Cooperstown Chronicles – Tommy John

Jan 14, 2008

cooperstown-chronicles.jpg
Photo courtesy of TSN Archives/Icon SMI 

Three hundred wins is the magic number for a pitcher to join the Hall of Fame.  If you go slightly below that mark you’ll find Tommy John.

tommy-john.jpg
Photo courtesy of Icon SMI

Most young fans know his name for the surgery that has he made famous, but Tommy John was a heck of a pitcher too. He won 288 games (5th most among lefties) at a .555 winning percentage and a 3.34 ERA over a career that spanned 26 years. He also had a 6-3 record with a 2.65 ERA in postseason play. Tommy was a four-time All-Star and won the Hutch Award and the Lou Gehrig Memorial Award. He was in the top 10 in ERA and wins six times, Win-Loss % 10 times (led the league in ’74), Walks/9 innings pitched 12 times, Complete Games 4 times, and Shutouts 7 times (led the league three times). He injured the ulnar collateral ligament in his pitching arm in 1974, and after a revolutionary surgical operation he was able to pitch until he was 46. For the amount of victories, the brilliant control he exhibited over his lengthy career, as well as his lasting mark on the game with the surgery he helped coin I believe Tommy John is overdue induction into baseball’s hallowed Hall.

UPDATE:  Upon further review I just don’t think Tommy John cuts it.  He was solid, but never one of the very best.  His win total is impressive, but not quite enough to merit induction.

References
http://www.baseball-reference.com/j/johnto01.shtml
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tommy_John

Past Chronicles
Bert Byleven
Andre Dawson
Dale Murphy
Mark McGwire
Bobby Matthews

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

  1. 2009 MLB Hall of Fame Ballot | 1800blogger
    December 8th, 2008 at 9:14 am #

    [...] Whitey Herzog (Manager) Gil Hodges Ralph Houk (Manager) Shoeless Joe Jackson Travis Jackson* Tommy John Bob Johnson Addie Joss* Jim Kaat George Kell* Joe Kelley* George Kelly* Tom Kelly (Manager) Chuck [...]

  2. 2009 MLB Hall of Fame Ballot | Fantasy Sports Blog
    December 8th, 2008 at 9:15 am #

    [...] Whitey Herzog (Manager) Gil Hodges Ralph Houk (Manager) Shoeless Joe Jackson Travis Jackson* Tommy John Bob Johnson Addie Joss* Jim Kaat George Kell* Joe Kelley* George Kelly* Tom Kelly (Manager) Chuck [...]

  3. BraystreetLad
    January 5th, 2009 at 12:13 pm #

    Ever hear of Tommy John surgery?Yes,but only for that reason.(Two-hun-
    dred eighty-six wins in 26 years-11 annually-is NOT a Hall Of Fame
    pace.)

  4. LestersLegends
    January 5th, 2009 at 12:17 pm #

    Bray – maybe not. 288 wins is impressive though.

  5. Cooperstown Chronicles - Jesse Haines | 1800blogger
    May 7th, 2009 at 8:58 am #

    [...] Whitey Herzog (Manager) Gil Hodges Ralph Houk (Manager) Shoeless Joe Jackson Travis Jackson* Tommy John Bob Johnson Addie Joss* Jim Kaat George Kell* Joe Kelley* George Kelly* Tom Kelly (Manager) Chuck [...]

  6. Cooperstown Chronicles - Stan Coveleski :: Elites TV
    May 13th, 2009 at 12:58 pm #

    [...] Whitey Herzog (Manager) Gil Hodges Ralph Houk (Manager) Shoeless Joe Jackson Travis Jackson* Tommy John Bob Johnson Addie Joss* Jim Kaat George Kell* Joe Kelley* George Kelly* Tom Kelly (Manager) Chuck [...]

  7. Cooperstown Chronicles - Waite Hoyt | 1800blogger
    May 20th, 2009 at 2:03 pm #

    [...] Whitey Herzog (Manager) Gil Hodges Ralph Houk (Manager) Shoeless Joe Jackson Travis Jackson* Tommy John Bob Johnson Addie Joss* Jim Kaat George Kell* Joe Kelley* George Kelly* Tom Kelly (Manager) Chuck [...]

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  10. patrick
    May 19th, 2011 at 10:42 pm #

    tommy john belongs in hall great durability

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