Induction into the Baseball Hall of Fame is the goal of many Major League Baseball players. Many hope to be able to get in one day, but few actually get the chance to enter the HOF despite putting up HOF numbers.
One such player who deserves his spot in the Hall of Fame is Atlanta Braves‘ great Dale Murphy.
Every winter sportswriters get together and decide who will be in the next class. In recent years, the process has come under fire. This season the HOF voted in Braves’ pitching aces Tom Glavine and Greg Maddux along with Chicago White Sox slugger Frank Thomas. All three deserved the nod in, but the HOF needs a player like Murphy more than ever now.
In a 17-year career from 1976-91, Murphy hit 398 homers along with a 1266 RBIs. He won back-to-back MVP awards in 1982 and 1983. His numbers are comparable to a recent HOF inductee Boston Red Sox‘ Jim Rice. Rice hit 382 home runs along with a .298 batting average and won the 1978 American League MVP award.
Murphy’s numbers were great, but off the field he was probably an even better person. Murphy was known for his clean living on and off the field. A devout religious person, he never smoked or drank. So there is no possible way to link Murphy along with the other players who are tied to performance enhancing drugs.
Critics of Murphy have pointed out that fact after the age of 31, Murphy’s numbers dropped off. That may be a good argument against Murphy, but there are more reasons why he should be in.
One good reason is that baseball needs a feel good story.
Granted, Derek Jeter‘s last season will have its highlights and tribute to a great career. But would it hurt to have another great story? That story should be Dale Murphy getting his final due with a place reserved in Cooperstown in the next few seasons.