The UCB project for this month is to talk about the things you’d like to see in the soon to be Cardinals HOF and museum. This is an easy one and one that will have many different opinions from which to choose from. Any combination that starts with Stan Musial and ends with some of the key members of the 2011 WS Champs would be fine, and I expect there will be a lot of it. One player I’d like to see as much as possible on though is Rogers Hornsby.
When I started my own blog, one of the first things I wrote about was Hornsby being the most underrated Cardinal of all time. It’s still amazing when you look at his stats today. Hornsby won the Triple Crown twice, in 1922 and 1925. In 1922 and 1923, the NL didn’t have the MVP award. Winning it in 1922 would have put Hornsby in elite company as he would have ended up with three career MVP’s.
There’s not a lot of Hornsby memorabilia floating around out there today. Hopefully the Cardinals make it a priority and make a nice section on Hornsby with some of it. There’s no question that Hornsby is the second greatest Cardinal of all time. If you think I’m taking a swipe at Albert Pujols, then you don’t know enough about Hornsby. What he did as a 2B somehow has gotten lost when talking about the great players of the past. Hornsby’s lifetime BA of .358 is only second to Ty Cobb’s .366. Only four NL players have ever won the Triple Crown, and only Hornsby and Ted Williams have won it more than once in the history of MLB.
So again, the Cardinals HOF should be a nice tribute to Musial, Pujols, Bob Gibson, Lou Brock, Ozzie Smith, Bruce Sutter, Red Schoendienst, Whitey Herzog, Dizzy Dean and Enos Slaughter. Tony LaRussa will be in soon, so I expect a nice tribute to him in there. The Cards might want to dedicate a wall to starting pitchers that were .500 before they found new life with Dave Duncan, and put a picture of him right in the middle of them. It should also recognize HOF’ers that spent significant time with the Cardinals like Orlando Cepeda (Cepeda won his only MVP and WS as a Cardinal in 1967), Steve Carlton (left over $5,000, what the ’70’s could have been) and many others, but the one player who should have the most wall space next to Musial is Hornsby.
I’d also like to see a section for those players in the Hall of Very Good, starting with Jim Edmonds. Willie McGee, Ted Simmons, Ken Boyer, Chris Carpenter and Scott Rolen should be in that group as well. I think Edmonds will eventually get in the HOF someday as there are not 10 CF’ers to ever play the position on offense on defense as well as he did. When defensive metrics catch up and the voters start to pay attention to them, Edmonds will get in. I think the Cards should consider that.