13 September 2006

DPD: Strange Choices in DHL/MLB "Hometown Heroes" Promo, American League Edition

I know it's just a promotion, and why DHL is associated with is is beyond me, but as I looked over the ballot for the "Hometown Heroes" voting it seemed to me that there were several curious selsctions on it, and off it for that matter. There was a bit of publicity about Sammy Sosa not making the list of five players for the Cubs about a month ago, but that was really all I heard, when it seems to me that there were more than a few players who could feel appropriatley slighted for having been left off the ballot of one team or another. For another thing, there were some that seemingly had no business being on the ballot but for some reason were, so I thougth I would run down these, just for grits and shiggles, and see if anyone else had any ideas on players I might have missed. In some cases these are public relations decisions, like Sosa, I suspect, but others are simply oversights because we've forgotten some of the rich (and older) history of theis great game.

Baltimore Orioles

On the list: Eddie Murray, Jim Palmer, Cal Ripken Jr., Brooks Robinson, Frank Robinson

What's He Doing Here??? Frank Robinson was a fantastic player, and he did win a Triple Crown, an MVP Award, and two World Series (including a World Series MVP Award) with Baltimore, but he only spent six years of his 21-season career in an Orioles uniform. Ken Singleton had more of most of the counting stats as an Oriole than Frank Robinson did.

Where's the Love, Man? George Sisler. Hello? Anybody remember that the Orioles spent the first 52 years of their mostly miserable existence in St. Louis? Granted, that's a different "home town" but it seems ridiculous to pretend that the franchise just sprang into existence from the ether in 1954, doesn't it? Sisler hit over .400 twice for the Browns, owns the franchise's all-time record for career batting average (.344), steals (351) and triples (145), and is third or fourth on the team in numerous other offensive stats.

Wouldn't It Have Been Funny if They'd Included: Eddie Gaedel, Pete Gray?

And the Winner Is... Cal Ripken. Even if he didn't deserve it, he would win, since the collective memory of people who vote on the Internet is about ten years, at most.

Boston Red Sox
On the list:Roger Clemens, Jim Rice, Ted Williams, Carl Yastrzemski, Cy Young

What's He Doing Here???Can't complaing much about these guys, four Hall of Famers and a borderline guy in Rice. Cy Young only spent 8 of 22 seasons in Boston, but the dud holds the career wins record (with the Rocket) for the Boston franchise, so you can't begrudge them his name on the list.

Where's the Love, Man?Pedro Martinez. He spent seven years in Red Socks, only one less than Cy, compiling a 117-37 record, for a .760 winning percentage that isn't only the best in Boston history, it's the best record of any pitcher with any team who's gotten at least 100 decisions. He won two Cy Young Awards, finished third or higher in the voting three other times, and probably should have won Pudge's 1999 MVP. All of that in seven seasons. Also, Wade Boggs won five batting titles and amassed over 2,000 hits as a Red Sock. Of course, who do you bump from the list?

Wouldn't It Have Been Funny if They'd Included: Bill Buckner?

And the Winner Is... The Kid. The Splinter. The Greatest Hitter Who Ever Lived. Nobody is more closely associated with the Red Sox franchise than Teddy "F-ing" Ballgame.

Read the rest at Double Play Depth...

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