05 January 2005

Boggs Going to the Hall

Back when I was growing up (post Mets-dalliance, in which I was a Strawberry/ Carter fan- I wanted to be a catcher. I was like, 8), Wade Boggs was my all-time favorite player. I wanted him to beat out Kirby Puckett for batting titles. I always looked for him to get to 200 hits. I remember in the 1989 All Star Game when he hit a leadoff HR off Rick Reuschel (Reuschel started an ALL STAR GAME?!), just before Bo Jackson did him one better and about 200 feet longer.

My grandma got me the card above, his rookie card, on a lark, during the height of my card-collectin', Wade-lovin' days. The best part about it was the case it came in had screws- looked like a museum piece. I still have it- I'd feel bad about even thinking of selling it.

And why would I even think about selling it? Oh I don't know- maybe this? What can I say- I was 11. I felt betrayed.

But, since that has no bearing on what he's accomplished, it doesn't matter, and neither do cowboy boot injuries, chicken eating, Margo Adams, or sex addiction. Instead, what does matter- .328 career BA, .415 career OBP. Five batting titles (top 5 six more times), six OBP titles, two OPS titles (one of which, 1988, when he hit 5 HR), league leader in times on base from 1983-1990, two Gold Gloves, four top ten MVP finishes, lead league in intentional walks 1987-1992, twelve straight All Star appearances, seven straight seasons with 200 hits, a standing record.

While admittedly, in the 1980s, there were TWO better 3B in MLB- Mike Schmidt and George Brett- but to be fair, those are very arguably the two greatest 3B ever. Boggs is probably one of the top 5 3B of all time, and that's Hall of Fame through and through. Somewhere- Margo sheds a tear for him.

Finally- finally- Ryne Sandberg is in the Hall of Fame. Flat out, one of the greatest all-around 2B of all time and one of the more valuable players of the 1980s has been elected. It took a relatively weak field and a number of tries, but it finally happened, and thank God. They've messed a few up (Blyleven, Trammell, Gossage still not in, Tony Perez, Phil Rizzutto are) but it'd be totally ridiculous to have Ryno not a HoFer.

Consider, a la Boggs- 1984 NL MVP, top ten MVP three times, .285 career BA, .344 career OBP (.314/ .379 season highs), nine Gold Gloves, ten All Star games, lead the league in runs three times, top ten in OPS six times (as a 2B!) 344 out of 451 SB atttempts, career 114 OPS+, 282 HR (40 in 1990, 30 in 1989), 1061 RBI.

Congrats to both, and to a truly, truly weak class in 06 (Hershiser, Gooden)- let's get Blyleven, Gossage and Trammel in. Say no to Jim Rice, too.


Earlier I suggested I was going to attempt to get "into" Carnivale and Deadwood via HBO OnDemand- I chose Carnivale to work on first, mainly because the second season started MUCH sooner (January 9th), but more importantly because Deadwood's first season isn't on Demand at the moment. So it'll have to wait.

I was a bit skeptical after watching the first episode, but it built on some solid characters and good writing to create a real interesting and strange show. It's like religious fanaticism from the 1920's... that's all actually real. Healers, apostles, freak show freaks, demons, apparitions, clairvoyants- cool stuff. The best part?

Michael J Anderson. A veteran of a lot of David Lynch stuff, he plays the Carnivale's man-in-charge, Samson. He's a really, really great actor and the character is terrific- funny, angry, annoying. Anderson has this wonderful way of walking (which, I'm sure, he can't do much to change given his legs) that lends so much to his character.

Then there's Tim DeKay, as Clayton Jones, a severely injured former ballplayer used as head mechanic-guy. You'll remember him as Bizarro Jerry in the Bizarro Jerry episode of Seinfeld and he, against what you may have assumed, is also a gifted actor. These two guys really stand out among the leads- Nick Stahl, Clancy Brown (he was the head guard in Shawshank), Amy Madigan (Costner's wife in Field of Dreams), Clea Duvall ("troubled girl" in every movie ever), Dian Salinger ("Merci beaucoups, Pee-Wee!"), Adrienne Barbeau, Toby Huss (Artie, the Strongest Man... IN THE WORLD!), Brian Turk (plays Gabriel on the show, a favorite character of mine).

WOrth a look- nice and weird, but very well written still, and not impressed with how "strange" it can be. A very well-told story- which says a lot, considering the story.


Finally, I was in a pizza place today, having some food. A mother was trying to study for something/ fill out a form- whatever. She had her young kid (I'd say 4 years old, tops) there, and he was kinda rambunctious. Had his little toy, was running around doing what he wanted to do. No matter he didn't listen much, Mom kept yelling at him- "Truth! Come here! Dammit Truth, stop playin'! Momma told you to do somethin' Truth, now git!"

I wanted so very badly to just lean over to her, smile, and casually mention that...

"Lady- you can't handle the Truth."

Oh man, I'm so funny.

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