Cooperstown Chronicles – Joe Carter

Feb 25, 2008

Photo courtesy of TSN Archives/Icon SMI

I thought I was all out of players worthy of Hall of Fame entry, but a Sporting News friend, Favre is overrated 2007, suggested Joe Carter.  Carter will forever be remembered for two things…being an RBI machine and his series clinching home run off the Phillies’ Mitch “Wild Thing” Williams in 1993. 

Photo courtesy of Icon SMI

The Numbers
2189 Games
8422 At Bats (94th All-time)
.259 Batting Average
1170 Runs
2184 Hits
432 Doubles
53 Triples
396 Home Runs (46th All-time)
1445 RBI (55th All-time)
3910 Total Bases (84th All-time)
881 Extra Base Hits (58th All-time)
.464 Slugging %

World Series – 12 games, 13 hits in 47 at bats (.277), 8 runs, 3 doubles, 4 HRs, 11 RBI, .596 Slugging %

The Awards
5 All-Star Games
2 Silver Sluggers
MVP votes in 8 seasons

Top Ten Finishes
Slugging % – Three times
Games – Six times
At Bats – Ten times (Led league in ’89 & ’90)
Runs – Once
Hits – Once
Doubles - Twice
Triples - Four times
Home Runs – Seven times
Total Bases – Seven times
RBI – Nine times (Led league in 1986)
Exta-base Hits – Seven times
Hit by Pitch – Six times (Led league in 1991)

Joe Carter has the type of average that Hall of Fame voters frown upon.  I’ll give you that.  His batting average is far from being Hall of Fame worthy.  He didn’t add the type of defense to make up for the lack of average.  So why I am here telling you that Joe Carter is worthy of the Hall of Fame?  Because of the two reasons mentioned earlier.  His RBI prowess can not be denied.  He had at least 100 RBI in ten seasons (as well as 98 in another).  Had their not been labor stoppage in 1994, Joe would have had that signature season.  In 115 games he had 27 HR and 103 RBI.  In an 162 game season that averageds out to 38 HR and 145 RBI. Not a bad follow-up a World Series-ending blast.  Yeah, that blast is what vaults him into the Hall of Fame, in my opinion.  His numbers are borderline.  I’ll give you that.  Add in his World Series heroics and the case is made.  Bill Mazeroski is the only other player to end a World Series with a home run.  He’s in the Hall of Fame.  Want to know what his average is?  It’s .260.  Eerily similar to Carter’s .259.  He brought great defense to the table.  Well, Carter brought RBI production to the table.  He’s already been elected into the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame, it’s time Cooperstown calls.


Past Chronicles
Bert Byleven
Andre Dawson
Dale Murphy
Mark McGwire
Bobby Matthews
Tommy John
Buck O’Neill & Minnie Minoso
Jim Rice
Ted Simmons
Lee Smith
Jack Morris
Al Oliver
Steve Garvey
Jim Kaat
Pete Ro$e
Shoeless Joe Jackson
Dave Concepcion
Lou Whitaker
Alan Trammell
Ron Santo
Ron Guidry
Gil Hodges
Dave Parker
Tony Mullane
Keith Hernandez
Don Mattingly
Dwight Evans
Ralph Houk (Manager)
Jimmie Dykes (Player/Manager)
Charlie Grimm (Player/Manager)
Billy Martin (Player/Manager)
Harold Baines
Gene Mauch (Manager)
Whitey Herzog (Manager)
Tom Kelly (Manager)

Posted by | Categories: Cooperstown Chronicles, MLB |
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29 Responses so far | Have Your Say!

  1. Larry Novak
    February 25th, 2008 at 2:26 pm #

    He is borderline. But I think the strike in 94 that cost him a monster season, cost him.

  2. Ryan Lester
    February 25th, 2008 at 3:00 pm #

    Larry – Yeah, but I think that HR puts him over the edge.

  3. Larry Novak
    February 25th, 2008 at 4:16 pm #

    I agree, You brought up Bill Mazaroski, without the Home Run in 1960 no one would look at his complete game, Hopefully Carter will get that look too.

