Jun 26, 2009

All-Time All-Star

With the 2009 All-Star game approaching, I think it is only appropriate to focus on Andre being an 8-time All-Star.

Andre was a player's player, a manager's player, and a fan's player. The players that played with or against Andre loved him. Managers loved his approach to the game. And fans respected the way he played.

It was Andre's ability and work ethic that made him an 8-time All-Star, not to mention being voted by the fans to be a National League starter in 7 of the 8 games. The only game he didn't start was the 1989 game. He was a starting outfielder in the 1981-83, 1987, 1988, 1990, and 1991 games.*

He won the 1987 pre-All-Star game festivity the Home Run Derby, fitting since he led the Majors that year in home runs. He capped off his last All-Star appearance in 1991 by hitting a majestic home run in Toronto’s Skydome.*

Being an elected to start 7 All-Star games is a great accolade, but being elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame would be the ultimate compliment to Andre's career.


Jun 15, 2009

Tale of Two MVP Seasons

In 1987 Andre Dawson won the National League MVP award for a Cubs team that finished last. That is the only time in Major League Baseball history that a player on a last place team won the coveted award.

Many baseball experts and fans since 1987 have debated if the award should be given to a player of a non-playoff contending team. The purpose of this post is to give an example of why those that voted for Andre in 1987 did so (he received 80% of the vote).*

In 1987 Andre topped the National League in homeruns (49), RBIs (137), and total bases (353), as well as fifth in hits (178) and third in extra-base hits (75).

But I think the most amazing statistic of 1987 is that Andre accounted for 32% of the runs the Cubs scored that year. The Cubs scored 720 runs, 137 in which Andre batted in and 90 of which he scored himself. Of the 720, 227 involved Andre. 32% is HUGE!**

Here is an illustration of how huge that really is. In comparison, in the 2007-08 NBA season in which Kobe Bryant won MVP he accounted for 31% of the Lakers total points that season(Points + assists). Andre accounted for one more percent of his team's run in his MVP season than Kobe.***

I doubt anyone would argue against Kobe for basketball's hall of fame; it shouldn't be any different for Andre!


Jun 8, 2009

The 8 Gold Gloves

Fielding is rarely a statistic that comes into consideration regarding baseball's hall of fame. The only player I can think of that was inducted largely on the defensive aspect of the game was Cardinals shortstop Ozzie Smith.

What made Andre such a great all-around player was his ability to save as many runs with his outstanding glove as he created with his bat. He won 8 Gold Gloves in his 21-year career, six in which were in consecutive years (1980-1985, two additional Gold Gloves in 1987 and 1988).

I believe Andre would have won additional gold gloves later in his career had he began his career playing on natural grass rather than hard artificial turf during his time as a Montreal Expo. Despite that, only two outfielders in Major League Baseball history have won more Gold Gloves than Andre, Roberto Clemente and Willie Mays, both are in the hall of fame*.

Andre's fielding percentage for his career was .983 (1.000 is the highest possible %).*


Jun 1, 2009

The 400HR/300SB Club

Andre finished his career with 438 home runs and 314 stolen bases. He is one of only six players in major league history to record over 300 home runs and 300 stolen bases in his career (300/300 Club). The other players to accomplish this feat are: Willie Mays, Barry Bonds, Bobby Bonds, Reggie Sanders and Steve Finley*.

Andre belongs to an even more elite group, the 400/300 Club (400 home runs and 300 stolen bases). What makes this group so amazing is that out of the 16,187** players in Major League Baseball history (1876-2007) only three have the statistics to belong to this exclusive club. Mays and Barry Bonds are of course the other two members.

This means only 1.85% of all players to don a MLB uniform belongs to this club. Mays is in the Hall of Fame and Barry is not eligible for the Hall yet. That leaves Andre. Don't you think a player that accomplishes something of this magnitude that 98% of other players couldn't, that it is a no-brainer that Andre should be elected?

* www.wikipedia.org
** www.wikianswers.com