Cooperstown Choices: Dale Murphy

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 Dale Murphy

Dale Murphy
Murphy’s 18 year career would begin in 1976 as a member of the Atlanta Braves organization and come to a close in 1993 with the Colorado Rockies. Between he would spend a few years with the Philadelphia Phillies. This will be his 18th year on the ballot.

Year Tm G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS OPS+
1976 ATL 19 65 3 17 6 0 0 9 0 7 9 .262 .333 .354 .687 91
1977 ATL 18 76 5 24 8 1 2 14 0 0 8 .316 .316 .526 .842 112
1978 ATL 151 530 66 120 14 3 23 79 11 42 145 .226 .284 .394 .679 80
1979 ATL 104 384 53 106 7 2 21 57 6 38 67 .276 .340 .469 .809 113
1980 ATL 156 569 98 160 27 2 33 89 9 59 133 .281 .349 .510 .858 135
1981 ATL 104 369 43 91 12 1 13 50 14 44 72 .247 .325 .390 .716 101
1982 ATL 162 598 113 168 23 2 36 109 23 93 134 .281 .378 .507 .885 142
1983 ATL 162 589 131 178 24 4 36 121 30 90 110 .302 .393 .540 .933 149
1984 ATL 162 607 94 176 32 8 36 100 19 79 134 .290 .372 .547 .919 149
1985 ATL 162 616 118 185 32 2 37 111 10 90 141 .300 .388 .539 .927 152
1986 ATL 160 614 89 163 29 7 29 83 7 75 141 .265 .347 .477 .824 121
1987 ATL 159 566 115 167 27 1 44 105 16 115 136 .295 .417 .580 .997 157
1988 ATL 156 592 77 134 35 4 24 77 3 74 125 .226 .313 .421 .734 106
1989 ATL 154 574 60 131 16 0 20 84 3 65 142 .228 .306 .361 .667 89
1990 TOT 154 563 60 138 23 1 24 83 9 61 130 .245 .318 .417 .735 99
1990 ATL 97 349 38 81 14 0 17 55 9 41 84 .232 .312 .418 .731 96
1990 PHI 57 214 22 57 9 1 7 28 0 20 46 .266 .328 .416 .744 105
1991 PHI 153 544 66 137 33 1 18 81 1 48 93 .252 .309 .415 .724 103
1992 PHI 18 62 5 10 1 0 2 7 0 1 13 .161 .175 .274 .449 26
1993 COL 26 42 1 6 1 0 0 7 0 5 15 .143 .224 .167 .391 0
18 Seasons 2180 7960 1197 2111 350 39 398 1266 161 986 1748 .265 .346 .469 .815 121
162 Game Avg. 162 592 89 157 26 3 30 94 12 73 130 .265 .346 .469 .815 121
G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS OPS+
ATL (15 yrs) 1926 7098 1103 1901 306 37 371 1143 160 912 1581 .268 .351 .478 .829 125
PHI (3 yrs) 228 820 93 204 43 2 27 116 1 69 152 .249 .304 .405 .709 98
COL (1 yr) 26 42 1 6 1 0 0 7 0 5 15 .143 .224 .167 .391 0
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 12/29/2011.

Why He Should Get In
Murphy is a unique case. His raw number show an above average but not superstar player. However, the accolades paint a different picture. He was a seven time All Star, five time Gold Glove winner, four time Silver Slugger, would lead the league in home runs and runs batted in twice each, and won back-to-back Most Valuable Player awards in 1982 and 1983. He does have over 2,000 hits and just shy of 400 home runs.

Why He Should Not Get In
This is a classic case of “a few good years does not make you great”. Murphy was outstanding and dominated pitching from 1982 through 1987. The rest of his career was average and the last few years were horrible. He may have been a great player for a short time, but that does not making him a Hall Of Fame player over the course of his career.

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.
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2 Responses to “Cooperstown Choices: Dale Murphy”

  1. flyingelbowsmash says:

    What happened to him after 87? In 87 he hits 44 homers in 566 AB then the very next season only hits 24 in 592 AB. 89, 90, and 91 all see him have over 500 AB but barely hits 20 in those seasons. Doesn’t appear to be health/injury – odd sudden power decline.

  2. hoss says:

    look who was on those teams to protect him…the best they had was horner an he was gone after 87. i was just startin to watch baseball then an murphy was my fav. when they traded him i was
    pissed..not because they traded him but for what they got in return.if they had traded him a year earlier to the mets who knows what would have happen to the braves run with dykstra in CF an rick aguilera closing the games instead of the cast of characters they had in the early 90s.

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