Posts Tagged ‘Wade Boggs’

h2h Corner ~ Check You Out On the Flip Side: Mike Greenwell

mike greenwell back mike greenwell frontFirst of all, I grew up in an era during which every player on a Little League team received a trophy. There were not MVPs, but most improved, sportsmanship, and Bob Loblaw’s Law Blog. So it’s odd to me to see that Greenwell was the MVP of his squad and that he remembered the fact until he was 22.

What this instantly reminded me of was Greenwell’s 1988 season. As a 24-year-old, Greenwell hit .325, posted a .416 OBP and slugged .531. He would be a distant runner-up in the MVP voting to Mr. 40/40 (no, not Jay-Z) Jose Canseco.

Five years ago, after all of the steroids and PED hubbub, Greenwell made a somewhat bitter case that he should be awarded the 1988 MVP. Did he lose a few million dollars because of it? Probably. Did he already get paid more than most people will make in a lifetime? Absolutely (he made over $21 million in his career).

Life, quite simply, is enjoyable because it isn’t fair. If life were fair for everyone, it’d be dull. Why do Americans enjoy the underdog story so much? Mostly, because the underdog doesn’t have all the advantages that the favored team or boxer might have.

Greenwell was a splendid player, but he never really was an MVP. In fact, in 1988, Greenwell would trail Wade Boggs, Canseco and Mark Gubicza and tie Kirby Puckett in wins above replacement player according to Baseball Reference. So, if we’re being completely fair, it is Wade Boggs who should be all annoyed at Canseco.

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For the history of this series, check out this article: Check You Out On the Flip Side: Howard Johnson.

h2h Corner ~ Check You Out On the Flip Side: Tony Gwynn

For the history of this series, check out this article: Check You Out On the Flip Side: Howard Johnson.

Tony Gwynn Back1987Tony Gwynn Front 1987

First things first, Tony Gwynn loves San Diego. Not only did he spend his entire 20-season career in the beautiful whale’s vagina, but he went to college there and was drafted by the basketball team. Oh, yeah, he also, currently, coaches San Diego State University’s baseball team.

Second things second, someone my age—who didn’t really know baseball in the late ‘80s—thinks of Tony Gwynn as this slow slap hitter that didn’t do much besides hit singles. Kind of like an Ichiro without speed or Wade Boggs.

When, in fact, judging by Gwynn’s prowess at basketball he was an incredibly athletic dude. From 1984 – 1990, he averaged 32 steals per season. Meanwhile, from 2005 – 2010, Ichiro averaged just five steals more per season.

This card really made me re-think the way I looked at Gwynn’s career. Certainly, I had mad respect for the guy, especially when his career compares favorably to Rod Carew, Boggs, Roberto Clemente and George Sisler. But I always saw him as the most boring of one-dimensional station-to-station players. That simply isn’t the case of the man who lead the league in hits in seven out of the 16 fullish seasons he played.

I just thank god he didnt go to the Clippers and incur the curse.

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