Here’s Reggie Jackson taking about tonight’s matchup:
“I think if Andy beats Lee, it would make any [Hall of Fame] voter that’s on the borderline put him in. I think Andy has a strong resume now for the Hall of Fame, and I think he’ll already get strong consideration. But something like this would give him additional consideration.”
People are pretty simple creatures. We approve when people do like we do. We disapprove when people do differently. If something we did made us great, of course we’re going to think that someone else behaving similarly is great too. In light of that, perhaps we shouldn’t be surprised that a guy who is best known for what he did in one postseason game puts undue emphasis on what another player may or may not do in one postseason game.
That said, Reggie Jackson had more than one great game on his Hall of Fame resume. It took an entire career’s worth of work to get him to Cooperstown. My gut feeling: Andy Pettitte, for all of his accomplishments, doesn’t have the same quality of a career, and I don’t think he’s ultimately a Hall of Fame pitcher, whether he beats Cliff Lee or not.
I don’t think he’s a Jack Morris case (i.e. a guy no one with sense should consider for the Hall). I will understand one day when people push hard for him. But in my mind, he’s Hall of Very Good. He’s Hall of Excellent Postseason. But he’s not, in my mind, a Hall of Famer.
I’m going to go out on a limb and guess that some of you disagree.
Oft-injured pitcher Josh Johnson is retiring from baseball, ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick is reporting.
Johnson, 32, hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2013. The right-hander underwent his third Tommy John surgery in September 2015 but wasn’t able to bounce back.
Johnson spent most of his career with the Marlins, but also pitched for the Blue Jays in the big leagues, as well as the Padres in the minors. He retires with a career 3.40 ERA, 915 strikeouts across 998 innings in the majors, and two All-Star nominations. Johnson led the National League with a 2.30 ERA in 2010, finishing fifth in NL Cy Young Award balloting. One wonders what he could have accomplished if he was able to stay healthy.
The Angels are nearing a multi-year deal with free agent third baseman Luis Valbuena, Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports. It’s believed to be a two-year contract with a third-year option.
Valbuena, 31, hit .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances in 2016. He missed most of the second half with a hamstring injury, for which he underwent surgery in late August.
Valbuena has played a majority of his career at third base, but also has extensive experience at second base and has racked up innings at first base and shortstop as well. He won’t play every day for the Angels, as Yunel Escobar lays claim to third base and C.J. Cron first base, but he will give them flexibility and a left-handed bat off the bench.