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Jim Rice?

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  • Jim Rice?

    Hi everyone, im new to the board as of today and I just wanted to see what everyones opinion of Mr. Rice's HOF status is. So, should he or shouldnt he? Thanks.

  • #2
    i view him as being just short of hall-worthiness.


    • #3
      Welcome to the board, NYYanks26!

      Hope you stick around a while a treat us to some thoughtful baseball discussion. Please check out our "Baseball Fever Hall of Fame" threads and cast your vote in our current election. We'd love to hear your opinions!

      As for Jim Rice, I guess the answer depends on what you feel the Hall of Fame's standards should be.

      If you believe that only Ty Cobb, George Brett and Johnny Bench are the kinds of players we ought to be electing (not Ozzie Smith, Don Sutton or Phil Rizzuto), then Rice would be an automatic "no".

      If you believe that there's room in the Hall for recognizing great player with shorter careers or very, very good players with really long careers, then you're probably going to say "yes" to Rice.

      I've long felt that the Hall of Fame should be about the former, but realize that is is about the latter. So I've sat on the fence with regards to Rice for a long time. Just depends on the day you ask me.

      Recently, however, I've been touting him for election by the BBWAA so you can put me down as a YES.

      Rice was an outstanding player and one of the most feared sluggers in baseball in his prime. I think Rice deserves to be remembered as such with the honor of induction to Cooperstown.
      "It is a simple matter to erect a Hall of Fame, but difficult to select the tenants." -- Ken Smith
      "I am led to suspect that some of the electorate is very dumb." -- Henry P. Edwards
      "You have a Hall of Fame to put people in, not keep people out." -- Brian Kenny
      "There's no such thing as a perfect ballot." -- Jay Jaffe


      • #4
        Since i first asked this question, ill throw my 2 cents in. Being only 20, I dont remember him as a player. However, from the raw offensive stats and stellar defensive numbers, i would certainly put him in. In an era when 35 to 40 HRs would lead the league more times than not he was at the top of that list 3 times as well as a nearly 300 lifetime batter. I thought being the best player or one of the top few for 8 to 10 years or more warrants easy election. I know i'll hear people complain about Rice as being not the nicest person around but neither was eddie murray or presently barry bonds. Im not going to compare rice to bonds cause there is no comparison. However, while he was the epitome of consistant, at both rice and murrays peak who would you be more afraid to face as an opposing pitcher? Yes I know the voters look at bottom line stats in which murray has it won by far but I definitely think Rice's total output is enough and his lack of election for the past 9? years is not fair by any means.


        • #5
          I think Jim Rice should be in the HOF. However, he gets there pretty much solely on his bat; his defense was average at best. (I'm old enough to remember at least most of Rice's career.)

          But Rice's offense is more than enough by all existing standards of HOF performance to merit induction. Peak value, career value, black ink...whatever you want to use. It's obvious enough that I'm confident he'll get in eventually.


          • #6
            Rice's numbers were much more impressive in comparison to his peers at the time of his retirement than they are now when compared to the numbers that have been put up since he retired.

            I believe he was the player with the most home runs not elected to the HOF prior to Kingman.

            I have long thought he should have been in the HOF and have wondered why he wasn't.....but as the years go by his numbers lose their luster at an astonishing rate even to his aredent supporters..I think the chances that he won't be elected grow greater...and to tell you the truth I lose less and less sleep over that fact as every year goes by.

            No my big attentions are focused on's a travesty he isn't in the HOF..I tell you it's amazing how quickly fans forget the differences in eras.


            • #7
              Originally posted by TXRangerFan

              I believe he was the player with the most home runs not elected to the HOF prior to Kingman.
              A little hard to believe, seeing's how Kingman became eligible for the HOF BEFORE Rice.


              • #8
                Well there you go..see what the years to do numbers?

                Maybe he had the most RBI of anyone not in the HOF..I know he had the most something at one point but dang if I can remember what it was.


                • #9
                  Originally posted by TXRangerFan
                  Well there you go..see what the years to do numbers?

                  Maybe he had the most RBI of anyone not in the HOF..
                  No, that would be Rusty Staub.


