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Passing The Torch From Greatest MLB Player To Player During The Years 1979 – 2013: From Brett To Cabrera

Cabrera has had back to back AL MVP seasons in 2012 and 2013.  He has also won 3 straight AL Batting Titles.  Cabrera is the best player offensively in the universe.  He has put up 10 straight 100+ RBI campaigns, but he has racked in 276 RBI, and also 88 HRs.  The 11 Year Veterans totals would have even been higher in 2013, but he fought a torn groin for the last half of the year.

Cabrera has had back to back AL MVP seasons in 2012 and 2013. He has also won 3 straight AL Batting Titles. Cabrera is the best player offensively in the universe. He has put up 10 straight 100+ RBI campaigns, but he has racked in 276 RBI, and also 88 HRs – while featuring an OPS well north of 1.000. The 11 Year Veterans totals would have even been higher in 2013, but he fought a torn groin for the last half of the year.  The 8 time ALL – Star and 5 time Silver Slugger Award Winner has improved even greater on his totals over the last decade.  Cabrera has a Career 3 Slash Line of .321/.399/.967 – with 365 HRs and 1260 RBI in just 1660 Games Played.

By Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Analyst/Website Owner):

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While watching Miguel Cabrera this year, I started thinking about the best players in the MLB over the last 33 years.  I am talking the best player of the game at any point of time. 

I tracked back to 1979 for this article.  I may expand further back in follow-up articles.  I didn’t rank defense as  highly as offense when I came up with the players. 

I agonized over players like Mike SchmidtJim Rice, Wade Boggs and Cal Ripken for some of the years given in specific time frames.  These gentlemen were given every consideration. 

In the end, we are talking about the best player in the game though and it is always subject to debate and personal opinion. 

The criteria had to involve leading the league in several different offensive and/or defensive categories, followed by routinely being in the top 7 in MVP balloting (if not taking home the honor), All-Star Appearances for every year I listed them for and most of them won silver sluggers and/or Gold Gloves as well.

Cabrera’s 3 HR Game – 2013

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Time To Elect Don Mattingly Into Cooperstown

Don Mattingly won 3 straight AL Sporting News Player of The Years - and was the best ALL-Around player in the game from 1984-1986 leading 13 Offensive Categories for the 3 years.  His 145 RBI in 1985 was the most for a LHB since Stan Musial in 1949.  He hit .340 with 656 Hits, 145 2B, 88 HRs, 368 RBI and only SO 112 times in 2131 PA's.  He also led the league in Doubles from 1984-1986.  Mattingly’s 388 Total bases in 1986 had been the most in the Majors since Willie Mays back in the 1962 season.  Mattingly won the first of 9 gold gloves in 1985.  Donnie Baseball also won the AL MVP in 1985 and was boldly robbed in 1986 by the writers voting for Roger Clemens. In 1987, Mattingly hit 6 grand slams and also homered in 8 straight games(including 10 total which was higher than Dale Long and Ken Griffey‘s 8 during their consecutive streaks.)  His average year for the 4 year stretch was .337, with 30 HRs, 45 2B and 120 RBI.  He also averaged 110 runs and 210 hits.  Mattingly only struck out 37 times a year for this span.  He was clearly the best ball player in this era.

Don Mattingly won 3 straight AL Sporting News Player of The Years – and was the best ALL-Around player in the game from 1984-1986 leading 13 Offensive Categories for the 3 years. His 145 RBI in 1985 was the most for a LHB since Stan Musial in 1949. He hit .340 with 656 Hits, 145 2B, 88 HRs, 368 RBI and only SO 112 times in 2131 PA’s. He also led the league in Doubles from 1984-1986. Mattingly’s 388 Total bases in 1986 had been the most in the Majors since Willie Mays back in the 1962 season. Mattingly won the first of 9 gold gloves in 1985.

By Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Analyst/Website Owner):

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Okay, it is time for me to make my argument for my favorite player of all time to be inducted into Baseball’s Hall of Fame. 

There will be several people that will say that Don Mattingly’s career stats of: H-2154, HR-222, RBI-1099, AVG-.307 and 9 Gold Gloves are not enough in just 14 seasons. 

I am not counting his 7 game-stint in 1982 with this.  As a rookie in 1983, Don only .hit .283 with 4 HRs and 32 RBIs.

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Triple Play Podcast Ep # 13 – Around The Horn w/OAK/KC/COL/TOR + Bean Wars + The Genius Beane

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Monday, June.17, 2013

The Triple Play Show will have 5 shows per month.  Each show will be about 1 hour

The Triple Play Show will have 5 shows per month. Each show will be about 1 hour.

