Cooperstown Choices: Jeff Bagwell

With the Hall Of Fame election announcement coming on January 9, 2012, it is time to review the ballot, go over the names, and decide who belongs in the Hall Of Fame.

There are twenty seven men on the ballot this year and we will take a look at each one individually prior to official announcements. You can find all of the profiles in the I-70 Baseball Exclusives: Cooperstown Choices 2012 menu at the top of the page.

Tune in Saturday, January 7, 2012 as I-70 Baseball Radio will host a panel of writers discussing the Hall Of Fame Ballot in a 2-hour special.

In this article, we take a look at Jeff Bagwell

Jeff Bagwell
One of the “Killer B’s” that spent his entire fifteen year career with the Houston Astros, Jeff Bagwell was one of the National League’s premier first baseman from his debut in 1991 until his final game in 2005. Bagwell is on the ballot for the second time.

Year Tm G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS OPS+
1991 HOU 156 554 79 163 26 4 15 82 7 75 116 .294 .387 .437 .824 139
1992 HOU 162 586 87 160 34 6 18 96 10 84 97 .273 .368 .444 .812 135
1993 HOU 142 535 76 171 37 4 20 88 13 62 73 .320 .388 .516 .903 144
1994 HOU 110 400 104 147 32 2 39 116 15 65 65 .368 .451 .750 1.201 213
1995 HOU 114 448 88 130 29 0 21 87 12 79 102 .290 .399 .496 .894 142
1996 HOU 162 568 111 179 48 2 31 120 21 135 114 .315 .451 .570 1.021 178
1997 HOU 162 566 109 162 40 2 43 135 31 127 122 .286 .425 .592 1.017 168
1998 HOU 147 540 124 164 33 1 34 111 19 109 90 .304 .424 .557 .981 158
1999 HOU 162 562 143 171 35 0 42 126 30 149 127 .304 .454 .591 1.045 162
2000 HOU 159 590 152 183 37 1 47 132 9 107 116 .310 .424 .615 1.039 152
2001 HOU 161 600 126 173 43 4 39 130 11 106 135 .288 .397 .568 .966 139
2002 HOU 158 571 94 166 33 2 31 98 7 101 130 .291 .401 .518 .919 135
2003 HOU 160 605 109 168 28 2 39 100 11 88 119 .278 .373 .524 .897 128
2004 HOU 156 572 104 152 29 2 27 89 6 96 131 .266 .377 .465 .842 115
2005 HOU 39 100 11 25 4 0 3 19 0 18 21 .250 .358 .380 .738 94
15 Seasons 2150 7797 1517 2314 488 32 449 1529 202 1401 1558 .297 .408 .540 .948 149
162 Game Avg. 162 587 114 174 37 2 34 115 15 106 117 .297 .408 .540 .948 149
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 12/29/2011.

Why He Should Get In
Bagwell’s career was littered with league leading statistics, consistent all-around play, and consideration as the premier player on his team. Bagwell was awarded the Jackie Robinson Award as the top rookie in 1991, the Most Valuable Player Award in 1994, appeared in four All Star games, won one Gold Glove, and three silver slugger awards. His home run total may clock in at 449, which many consider to low for automatic induction, but backed by 488 doubles, 202 stolen bases, and 1529 runs batted in as well as a career .297 batting average and Bagwell looks like a player that deserves to be bronzed in the halls of Cooperstown.

Why He Should Not Get In
On numbers alone, he falls short of the home run and hit totals that voters will look for. His career was cut short due to injuries, preventing him from reaching many career milestones. Though he did receive awards and recognition, it was up and down and not consistent year over year. He is from the steroid era and many raise an eyebrow due to his general size, but it should be noted that he has never been connected to performance enhancing drugs and that should not be a factor.

Bill Ivie is the editor here at I-70 Baseball as well as the Assignment Editor for BaseballDigest.com.
He is the host of I-70 Radio, hosted every week on BlogTalkRadio.com.
Follow him on Twitter here.

Author: Bill Ivie

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