Hall Of Fame Debate: Cast Your Vote For Steve Garvey!!!

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. 

Steve Garvey photo

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.

Gavel

So, you have my vote.

What do you have to say – Cast Your Vote For Steve Garvey’s Hall Of Fame Worthiness Now!!!

16 responses to “Hall Of Fame Debate: Cast Your Vote For Steve Garvey!!!

  1. Ron Churchwell

    NL Iron Man needs to be in! ’nuff said

  2. Steve Garvey was a very good player, but he wasn’t HOF great. He definitely belongs in the Dodgers and Padres HOF.

    He is more deserving of going into the HOF than some other players talked about in these discussions like Don Mattingly or Dale Murphy.

    For me a player to get into the HOF he should be great at his position and for me Keith Hernandez is a more deserving player to get into the HOF. Hernandez is probably the best defensive 1st basemen of all time. If Ozzie Snith can get elected into the HOF for his defensive skills than that same courtesy should be shown to Hernandez. If I was a GM in the 1970’s & 1980’s and I had to choose between Hernandez and Garvey; I’d take Hernandez in a heartbeat. Hernandez’s average year OPS, OBP, Runs Scored, BA and fielding (HRs and RBI are fairly similiar between the two) make him my choice.

    • Matt- Hernandez is a great player to compare Garvey to. And I agree, I would take him over Garvey as well. I’d say that Hernandez is comparable to ‘C’ level Hall of Famers and that Garvey to ‘D’ level.

  3. No way Garvey gets in if I am voting for the HOF. He was a very good player but not hall worthy. I agree Hernandez was better but wouldnt put him in either. All star players but not hall of famers.

  4. I think Garvey goes in and probably will on a Veterans Committee vote at some point in the future. I don’t see Hernandez as a Hall of Famer. As good as his defense was, his career numbers are not that strong and outside of his co-MVP season none of his individual seasons stand out.

    • Rob- As the Vet Committee changes and more guys that played against guys like Garvey are included I think we may see an influx of newly inducted players that starred in the 70’s get into the HOF

  5. I say Garvey is on the cusp for me. Almost 7 straight years of 200 hits a season, 5-100 RBI seasons, four straight and not to mention 1 mvp, 1 runner-up and three other top 10 finishes. I think the clincher is being the leader of those great Dodger teams. I think his numbers were inline or better than the top 1b of his time. I say yes.

  6. My philosophy has changed with age. Over the years, I’ve gotten more critical of who should have a place @ Cooperstown. I love Garvey and think his numbers are very solid. Solid enough to merit this debate.

    10 years ago… heck, maybe 5 years ago… I probably would have given him the nod. But (IMHO), I wouldn’t give him a vote.

    Matt D hit it on the nose. Dodgers HOF, yes. Padres HOF, yes. Baseball HOF, no. Cooperstown should be reserved the best of the best… the elite… the cream of the crop.

    • Fuji- Extremely well done.

      And I would agree with everything that you and Matt have said if it were not for the fact that the HOF is already pretty watered down.

      If there were only elite players in the HOF today, than I would not vote Garvey in. But with some of the more recently elected players, I think it opens up the conversation for others from similar eras that accomplished as much if not more…

  7. Ozzie Smith is in the HOF. Garvey is more worthy than him

  8. He was a 10 time all star and an MVP, that’s enough for me. Put him in!

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