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Any HOF auto collectors get caught looking for Rolen?

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mrmopar

Member
Jan 19, 2010
6,150
4,002
I make it a habit to try to get as many borderline guys as I can, along with the bigger names i choose to afford. I'll miss some future current era HOFers likely, only because they never had an affordable autograph.

I have a bunch of Rolen, but as I was scoping out his stats, I couldn't help but notice a similarity and then compared him to Steve Garvey. I am strictly looking at career totals in the basic "old school" categories, not any of those new metrics I don't follow or understand, as they are fairly close in most of the big areas. Rolen gets the nod for Runs, 2B & HR. Garvey gets the nod for Hits, RBI and batting average.

Garvey was a 10X AS and 4X Gold Glover. Rolen a 7X AS and 8X Gold Glover.

Garvey was NL MVP and ASG MVP (twice). Rolen was NL ROY.

Garvey lead the league in hits a couple times and often games played (during his iron man stretch). Rolen never lead the league in any statistical category even once.

Garvey had about 2 seasons on Rolen over his career as well for Games and ABs.

Neither hit any sure-thing milestones in their career.

I'm sure many will say Rolen is another in a line of non-deserving electees of late, but I disagree. He was no Mike Schmidt, but that also doesn't diminish Schmidt's career to call Rolen a fellow HOFer. I think this only gives players like Garvey a stronger argument for eventual enshrinement.

Congrats to Scott Rolen, baseball's newest Hall of Famer.
 

WizardofOz1982

Well-known member
Sep 30, 2017
1,733
1,498
Oklahoma
Garvey played in an era where all you had to do was be in the top 3 in RBIs while playing for a winning team to get MVP votes. Rolen had to contend with both Albert Pujols and Jim Edmonds on his own team along with some guy named Bonds for MVP votes.

Here's my issue with Garvey as a HoF candidate. At no point in his career was Garvey the best player at his position in baseball, much less in the conversation for best player in baseball like Rolen was. Rolen was the best 3B in baseball for a decade from 1997 (his first full season) until 2006. You can extend it to 2010 (14 years) and he only falls behind Chipper for 2nd best 3B because of his injured shoulder in 2007 and 2008.

Garvey's best seasons were 1975 and 1978 (both 4.8 WAR). 4.8 WAR would rank as Rolen's 7th best single season. His MVP was 1974 which wasn't even his best season. Mike Schmidt hit .282/.395/.546 with 36 HRs, 108 Rs, 116 RBIs, and 23 SBs while playing all time defense at 3B in 1974 to put up 9.4 WAR which lead all of baseball. How the heck did Garvey and his .312/.342/.469, 21 HRs, 95 Rs, 111 RBIs, 5 SBs, slightly below average defense, and 3.8 WAR merit an MVP over Schmidt? For that matter over Morgan, Bench, Wynn, Evans, Stargell, Reggie Smith, on and on. Garvey was 20th in the NL in WAR in 1974. He didn't lead the league in any categories at all. It's hard to acknowledge awards when you take an objective look at the numbers and they leave you scratching your head.

The raw stats overall are similar, though Rolen has a decent edge in everything but BA. Rolen put them up in 1,000 less PAs so he had a pretty sizable advantage as a hitter and Garvey isn't even in the discussion with Rolen defensively.

I really don't think it helps Garvey's argument at all. In fact I think it makes him look worse. He had 1,000 more PAs to put up numbers and still fell way short of Rolen's numbers.
 

gt2590

Super Moderator
Aug 17, 2008
38,550
3,108
Near Philly
I worked for a chain called BC Sports, mostly in Philly area, but some in NY and MA, that had him exclusive for his first coupla years.

Signed a lot of items with us. Nomar too, including some dual signed pieces, mostly bats I think.

