the results for the same effort has been massively stacked to give the rich & big corps. their much much greater share of the wealth. Via corporate welfare, loosened & unenforced regulations, criminality, & essentially buying influence. Though further comments should be made off here as per Chuck’s request. Word is Bond.

  134. Raul Says:

    lol @ adjusting for ERA and park

  135. Bob Says:

    The Red Sox, according to Alex Speir, will get a pitcher from the Cubs who is on the 40-man roster.

  136. Bob Says:

    Chuck, are you planning on coming to Ct? If so, I will give you my # and we can grab a pizza and some beers one evening.

  137. Bob Says:

    Lefty, I hope you come back, but if you do not, thank you for the good times as well.

  138. Chuck Says:

    “In this thread & generally John has not been bringing up Tim Raines.”

    Yep.

    It’s like picking on your little brother..once he made the mistake of saying he hated a certain album or something, that’s all you played. It’s a rite of passage.

    “LOL at adjusting for era and park.”

    On the internet, however, since we can’t play an annoying song, we can pick on people for saying stupid shit like that.

    You statheads bring this on yourselves.

    There’s plenty of websites where you all can hide under the comfort and protection of your mommy’s apron.

    But if you dare venture out in the real world…beware.

  139. Chuck Says:

    Bob,

    It depends on my work..if I end up getting laid off next month then I’m not going. My wife will go to Pennsylvania by herself (it’s actually HER niece)for a long weekend, then back home.

    If I am working, then we’re all going and may end up in CT to see my parents and brother in law, but only for a couple of days.

    Tentatively scheduled now for the second week in August.

  140. Bob Says:

    The Red Sox recieved Chris Carpenter and a PTBNL as compensation for Theo.

  141. Raul Says:

    ..err…not THAT Chris Carpenter…

    lol

    Happy 29th birthday, Franklin Gutierrez! Gutierrez is a fine defender…not much of a hitter. It’s pretty interesting to note that Franklin was traded from the Indians to the Mariners in 2008 in a 3-team deal:

    Mariners get: Franklin Gutierrez, Mike Carp, Ezequiel Carrera, Endy Chavez, Maikel Cleto, Aaron Heilman and Jason Vargas.

    Mets get: Sean Green, JJ Putz, Jeremy Reed

    Indians get: Luis Valbuena and Joe Smith

    It would ultimately prove to be quite a haul for the Mariners, as Gutierrez would be a solid defender for them, Jason Vargas a decent back-end starter, and Mike Carp showing some promise as a potential power threat. (The Mets had Carp and Vargas in their system, btw).

    Happy 54th birthday, Alan Trammell! In his 20 years with the Tigers organization, Trammell saw just 13 postseason games. He made em count, though, hitting .333/.404/.588 and was your 1984 World Series MVP.

    Happy 69th birthday, Jack “Cactus Jack” Billingham! Billingham was one of the cornerstones to those great Cincinnati Reds teams of the 1970s. Appearing in seven World Series games, he allowed just 1 run to score in 25 innings.

  142. Bob Says:

    Happy birthday Alan Trammell.
    Also, Tommy Hanson suffered a mild concussion in a car wreck on Monday. The Braves are giving him 2 days off, and will take it from there. Best of luck to him.

  143. Raul Says:

    Yeah that’s unfortunate about Tommy Hanson, but luckily it wasn’t worse.

  144. John Says:

    Actually, I think Trammell is a more glaring ommission than Raines.

    @138, bitch please. I certainly don’t need shit from you about “the real world”

    I know that in the real world, you have to back up what you say with facts and not just hunches without any proof, reason, or logic.

  145. Bob Says:

    Chone Figgins will bat lead-off for the Mariners;Ichiro will bat 3rd.

  146. Chuck Says:

    “@138, bitch please. I certainly don’t need shit from you about “the real world”

    Yes, you do.

    “I know that in the real world, you have to back up what you say with facts and not just hunches without any proof, reason, or logic.”

    And yet, here you are, three years later, still acting like Raines is the best player in history.

    Forget about listening to us, listen to yourself.

    LOL.

    All time classic comment.

    Way to go.

  147. Raul Says:

    I was curious to see how many times MLB has seen teammates hit 40 homers in a season.

    It’s actually happened a lot more than I thought — though depending on how you consider the context, perhaps not so often…

    Lou Gehrig & Babe Ruth: 1927, 1930, 1931
    Willie Mays & Orlando Cepeda: 1961
    Roger Maris & Mickey Mantle: 1961
    Rico Petrocelli & Carl Yastrzemski: 1969
    Hank Aaron, Darrell Evans & Davey Johnson: 1973
    Ellis Burks, Andres Galarraga & Vinny Castilla: 1996
    Andres Galarraga, Vinny Castilla & Larry Walker: 1997
    Alex Rodriguez & Ken Griffey Jr.: 1998, 1999
    Shawn Green & Carlos Delgado: 1999
    Albert Pujols & Jim Edmonds: 2004
    Manny Ramirez & David Ortiz: 2004, 2005

    That’s 15 instances in baseball history; 8 of which occurred in the last 15 years

    This wasn’t a thorough search so if I’ve missed any, please let me know.

  148. Raul Says:

    Sorry.
    Add Jermaine Dye and Jim Thome in 2006.

    16 instances.

  149. Cameron Says:

    That 43 homers Davey Johnson hit in 1973 counted for about a third of his career homer total.

  150. John Says:

    Jeff Bagwell and Richard Hidalgo (2000).

  151. John Says:

    The others (I cheated):

    Campanella/Snider (1953)
    Hodges/Snider (1954)
    Kluszewksi/Post (1955)
    Cash/Colavito (1961)
    Bench/Perez (1970)
    Buhner/Griffey (1996-1997)
    Bautista/Delgado (2000)
    ARod/Palmeiro (2001-2002)

  152. Raul Says:

    Wow, I missed quote a few.

  153. Mike Felber Says:

    C/mon Chuck, enough of the macho beewax. Nobody is hiding behind apron’s John is not hurt: i was not even complaining about the Raines broken record. Other than toi set the facts straight, Cam mixed it up.

    Fine, tease away. But you continually bait, Raul & Cam flip about seeing it again, & it is not John’s fault. And having a different (& quite common) opinion does not = being “stupid shit”.

    Disagree forever, but a tone of tolerance, not mockery based upon a subjective matter, would be much more fitting all around.

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