We just rehired one of my all-time (well, all-time based on how many years I've been following them) favorite Padres, Mark Loretta, as a "special assistant to baseball operations". Now that he's retired, it's a slow countdown for his Cooperstown eligibility. Should he get in? Hell yes. His stats, and how they measure up with the other 17 2B's in the hall, are after the jump.Career: 1,713 hits (more than Johnny Evers and Jackie Robinson, and only a handful fewer than Tony Lazzeri)
76 home runs (Would be 6th-fewest, in front of Ed Collins, Evers, Nellie Fox, Bill Herman, and Bid McPhee)
629 RBI (in front of only Evers)
Average of .295 (Good for 9th on the list-- beats Bob Doerr, Evers, Fox, Lazzeri, Bill Mazerowski, McPhee, Joe Morgan, Ryne Sandberg, and Red Schoendienst)
Slugging % of .395 (Tops Evers, Fox, Mazerowski, McPhee, and Schoendienst)
On-base % of .360 (Better than Evers, Fox, Mazerowski, McPhee, Sandberg and Schoendienst; just a whisker behind Doerr, Frank Frisch, and Herman)
47 steals (Better than only Mazerowski)
768 runs scored (ONE behind Mazerowski-- which leaves him dead last)
Now that you've seen that (and laughed at how pathetic Johnny Evers's resume is), some factors working for and against Mark.
THE CASE FOR:
Two-Time All-Star: In 2004 with San Diego and 2006 with Boston. Those will give him a boost.
Silver Slugger Award: Also in 2004, his career year, when he notched a .335 average. He's come close to a few batting titles, but no cigar.
Winner of the Hutch Award: 2006 with the Sox. The Hutch "is awarded annually to an active player who best exemplifies the fighting spirit and competitive desire to win."
Clubhouse leader: Voters like this.
THE CASE AGAINST:
What about him?: As well as he stacks up on paper, what has he done thoughout his career? No ring, no pennant, toiled for 8 years on an awful Brewers team. He hasn't done anything spectacular either for any of his teams, or for the game of baseball (like Robinson).
Stats are telling: Look again at those lines up there. Notice anything? He's squarely in the middle-to-back of the pack amongst them. You would think that he would need to lead or at least be near the leading edge in more categories, especially because he has...
No name recognition: He's an unspectacular journeyman. Outside of Milwaukee and San Diego, only serious baseball fans would know who he is. This could be a problem when the Hall comes calling.
I think he has at
least best an outside shot of making it to Cooperstown, especially considering the lack of marquee second basemen who have just recently retired and will therefore be eligible in his year. He'll probably get stuck behind Randy Johnson and Mike Mussina (I imagine the latter will in turn be stuck behind Jeff Kent and Curt Schilling in his first year of eligibility).
What do y'all think?