Hall Of Fame Debate: Rank ‘Em – Mike Schmidt, Brooks Robinson, Chipper Jones, and George Brett!!!
By now, you probably know how this works. The discussion of best third baseman in the history of the sport is one of the more debated position-related debates between baseball fans.
The reason, I believe, that this discussion has so many varied opinions is that each of these players left huge impacts on the sport – and at one time or another, each of them held the title of ‘Best Third Baseman In Baseball’ for a lengthy time.
So, I will offer up some numbers. And then offer up my rankings as well.
First, let’s look at the numbers:
|Games at 3B||2870||2212||1692||1992|
|3B Fielding %||0.971||0.955||0.951||0.954|
There is no doubt about it – Each of these players was fantastic, and each of them stands out in a way that the others do not.
So, how do you judge? When you’re talking apples-to-apples it is easier, but it is still not an easy process.
Because the discussion is about players that were primarily known as third baseman, I think you have to include defensive accomplishments into the conversation. But, how much should that count?
Time for my decision….
For me, I really tried to take a look at the full career of each player. Like I mentioned earlier in the post, each of these four elite players stands out in one or more aspects of the game – and these parts of the game are all deemed as important – from Brooks’ defense to Schmidt’s home run prowess to Brett’s batting skills to Chipper’s on-base percentage.
I will say that it is nice to see that each one of these great ballplayers had the chance to hoist a World Series trophy at one time (2 for Brooks) during their careers.
Who do you pick??
How do you pick??
Well, I tried. And I had to re-do my rankings a few times. But I think that I have settled in on this as my final list.
So, here is my list, in order:
1 – Mike Schmidt
2 – Brooks Robinson
3 – Chipper Jones
4 – George Brett
This was very tough – but ultimately for me, the defense that Robinson and Schmidt were noted for separated them from the pack. After that, it was the consistent home runs and run production of Schmidt’s that propelled him to the top spot. Choosing between Chipper Jones and George Brett for the 3rd and 4th spots was a lot tougher. While Chipper had a more well-rounded offensive attack, it was Brett that amassed an amazing number of hits and batting championships. Ultimately, I chose Jones simply due to the number of games he played at third base versus Brett. If Brett had played 80% of his games at the ‘Hot Corner’ it would have made my decision a lot tougher to make.
And now, I am exhausted. And if you ask me this same question in a week, I may have different answers to this question.
But I want your rankings on this too. So, study the numbers and let me know how you’d rank these four legendary third baseman.
Have a great night!!!