By The Big Ticket Show ( AKA Triple Play Podcast on http://www.mlbreports.com)

Guests in this Podcast – Chuck Booth (MLB Reports Owner and Lead Analyst) 

On this week’s show Chuck Booth joins us to break down all the biggest stories in MLB. We also go Around the Horn with Chuck to discuss the A’s, Rockies and Royals current situations and declare the worthy few that belong on their respective Mt Rushmore’s. Bethubb.com best bets end the show as always. Happy Father’s Day!!!!!!!

Intro – 10 Minutes, Toronto Blue Jays talk from 10 Minute to the 18 Minute Mark.  OAK chat – 18 minute – 33 Minute Mark, COL Talk 33 Minutes – 44 Minute Mark.  Kansas City Royals Chart 44 Minutes Mark – 59 Minute Mark.  Late Jays Talk Bethubb Best Bets 1 hour 1 MIN mark to 1 hour 9 Minute Mark.

Quick Facts:  Catsfish Hunter was 7 – 2 in the Post Season for the 1972, 1973 and 1974 World Series Winning A’s – and only 2 -4 with the 3 Post Seasons with the Yankees.  Still 5 World Series Winners was great.  Chuck also meant Ewing Kauffman (Chuck thought his nickname was Charlie in the podcast – maybe because his name his Charlie) when talking about the Royals MT. Rushmore for the franchise.

Yogi Berra did indeed play in 14 World Series and won 10 of them in his Yankees days.

To Keep Reading and Listen to this Podcast click the READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY or scroll past the Triple Play Logo.

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The Patrick Languzzi Interview: The Man Behind The Petition About The Dwight Evans For The ‘BBHOF’ Candicacy Campaign

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Sunday, January.13/2013

Dwight Evans falls into that category with Don Mattingly, Mark Grace, Jim Rice and Keith Hernandez. Guys that were the best players amongst their piers and BBHOF Worthy (In some cases) but are trounced on by the ballooned 'Steroid era" numbers.Dwight Evans falls into that category with Don Mattingly, Mark Grace, Jim Rice and Keith Hernandez. Guys that were the best players amongst their piers, (offensively and defensively) plus BBHOF Worthy (In some cases) - but are trounced on by the ballooned 'Steroid era" numbers.

Dwight Evans falls into that category with Don Mattingly, Mark Grace, Will Clark and Keith Hernandez. Guys that were the best players amongst their peers, (offensively and defensively) plus BBHOF Worthy (In some cases) – but are trounced on by the ballooned ‘Steroid era” numbers.

By John Tuberty – Special Guest Writer and Cooperstown Correspondent (Owner of The Wesbite Tubbs Baseball Blog, please view here . )

Under current Hall of Fame voting rules, the Expansion Era Committee meets once every three years to vote on retired players who are no longer eligible for election by the BBWAA, have been retired 21 or more seasons, and made their biggest contributions to the sport after 1972.  In addition to the retired players, the Expansion Era ballot also includes retired managers, umpires, and executives from the post-1972 era.  One player who is eligible to be included on December’s Expansion Era ballot is former Red Sox Right Fielder, Dwight Evans.

Despite owning impressive career totals such as 385 Home Runs, 2,446 Hits, and 8 Gold Glove Awards, Evans struggled to draw support in BBWAA Hall of Fame voting and fell off the ballot after failing to draw the necessary five percent needed to stay on the ballot on a very crowded 1999 election.  However in recent years, Evans has become a popular Hall of Fame debate in the sabermetric community and several articles have been written in support of his overlooked Hall of Fame candidacy.  One particular writer, Patrick Languzzi is spearheading a campaign to put Dwight Evans on December’s Expansion Era ballot.  Languzzi, who writes for MLB Reports as the Hall of Fame Correspondent, created his own website, Call to the Hall, which is devoted to bringing awareness to Dwight Evans’ overlooked Hall of Fame candidacy.  Languzzi even started a petition which calls for Evans to be selected as one of the twelve finalists on December’s Expansion Era ballot.  Languzzi was nice enough to take the time for me to interview him about his Call to the Hall website and petition.

JT: Patrick, you, along with Nick Carfardo of the Boston Globe were recently interviewed by Tom Caron on the New England Sports Network (NESN) to discuss Evans’ overlooked Hall of Fame candidacy (see link below).  What was that experience like?

http://nesn.com/2012/12/dwight-evans-hall-of-fame-candidacy-languishes-with-veterans-committee-video/

PL: The experience was validating for me, meaning, when I started this project, I never imagined it would have gone as far as it has, and gotten the attention it’s drawn.  It’s great to see that I’m not the only one that feels that Evans’ case deserves to be revisited.

JT: You mention in the NESN clip that you got a chance to meet Dwight, what can you tell us about meeting him?

