Tuesday, February 06, 2007

First Base

Ryan Howard - Howard is the new Golden Boy of Philadelphia baseball. 58 homeruns and an MVP will kind of do that for you. He's young, talented, productive, personable, and very likeable. He's only played two years in Philadelphia, but he's done enough in that short of time to be included on the list. Like I said, 58 homeruns and an MVP will do that for you.

John Kruk - If I were a bookmaker, I would make ol' One Nut the odds on favorite to take this vote. Kruk was a fun-loving (see: alcoholism), hard-playing fan favorite. He looked more like a truckdriver playing rec-league softball, than an "athlete." Except, no other fat, beer-swilling trucker from West Virgina could hit like the Krukker. His look and attitude separated him from the pack, though. Without it, he's just Hal Morris. After his playing career, he became a top notch baseball analyst. Again, you don't see Hal Morris' face all over ESPN. There are so many positive things to say about Kruk, you could write a book. Of course, you could just read Kruk's. Feel free to contribute your favorite Kruk story, I'll post the best of the best here...

Von Hayes - Von Hayes gets killed by Phillies fans, sometimes. But I'm here to defend Hayes. Sure, he was traded for 5 other players, but 4 of them sucked, and the one that didn't, Julio Franco, was a young kid. Moreover, the Phils needed someone to replace the less-than-stellar (.245, 0 homers) Pete Rose at first base. Excluding the first and last years Hayes played with the Phils (because they sucked), Hayes hit .276 with 118 homeruns in 7 seasons. Given the time, those are solid numbers. He also was in the top ten in OBP for 3 of those years and led the league in runs, doubles, and extra-base hits once each. He played on some teams that had little power (other than Michael Jack), yet he occasionally batted lead-off because of his on base skills. What a novel idea. Of course, that situation never has and likely never will occur again in Phildelphia. He also rocked the powder blue uni. All that being said, I kind of think Von Hayes sucks.

Dick Allen - We heard the call and have obliged, here is a player that we never saw play. We can base our opinions on this player only on stats and others' subjective writings. So, I present Dick Allen from Baseball Reference and Wikipedia.

On his career: "Perhaps the single most controversial player of his time, Allen's image was both one of rebellion against a conservative, white power structure, and also one of self-centered pigheadedness. Bill James, in a revised ranking of first basemen in 2005, ranked Allen as the 15th greatest of all time, behind Jimmie Foxx, Willie McCovey, and others. The years from 1964 to 1969 were uniformly excellent for Allen as a hitter. Even as major league baseball entered a "dead ball" era, Allen typically had high batting averages, high on-base percentages, and high slugging averages. He was fourth in the MVP voting in
1966"


On his behavior: "He got in a fistfight with the popular Phillie Frank Thomas in July 1965, gashed his throwing hand by pushing it through a car headlight on August 24, 1967, and earned a 26-game suspension in June 1969 after being stopped by police for erratic driving, and showing up late to a doubleheader; he also began drinking heavily. The Phillies' 'Boo Bird' fans exacerbated Allen's problems. Initially the abuse was verbal, with obscenities and racial epithets. Eventually Allen was greeted with showers of fruit, ice, refuse, and even flashlight batteries as he took the field. He began wearing his batting helmet even while playing his defensive position in the field, which gave rise to another nickname, "Crash Helmet", shortened to "Crash".

Honorable Mention:
Ricky Jordan - He hit a homerun in his first at-bat with the Phillies. His batting stance was so cool, I hit like Ricky Jordan for a whole summer of Wiffle-Ball. After that, I would be reaching for compliments. But because of his stance, he gets honorable mention.
Favorite First Baseman
Ryan Howard
John Kruk
Von Hayes
Dick Allen
Corey

21 comments:

Bob D said...

Jordan was cool, I thought the Phils had something with him and Ron Jones another one who made his first hit a HR before getting hurt.

For 'favorite' it'll have to be Hayes as he was fun to watch on this team. Pete Rose would be the best all time though Allen would give him a run for his money. Unfourtunately he was banned from baseball and baseball polls

GM-Carson said...

Kruk is one of my most favorite Phils of all-time, ranked up there with Schmidt and Wes Chamberlain. Kruk's autobiography is a great read.

Corey- awesome Hal Morris reference.

Dick Allen, from all I've read and discussed on forums, was one bad mutha...love it!

I got my picture taken with Ricky Jordan, but other than that, no fond memories.

furiousBall said...

Kruk was great, the guy could just flat out hit. I loved his appearances on Letterman and he's done great on Baseball Tonight.