    Also, with all the steroid allegations against so many players that played in the past 10 to 15 years. I think many of the names you have brought up will be given a 2nd look and will get voted in during the next 10 years.
    I hope Ron Santo gets the first ticket in while he is still with us. His health is so poor, I want to see him enjoy the moment.

  4. Ryan Lester
    February 25th, 2008 at 4:20 pm #

    Larry – good point about the steroid scandal. It should help a lot of these guys who were the best in THEIR eras. That’s the key here.

  5. Brett Ormsby
    August 27th, 2008 at 8:28 am #

    The home run is all that matters. Joe did what every kid who ever played baseball dreams of doing. He hit a home run to win the world series. It may never happen again. Was it lucky, maybe. Fact is, when it mattered the most, Joe delivered. The Hall of Fame is where Joe Carter belongs.

  6. LestersLegends
    August 27th, 2008 at 8:32 am #

    Brett – Well said.

  7. Joe Carter
    October 3rd, 2008 at 9:02 pm #

    Hey guys I appreciate all the good words. I tried to carry myself in a respectful manner and play the game the way it was supposed to be played. Although I may never get in the hall of fame,just seeing the comments everyone writes makes me feel like a Hall-of Famer. Thank you.

  8. LestersLegends
    October 3rd, 2008 at 9:04 pm #

    Thanks for stopping by Joe. Even though you ripped the hearts out of everyone in Philly, you played the game the way it was supposed to be played. You’re a HOF in my book.

  9. Ellen Morris
    October 9th, 2008 at 8:07 am #

    I nothing but respeck for Joe Carter .Joe was my son hero.Joe was the best roll model.Joe never acted like todays players .He treated every one with respeck.Joe was class act.
    Joe’s “Tower of Power” poster still hangs in our home today.Send Joe to the Hall of Fame .

  10. LestersLegends
    October 9th, 2008 at 8:12 am #

    Ellen – thanks for sharing your story. I echo your sentiments

  11. Mike
    January 25th, 2009 at 1:12 pm #

    Stumbled across your site today and I just published a post on mine on Carter, look at Rices numbers compared to Carters and they are nearly identical, hell, Carter gets him HR’s and remember Carter could run. He stole 231 bases and had a 30-30 season in ’87
    He not only hit the World Series winning home run in 1993, he caught the world series winning out in 1992, how many players can say that?
    I also looked at other guys with Carter type numbers including Rice, Dawson, Dale Murphy and What does Carter have two of that they don’t…..World Series Rings.
    Carter should get a second look, a third look and get looked right onto a plaque with a Blue Jays hat on his head.

  12. LestersLegends
    January 25th, 2009 at 5:28 pm #

    Great points Mike. You’re very right.

    March 10th, 2009 at 1:59 pm #

    I 100 percent that Joe should be in. He lead the MLB with RBIs and HRs for a 12 year time frame!!!

  14. LestersLegends
    March 10th, 2009 at 2:17 pm #

    I’m with you Mark.

  15. Cooperstown Chronicles - Jesse Haines | Fantasy Sports Blog
    May 7th, 2009 at 8:53 am #

    [...] Dan Bancroft* Jake Beckley* Albert Belle Jim Bottomley* Pete Browning Jim Bunning * Bert Byleven Joe Carter Orlando Cepeda* Rocky Colavito Earle Combs* Dave Concepcion David Cone Roger Connor* Larry Corcoran [...]

  16. Cooperstown Chronicles - Waite Hoyt | 1800blogger
    May 20th, 2009 at 1:58 pm #

    [...] Dan Bancroft* Jake Beckley* Albert Belle Jim Bottomley* Pete Browning Jim Bunning * Bert Byleven Joe Carter Orlando Cepeda* Rocky Colavito Earle Combs* Dave Concepcion David Cone Roger Connor* Larry Corcoran [...]