PL: Through all of my research, I’ve gotten to know Evans, and what I’ve found is that he is extremely humble and unwilling to discuss himself as a possible Hall of Fame candidate.  He was humble as a player too.  A good example of this is the clip from the 1987 All-Star game (see link to clip below) when Dwight fields a fly ball and fires a strike to home plate, Tim Raines the player at third holds from tagging up.

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The Lack of Criteria to get into Cooperstown: The Election Results can be Puzzling

Friday August 24th, 2012

MLB Commissioner Bud Selig

Patrick Languzzi (Cooperstown Correspondent, Twitter @PatrickLanguzzi): On August 14th, MLB Reports honored Ron Santo for his recent induction into The National Baseball Hall of Fame.

Did you know Santo was elected on his 20th attempt via the Golden Era committee (Veterans) some 31 years after he first became eligible for the Hall of Fame?

Since 1936, only 207 former major league players have ever been elected to baseball’s Hall of Fame. That’s about 1.17 percent of more than 17,000 players who have worn a major league uniform.

Of the 207 players elected to date, the Baseball Writers Association of America (BBWAA) has elected 112 candidates, or 54 percent. Conversely, 95 major leaguers, or 46 percent, have been elected through other means (in all of its forms) such as the Veterans Committee, Old-Timers Committee, Centennial Commission and other special election of committees, to name a few.

For those not familiar, qualified members of the BBWAA vote annually by submitting a maximum of 10 eligible pre-screened players whom they would consider worthy of induction. In order to be elected, a player must be named on 75 percent of the voters’ ballots. Read the rest of this entry

The Time Has Come to Induct Dwight Evans into Cooperstown

Sunday July 22nd, 2012

By Patrick Languzzi (Guest Baseball Writer):

As we embark on baseball’s most exciting weekend, the eyes of baseball fans everywhere will be on Cooperstown, NY for the induction of Barry Larkin and Ron Santo into the National Baseball Hall of Fame.

Larkin was elected through the Baseball Writers Association of America (BBWAA) and Santo via the Veterans Committee after falling off the ballot in 1998.

The Veterans committee consists of 16 members made up of veteran media members, executives and current members of the National Baseball Hall of Fame. For a player to be elected, they must receive 75 percent or 12 of 16 votes.

But there’s another player that I’ll take a special interest in come the winter meetings of 2013. That’s when the Expansion Era ballot (Veterans) finalists are announced. It’s also when former Red Sox great Dwight “Dewey” Evans becomes eligible again. Evans fell off the BBWAA ballot back in 1999. Now his chance to shine comes up again very soon. Read the rest of this entry

Passing of the Torch as The Greatest Player in The MLB: From Pujols to Hamilton

Wednesday June.6, 2012

Josh Hamilton is on pace for 64 HRs and 177 RBI in 2012 with a .345 AVG. He has taken over as the best player in MLB from Albert Pujols -Photo Courtesy of http://www.real-fans.com

Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Writer and @chuckbooth3024 on twitter)- While watching Josh Hamilton this year, I started thinking about the best players in the MLB over the last 33 years.  I am talking the best player of the game at any point of time.  I tracked back to 1979 for this article.  I may expand further back in follow up articles.  I did rank defense highly when I came up with the players.  I did agonize over Mike Schmidt,  Jim Rice, Wade Boggs and Cal Ripken for some of the years given in specific time frames.  These gentlemen were given every consideration.  In the end, we are talking about the best player in the game though and it is always subject to debate and personal opinion.  The criteria had to involve leading the league in several different offensive and/or defensive categories, followed by routinely being in the top 7 in MVP balloting(if not taking home the honor), All-Star Appearances for every year I listed them for and most of them won silver sluggers and/or Gold Gloves as well.

George Brett won batting titles in 3 different decades and flirted with .400 in 1980 while hitting .390 for the year. -Photo courtesy of lanius.wordpress.com

George Brett 1979-1983-George Brett was the best hitter in the game from 1979-1983.  He hit for a .320 average and slugged his way to having the Royals as perennial contenders.  He led the league in triples (20) and hits in 1979.  In 1980, he hit .390 with a .454 OBP, 664 SLG and a 1.118 OBP which led the league.  In 1983, Brett led the league in slugging an OPS once again.  Brett won the MVP in 1980 and was the runner-up in 1979.  In 1985, George Brett would lead the Royals to a World Series.  He later won a batting title at age 37 with a .329 average.  This was the toughest time frame to judge from 1979-1983.  Mike Schmidt was an incredible force at third base with huge power and Jim Rice also put up mammoth numbers, but in the end I chose  George Brett because he was more consistent out of 3. Read the rest of this entry

Time to Elect Don Mattingly into Cooperstown

Monday December 5, 2011


Doug Booth-  Guest Baseball Writer:  Okay, it is time for me to make my argument for my favorite player of all time to be inducted into Baseball’s Hall of Fame.  There will be several people that will say that Don Mattingly’s career stats of: H-2154, HR-222, RBI-1099, AVG-.307 and 9 Gold Gloves are not enough in just 14 seasons.  I am not counting his 7 game-stint in 1982 with this.  As a rookie in 1983, Don only .hit .283 with 4 HR’S and 32 RBI’s. In Donnie’s first year as a full time first baseman, he led the AL with a .343 AVG-with 23 HR’S and 110 RBI’s, also leading the league in hits with 207 and 2B's with 48.

