Sunday, May 18, 2008
#460 Ozzie Smith
Why this card is awesome: Because, holy cow, there are more people who don't belong in the background. There are at least 4 folks there, including a guy on the right wearing a white shirt and black pants. Only the "S' in Cardinals prevents us from seeing that dude's entire body, head to toe.
And a mere 60 cards after appearing on #400, Here's Ozzie again on #460. Dave Winfield also appeared close together, on #392 and #459. And Willie Randolph was on #387 and #459.
Cool stat: As fantastic a player as Smith was, it's notable that he had very little extra-base power. His speed allowed him to get some decent 2B and 3B seasons, but for the most part he got lots of singles and walks. (He was in the top 10 in the NL for singles 6 times and top 10 for walks in the NL 4 times.) Anyway, as a result, he finished with a higher OBP than SLG, which itself is not too rare. (The fact that he had tons of sac hits also plays into that, as sac hits are not counted as a PA for calculation of OBP, whereas sacrifice flies are counted as o-for-1 in OBP calculation.)
All of this is a long-winded way of saying that Ozzie has the most career PAs for a player with an OBP of .335 or better but a SLG of .330 or less.
Hall of Fame count: 31
I wonder if Ozzie retired today whether he'd get as many votes for HOF as he did back in 2002. Don't get me wrong, I think he's a definite HOFer, but his numbers don't stand out.