Friday, November 17, 2006

Steve Finley

Chances are that Steve Finley will be done as a professional baseball player. I don't think that's his choice but who is going to sign a soon to be 42-year old centerfielder who last year hit just .246? If Finley's career is over then he's got nothing to ashamed about. Finley may not make the Hall of Fame but he certainly would get voted into the Hall of Very Good.

Consider that for his career Finley is top 100 all-time in the following categories:

- Games (39th)
- At Bats (46th)
- Total Bases (62nd - more than Hall of Famers Wade Boggs or Rod Carew among others)
- Doubles (81st - one more than Rod Carew)
- Triples (90th)
- Extra Base Hits (tied for 59th with sure fire Hall of Famer Rickey Henderson)

Finley was only an All-Star twice but five times he won a Gold Glove for his work in the outfield. Perhaps the biggest feather in Steve Finley's cap is the fact that he has hit over 300 HR (303) and stole over 300 bases (320). Only six players in history have accomplished that feat (Barry Bonds, Willie Mays, Andre Dawson, Bobby Bonds, Steve Finley and Reggie Sanders).

: I got to thinking about the six players who are in the 300 / 300 club and I got to wondering why Rickey Henderson wasn't listed. It turns out that Rickey has just 297 HR but it also turns out that Rickey had 1658 more at bats than Finley which to me makes the fact that Finley is tied with Rickey for career extra base hits that much more extraordinary an accomplishment by Finley. Maybe there's a much better case for Finley than first meets the eye?

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