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« The Backbone | Main | Jim Tracy On The Hotseat? »

June 1, 2005

The Artist

As much of a fan of the game as I am, I have only one autographed baseball and one autographed picture, both by Greg Maddux. I was ecstatic when the Braves signed him in 1993 and I was sad to see him leave the Braves in 2004. So it was bittersweet to turn on the Dodger game on Memorial Day to see "Doggie" standing on the mound in a Cubs uniform. Of course it was a vintage Maddux performance; 6IP, 5H, 2R, 1ER & 3Ks, he kept the hitters off-balance with a fastball that never topped 90-mph, he hit the black on both sides of the plate, and his 3 Ks all came on his changeup. He did commit an error on a throw to first base, however, when this season is complete, odds are he'll receive his 15th Gold Glove Award, which will put him one behind Jim Kaat for Gold Gloves won by a pitcher. I mentioned that it was bittersweet only because I would have liked for him to finish his Hall of Fame career with the only team he won a World Series (1995).

As it is, he'll pitch for Cubs through the 2006 season, when his current contract expires, and, if he hits his average of 15 victories per season, he'll end up with around 350 wins. This total will put him in the All-Time Top 10 and he will have passed greats such as; Tom Seaver, Gaylord Perry, Phil Niekro, Don Sutton, Nolan Ryan, Steve Carlton and Tim Keefe. Not bad for a guy who was told he was too small to be a successful pitcher and should consider second base or shortstop.

Posted by Kevin O'Leary at 9:09 PM

Comments

Kevin, you're right about Maddux being an artist. I find it odd that he gets somewhat discounted when there are discussions about the best pitcher in baseball over the past 50 years.

I would say that Clemens ends up at the top of most people's lists, though I feel that Warren Spahn is the best. But Maddux, along with Jim Kaat, has to be thought as one of the best athletes at the position, plus he's simply a pleasure to watch, so accurate, and while batters might fear facing a Clemens or Randy Johnson, my guess is they'd rather not hit against Maddux simply because he can just make a major league hitter look silly.

Posted by: Andrew Torres on June 2, 2005 6:39 AM

......Kevin should never root for the Dodger bums....keep his heart with the Braves( even though they "choke-the-big-ones" ).....and i hope his beautiful daughter stays away from the Dodgers and the Braves..root for the SF Giants !!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: Lyle on June 2, 2005 4:58 PM

Well said, but it seems odd to me that you completely dismiss (at least, through the absence of acknowledgement) any possibility at all that Maddux may yet win a ring with the Cubs.

Should that come to pass, would your feelings change at all?

Posted by: Chris P. on June 2, 2005 9:27 PM

Well said, but it seems odd to me that you completely dismiss (at least, through the absence of acknowledgement) any possibility at all that Maddux may yet win a ring with the Cubs.

Should that come to pass, would your feelings change at all?

Posted by: Chris P. on June 2, 2005 9:32 PM

So much for free speech!!!
Nice try 89.3!

WORD...

Posted by: YankeeFan on June 4, 2005 7:33 AM

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