They say that if you have a shortened career-(and Mattingly’s back injury in the late eighties certainly robbed him of a definite Hall of Fame Career,) then you better have an incredible stretch as the best player in baseball.  It is my belief that Don Mattingly was the best all-around player from 1984-1989, with apologies to Rickey Henderson, Wade Boggs, Tony Gwynn and Dale Murphy, Don’s incredible consistency during this 6 year stretch included these numbers.  A .327 AVG with 160 HR’s and a staggering 682 RBI’s with 257 doubles and 1219 hits.  Nobody had more RBI’s and extra base hits in that time frame.  Only Wade Boggs had more hits.  The 6 year AVG breaks down to an AVG of .327 with H-204, 2B-43, HR-27 and RBI-114.  What is most impressive is that Mattingly only averaged 33 strikeouts a season/or about 1/23 Plate appearances in this stretch.

During this stretch-Mattingly was also an All-star for 6 straight seasons-and was a Gold Glover for 5 years straight from 85-89.  Donnie led the league in doubles three times, (84-86), hits twice, (84-86), total bases twice, (85-86), AVG in ’86, slugging and OBP in 1986.  Don’s 145 RBI’s in 1985 were the most RBI’s by a left hander since the 1960’s.  The same could be said for his 388 total bases in 1986.   Other dominant stretches included his 1987 power streaks, in which he hit a record-6 grand slams(since equaled by Travis Hafner,) and also is still tied for homering in a record-tying 8 straight games (and should be the official leader because only Don hit 10 HR’S in that stretch of 8 games.) Mattingly is a silver slugger three times over (84-86), and The Sporting News Player of the Year for the seasons of (84-86). Don was the AL MVP in 1985, and finished 2nd in 1986 to Roger Clemens, but for hitting he was listed as #1.   His 1984 and 1987 seasons also garnered serious MVP considerations. All impressive for a man who was not considered a power hitting prospect.

Back injuries slowed Mattingly down from 1990-1995, where he lost most of his power, but he was a .290 contact hitter who would still drive in about 80-85 RBI’S per year.  If he could have kept playing healthy, instead of retiring at the age of 34, he would have had nearly 3000 hits, and probably would have hit 600-700 2B, and 300 HR’s-with about 1600 RBI’S.  He probably would have finished up career with an AVG. that was near .300.  You could probably add 3-5 more Gold Gloves as well.  Instead, he finished with 2154 hits.  His .307 career average will be one of the higher averages never to be in the Hall of Fame if he is not voted in.  Don’s average season is still .307 with 20 HR’S, 97 RBI’S, with close to 200 hits and 40 doubles.

Another fact that gets overlooked was Don’s strikeout ratio to plate appearances.  Mattingly only struck out 444 times in 7721 PA’s, or once every 19 times.  This stat is unbelievable for a modern age hitter-and 444 Strikeouts is only 2 less doubles than the man hit in his career with 442.  Only Tony Gwynn has had a better ratio for striking out in the last 50 years.  You add the 9 Gold Gloves-(2nd all-time for a 1B), and this man should be gaining more consideration for the hall.

Other comparisons in numbers for players already in the Hall, would be Jim Rice and Kirby Puckett, Puckett for average and power, while Rice has similar offensive numbers for his 162 game AVG.  Rice had a few more HR’s and RBI’s while Mattingly had a better AVG. and had more hits/doubles for an average season.  Both played 14 seasons.

For all of those kids watching Donnie Baseball play live, or on TV, we saw a guy that exemplified a professional hitter.  Amongst fielding 1st baseman that I have seen, no one has ever been better.  His swing was pure poetry in motion, even when he older, it must have drove pitchers crazy that they could not strike him out.  I am only sad that Don Mattingly has missed out on all of the Yankees championship seasons.

At least his fans can always recall his last at bat in the 1995 playoffs where he crushed a homer in a 5th game loss to the Mariners in the ALDS.  It was a great career shortened by back injuries.  If defensive prowess is deemed a lot more lucrative for a Hall of Fame bid, once again they have to consider ‘Donnie Baseball.’


*** Thank you to Doug Booth for joining us today on MLB reports.  To learn more about “The Fastest 30 Ballgames” and Doug Booth, you can follow Doug on Twitter (@ChuckBooth3024) and click here for Doug’s website, fastestthirtyballgames.com***

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