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Jack Morris: It Is Time To Elect This Winner Into The Baseball Hall Of Fame!

Jack Morris was a winner, a true throwback pitcher who came after hitters with reckless abandon. He pitched based on what the score was - and had no personal regard for his own personal statistics. It is this very reason why the debate has hit epic proportions on social media hubs, amongst bloggers, former players, analysts, broadcaster and statisticians.   I intend to prove the case for the guy in a manner that will have some similarities to other pieces you may have read, yet promote a big look into the numbers that I have been bouncing around in my head for months.

Jack Morris was a winner, a true throwback pitcher who came after hitters with reckless abandon. He pitched based on what the score was – and had no personal regard for his own personal statistics. It is this very reason why the debate has hit epic proportions on social media hubs, amongst bloggers, former players, analysts, broadcaster and statisticians. I intend to prove the case for the guy in a manner that will have some similarities to other pieces you may have read, yet promote a big look into the numbers that I have been bouncing around in my head for months.

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

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The debate for whether or not Jack Morris belongs in the Baseball Hall Of Fame has heated up to an ALL-Time high with the big vote going down in Jan of 2014 for the final time.

575 members of  BBWAA fraternity will decide whether or not the big man from Minnesota will enter one of the hardest Hall Of Fame’s to enter in pro sports (if not the hardest). 

Morris will need a 75% (432 Minimum Votes) of them to write down his name on their ballot for enshrinement into Cooperstown.

Last year, Morris received 67.7 % of the writers votes in his 14th year of eligibility.  He will have his name on a 14th ballot this year. 

He has been trending up in recent years, so if he can improve in 2014, with the same amount of 2011-2012 jump of (+13.2%), then he will make it in.

If he fails to reach the Hall this year, it would be his last year of eligibility for the BBWAA Vote. 

He could still make it via the Veterans Committee after that.  But that could take some significant time.

Read the rest of this entry

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Meet Haley Smilow’s Assistant: Ethan Smilow’s Premiere Wrigley Field Interviews

Wednesday September 26th, 2012

 

Marc Smilow (Dad):  So today my 11-year-old daughter Haley comes to me and says: “dad… my assistant has an idea that we would like you to send Jonathan over at MLB Reports.”  Now my first reaction is what is Haley talking about? Her assistant!?  Then they proceed to show me the interview that they have been working on together.  So I would like to introduce you Haley’s assistant, Ethan Smilow.  Ethan is Haley’s seven year old brother and like his sister, is Yankees fan but loves the game of baseball. Haley is the MLB Junior Correspondent for MLB reports. Well now, baseball has certainly turned into a family affair in the Smilow household.

Ethan Smilow plays catcher, second base and right field for the West Little League Novas in New York City.  Ethan is also the reason we started our quest for 30 stadiums.  In the summer of 2010, the family was watching the Yankees vs. Royals on television and Ethan said, “I want to go to Kauffman Stadium and see the fountain one day.”  I turned to my wife and said yeah right, like we were ever going to Kansas City!!  One year later, we all were sitting at a game in Kauffman Stadium.  Over the last two summers we have been to 16 ballparks and learned that the rules of baseball don’t change at each location. But every ballpark has its own unique style, sites, food and history.  On a recebt family visit to Wrigley Field, Ethan found it interesting and unique that most of the ushers at the ballpark were the same age as his grandparents.  He couldn’t imagine his grandparents working at Wrigley.  So he decided to ask several of the usher some questions about Wrigley and this is what he found out: Read the rest of this entry

A Tribute to Ron Santo: Cubs’ Third Baseman Finally Enters Cooperstown

Tuesday August 14th, 2012

Patrick Languzzi (Cooperstown Correspondent, Twitter @PatrickLanguzzi): On July 22nd, 2012, Ron Santo was inducted into The National Baseball Hall of Fame.

Santo, a long time radio broadcaster for the Chicago Cubs, had no reservations about sharing his passion for baseball, his beloved Cubs and the Hall of Fame, where he felt he had always belonged.

And, according to Joe Lemire of SI.com’s inside baseball, Santo once told Chicago Magazine, “The last thing I want is to die and then be put into the Hall of Fame. It’s not because I won’t be there to enjoy it, exactly. It’s because I want to enjoy it with family and friends and fans. I want to see them enjoy it.”

Sadly, we lost Ron Santo before he ever got a chance to receive the phone call he longed to yearn for. Santo passed away slightly more than a year (and two days) to the day he was to finally be elected into baseballs highest pantheon.

“This is not a sad day, not at all. This is a very happy day… I am certain that Ronnie is celebrating with us right now.”   -Vicki Santo

On December 5, 2011, Ron Santo was voted into the Hall of Fame 15-1 by the Golden Era committee (Veterans) some 31 years after he first became eligible. At the end of the day, few will remember how a player got into Cooperstown, or how long it took. Once the plaques are on the famed wall, all hall of famers are treated the same. It took too long, but Ron Santo’s plaque is finally where it belongs. 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

Baseball As My Muse: Baseball Artist Margie Lawrence – Guest Blog

Saturday June 9th, 2012

Margie Lawrence (Guest Blogger):  Having grown up blocks from the friendly confines of Wrigley Field, I had no choice but to fall in love with the Cubs. 

 

The organ music and cheers of the crowd would drift through the open windows of my school, which sat a mere block from the bleacher entrance. And like many of my loves, the Cubs have disappointed me, but I still keep the hope alive that one day everything will be all right in the world and they—we— will win a World Series.

