Tuesday, July 17, 2007

? No. 11: Grace ain't that amazing

If you didn't already know this, you'll have it beaten into your head in a couple years when Mark Grace is eligible for the Hall of Fame: No hitter in the decade of the 1990s collected more hits than Gracie's 1,754. (Raffy Palmeiro is second, just seven hits away.) Grace also paces the majors in doubles for that time span with 364. Some (Cubs) fans will argue 'til they're blue in the face that he was the best pure hitter of the decade. His average over that time span was .310, a very respectable number no doubt but still only one percentage point higher than Rusty Greer and two points lower than Jason Kendall. Average doesn't tell the whole story of course. But anyway you cut it, there were several hitters better than old Grace in the '90s. Let's see how many I can name off the top of my head: Tony Gwynn, Mark McGwire, Mike Piazza, Edgar Martinez, Frank Thomas, Robbie Alomar, Jeff Bagwell, Bernie Williams, Barry Bonds, Jim Thome, Barry Larkin, Will Clark, Ken Griffey, Chipper Jones, Albert Belle, Juan Gonzalez, Gary Sheffield, Fred McGriff, the aforementioned Palmeiro. Do you want me to go on?

Well, there's one more player I'd definitely add to that list, and he's the subject of this trivia question. This player is third on the list of hits for the decade of the '90s, second in doubles, twelfth in walks, eighth in steals, third in times on base, and second in runs. He went to the playoffs three times in the decade, but his team never advanced past the first round. Who is he?

Yesterday's Answer: As of the end of Saturday's games, the four major leaguers on pace to qualify for the batting crown with a slugging percentage over .600 were Prince Fielder, Alex Rodriguez, Carlos Pena (no, really), and Chipper Jones. Leading the majors in OPS was our old standby, Barry Bonds, despite a very un-Bonds like slugging percentage in the mid-.500s. (The on-base percentage near .500 sure helps.)

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

Ivan Rodriguez?

bunting4hits said...

Close, but no cigar.

Listmaker said...

biggio

Anonymous said...

ahhh...houston, that's right. forgot about them.

dn

Don Gerard said...

Mets' Fan: "Hey, Grace! What's yer last name!"

I always thought Grace was a bit of a banjo-hitting, rack up the stats after games were lost/won waste at first base.

I'll take the Hawk anyday.