Another Former All Star Baseball Star Retires (Jim Edmonds)

We guess this is the season where All Stars are retiring.  Jim Edmonds, who on four occasions was a Major League All Star announced that he is calling it a career after seventeen campaigns in the bigs.  His announcement has not made a lot of people think of Cooperstown, and the odds are strong that he is a "one and done" when eligible, but is it possible that a case could made?

Jim Edmonds finished his career with 393 career Home Runs and an RBI short of 1,200.  His career OPS is a very respectable .903 and twice he finished in the top 5 in the MVP race.  He was a great fielder earning eight Gold Gloves and he has a lifetime WAR of 68.3.  Not too shabby isn't it?  Still, Edmonds played primarilly in an era where his numbers were overshadowed by others and he was never the best player on his team.  Still, an overall look at his career shows that maybe Jim Edmonds should not be a one and done candidate. 

What do you think?

Last modified on Thursday, 19 March 2015 18:47
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0 #1 Darryl Tahirali -0001-11-30 00:00
ESPN's SweetSpot blog had an article the other week arguing for Edmonds' s HoF inclusion by comparing him favorably to Duke Snider, noting that their counting numbers (e.g., HR) and qualitative stats (e.g., WAR) are very similar.

Perhaps so, but both played in different eras. Does Snider's performance look more impressive because he played in a smaller league, with presumably better pitching and a higher proportion of talent? Or is Edmonds more impressive because he played in a time of "talent compression& quot; (i.e., the talent in aggregate is better overall because there is a much larger talent pool to draw from now as compared to Snider's era)?

This last would seem to be borne out by Edmonds' s "gettin g lost in the shuffle,&quo t; stat-wise, during his career, which also coincided with the PED (peformance- enhancing drugs) era--althoug h let me hasten to add that I am not insinuating anything about Edmonds and PEDs here. Everyone' ;s stats, at least HR totals, look inflated from between 1995 and 2005, when Edmonds was in his peak years. Once PEDs became a serious issue by 2005, everyone' ;s stats, at least HR totals, dipped. Does this mean every player was taking PEDs? It's a curious phenomenon, and the entire issue is still of course being hotly debated.

Edmonds might encounter as much flak for simply playing during the PED era as for what his stats and performance add up to overall. I've always thought Edmonds was a very good player, particularly as a defensive center fielder (we've all seen the highlight-re el catches), but my initial impression is that he is this era's Andre Dawson. Like Dawson, who did get elected to Cooperstown, Edmonds was very good, sometimes spectacular, but falls just short of the HoF. That didn't stop the BBWAA from electing Dawson, so we'll see.

One final note: Edmonds could still be facing a crowded HoF ballot when he reaches his first year of eligibility, and might again find himself "lost in the shuffle.&quo t;
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