Wednesday, May 21, 2008

#463 Fred McGriff

Why this card is awesome: Because it's such a classic photo! A young Blue Jay, dressed all in blue, in front of a sea of blue seats. I love it.

Cool stat: From 1988 to 2002, which two players have the most seasons with at least 22 homers? Of course Fred McGriff is one, or else I wouldn't be citing the stat. Barry Bonds is the other.

I would love to see Fred McGriff in the Hall of Fame. According to's HOF Monitor and HOF standards, he's right there at the level of a typical HOFer. But I doubt he'll make it since, despite being one of the most consistent power hitters from 1988 to 2002, he only led the league in homers twice, with totals that now seem paltry (36 in 1989 and 35 in 1992) and never led the league in RBI, OBP, SLG, total bases, or anything else. (Interestingly, he did lead the league in OPS in 1989 while being second in SLG and 4th in OBP.)


David said...

McGriff is the only player to hit at least 30 HRs every season from 1988 to 1994.

MMayes said...

Look at the scouting department the Jays had in the early 90's. They get George Bell, Kelly Gruber, Willie Upshaw and Manny Lee as a Rule 5 draftee. They picked up Fat Cecil when he'd been in the KC system for 1 year for Leon Roberts.

McGriff came as a throw-in when George Steinbrenner wanted Dave Collins and Mike Morgan. The trade was 12/82 and McGriff had not turned 19 until after the '82 season, which he only played short season ball in the Gulf Coast League. That's some good scouting Pat Gillick's organization did.

Ugo said...

I'll never forget the December 1990 trade of McGriff and Fernandez for Alomar and Carter. I remember being so upset at time. (I was 12) I loved McGriff. but didn't realize how great Alomar and Carter. 1991,1992,1993 were great years.

ajsnyc22 said...

Seeing the talk about how stacked the early 90's Jays were makes me think that their mini-dynasty will probably be relatively forgotten in the annals of baseball history.

Look at all the players that passed through there, and a good mixture too: not just over-the-hill rent-a-players (though they did have that: Jack Morris), but guys who would go on to become good elsewhere, like Wells or Leiter, plus those that were best known for their time on the Jays like Olerud or Carter*.

*Pozterisk: did a good article yesterday on the worst clean-up hitters of all-time and made a good case that Joe Carter was vastly overrated. I agree and it's worth reading.

If they were the Yankees, Red Sox or Mets, you would hear a lot more from writers about the incredible amount of talent, homegrown and otherwise, that played in front of ~4 million fans a year at SkyDome over that span. (Look how much attention the Jackson-Munson Yankees get with similar accomplishments.) But the Blue Jays get passed over for some reason.

Andy said...

Joe Carter was definitely overrated. I've written about that a few times on B-R SOTD blog. Just look at Joe Carter's card on THIS blog (search his name at the top) and I linked back to all the relevant posts.

That trade between the Pads and Jays also sticks in my mind. Huge frickin' trade. I'm not sure we've seen a trade with so many big-time players since. I bet if you count by All-Star appearances, that's one of the top trades of all time.

Uglee Card said...

Crime Dog was a nice player. A very good player. But he goes on my list of players who are too often mentioned as should be in the Hall of Fame, along with Tim Raines (sorry!), Bert Blyleven and Manny Trillo.
Trillo should be in the Hall of Superiority.