Last year, right after MLB Hall of Fame Induction weekend, I introduced the Hall of Above Average, a list of players who put up above average numbers in their baseball careers, but never got the call to Cooperstown.
The idea, concocted by the infamous LonelyTailgater as a hashtag, sparked copious debate among baseball fans on my timeline, and while several players missed the cut, the Hall of Above Average has returned for a second year. We’re inducting six members this year. Let me know what you think at @RHancock19.
Hall of Above Average criteria is as follows:
Batters must have one of the following:
* .290 or higher batting average
* 300 or more HRs
Pitchers must have one of the following
*150 saves for relievers
Class of 2015Jim Edmonds
Angels, Cardinals, Padres, Cubs, Brewers, Reds 1993-2010
One of the best centerfielders of my generation, Edmonds was a mainstay in the Cardinals outfield for seven years, helping the team win the 2006 World Series. In addition, Edmonds provided Cardinal fans like myself with one of the most thrilling moments in Busch Stadium II history as he hit a game-winning home run to send the 2004 NLCS to a seventh game.
Mets, Reds, Cubs, Padres, Blue Jays, Orioles 1985-1998
One of infamous “Nasty Boys” on the 1990 Cincinnati Reds team that won the World Series, Myers was one of the best closers of the 90’s, posting five seasons of 30 or more saves in the decade.
Angels, Indians, Cardinals 1986-2002
Chuck Finley was one of the best pitchers in the American League during the 1990’s, most notably with the Angels. In his 16-year career, Finley amassed over 2,000 strikeouts and made five All Star teams.
Giants, Rangers, Orioles, Cardinals 1986-2000
Not too long ago, I wrote on New Orleans’ greatest living baseball player, Rusty Staub and Will Clark? After doing research on both players’ stats, Clark had the edge over Staub. In his 14 seasons as a major leaguer, Clark helped the San Francisco Giants win their first pennant in 27 years (1989,) as well as the Texas Rangers’ first two postseason appearances in 1996 and 1998. In his later years, he played a role in helping the Cardinals reach the 2000 National League Championship Series.
Dodgers, Mets 1943, 1947-63
One of the most popular Dodgers in history, Hodges hit 370 homers in an 18-year career that spanned from 1947 to 1963. During his long career with the Dodgers, he helped lead the team to NL flags in 1947,49, 52, 53, 55, 56, and 59 as well as two World Series titles in 1955 and 1959. More importantly, he helped the New York Mets win the 1969 World Series as manager.
Braves, Indians, Yankees, Athletics 1989-2000
Justice was a controversial pick because of his rocky marriage to Halle Berry. Accusations of domestic abuse have made it so that it’s actually hard to find a picture of him on Google in Braves attire. His personal life aside, Justice was one of the best players in the National League during the 1990’s, helping the Braves win four NL pennants and hitting one of the most dramatic home runs in postseason baseball history to give Atlanta its first World Series title. Although he played for a team I loathe to this day, David Justice was one of my favorite players as a kid. In addition, Justice appeared in the 1997, 2000, and 2001 Fall Classics, winning another ring with the Yankees in 2000.