Tuesday, December 28, 2004

Memories Of Wade Boggs

Looking for another puff piece about the chicken man? You won't find it here, my friend.

Let's take a look at the only member of baseball's 3000 meaningless hit club.

Ask anyone who knew me in the eighties. I was decidedly anti-Boggs.

He was the first Red Sox player I grew to NOT like. I remember in early '83 standing on my dead end street with my dad and my friend Chris, talking about a rookie whose name, I thought, was Wayne Boggs. My dad insisted it was Wade, not Wayne. Terrible job by me. But come on, I was seven years old.

I was happy with that first season, with the .361 average and all. I had his poster (the white bordered, black upper/lower case lettered Sports Illustrated kind), and the book "Boggs!", but within a few years, I knew the truth: Rarely any hits that weren't singles, no defense, and NEVER a clutch hit. I'd rather have Greenwell up in a key spot any day. Benzinger, even. ZUPCIC, even.

If Jim Rice and Dwight Evans aren't in the Hall of Fame, Wade Boggs definitely shouldn't be in. Those guys played solid D every year, hit for power and average, and didn't crack under pressure. If a pre-teen could figure this one out back in the eighties, grown voters should be able to now.

I could relate to the superstitions, and I was a singles hitter myself in the eighties, but I wasn't down with the womanizing, the mustache (and later red beard), the repeated ground outs to the pitcher (my grandpa loved to point that out), or the way he'd arrogantly hold the bat where (he felt) it had stopped on a check swing to show the third base ump that he definitely didn't go around. And I guess it was fitting that the one Red Sox player I didn't like in my childhood went on to play for the yankees and ride around on a stupid cop horse.

I've never used the word "douchebag" on this blog before. But I've never talked in depth about "Bogus" before. So here goes.

Rice: Hall of Famer
Evans: Hall of Famer
Boggs: Douchebag

I compare Boggs getting 3000 hits to someone donating to a homeless shelter 3000 times, but 2950 times making the check out for zero dollars. Whoopdee freakin' doo. Even Jeter will probably end up with 3000 bloop hits. So what?

And for the record, I was at a game at yankee Stadium where Boggs didn't come out of the dugout until 7:18. He must've been skeezin' wit' a ho in the clubhouse and missed his special time. So I don't want to hear about "he always came out at 7:17."

Wow, where's the love?

OK, I'll grant you that Boggs was a first-rate jerk: you can't say that he wasn't a first-rate something.

But I ask you this: was Tony Gwynn a HOF'er, in your opinion?

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Location: Rhode Island, United States