Sunday, July 25, 2010

HOF-ROY Combo


As we all know, today, Andre Dawson officially becomes a member of the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. Most baseball-minded people agree that Dawson's enshrinement was long overdue considering how illustrious a career he had. But nonetheless, the man known as 'The Hawk" is finally in, so a big CONGRATS to him.

Having said that--

As an official Hall of Famer, Dawson now joins his fellow 1977 Rookie of the Year partner, Eddie Murray, in Cooperstown. In fact, they now form a rare trio of players who simultaneously won the Rookie of the Year Award and went on to the Hall of Fame.

This elusive feat has now occurred only 3 times--

1977 - Andre Dawson and Eddie Murray
1967 - Tom Seaver and Rod Carew
1956 - Frank Robinson and Luis Aparicio

Aside from the above six, there have also been 8 other Rookies of the Year to make it to the Hall of Fame-- but their co-winners did not go on to have a Hall of Fame career.

A quick note on Tom Seaver: He is the only ROY pitcher in the Hall of Fame. In fact, so rare is this phenomena, that the only other ROY pitcher with HOF potential is the 2006 winner, Justin Verlander, who's career is just getting started. Talk about a "go figure" moment.

And for the record: Hall of Famer Jackie Robinson, the 1947 and first-ever ROY, won the award when it was given to only one player for both leagues. So in his defense, he didn't have a co-winner.

The other HOFers, who won the ROY are: Willie Mays (NL-1951); Orlando Cepeda (NL-1958); Willie McCovey (NL-1959); Billy Williams (NL-1961); Johnny Bench (NL-1968); Carlton Fisk (AL-1972); Cal Ripken (AL-1982).

Now let's throw their dancing partners under the bus-- the above player's ROY co-winners, who DID NOT make the Hall of Fame--

Willie Mays (AL-Gil McDougald); Orlando Cepeda (AL-Albie Pearson); Willie McCovey (AL-Bob Allison); Billy Williams (AL-Don Schwall); Johnny Bench (AL-Stan Bahnsen); Carlton Fisk (NL-Jon Matlack); Cal Ripken (NL-Steve Sax).

Anyway--

What does all this really mean? I guess, nothing, unless you're a stat freak, like me. In fact, it wouldn't surprise me if the above six players don't even realize they share this common bond-- but nonetheless, it is one of those baseball oddities.

And for the record, the next PAIR of ROY co-winners destined for the Hall of Fame? The 2001 duo of Albert Pujols and Ichiro Suzuki-- trust me on that one. :-)

P.S. Once again, congratulations to the Hawk. For everything Andre Dawson, checkout the site hawk4thehall.blogspot.com.


Andre Dawson photo courtesy of Getty Images

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