  17. rick
    June 6th, 2009 at 3:31 pm #

    Joe Carter is very borderline. But it is not his batting average that is worrisome to me. .259 is not good, but I think his power makes up for the low batting average. It is his frighteningly low on-base percentage, barely above .300, and his .464 slugging percentage that are harder to overlook. The OBP is bad any way you cut it. The slugging in general isn’t bad, but for someone who hit nearly 400 HR’s it should, frankly speaking, be higher. And I can’t justify Hall of Fame induction based on one Home Run, no matter how cool and dramatic it was. I know Maz is in and he hit the same home run as Joe, but Maz was a defensive wizard at 2nd Base, on par with Robinsons work at 3rd and Ozzie’s at shortstop. Personally I don’t think Maz should be in anyway and I don’t think making the same mistake (induction for one world series HR) should be made again for Joe. If Carter gets in, it should be for the totality of his career, not one at-bat.

  18. LestersLegends
    June 7th, 2009 at 12:10 pm #

    That swing plus all of those RBIs. It’s close, but to me he just slides in.

  19. Chris
    June 8th, 2009 at 12:40 pm #

    I don’t want to start another USA vs Canada debate, however I think the biggest strike Joe has against him is his best years (and his homer) were with the Blue Jays. Just ask Tom Henke, Tony Fernandez, Dave Stieb (probably the 2nd best pitcher of the 80’s and he only got 7 votes on HOF ballot in 2004).

    Sometimes I wonder if the baseball writers feel the Blue Jays amazing record through the late 80s and early 90s as well as back-to-back World Series titles were just a fluke. You would think a team winning it all in consecutive years would have more than a couple rental players (Molitor & Winfield) in the hall. See you next year Alomar!!

  20. LestersLegends
    June 8th, 2009 at 12:43 pm #

    That could play a role, but most likely that poor average is doing him in. He may not have had a good average, but he made his hits count. Mitch Williams can attest to that.

  21. John
    August 8th, 2009 at 9:37 pm #

    Take Joe out of the Jays lineup with his HRs and RBIs and where does that leave the team? Do that for any team other Hall of Famers played on and you’ll see the difference. Joe should be in the Hall! You made us all proud, Joe. Thanks!

  22. Gary
    December 5th, 2009 at 5:53 pm #

    To me Joe Carter should be a shoe in for the Hall of Fame. 10 seasons over 100 RBI’s plus a World series hero. My opinion Joe should be there easily. awesome player

  23. LestersLegends
    December 5th, 2009 at 6:12 pm #


  24. Bill
    January 7th, 2010 at 5:56 pm #

    I look forward to Joe making it to the hall of fame. He was a consummate professional. Do the math, 2189 games is approximately 13.5 full seasons. 1445 RBI divided by 13.5 is approximately 107 RBI per season. His ability to steal bases helped him score runs as he averaged approximately 87 runs per season. He was above average defensively for most of his career thus he is well deserving.

  25. Amir
    January 21st, 2010 at 11:34 pm #

    Joe, you have been my baseball hero since I was 10 (1991). Now I’m 29 and you are still my baseball hero. Regardless of whatever happens, you are still a hall of famer in many of your fans’ hearts. I may never will be able to meet you in person, but from a distance, you still inspire me. Good luck, Joe.

    April 10th, 2010 at 6:58 pm #


  27. @Joe Carter
    January 6th, 2011 at 4:19 am #

    Hey Joe if that is really you commenting from 2008 let me tell you one thing. You 100% Belong in the Hall of Fame!!! And I am a Phillies fan, I was riding with my high school friends in a mini van when we heard you hit the home run. I was devastated and had gone out with my friends because I couldn’t take the suspense when the Phillies were down 5-1. Then when Dykstra hit the homer in the 8th I was rushing home because I thought the Phils had a chance. I was 2 minutes from home when you hit the homer and my friends turned the radio up loud because they knew I was a huge Phillies fan to make fun of me. You hit a home run to win the world series. No other athelte in sports could possibly ask for more. It is the highest accomplishment in all of sports and because of that with the rest of the numbers for your career you 100% belong in the Hall. Good luck Joe hope you get it you are in my Hall of Fame. -T

    January 25th, 2011 at 11:14 pm #


  29. John
    January 25th, 2011 at 11:42 pm #

    Terrific clip Mark. Thanks for posting it. I’m on board already. Looking forward to 2011. Go Jays!!!

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