The common trend in Baseball Hall of Fame voting is for a solid candidate to get a healthy double digit vote in his first year of eligibility and watch that number climb slowly as more and more perspective is put on their career. For Steve Garvey, the more the Hall looked at his career, the more they seemed to talk themselves out of his induction as evidenced by the way his votes were cut in half from his first year (41.6) to (21.1) in his last year.
There is a good chance that if you were a fan of the L.A. Dodgers in the 70’s you were a huge fan of Steve Garvey. It would be easy to see why as is squeaky clean image and model good looks were combined with a perennial All Star who hit for solid average, had moderate power, was great in the clutch and was the Iron Man of his generation. Garvey won the 1974 NL MVP, 1978 NLCS MVP and two All Star Game MVPs. Basically, if the camera was on Steve Garvey, he produced.
Perhaps that was the problem. Garvey was more concerned at times with looking good than playing good, and he would rather swing away than take a deserved walk which did not play well for TV. Garvey also may have been a four time Gold Glove recipient at first, but he was a failure at third base. Garvey may have been an Iron Man playing in a lot of consecutive games but it may have been at the detriment to his team. Bottom line is that stories of his selfishness have emerged as frequently as stories of his infidelity did after his playing days ceased.
We like to build heroes and tear them down so that we can build them up again. Steve Garvey may have rejected on his first go around but it is possible that he will be built up again for consideration by the Veteran’s Committee.
The Bullet Points:
Country of Origin:
Tampa, Florida, U.S.A.
Los Angeles Dodgers
San Diego Padres
Major Accolades and Awards:
Most Valuable Player (1) (NL) (1974)
NLCS MVP (2) (1978 & 1984)
All Star Game MVP (2) (1974 & 1978)
10 Time All Star (1974, 1975, 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1981, 1984 & 1985)
Gold Gloves (4) (NL) (1974, 1975, 1976 & 1977)
Silver Slugger (6) (AL) (1992, 1993, 1996, 1997, 1998 & 2001)
Most Hits (2) (NL) (1978 & 1980)
World Series Ring (1) (Los Angeles Dodgers, 1981)
Other Points of Note:
Other Top Ten MVP Finishes: (Won the 1974 NL MVP)
(NL: 1976, 6th), (NL: 1977, 6th), (NL: 1978, 2nd) & (NL: 1980, 6th)
Roberto Clemente Award (1981)
Lou Gehrig Memorial Award (1984)
6 Top Ten Finishes (Batting Average)
2 Top Ten Finishes (Slugging Percentage)
2 Top Ten Finishes (Runs Scored)
10 Top Ten Finishes (Most Hits)
7 Top Ten Finishes (Doubles)
1 Top Ten Finish (Triples)
3 Top Ten Finishes (Home Runs)
7 Top Ten Finishes (Runs Batted In)
2 Top Ten Finishes (WAR for Position Players)
1 Top Ten Finish (OPS)
Notable All Time Rankings:
75. At Bats: 8,835
76. Hits: 2,599
87. Total Bases: 3,941
92. Games Played: 2,332
96. Runs Batted In: 1,308
Vote Percentage Received for the Hall of Fame:
Should Be Inducted As A:Los Angeles Dodger