Thursday, January 11, 2007

Baseball Hall of Fame

I know you're wondering about my take on the recent additions to Baseball's Hall of Fame. But first this bulletin: The Hall of Fame is in Cooperstown, New York. Did you know that Cooperstown was named for the family of James Fenimore Cooper and the Cooper grew up there? (I'm including this info primarily for those who attended my panel on Robert E. Howard at the World Fantasy Convention last fall.) Now back to our regularly scheduled blogging.

I'm happy to see that Cal Ripken, Jr., and Tony Gwynn were elected to the Hall of Fame. I don't really care too much that Mark McGwire wasn't chosen, but I do think there's a large cloud of smug over far too many sportswriters today. I wonder how many of them have been amped up on one thing or another when they wrote their columns, and I suspect the answer is: "More than a few." But I could be wrong, and I often am.

I'm not the guy to ask about the HoF, however. I still think Pete Rose should be in. Sure he's kind of a dick, and sure he bet on baseball, but he was still Charlie Hustle. It's not as if the Hall was filled with sterling characters, the kind you'd want your sister to marry. Some probably are that guy, and others just aren't.

Congrautlations to Ripken and Gwynn, though. They're truly deserving.

8 comments:

Graham said...

Gwynn's most amazing feat (to me): In at least one year, he was in the top 10 for batting average vs. left-handed pitchers. Not bad for a lefty hitter.

Vince said...

Amen, Bill. I don't know that McGwire is an automatic first ballot entry. I do know that a lot of sportswriters feel guilty about not delving into the issue of steroid abuse until it was too late, so they're taking out their shame on McGwire. And you're right about the caliber of other players enshrined in Cooperstown. Plenty of them took advantage of performance enhancers that were legal in their day. FWIW, I want Charlie Hustle in there, too.

Bill Crider said...

Well, that makes two of us.

Cap'n Bob Napier said...

The Hall of Fame doesn't consider moral issues outside the park unless they impact the game itself. If anyone is still using steroids after they were banned, that person doesn't deserve the honor of being in the Hall. I'd also strip them of their stats.

Bill Crider said...

That would probably eliminate the stats of about half the players.

Bill Crider said...

Or maybe I'm just being cynical.

Shelly said...

Not only did I get to visit the hall with my parents in the mid-'70s, but we went on the tour of the John Fennimore Cooper home. And we saw Chinatown in the Cooperstown movie theater.

I'm happy Ripkin and Gwynn were elected to the hall. They were funny doing a top 10 list on David Letterman's show last night.

Bill Crider said...

I'll bet most people who go to Cooperstown skip the Cooper home!