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 Post subject: Hall of Fame provocateur
PostPosted: Sun Mar 12, 2006 10:33 am 
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Joined: Mon Apr 08, 2002 12:01 am
Posts: 3135
Location: Albuquerque, N.M. USA
This essay in today's NY Times suggests we're hypocrites for wanting to keep Barry Bonds out of the Hall of Fame. Anyone ever heard of Alex Pompez?

Add1:
Keith Olbermann blogged about this on March 1.


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 Post subject: Re: Hall of Fame provocateur
PostPosted: Sun Mar 12, 2006 7:22 pm 
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Joined: Tue Sep 30, 2003 12:01 am
Posts: 1112
Location: An undisclosed alpine meadow
jjmoney62 wrote:
Anyone ever heard of Alex Pompez?

Yeah, anyone who read Carter Gaddis' work in The Tampa Tribune on Feb. 26 and Feb. 28.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Mar 17, 2006 11:30 am 
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Joined: Sat Nov 01, 2003 1:01 am
Posts: 741
Location: The Empire State
Sorry I'm late to this party, JJ. I've had a busy week.

God bless John Thorn--he has done a lot of research (and, obviously, writing) about baseball and was in the news a couple of years ago when he discovered baseball's year and place of origin were much earlier/different than first thought. He made a self-deprecating remark at the press conference held to tout that discovery that writing about and researching the history of the game was his entire life, and I don't doubt it.

I don't agree with his premise, though. I love Buck O'Neil; the guy is clearly a national treasure for baseball fans. He seems to be a man of incredible integrity, generosity and kindness, and he tells wonderful stories. He has been a terrific ambassador for the game, and I hope one day to make it to Kansas City to see the Negro Leagues Museum there, which I believe O'Neil was instrumental in getting started.

But if it weren't for Ken Burns' documentary, would anyone be clamoring for O'Neil's induction? Would people even know his name? Thorn is claiming that players merely have to be famous to get into the Hall of Fame, but I disagree. (Thorn probably doesn't have any quibble with Bill Mazeroski's presence in the Hall, given that logic.) From what I read about O'Neil's career, he was a very good player, not a great one. The Hall should be for those players/executives/broadcasters who exemplified greatness.

Thorn seems to be arguing that because there are people who have been inducted into the Hall who are less than great, then it's all right to continue to induct people who are less than great. I disagree. The inductions of lessers should be seen as anomalies, not an indication or an expectation of the norm.

Maybe MLB can create some type of award for humanitarian service to the game and name it after O'Neil and find worthy recipients (one in each league, perhaps) each year.


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