hwiggen wrote:I think Gwynn was definitely the better player but I agree that Ripken was the reason for the huge turnout. His iron man record was really embraced by most fans.
Personally, his consecutive game record is one that I really feel is tainted. I love Cal Ripken the player, but how many games did Lou Gehrig miss due to being on strike? Few people question the legitimacy of the record because Cal was so well liked. I wonder if this point would be brought up by more fans if an unlikable player had broke the record.
And the streak really is the reason for the huge turnout today. There wasn't a record setting turnout for Eddie Murray was there?
I watched the ceremony today; it's the first time I've seen it and it was great. I had my son sit down and watch it with me. The highlights they showed when introducing the HOFers that were there made my day.
Gwynn versus Ripken: What are you guys smoking? First of all, you have to consider their offense in context for their position. Ripken is easily among the 10 best hitting SS of all time. Gwynn isn't even close to that among OFs or among RFs.
Second, beyond their positional considerations, you have to consider defense. Gwynn was a very good RF. But, that's a position of limited defensive value. Ripken was an excellent SS.
So, Ripken was a better offensive player at his position and better fielder at a more important defensive position. I don't see how you can rate Gwynn the better player; in fact, I know of no serious baseball writer who knows his stuff who has argued that.
The streak..Did you know Gehrig once batted lead off and left the game for pinch-runner so that he could keep his streak alive? Ripken never resorted to something like that. Why should he be penalized for things he had no control over? Gehrig never traveled cross-country to play games. Is his streak tainted?
No, the turnout is because A) Ripken was a HUGE hometown hero and B) Cooperstown is an easy drive to Baltimore. Murray was hated by many in Baltimore who felt he was moody and lazy.
"I don't want to play golf. When I hit a ball, I want someone else to chase it."