 

My first baseball memory involved 20 or so family members crowded around the portable TV cheering Sandy Koufax on during the 1963 World Series. Later on, I would pretend I was Sandy or Fergie Jenkins or Ken Holtzman, throwing what I perceived to be a curve ball at a small painted square on a brick wall. That square was always Mickey Mantle, for some reason. I was 11, it was 1969. My height was about that of a munchkin, and I may have weighed at 65 pounds.  If only I could have played on a Little League team…but damn those girl chromosomes. (And damn those Mets!) Read the rest of this entry

Adrian Beltre is Playing Himself into Hall Of Fame Consideration

Monday January 9, 2012


Doug Booth-  Baseball Writer:  With today being the official day the Baseball Writers Association of America (BBWAA) to finalize the 2012 Baseball Hall Of Fame inductees, I thought some more about Adrian Beltre as a potential candidate when he is finished playing the game.  At first glance, Beltre would not seem like a viable candidate but I intend to plead his case for him.  Adrian Beltre was signed by the Los Angeles Dodgers while he was playing high school baseball at the age of fifteen.  The Los Angeles Dodgers would later be suspended for a year from the Dominican Republic when this was revealed. However, this was a minor price to pay for securing such a great prospect.  Beltre played in the Los Angeles Dodgers baseball Academy in his own country before heading to the minor leagues.  His minor league career was short-lived as he was called up as a teenager in 1998 at the age of 19.  Beltre struggled with Major League pitching that year hitting .215, but showed some power with 7 HRs and 22 RBIs in only 195 AB.  Beltre won the third base position out of training camp in 1999 and never looked back.  Beltre then enjoyed 5 solid seasons with the Los Angeles Dodgers, providing great defense and above average power.  It was 2004 that was his breakout year.

At age 25, Adrian Beltre had one of the greatest years of all-time offensively for a third baseman.  Included in his numbers were:  .334 with 48 HRs and 121 RBIs, 200 hits and 104 runs.  Beltre had a slugging percentage that year of .629.   Adrian finished second in MVP voting to Barry Bonds.  Beltre picked a perfect season to explode considering it was his free agent season.  The Seattle Mariners came calling with a 5-year $64 Million deal.  The Seattle Mariners had also signed Richie Sexson that year to try and compete in the AL West for 2005.

The move did not pay off at the start, with Beltre struggling in the 1st half of the season. Yet there was a nice second half of the year, as he still managed to put up 19 HR’S and 87 RBI.  Beltre was frustrated with his first year although he had optimism towards the future, citing the League switch (as it was hard to have a handle on pitchers you never had faced before).  The next three years, Adrian cracked 76 HRs and drove in 265 RBIs.  His average fluctuated a little between .260 to .280. Amongst the numbers that favored Beltre was that he hit 109 doubles in those 3 years.  This next point is playing in certain ballparks can make a huge difference.  As my regional team, I watched Beltre play for his entire Seattle Mariners career.  I would say half of his doubles at home were launched off the fences of Safeco Field.  Had Beltre played in a ballpark more offensive friendly, we are talking about a player capable of hitting 30-35 HRs every year.  When you add up all of the extra base hits for Beltre, he is always in the top 10-15 every year.  With 2010 coming, and finishing an injury plagued 2009 campaign for the Mariners, Beltre picked his worst year for a bad season (with him set to become a free agent for the 2nd time in his career).  The Boston Red Sox finally came calling with a 1-year $10 Million contract.

Adrian Beltre was an outstanding fit at hitter-friendly Fenway Park, posting remarkable numbers of a .321 AVG with 28 HRs and 103 RBIs. It was another impressive season for doubles with 49 (which led the league).  This was the second 80 Extra Base hits season of his career. Some would tell you that Adrian Beltre was the MVP of the Boston Red Sox in 2010, and that his absence from the team in the 2011 year was the main reason why the Red Sox struggled to start the season before missing the playoffs on the final day of the season.  Adrian Beltre took his offensive talents to Texas for 2011, signing a 6-year $96 Million Contract.

Beltre tore it up in Arlington last season. Despite missing 38 games, Beltre clubbed 32 HRs and drove in 105 RBIs while carrying an Avg of .296.  Beltre continued his torrid offensive pace in the playoffs, where he even had a 3-home run game in the ALDS versus the Tampa Bay Rays!  Later in the World Series, Beltre hit a home run where he fell to his knees.  At age 32 and with 5 seasons left in his contract with the Texas Rangers, this slugger shows no sign of slowing down.  His career numbers are already impressive at .276 with 310 HRs, 1113 RBIs and 430 doubles.  If Beltre can amass another 140 HRs, 170 doubles and 390 RBIs during these upcoming years(a yearly average of 28 HRs, 34 doubles and 78 RBIs), then you are talking about a guy that will have career numbers of 450 HRs, 1500 RBIs and 600 doubles.  Those statistics would garner the man some serious consideration for the Hall of Fame… and he may not even be done playing after that.  Beltre should have about 2800 hits by the time he is done as well. Beltre is also known as being one of the best defensive third baseman of late, which has culminated in 3 gold gloves over the last 5 years. With Beltre’s Gold Glove potential every year, there is no reason to think he will not win a couple more of these awards.  

In the end, Beltre could have historical numbers for a third baseman, surpassed by only a select few like Mike Schmidt. I think it is very important for the writers of the BBWAA to talk to all of the announcers/broadcasters of all major league teams about the potential BBHOF candidates out there, as a guy like Adrian Beltre might just slip through the cracks.  Ron Santo’s 2012 induction might just be a preview to the kind of third baseman who will one day join the fraternity. If you look up Beltre’s numbers as of today, their career numbers are already eerily similar.

*** Thank you to our Baseball Writer- Doug Booth for preparing today’s feature 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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