I think Ryan will be considered the best at 1B when everything is said and done (some may already give him this nod after that monster season).

I would have loved watching a demon-head like Dick Allen. That kind of bad attitude probably wouldn't work in today's game though.

GM-Carson said...

Dick Allen's bad attitude may have been well justified.

Howard will end up going down as one of the best Phillies of all-time. He's already had the best season ever, and I believe he will continue blasting for the foreseeable future.

Skeeter said...

If there was no such thing as "Ryan Howard" (and thank God that isn't the case), I have a feeling Thome would be on this list and would rank fairly high. I'm pumped to see the ChiSox come to Philly this season. I loved Jim while he was here.

Plus, if my memory is correct, I think Burrell played half a season at first base. Can't he count?

GM-Carson said...

The Phils have had many kwality 1-sackers over the years: Travisty Lee, Pete Rose, Burrell for 1/2 a season, Jim Thome, Gregg Jefferies, Rico Brogna, etc.

Ok, some of those players suck, but you get the idear.

*kwality/idear, were on purpose

voice of reason said...

A Kruk classic moment: In 2003(?), after a call-up from SWB, Utley hits his first major-league HR. The next day Kruk has him on the hook, explaining the league is revoking the hit due to a paperwork foul-up.

The "coolest" first-baseman: Willie Montanez, one of the original hot-dogs!

GM-Carson said...

Pirates are lovin' Cuba this offseason. They just signed a fireballer, 98 mph, to a minor league contract. His name- Serguey Linares. This is the 2nd Cuban signed to be a Bucco this offseason, Yoslan Herrera being the other. Neither of them look very promising to me.

Corey said...

the guy who made this poll is an idiot, where the hell is jim thome????

i knew i would take slack for not putting thome on her, and frankly, he should be. i went "generational" on this one, i guy from 00, 90, 80, and whenever the hell dick allen played. thome should be on though, because after kruk, he's my favorite.

GM-Carson said...

Besides the omission of Thome, you did a damn fine job Corey. Just like the Phillies, we aren't perfect.

Bob D said...

All is forgiven on the Thome ommision. But I did see the Phanatic play 1B before and he runs over the competetion with his ATV. Now he's the favorite 1B of all time

Maria said...

I guess my answer would have to be Ryan Howard since I would've been 3-6 years old when Kruk played.

BenJah said...

JAH! Today, the 6th of Feb, is bob marley's birthday! he would be 62 today.....i'll have to figure out some way to celebrate...


...the phils NEVER should have signed thome. they knew they had howard waiting in the wings, and should have saved the money for vlad guerrero or someone. my take, anyhow

GM-Carson said...

Benjah- blaze one for the nation brotha! I'm sure you kind find a Rich Dubee out there with your name on it...enjoy!

Corey said...

the year before the phils signed thome (2002) howard went for .280-19-87 for single A lakewood. i'm not convinced a season like that from a 5th round draft pick is proof enough to not sign thome, especially given the state of the organization at the time and what signing a big time free agent meant.

are you sure you're not high already, because it sounds like you are agreeing with stepen ass smith????
please see this post
Someone Dumber Than Manuel. Unfortunately the clip is no longer on youtube.com, but trust me, he was as retarded as ever...

BenJah said...

fair enough, maybe howard wasn't ready yet, but my biggest problem with the move is that 1st base was not a position that needed to be filled (burrell, howard). they should have spent the money on a more athletic player. -- i'm trying to remember who the other free agents were that year, and the year after

chuckm said...

Benjah- The free agency class of 2002-2003 was weak. There was Thome, Jeff Kent and Tom Glavine. There are plenty of legit examples where the Phillies FO should be reamed, getting Thome in 2003 wasnt one of them.

GM-Carson said...

It's early Wednesday morning and Krunk holds a 1 vote lead over Sir Ryan Howard.

I agree the Thome signing needed to be done to get excitement back in the fanbase and to get the hype up for Citizens Bank Park.

If memory serves me right, the Phils were hot on the tail of Tom Glavine too.

TrekMedic251 said...

Kruk wasn't an alcoholic. Alcoholics attend meetings. Kruk just attended baseball games.

Lake Fred said...

Ryan Howard is the man! We all love Kruk, but Kruk and Howard are not even comparable. Richie Allen had a lot of talent, but for whatever reason, he never took it to the "great" level in Philly after his rookie year. Look what Howard did in his sophomore year? Plus Ryan is such a nice guy. I think I'd like to sit in a bar room with Kruk talking about how great Howard is. I voted for Howard.

McD said...

Thanks for showing some love for Von Hayes!


www.vonhayes.blogspot.com