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Baseball Corridor of Fame poll: Fielder, Howard, Morneau and Teixeira have been nice, however undeserving of Cooperstown


Buried beneath quite a lot of the polarizing — or for some, downright annoying — dialogue this Baseball Corridor of Fame season are 4 first-time eligible first basemen who aren’t more likely to achieve a ton of fanfare for enshrinement. However additionally they deserve a tip of our cap. A great way to try this is to run the group of 4 — Prince Fielder, Ryan Howard, Justin Morneau and Mark Teixeira — down one-by-one. 

Let’s get to it.

Prince Fielder 

When a younger core headed up by Fielder and later Ryan Braun arrived, the Brewers hadn’t had a successful season since 1992 and hadn’t made the playoffs since 1982. From 2007-11, the Brewers had three successful seasons, a wild-card berth, a division title and a visit to the NLCS. Fielder was the middle-order anchor of the turn-around. 

Fielder was as soon as a mannequin of sturdiness, too, taking part in in 157, 158, 159, 162, 161, 162, 162 and 162 video games, respectively, in his first eight full seasons. In his elite-level, six-year prime (5 years with the Brewers and 2012 with the Tigers), he hit .289/.401/.549 (151 OPS+) with 1,007 hits whereas averaging 38 homers and 112 RBI per season. He had three top-four MVP finishes in there. 

Sadly, a neck damage ruined Fielder’s run. He wanted surgical procedure on it after 42 video games in 2014. He bounced again with a full 2015 and made his sixth All-Star workforce, however then after 89 video games in 2016 — throughout which he was clearly compromised — he was pressured into retirement because of the neck damage. 

Maybe greater than the gamers above, the damage actually damage Fielder’s Corridor probabilities. He was solely 32 years outdated. He had 1,645 hits, 319 dwelling runs and 1,028 RBI and that is together with two considerably impacted seasons. 

Regardless, let’s give one other spherical of props for a wonderful, even when not Corridor of Fame, profession. 

Ryan Howard

An damage may need conspired in opposition to Howard. Keep in mind the ultimate play of the 2011 NLDS wherein the Cardinals upset the Phillies? Howard tore his Achilles. To that time in his profession, Howard had a Rookie of the Yr, an MVP, three All-Star appearances, a Silver Slugger, 4 top-five MVP finishes and 6 top-10 finishes. 

From 2005-11, Howard hit .275/.368/.560 (139 OPS+) with 1,032 hits, 184 doubles, 284 homers and 859 RBI. Within the ultimate 5 seasons of his profession, after the Achilles damage, surgical procedure and restoration, he hit .226/.292/.427 (95 OPS+). Once more, decline years occur to everybody but it surely was fairly drastic following a serious damage. There isn’t any option to understand how his profession would have unfolded with out that damage. 

Howard ended with a .258 common, 125 OPS+, 1,475 hits, 277 doubles, 382 homers and 1,194 RBI. He led the majors in homers twice and RBI thrice. Even with the {hardware}, together with his World Sequence ring and being a central a part of the Phillies core that additionally received 5 straight division titles and two pennants, this is not a Corridor of Famer. Nice profession, although. 

Justin Morneau

Was Morneau on his option to turning into a Corridor of Famer earlier than a concussion? In July of 2010, he suffered a career-altering blow to the pinnacle through knee on a slide. On the time, Morneau was 29 and had made 4 straight All-Star groups after successful an MVP. He additionally had an MVP runner-up in there, to not point out really successful the Dwelling Run Derby the place Josh Hamilton stole the present early on at Yankee Stadium (and the sponsor referred to as him “Jason” Morneau when handing him the trophy — which solely issues right here as a result of it was humorous). 

From 2006-10, Morneau hit .298/.372/.528 (138 OPS+) with 162-game averages of 182 hits, 40 doubles, 32 homers, 123 RBI and 97 runs. This was within the midst of the Twins being a comparatively common playoff workforce. Together with Joe Mauer and Johan Santana, Morneau was the core of the inspiration. 

The remainder of his profession, he hit .275/.331/.433 (106 OPS+) with 162-game averages of 165 hits, 36 doubles, 18 homers, 83 RBI and 65 runs. 

Each participant goes by way of a decline part, but it surely actually looks like the concussion ruined Morneau’s profession, to a sure extent. 

Ultimately, he had 1,603 hits, 349 doubles, 247 homers, 985 RBI with a .281/.348/.481 line. With these 4 All-Star Video games, the MVP and two Silver Sluggers, it is a very formidable profession, but it surely is not a Corridor of Fame profession. 

Mark Teixeira

After which there’s Mr. Teixeira, who did not have the killer offensive upside of Fielder nor the {hardware} of Morneau or Howard. He did end second in MVP voting as soon as, however the primary causes he has the perfect probability of this group to stay on the poll are that he averted the career-altering damage and he was a extra full all-around participant. 

Teixeira was fairly clearly the perfect defender of this group, taking dwelling 5 Gold Gloves along with his three Silver Sluggers. He was the most effective gamers on a World Sequence champion, too, as Howard was. 

Teixeira ended with the perfect case right here in counting stats, once more, attributable to longevity. He sits with 1,862 hits, 408 doubles, 409 homers, 1,298 RBI and 1,099 runs. College students of the Corridor of Fame know that these numbers for a primary baseman are pedestrian, some even a bit missing. Amongst first basemen in historical past he is 61st in hits, fortieth in doubles, nineteenth in homers, thirtieth in RBI and forty third in runs. There are at present 22 Corridor of Fame first basemen. 

JAWS helps Teixeira a bit, however he is nonetheless thirty first, sitting a reasonably sizable tick beneath the common Corridor of Fame first baseman. Some current gamers in his ballpark in JAWS are non-Corridor guys like Jason Giambi, Will Clark, Fred McGriff, Carlos Delgado and Don Mattingly.  Whereas Teixeira will get nearer than any of those 4 we have mentioned proper right here, he is nonetheless comfortably out of the Corridor of Fame, for me. 


And that is OK. These 4 had careers price celebrating, even when they weren’t the elite of the elite to the purpose being thought of Baseball Immortal. Very, only a few ever are. That is the purpose of the Corridor of Fame. 





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