Texas Liberal

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A Tribe Called Quest CD Leads To Fact-Based View Of Flawed St. Louis Cardinal Lou Brock

I was listening to Run DMC in my car a few weeks back here in Houston while ordering something from the drive-up window of a well-known coffee chain. The young man at the window heard the music and said I might enjoy A Tribe Called Quest.

Since the young man at the drive-up window did well with my tea, I took his advice and purchased a greatest hits CD of A Tribe Called Quest.

In one of the songs on that CD, reference is made to the base running speed of former St. Louis Cardinal outfielder Lou Brock.

Positive mention of Lou Brock as a player annoys me. Brock, who played between 1961 and 1979, is viewed as a great or near great player because of his many stolen bases and because he had more than 3000 hits. Brock is in the Hall of Fame despite the fact he should not be in the Hall of Fame.

A review of Brock’s career shows a flawed player. Brock had many hits, but not many of them were for extra bases. Brock did not walk enough. He struck out often. Brock’s stolen base total is mitigated by the fact that his percentage of successful stolen base attempts is not high in relation to other successful base stealers. 

As of the end of 2006 season, Brock ranked 15th in number of times appearing at  the plate as a batter. However, Brock is not even close to being in the top 100 for walks. Brock is also 13th in times striking out. That is a lot of strike outs for a guy not hitting many home runs.

Brock is not in the top 100 for extra base hits. Despite his speed and long career he is only 55th in doubles. All-time stolen base champ Rickey Henderson was successful in 80.8 % of steal attempts. Brock was successful 74.5% of the time. Henderson had 1406 stolen bases while Brock had 938.

At his best Brock was a capable player, but almost never among the best in the National League. For his career, Brock hardly merits mention in relation to a contemporary such as Roberto Clemente. He is a pip-squeak when put up against Willie Mays or Hank Aaron. 

Look behind the hype and behind the well-known statistics and “facts.” Often you’ll find a different story.

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May 31, 2007 - Posted by | Music, Uncategorized

7 Comments »

  1. Nice post, what about Biggio and Bagwell? HoFers or poseurs?

    Comment by Laz | May 31, 2007

  2. Thanks for the compliment. Biggio and bagwell are the real thing. Though Biggio is doing waht Brock did in playing past his day. Bagwell’s mix of walks and home runs was first-rate.

    Comment by neilaquino | June 1, 2007

  3. You might want to check out a little de la soul and urban dance squad too.

    Comment by bill brady | June 2, 2007

  4. Oh yeah and i fucking hate baseball

    Comment by bill brady | June 2, 2007

  5. I did have a De La Soul Cd but it was ripped off from my car along wiht many other CD’s.

    I am aware of your distaste for baseball.

    Comment by neilaquino | June 2, 2007

  6. came upon your site by accident. you are way off base in your summation of lou brock. you are judging lou brock on stats alone. wrong. the guy was a great ball player and i am one his many fans. maybe i’m missing something—-who are you to make the distinction of who should be in the hall of fame? all of thi does not sound to liberal.

    Comment by reggie ward | March 12, 2010

  7. He did not reach base often enough and he did not have enough power. That’s a lot of the bottom line.

    I have no power to decide who is in the Hall of Fame. If I did, Mr. Brock would not be in the Hall of Fame. Thank you for the comment.

    Comment by Neil Aquino | March 13, 2010


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