Say this for Hall of Fame third baseman Mike Schmidt, the man is seldom afraid of his opinions. God love him for that.
On fomer Texas Rangers infielder and new Phillie Michael Young: "Michael Young could retire tomorrow, and he would be a strong candidate for the Hall of Fame. He's probably two Michael Young years away from being a first-ballot Hall of Famer. I don't know what his career hitting numbers are, but he's a little like Derek Jeter. Is he not? If he played in New York, imagine what people would be saying about Michael Young's career. Somebody would have mentioned the Hall of Fame a long time ago."
Not sure if Texas Rangers general manager Jon Daniels would agree with Mr. Schmidt, and I sure as hell know a lot of short-term memory Rangers fans do not. Schmidt does have a point - if Young played in a New York market, the slobbering love fest for this guy would be akin to a Jenna Jameson greatest hits DVD.
Since I have known Michael since he was a rookie in 2001 and he actually gave me the time of day, I will forever have a hard time remaining unbiased about Young. Yes, his season last year sucked. No doubt.
Young needs a couple of more Michael Young-type seasons and a strong case can be made that he should merit HOF consideration. Not a first ballot. Maybe a fourth or sixth ballot. If Barry Larkin, whom was a childhood sports hero of mine, gets in so easily a player like Young should get a serious look.
He's 36, and on a roster such as the Phillies he has the time and the team to make a run at a couple of more highly productive seasons.
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