Tom Glavine is Underrated
Wednesday February 29th, 2012
Sam Evans: There is no question that Tom Glavine is a Hall-of-Famer. However, Glavine seems to still be underrated by baseball fans. Just how good was this three hundred game winner?
Tom Glavine was born in Massachusetts and after high school, he was drafted both into the NHL and MLB. Glavine made his MLB debut in 1987 with the Atlanta Braves. Over the next twenty-one years, Glavine would throw over four thousand innings, and record 305 wins. He won games not by a blazing fastball, but by possessing outstanding command of his fastball and changeup.
The mid-90’s Atlanta Braves rotation was outstanding. The Braves were anchored by the best pitcher of the last twenty years, Greg Maddux, who was followed by John Smoltz. Glavine seemed to be sometimes overshadowed by Smoltz and Maddux, which he doesn’t deserve. With these two pitchers plus Glavine, the Braves had one of the best starting trio’s of all-time. That was just as much about Glavine’s contributions, as the other two.
Glavine’s career accomplishments are amazing. He won two Cy Young awards, one World Series MVP, and he was a ten-time All-Star. He deserves credit for helping build the winning atmosphere that still exists in the Atlanta Braves organization today. Glavine left the Braves organization in 2003 to join the division-rival New York Mets. His four-year, $42.5 million deal was enough to keep him in New York long enough to get his 300th win.
If you are talking about whehter a player is overrated or not, you have to ask yourself who is judging the player. Let’s say Craig thinks Ichiro is not even the fourth best hitter on the Mariners, but twenty other people might think he’s the best. Obviously, your view on what people think of a player is helped to be formed from what you hear. This is where rating players gets tricky. If I talked to Craig, then I could have a different opinion on what the public thinks, in comparison to talking to one of the other people.
When it comes to the issue of Glavine being overrated or not, my opinion definitely includes what I’ve heard other people’s opinions are. I’m sure plenty of people give Tom Glavine the credit he deserves, but in my opinion, I don’t think enough people do.
During Tom Glavine’s lengthy career, he only played for two teams, the Braves and the Mets. He only won one World Series title, in 1995 with the Braves, but he did manage to make two All-Star games during his time with the New York Mets. His best season was in 1991, when he won twenty games and had a 3.06 FIP. During the entire 1990’s decade, Glavine never posted a single-season WAR below 3.3. Glavine’s career WAR is 68.5, which is right up there with current Hall-of-Famers.
Glavine deserves more credit. He was a dominant pitcher in an era of sluggers, and he controlled the game unlike any pitcher in the game today. It’s easy to be overlooked when you spent the majority of your career pitching the day after one of the best pitchers of all-time. My point being, Glavine should be recognized for the great pitcher he was, not just for who he played with.
**Today’s feature was prepared by our Baseball Writer, Sam Evans. We highly encourage you to leave your comments and feedback at the bottom of the page and share in the discussion with our readers. You can also follow Sam on Twitter***
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