Rafael Palmeiro, Hall of Famer?
By Ben Dieter
August 11, 2012; Arlington, TX, USA; Texas Rangers former playerRafael Palmeiro
waves to fans during introductions of the Rangers 40th anniversary all time team before the game against the Detroit Tigers at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington. Mandatory Credit: Jim Cowsert-USA TODAY Sports
Former Rangers and former steroid user Rafael Palmeiro is once again on the Hall of Fame Ballot for Major League baseball, but hs he going to get in? Does he even deserve to get in? No matter what your thoughts on steroids in baseball are or your thoughts on him pointing his finger at congress and saying he never used, Palmeiro was an undeniable talent. As a Ranger fan, I always enjoyed watching him play, and I was disappointed when he fell into the whole baseball steroid scandal.
Rafi began his career as a Cub 1986 and played three seasons for them before moving to the Texas Rangers. He only hit 25 home runs in his three season with the Cubs, but he also only played in 258 games. He was with the Rangers from 1989 through 1993, and then again from 1999 through 2003. In his career, Rafael had a line of .288/.371/.515/.885 with 569 home runs (321 with the Rangers) and 1835 runs batted in (1039 with the Rangers). Are those hall of fame numbers? I tend to think so, and I think he would be a shoe in if it was not for the finger-pointing. The difference between a Palmeiro and a Barry Bonds is that Palmeiro was a nice guy, or he at least appeared to be. Nobody seems to think Bonds is a good guy. Everyone thinks he is very stuck on himself. Of course Rafi had his moments as well.
I think those numbers are worthy of being in the hall, but like in the case of Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens, Sammy Sosa. Mark McGwire and so many others who are linked to steroids, Rafi will not get in just because of that. I don’t want to be on a soap box or anything about performance enhancing drugs, but that steroid era is not the only era in baseball where people cheated, and I am starting to think that these guys should be let in after all. Afterall, players will always find a way to get an advantage, legal or not, and most will never get caught. My opinion is you have to know how to hit, steroids do not teach you that. So I say let Palmeiro in, but of course my opinion doesn’t matter because I don’t have a vote. What do you think?