We used a Diamond shaped hologram for authentication, if that helps…
 
Jul 22, 2016
187
18
To me jeff Kent was a better player

Sent from my SM-F711U using Freedom Card Board mobile app

No kidding and at second base. I thought for sure Kent being a second baseman with those numbers would put him in. I guess he waits to see if the vets put him in. Never did I see Rolen as a HOF type player. Everybody schemes and pumps players online and changes opinions. I guess that’s how it works now. Who’s the next to be pumped in?


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

WizardofOz1982

Well-known member
Sep 30, 2017
1,733
1,498
Oklahoma
To me jeff Kent was a better player

Sent from my SM-F711U using Freedom Card Board mobile app
I've seen people say this but never give a reason. What did Kent do better? I'm looking at stats and not seeing it.

They were basically dead even equal as hitters. Rolen has a career 122 wRC+. Kent's is 123. That includes an early offensive decline for Rolen because of shoulder injuries and ignores that Kent had his best seasons from age 29-35 playing in the same clubhouse with Barry Bonds. At their peaks Rolen ran a 134 wRC+(.287/.380/.532) to Kent's 132 (.297/.366/.532). That's again basically even other than Rolen walking a little more to have a higher OBP.

Rolen creates a wide gap in value between them with his defense. Kent was, at his best, an average defender and, at his worst, the worst defensive 2B in baseball. Rolen was the best fielding 3B in the game (coin flip between him and Beltre) and a top 3 or 4 defender at his position all time.

I just don't know how people look at the total package and think Kent is even close.
 

joey12508

Well-known member
Aug 7, 2008
38,172
15,799
Winterfell
granted he wasnt a good defender, but boy he could hit and hit with power. 351HR'S at 2nd base i believe is a record. he was a threat every time at bat. not trying to justify, jmo .
 

smapdi

Well-known member
Aug 7, 2008
4,395
219
Not to debate statistical merits, but Rolen's annual increase in voting percentage indicated eventual election was pretty certain. Especially with 63% last year, it was not like he was still a longshot. I don't think anyone has ever gotten that much and not been elected except for guys in their last year of eligibility. By the time someone's been on the ballot a few years, the debate over stats and player comparisons and all that is pretty much settled, and voting trends are the best indicator. If you saw his percentage last year and didn't start picking up his stuff, I think that's on you.

Personally, I have a Rolen auto from 2007, but I'm kicking myself for not getting a 1995 BBest Refractor at any point. They are pretty tough in high grade due to centering and print line issues. I don't think I even have a base card, a serious omission as a collector in general and Phillies fan in particular. But I'm going to go ahead and start looking at Andruw Jones, Todd Helton, and Billy Wagner cards as their percentages (58, 72 and 68, respectively) indicate they're going in by 2025. Gary Sheffield has been creeping up, too. Despite admitting to using PEDs and apparently benefitting enough to break the 500 homer barrier while "dirty," it seems that admitting it goes a long way towards getting writers to pick you, rather than continual denials that people don't believe. And Carlos Beltran got 46% his first year, so he seems likely to get in within 5 years. None of these guys are first echelon type guys IMHO, but writers like a Big Hall these days. At least it gives them something to write about.
 

mrmopar

Member
Jan 19, 2010
6,150
4,002
I have been previewing the committee and writers ballots for years now, looking at who I might grab up before they are elected. it seems obvious, but judging by the stupid spike in recently elected HOFers, it isn't for many! It's those already deceased guys that can really bite you though, especially if they were from way back. I don't worry about those as much, as I'll never have them all and can't worry about missing a guy newly elected that died in 1946, for example (this is not a real case, or if it is it was by sheer luck from my randomness).

It is a good time to look at guys who were snubbed. In fact, it makes me wonder if I have a certified Kent, specially one as a Dodger. I can't recall now.
 

frankhardy

Member
Sep 11, 2014
83
2
I've got a few Rolen autos!

I think Rolen is well deserving of the HOF, and I am one that thinks it is getting watered down. Rolen was an ELITE defender at 3rd base. His offense was not elite, but it was very good.
 

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