Houston Mitchell did not endear himself to Los Angeles sports fans this weekend when he wrote a column for the L.A. Times that listed nearly 100 people he would “cut” from the baseball hall of fame. READ THE STORY HERE.
Among the cuts: Don Sutton and (gasp!) Don Drysdale.
Wow. Those are fighting words for Dodger fans, especially the Drysdale snub. There are all kinds of reasons that Big D deserves his spot in the Hall of Fame. I won’t bore you by listing them.
Sutton, well, he won 300 games. That’s pretty much a guaranteed ticket to Cooperstown. He never won a Cy Young Award. He won 20 games in a season only once. He never played on a World Series winner, believe it or not (Sutton’s Dodgers lost in the 1974, 1977 and 1978 Series; his Brewers lost in the 1982 Series … The Dodgers traded him to Houston in 1980, a year before the Dodgers won it all).
But the thing is, Sutton is respected but not beloved by Dodger fans. A good guy, a good pitcher, a good teammate … but not necessarily a Dodger “icon.” We can live with Sutton being on the list of proposed “cuts.”
Now Drysdale, on the other hand, is one of the most iconic names in franchise history. It helps that he was a key member of World Series championship teams in 1959, 1963 and 1965. He also was just about the meanest SOB ever to step on a pitcher’s mound (he beaned 154 batters in just 14 seasons). His philosophy was, “You hit one of my guys, I’ll hit two of yours. Let me know when you’ve had enough.” But aside from being tough, he was a GREAT pitcher. The guy once threw 58 consecutive scoreless innings, for Pete’s sake.
The Dodgers of the 1960s could not hit their way out of a paper bag. Yet they still ended up in the World Series half the time. How? Because Sandy Koufax and Drysdale were dominant, dominant pitchers who simply would not be denied.
Chris Dufresne of the L.A. Times wrote a rebuttal column yesterday, saying it was absurd to include Drysdale on the cut list. READ IT HERE.