These two are really worthy of a Hall pass
As if the sports world didn’t already owe a big thank you to players like Tim Brown and Rafael Palmeiro, we should be grateful for their recent display of good timing. all accounts, these are players who have lived clean, worked hard, not made waves and put up numbers that are not just good but great. It’s this apparent wholesomeness, by the way, that drew Viagra to Palmeiro when it was looking for a pitchman. One argument against Palmeiro deserves some attention. That’s the idea that his numbers are inflated because he has played most of his career in the homer-happy steroids era and played 20 seasons in the hitter-friendly parks of the Cubs, Rangers and Orioles. This quibble is going to apply to a lot of Hall of Fame candidates in the years ahead, but it doesn’t stick in this case. First, the only connection between Palmeiro and steroids has been an accusation from Jose Canseco (no less). No evidence, no fair. Second, Palmeiro’s hit and homer totals are still pretty impressive, even if he’s been helped by Camden Yards and The Ballpark at Arlington. Think about the following: AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREThe top 10 theme park moments of 2019 In his first five-year stretch in Baltimore, 1994-1998, Palmeiro had 831 hits and 182 homers. Cal Ripken Jr., who will be a Hall of Famer, was an Oriole in the same five years, and he had 791 hits and 87 homers. Advantage, Palmeiro. In his latest five-year stretch in Texas, 1999-2003, Palmeiro had 805 hits and 214 homers. Comparisons are tricky, because no hitter stayed with the Rangers for the same five years. But Juan Gonzalez, who was a Ranger from 1995 to 1999, winning two MVP awards in that time, had 808 hits and 200 homers. Even, or slight edge to Palmeiro. There is no single Hall of Fame template. You look at numbers, which tell you what a player did. You listen to your gut, which tells you how he did it. To anybody who says Tim Brown’s and Rafael Palmeiro’s credentials don’t look like a Hall of Famer’s, I say you’re welcome to your opinion, but sure they do. Brown’s look like Palmeiro’s, Palmeiro’s look like Brown’s. Kevin Modesti’s column appears in the Daily News three days a week. He can be reached at [email protected] 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!