Sunday, February 21, 2021

The Case for Alan Trammell 2/21/21

 Hey baseball fans!

It's my birthday, which means it's time to talk about my Hall of Fame birthday buddy, Alan Trammell! I've done a post about Trammell pretty much every February 21st since I started my blog in 2012, so this birthday will be no different! Today, rather than just go over his career for the 1,000th time, let's take a deep dive into why he deserves to be a Hall of Famer based on the three categories I use to judge Hall of Fame candidacy: longevity, consistency, and intangibles. 

Trammell did play for a while, I'll give him that. But that's not what longevity actually means in this case. How close was Trammell to the Hall of Fame benchmarks we have come to know and love? Well, the short answer is not at all, at least in the offensive department. 2,365 career hits isn't close to the 3,000-hit threshold, especially considering he played 20 years. The cumulative stat that he has actually met is defensive wins above replacement. dWAR is a newer stat in the Hall of Fame conversation, considering fielding gurus like Andruw Jones and Scott Rolen only just made the ballot, but it's an important stat nonetheless. You don't have to be good at everything to be a Hall of Famer, so even though Trammell's cumulative hits aren't there, his 22.7 career dWAR (which is 33rd on the all-time list) at a premier position like shortstop certainly puts him in the conversation, not to mention his 70.7 career total WAR is in the ballpark of that of Derek Jeter. 

The consistency category marginally helps Trammell more than the longevity category, even though it's less important. A .285 lifetime batting average and 152 hits a season during his prime years from 1980-1990 make it known that Trammell was a consistent hitter. But other than those stats, why is Trammell a Hall of Famer? We can talk about his six All Star Games, three Silver Sluggers, or four Gold Gloves, but that's not enough. Again, I ask the question: why is this guy a Hall of Famer? The answer lies in the piece I've left out of this post so far on purpose: he's a legend in the Detroit Tigers organization. Sure, he's one of their worst managers ever, but the lifelong Tiger meant more to the city of Detroit than a lot of baseball fans realize. You can't tell the history of the Detroit Tigers without mentioning the 1984 World Series MVP. Although the intangibles category is the least important criteria for me for Hall of Fame candidates, it matters the most in Trammell's case. 

Thanks for reading this post and I hope you enjoyed it. Check back soon for more of "all the buzz on what wuzz."

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