5 Reasons Tom Glavine Belongs In The MLB Hall Of Fame
Tom Glavine Belongs In The MLB Hall Of Fame
Like many young American boys growing up, I loved the game of baseball. I was lucky enough to grow up next to a grandfather who loved the game and loved to watch and listen to the game on the radio. I remember throwing the ball around with my younger brother, my dog, my teammates or just by myself, thinking that I was playing in the Major Leagues.
During many backyard baseball games, I always imagined being some of the great players of the day. Well, growing up in the 1990’s and not being the hardest throwing pitcher at any level that I played in, I looked up to two pitchers, Greg Maddux and Tom Glavine. Even though I was a right-handed pitcher, I wanted to be more like Glavine than any other pitcher.
Today, the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown and the Baseball Writers Association of America named three new players to be inductees to the Hall. Those players were Maddux, Frank Thomas and Glavine.
If you are not a big fan of baseball, then many of you are probably wondering why Glavine would be named to the Hall of Fame on the first ballot. Glavine was one of the best pitchers of his generation, right behind his former teammate Maddux and right there with the other former Atlanta Braves’ star pitcher John Smoltz.
If you have doubt about why Glavine should be in the Hall of Fame over steroid players like Roger Clemens, then I want you to see the five reasons why he does belong in the Hall, especially as a first ballot member.
5. CY Young Awards and World Series MVP
If you make the MLB as a pitcher, you really did something in your career. If you win a game in the MLB, you did even more. Tom Glavine was not just your regular MLB pitcher. During Glavine’s 22 year career, he helped the Atlanta Braves win the World Series in 1995, where he was named the MVP. In the deciding Game 6 of the World Series against the Cleveland Indians, Glavine pitched one of the greatest games in World Series history to help seal the deal for the Braves.
Glavine also won two Cy Young awards during his career, one in 1991 and another in 1998. Another fact that many people probably do not know about Glavine is that he was nominated for the Cy Young Award six times in his career, the last one coming in 2000 where he finished ahead of Maddux, but lost to the hard throwing Randy Johnson.
4. Career Wins
To win a game in the MLB as a starting pitcher, you must complete at least five innings of work and have the lead after those five innings. Tom Glavine did this and his team won the game 305 times. That makes Glavine 21st all time in wins. Glavine didn't just do this in a couple of seasons, he averaged 15 wins a season (not counting his first and last seasons when he did not play the entire season). This is a crazy number, especially for a pitcher who pitched in the era of the “long ball.”
3. He Was Great During The “Steroid Era”
During the time that Tom Glavine was at the height of his career, other players were taking the headlines. These were players like Mark McGwire, Sammy Sosa and Roger Clemons. While these guys were cheating to get an advantage of their completion, Glavine went on pitching like he always did -- calm, pitching with control and finesse. No other pitcher did it like Glavine. He was so good that hitters began to say that he had his own strike zone, which was about six inches off the corner of the plate. The only reasons others hated it is because they could not do it like Glavine did.
2. He Is One Of The Greatest Left-Handed Pitchers Of All Time
When people talk about the greatest left-handed pitchers of all time, Tom Glavine’s name has to be right at the top of the discussion. He is currently fourth all time for wins as a left-hander, only behind Warren Spahn, Steve Carlton and Eddie Plank. Glavine also pitched for 22 years. Any pitcher currently in the MLB would kill to be able to pitch, let alone still be in the MLB, after 22 years as a pro.
1. He's The Type Of Players The MLB Needs In The Hall Of Fame
With all of the controversy around the MLB, the league needed some great guys to go into the Hall this season. Tom Glavine was a perfect fit for it at the perfect time; he hardly ever complained while he was on the mound, and he went about every one of his starts as a true professional. Glavine stayed with the Atlanta Braves for most of his career, and only left the Braves for the New York Mets when Atlanta wanted to go in another direction. You hardly see any player in any professional sport do that, but Glavine did it, and he did it with class!