Fred McGriff may be joined by former Atlanta Braves teammate Andruw Jones in Cooperstown.
While Fred McGriff is for sure getting into the National Baseball Hall of Fame after being elected by the Veterans Committee, he could be joined by former Atlanta Braves teammate Andruw Jones in Cooperstown.
Unlike McGriff, Jones has a fantastic chance of getting into Cooperstown before his 10th time on the ballot. 2023 is the former centerfielder’s sixth year on the ballot, and he has an outside shot at getting in. He may be a few votes shy of it this time around, but he still has four more years to get above the 75-percent threshold needed for induction by those lovely baseball writers of America…
But if you remove McGriff and Jones from the equation, what former Braves star is getting in next?
Why Dale Murphy will be the next Atlanta Braves legend to be a Hall of Famer
As far as other former Braves players still on the ballot, closer Billy Wagner and slugger Gary Sheffield did have brief success in an Atlanta uniform during their illustrious careers. Should get in this year or in the next two, he will be sporting a Houston Astros cap. Sheffield has this year and next to get in. Like McGriff, his cap status is up for debate, but him being the first Marlin in is solid.
Another Veterans Committee option down the line might be hall-of-fame manager Joe Torre for his playing career, but the former Milwaukee Brave did win an NL MVP playing for the St. Louis Cardinals. So it is not a sure thing there for the iconic former skipper of the New York Yankees. As far as active players, closer Craig Kimbrel and first baseman Freddie Freeman are hall of famers.
Although Freeman will wear a Braves cap, no matter how weird it ended for him Atlanta, it is not a sure thing Kimbrel rocks the Atlanta A. Probably, because he won NL Rookie of the Year and was the Braves’ star closer for years, but he has played a bunch of places since being traded away from Atlanta to the San Diego Padres right before their most painful previous rebuild went into effect.
And this brings us to the two-time NL MVP, Dale Murphy…
He may not have 500 career home runs or anything close to 3,000 career hits, but it is patently stupid Murphy is not in the hall of fame. While he was up for induction by the Veterans Committee with McGriff, Murphy did not get inducted this time around. Frankly, Murphy, former Yankees first baseman Don Mattingly and former Detroit Tigers second baseman Lou Whitaker should all be in.
While people are going to fall apart at the seams because of numbers, so what? Baseball is America’s pastime and Mattingly, Murphy and Whitaker were gold standards of excellence for their respective clubs in the 1980s. Whitaker had greater team success than both by being a prominent part if the Tigers’ most recent World Series Championship way, way back in 1984.
Ultimately, Murphy is going to get in one day, well, because he was the face of the Braves franchise in the 1980s when they were absolutely terrible. Though he did not get to play with the team he is best associated with during their Team of the ’90s era, Murphy is the only Brave to have his number retired who has not also been inducted into the hall of fame. Chew on that, y’all.
I do not know when it is going to happen, but eventually, baseball will get it right with Murphy.