Should We Allow 9 Players to Damage History

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Should we allow nine players to damage Baseball’s History and it’s milestone numbers ?

Should baseball fans allow nine players in the history of the game to effect the way we view the record books and the history of the game?

Alex Rodriguez, Ryan Braun, suspensions, steroids, the Hall of Fame, baseball records, as well as baseball history has been the focus of attention in the baseball world for a good part of July 2013. This topic once again has dominated the discussions on sports talk radio and all other forms of baseball media coverage. In the past several years, when discussions of the baseball record books, the Hall of Fame or any topic relating to baseball history, the steroid era has become the main focus. Fans became angry when the home run records of their childhood stars were shattered. Baseball fans, whether tuning in to sports talk radio, reading newspaper articles, looking up medical studies etc., have been bombarded with countless hours of debates of how baseball history should handle the steroid era. Most of the true fans feel cheated by this controversial era. The general feeling has been that baseball history, as well as, it’s record books have been damaged beyond repair. At we feel we have a possible solution of viewing this era in a more favorable way.

From 1876 to opening day 2019 there have been 19,690 major league baseball players. We will begin by focusing on 9 of these players, Barry Bonds, Alex Rodriguez, Manny Ramirez, Mark McGwire, Sammy Sosa,Jose Canseco ,David Ortiz, Gary Sheffield, and Rafael Palmiero all who played in the steroid era .We do realize that P.E.D. use was wide spread in this era, but the reality is, many of the players who broke the rules, who are not Hall of Fame candidates and did not enter the record books, will retire and be forgotten. As of now, we will begin with these 9 players and as story of this era unfolds, more players will be added to this list. We have put together some home run charts (see below), the one on the left are the numbers recorded in the record books as of July 2013, and the chart on the right illustrates how the record books would look without these 9 players. The players highlighted in red are the players who posted the “tainted” numbers, something we feel M.L.B. consider using. Unfortunately, baseball cannot erase the past 20 years nor can it remove players from the record books, but they do have the means to foot note the players who cheated the fans of their history. Eventually when all the names come out, we feel the number of players who fit in the statistical category with Bonds, Rodriguez, Sosa, McGwire, Ramirez,Canseco and Palmiero will most likely max out at 15 to 20 players. As baseball fans who respect the game, we should not allow a group of 15-20 players to destroy our record books and tarnish the history of the game we love. Since the numbers do exist and are already in the record books, highlight or asterick these numbers,identify them as being “tainted.” In Cooperstown where the names of the record holders are listed, recognize the players as the greatest of their era, who have put up Hall of Fame statistics and did have Hall of Fame talent, but never give them the privilege of ever being inducted members of the Baseball Hall of Fame.

CHART 1 – Barry Bonds -762,  CHART 2 – Hank Aaron-755

No. Player H.R. No. Player H.R.
1 Barry Bonds 762 1 Hank Aaron 755
2 Hank Aaron 755 2 Babe Ruth 714
3 Babe Ruth 714 3 Albert Pujols 680
4 Alex Rodriguez 696 4 Willie Mays 660
5 Albert Pujols 680 5 Ken Griffey Jr. 630
6 Willie Mays 660 6 Jim Thome 612
7 Ken Griffey Jr. 630 7 Frank Robinson 586
8 Jim Thome 612 8 Harmon Killebrew 573
9 Sammy Sosa 609 9 Reggie Jackson 563
10 Frank Robinson 586 10 Mike Schmidt 548
11 Mark McGwire 583 11 Mickey Mantle 536
12 Harmon Killebrew 573 12 Jimmie Foxx 534
13 Rafael Palmiero 569 13 Ted Williams 521
14 Reggie Jackson 563 Willie McCovey 521
15 Manny Ramirez 555 Frank Thomas 521
16 Mike Schmidt 548 16 Eddie Matthews 512
17 David Ortiz 541 Ernie Banks 512
18 Mickey Mantle 536 18 Mel Ott 511
19 Jimmie Foxx 534 19 Eddie Murray 504
20 Ted Williams 521 20 Miguel Cabrera 502
Willie McCovey 521 21 Lou Gehrig 493
Frank Thomas 521 Fred McGriff 493
23 Eddie Matthews 512
Ernie Banks 512
25 Mel Ott 511
26 Gary Sheffield 509
27 Eddie Murray 504
28 Miguel Cabrera 502

