Friday, January 07, 2005
Here are the "Sutter Split Finger" defenses I found, with just a quick search:
And that's only what I found before my limited Bruce Sutter patience ran too thin to continue.
Long-time readers (and by "long-time" I mean "for little over a year") might remember my December 27 and 29, 2003 posts regarding the origin and development of the forkball and split-finger fastball. It turns out that both Elroy Face and Sandy Koufax were mowing down hitters in the 1960s with the pitch. Yeah, Sutter tweaked the forkball a bit and gave it a new name, but to use Sutter's Baseball Pioneer status as a key argument in his HOF candidacy, one must also hold Elroy Face in the same regard. Face even held the career saves record for a while, with 188.
Face is obviously out, and Sutter should be too. Gossage is in on the "Has your father told you multiple stories about this guy?" criteria.
If the BBWAA isn't careful, there's a good chance that by, say, 2025, the Baseball Hall of Fame will be better described as the Baseball Hall of Quite a Bit Better than Average. Who wants to take their kids to see that?
I believe there should be a special commitee set up to evaluate HOF standards for closers. The BBWAA can't be trusted - we'll end up with NY, CA, and post-season players way out of proportion with reality.