‘Hall Of Fame Debate’ – Jim Rice VS Dave Parker
One of the amazing things about baseball is that sometimes the numbers just cannot tell you about the true impact that a player had on his team or the sport.
Case in point – there are several players that starred in the 1970’s whose numbers are on par with the best players of the decade, the Hall of Famers, from the same era. Some of those names are Jack Morris, Keith Hernandez, Steve Garvey, Alan Trammell, and one that I especially am fond of, Mr. Dave Parker.
I tried to find the best player to compare Parker to so I could demonstrate this through the numbers, and I think that a player that fits the bill is Jim Rice.
Personally, when I review these careers of these two players side-by-side I see the same player. Both great, not elite, but certainly upper-crust.
Have a look:
|Jim Rice||Dave Parker|
|200 Hit Seasons||4||1|
|150-199 Hit Seasons||6||10|
|30-39 HR Seasons||3||3|
|40+ HR Seasons||1||0|
The stand-out stats for me:
- Parker has almost 275 more career hits
- Very consistent annual hit tally from both
- Extremely close lifetime batting average
- Parker’s two batting titles is a solid accomplishment
- Plate discipline is close
- Parker’s doubles is much greater than that of Rice who played in a ‘doubles friendly’ park for his whole career
- Rice has almost 50 more HR’s
- Parker has almost 100 more stolen bases
- Run production is extremely close
- Post-season accolades is similar
- Parker’s 2 World Series rings is HUGE
So, the players appear to be comparable in baseball accomplishments – yet one is in the Hall of Fame and one is not.
Let’s Debate!!! Who would you choose? Who was the better player??
For me, it comes down to a few things – and all of them point to Dave Parker getting my vote. Parker was a contributor on two different teams that won World Series titles – that means a lot. He also won two batting titles (1977 & 1978) in a time that featured a handful of guys that were collecting 200+ hits per season. Based on the stolen base numbers, Parker was a much more aggressive base runner than Rice and he also averaged fewer strikeouts than Rice as well. While Rice put up solid numbers, and maybe was a bit more consistent with the power production, his numbers do not exceed those by Parker by an overwhelming amount.
So, my vote goes to Dave Parker. I firmly believe that he belongs in the Hall of Fame alongside Jim Rice. And while neither player was the lone star on the teams that they played for, both were very solid teammates that produced wins and winning seasons for their clubs.
What do you think? Who would you take: Jim Rice OR Dave Parker??
Let the debate begin!!!