Scott Rolen and the Wall of Fame

A friend of mine posed the question of whether Rolen should be on the Phillies “Wall of Fame”. My first reaction is that if Mike Lieberthal is on it, then Rolen should be, too. However, I also said it would be generally unpopular with the fans due to how he left. The more I look at his stats, the more I think he is a lock.

When you look at Rolen’s stats as a Phillies, they are very good. He was Rookie of the Year in 1997 and after that had some really good years. His best was 1998 when he hit .290/.391/.532 with 31 HR and 110 RBI. He also had 14 stolen bases and won the Gold Glove that year. His career “slash line” for his Phillies years was .282/.373/.504, which is very nice, indeed. His stats with the Cardinals is almost identical. Of course, his fielding was probably the best part of his game. He was an excellent fielder. Looking at his career stats he was in the top few in various fielding categories, including the “advanced metrics” that the stat people like so much. I recall one longtime Philly baseball columnist even said he was a better fielder than Schmidt, which is debatable, of course. For a big guy, he had great athletic ability and range.  If he had fewer injuries in his career, he could have been a bubble Hall of Fame candidate.  You can see his stats here.

Part of the process is a fan vote. They select the top three, and then the final choice is picked by the organization. You have to wonder, when Rolen officially retires, if the fans would vote him into the top three.  Rolen didn’t leave on the friendliest of terms, which is a shame because he was very much admired by fans up until that point. He was an earlier version of Chase Utley; a player that hustled and played the “right way”. One that didn’t say much and just went out and played. Looking back on it, from what I remember, what Rolen said was basically true, that the Phillies weren’t committed to winning at the time. The team didn’t get to the World Series for another six and a half years after he left. I guess it’s how he said it; of course no one, including Philly fans, liked to be spurned. Things didn’t work out too well in St. Louis, either, though.  If he does get voted in, you also have to wonder if he would be comfortable coming back. I guess at that point, though, it would be a big enough sign from the fans that they would welcome him back. It’ll be interesting once he does appear on that ballot. The choices for this year were pretty slim, other than Curt Schilling I must say:

  • Curt Schilling
  • Larry Christenson
  • Jim Fregosi
  • Rick Wise
  • Greg Gross
  • Von Hayes
  • Jim Constanty
  • Fred Luderus
  • Danny Ozark
  • Ron Reed
  • Pinky Whitney
  • Harry Wright


This entry was posted by theyellowseats.

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