Hall Of Fame Debate: Cast Your Vote For Steve Garvey!!!
The number of rookie baseball players that debuted in the early part of the 1970′s that are worthy of Hall of Fame consideration is a very small group. Names like George Foster, Cecil Cooper, Don Baylor and Thurman Munson come to mind.
And you have to throw Steve Garvey into the mix as well.
Garvey made his debut with the Los Angeles Dodgers in 1969 and while it took him a few seasons to earn a starting job, when he did he made the best of it!!
Garvey played in the major leagues for 19 seasons. He is more than likely most well-known for playing in 1,207 consecutive games from 1975-1983.
But, Steve Garvey was a lot more than just an injury-free player. He was a rock-solid team leader as well!!
Garvey’s career numbers display exactly how well-rounded his offensive output was.
In summary – 2,599 hits, 440 doubles, 272 home runs, .294 batting average, 1,143 runs scored, 1,308 RBI, and 3,941 total bases. Couple that with a very strong career fielding average of .996 with his four Gold Gloves and you have an anchor on both offense and defense.
Steve Garvey was a 10-time All-Star player. He amassed six 200-hit seasons during his career, including two seasons in which he led the National League.
Steve Garvey won the National League MVP Award in 1974. His numbers from that season are superb – .312 batting average, 200 hits, 32 doubles, 21 home runs, 111 RBI, 95 runs scored and just 66 strikeouts in 685 plate appearances.
Garvey made it to five postseasons during his career, playing in five World Series match-ups. He won 1 of the five championships; in 1981 as a member of the Los Angeles Dodgers. Garvey’s individual success during the playoffs is exceptional. In 55 postseason games, Garvey collected 75 hits en route to a .338 batting average. He drove in 31 runs in those 55 contests while also scoring 32 times. His efforts in the postseason earned him NLCS MVP Awards in both 1978 and 1984.
But are these credentials Hall of Fame worthy? Do Steve Garvey’s career numbers stack up well against other Hall of Fame first basemen? Can he compete in a numbers game against other players that starred during his era??
For me, the answer is ‘YES’. I firmly believe that Steve Garvey is worthy of enshrinement at Cooperstown. His consistency at the plate and his ability to deliver in the postseason is well above average – and maybe just a tad below elite. And when compared to the players that debuted in the majors around the same time as Garvey, his numbers hold up, if not stand out, against them. Before Keith Hernandez took playing defense at first base to a new level, Steve Garvey was the standard for excellence during the mid-1970′s.
Steve Garvey is just one of five former Padres players to have his jersey number retired by the team.
So, you have my vote.
What do you have to say – Cast Your Vote For Steve Garvey’s Hall Of Fame Worthiness Now!!!