CHART 1Barry Bonds – 73, CHART 2 Roger Maris – 61

No. Player H.R. Year No. Player H.R. Year
1 Barry Bonds 73 2001 1 Roger Maris 61 1961
2 Mark McGwire 70 1998 2 Babe Ruth 60 1927
3 Sammy Sosa 66 1998 3 Babe Ruth 59 1921
4 Mark McGwire 65 1999 Giancarlo Stanton 59 2017
5 Sammy Sosa 64 2001 5 Jimmie Foxx 58 1932
6 Sammy Sosa 63 1999 Hank Greenberg 58 1938
7 Roger Maris 61 1961 Ryan Howard 58 2006
8 Babe Ruth 60 1927 8 Luis Gonzalez 57 2001
9 Babe Ruth 59 1921 9 Ken Griffey Jr. 56 1998
Giancarlo Stanton 59 2017 Ken Griffey Jr. 56 1997
11 Jimmie Foxx 58 1932 Hack Wilson 56 1930
Hank Greenberg 58 1938 12 Mickey Mantle 54 1961
Ryan Howard 58 2006 Jose Bautista 54 2010
Mark McGwire 58 1997 Babe Ruth 54 1928
15 Alex Rodriguez 57 2002 Babe Ruth 54 1920
Luis Gonzalez 57 2001 Ralph Kiner 54 1949
17 Ken Griffey Jr. 56 1997 18 Pete Alonso 53 2019
Ken Griffey Jr. 56 1998 Chris Davis 53 2013
Hack Wilson 56 1930 20 Mickey Mantle 52 1956
20 Mickey Mantle 54 1961 Willie Mays 52 1965
Jose Bautista 54 2010 Aaron Judge 52 2017
Ralph Kiner 54 1949 George Foster 52 1977
Babe Ruth 54 1928 JimThome 52 2002
Babe Ruth 54 1920
David Ortiz 54 2006
Alex Rodriguez 54 2007
27 Pete Alonso 53 2019
Chris Davis 53 2013
29 Mickey Mantle 52 1956
Willie Mays 52 1965
Alex Rodriguez 52 2001
Mark McGwire 52 1996
Aaron Judge 52 2017
George Foster 52 1977
Jim Thome 52 2002

Content copyright 2017. Joe Angelini. All rights reserved.

6 Responses

  1. The question is should we allow nine players to damage Baseball’s History and it’s milestone numbers ? Answer, of course not.

    However, I would like to add eight more names to your list; Rogers Hornsby, Jimmie Foxx, Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Hank Greenberg, Chuck Klein, Al Simmons, and Hack Wilson. While these players weren’t juiced, the ball they used to bash the record books was. Their inflated statistics litter every offensive category with mystical otherworldly numbers. Nobody ever stops to ask, “Should we accept this?”

    These were the top hitters of their day. Granted. However, unless they were also part of a race of super humans there is no way their numbers should be so far beyond the statistical norm. Consider these lines
    .376, 59, 171
    .401, 42, 152
    .364, 58, 169
    .386, 40, 170
    .373, 47, 175
    .337, 40, 183
    .356, 56, 190
    .381, 36, 165

    If your any kind of stat head like me you could identify each line with each player. They’re eye popping stats. Not to be duplicated for 60 years.
    I adore these numbers. Romanticize them. The problem is that they are not real. They are as inflated as Barry Bonds’ head. Take any of these eight players and put them in a different era, except the steroid era of course, and I surmise you would get dramatically different results. Hall of Fame numbers still, but seriously a second basemen winning the triple crown and batting over .400. Not just once, but twice. Say it out loud.

    I know, I know there’s one big difference. These players from the live ball era weren’t cheating. They were just playing the hand dealt to them. I agree.
    So then let’s say, hypothetically, if next season they moved all the fences in to 250 feet would you accept whatever homerun totals that came out of it as legitimate?

    I’m certainly not trying to justify the actions of a handful of talented, cheating players. Their numbers should be discounted. If we’re willing to do that shouldn’t we at least consider a conversation about these other eight players as well?

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