                  • #10
                    Hmmm maybe it was that he was the only guy with over 375 homers and 1400 RBI and a 298% BA not in the HOF..

                    Or maybe it was that he was the only guy to have lead the league in hits, triples, homers, SLG%, OPS, XBH and RBI and to win an MVP not in the HOF..

                    Or maybe it was that he was the only guy to lead the league in total bases at least 4 times not in the HOF.

                    He lead it in something..and BTW you didn't help Edgar's HOF chances .


                    • #11
                      Bill James pointed out in "The Politics of Glory" that you can make a group with arbitrary cutoffs like .298 BA, 375 and 1400 for just about anybody who was a good ballplayer and use that as a hall of fame argument. James did it, just to prove his point, making a couple of arguments for players like Frank White and Amos Otis.

                      I don't see that Jim Rice was a lot better than Reggie Smith, or Rusty Staub. Rice was a feared slugger, that's true. But hitting for power was about the only thing he did well.

                      Sandberg will get in, eventually. His qualifications are overwhelming. Then again, the same has been true of Ron Santo for a long time...
                      "Why waste four pitches when one will do?" -- Don Drysdale


                      • #12
                        Rice hit for both average and power exceptionally well.

                        The rest of his game was ordinary, true, but for a left fielder, that's basically all right -- the requirements of the LF position are essentially offensive. Defense and baserunning (of the sort you get from, say, Barry Bonds) is wonderful, but. generally, it's a bonus. (Shortstop or catcher would obviously be another story.) The offensive production is the baseline requirement, and Rice provided that plentifully.

                        Staub and Smith were both fine players (I'm not sure Rusty shouldn't get a look by Cooperstown), but Rice's peak production and career stats are pretty clearly superior, I think.
                        Last edited by Cougar; 02-07-2004, 03:47 PM.


                        • #13
                          Sure, Rice hit for power exceptionally well, and average too, I'll give you that. But take his road numbers and double them, and does that player look like a Hall of Famer left fielder to you, considering he's an average fielder and a poor baserunner? Rice has one of the highest GIDP rates in history, too, which is more important than people think.

                          If you want to see a man who has truly awesome hitting stats relative to his position and era, look up Vern Stephens. Most of the arguments that work for Jim Rice work for Junior Stephens, too. Rice had a longer career (Stephens drank/injured himself out of the game), but Stephens was a very good defensive shortstop. Neither, in my mind, is Hall of Fame worthy, because both were good players who were tremendously aided by Fenway Park.
                          "Why waste four pitches when one will do?" -- Don Drysdale


                          • #14
                            I've always been unmoved by the GIDP thing. Sure, it's really bad, but you've obviously got to be doing some awfully good things to compensate, or you won't stay in the lineup.

                            It's indisputable that Fenway helped Rice; I think the question is how much. I don't have his actual home/road splits; do you?

                            Anyway, I've always been a little leery of actually punishing a guy for where he happened to play. Teams acquire players that fit their park, and players tailor their games to their home field. It should be taken into consideration, sure, but one must be careful not to overdo it.


                            • #15
                              Sure, you can't overdo it, but you can't ignore it, either. A player's home park *does* distort the perception of what kind of player he really was. In Jim Rice's case, it makes him appear at least a little better than he was. Now, if Jim Rice had hit .295 with 550 homers for his career, then obviously I wouldn't argue he shouldn't be a hall of famer because of Fenway.

                              But the thing is, Rice is a marginal HoF candidate even before you adjust for his home park. That's why, in my mind, when you take Fenway into consideration it moves him down a bit, into the category of not quite good enough for the Hall of Fame.

                              Don't get me wrong. Jim Rice can play for my team anytime, no matter what park I'm playing in. He was a very good player. But I don't think, all things considered, he was a great player.

                              (I only have the home/road splits in book form, and don't have the motivation to type them right now. They're not huge, not as huge as Gavy Cravath or somebody's, but they're big. I need to find a good place to reliably get this data, being too poor to purchase a CD with all the stats in history on it.)
                              "Why waste four pitches when one will do?" -- Don Drysdale


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