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Raffy Palmeiro gets 3,000th hit, O’s win 6-3

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by Steve DeClue

Rafael Palmeiro reached the 3,000-hit plateau with an RBI double last night to help the Orioles to their fourth win in a row and secure at least a series split in Seattle.

Congratulations Raffy. What a class act. He is now one of just four players with 3,000 hits and 500 homeruns and is destined to become a first ballot Hall-of-Famer.

I’ve seen several recent articles lately about why Palmeiro doesn’t deserve to be in the Hall of Fame. It’s really sad to see a guy like Raffy, who stands for so many good things in today’s sports world, having his accomplishments criticized rather than celebrated. This should have been a feel good moment for baseball, a truly historic accomplishment, but instead has been overshadowed by negative publicity from the media.

I apologize to people like Skip Bayless that believe Raffy isn’t worthy of the Hall. Sorry Raffy has accomplished something only four players have done in the history of the game. Sorry Raffy is a class act, a guy who has achieved his accomplishments through a sweet stroke and not steroids. Sorry Raffy isn’t a showboat or jerk that would put him in the media spotlight and make him a better sound bite. Sorry Raffy has class and has gone about his job day after day and quietly produced like few have ever done before.

The notion that a guy like Sammy Sosa, who appears to have been using steroids, deserves to be held in higher regard than Palmeiro is ridiculous. Look at the numbers. Palmeiro has greatly outproduced Sosa in every statistical category except homeruns. As for homeruns, at this current pace, Palmeiro will surpass Sosa in career homeruns sometime next year, if Raffy opts to play another season.

I guess longevity is a bad thing in the eyes of the media. I don’t understand how a guy who hit at least 38 homeruns in eight consecutive seasons, something that had never been done before, has reached such great career numbers only because he has been around for a long time.

I’m not a homer arguing for Palmeiro’s legacy just because I want to see Raffy enter the Hall as an Oriole, which he will. I’m an ambassador of baseball, a guy who loves the sport and sees Rafael as the throwback ball player we long to see return to the game. I have never seen a sweeter stroke than that of Palmeiro connecting with the ball and lifting it over the right-field scoreboard at Camden Yards.

So congratulations to Rafael Palmeiro. Your accomplishments put you among the game’s greatest, and the numbers don’t lie.

TAS: Edited

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About JD

  • http://gratefuldread.net Natalie Davis

    Raf-FY! Wow, this baseball season so far is reminding me of growing up watching the Orioles during their glory years. With Palmeiro, Tejada, and the team in contention for the pennant, this lifelong Oriole fan wants to make like Wild Bill Hagy and go nuts in the streets. Oh yeah, ain’t the beer cold, baby!

    You’re right about Palmeiro being the type who does his job the best he can each and every game — in many ways he reminds me of a certain Iron Man, and his diligence and performance are reminscent of the legendary Brooks Robinson back in the day. I would be very surprised if Raffy didn’t get into the Hall down the road; he surely merits the honor. And yeah, I’ll admit it — I’m a homer and damn proud to be a black-and-orange-bleeding Oriole fan, even during the fallow seasons. But Palmeiro is a player of whom all baseball fans can be proud. Raf-FY!

  • Anthony Grande

    I am sorry Natalie, but the will fall on their face in the second half like they always do.

  • http://gratefuldread.net Natalie Davis

    Oh my god — having you refer to me by my first name feels like the worst kind of violation. I have never addressed you so familiarly, Mr. Grande, and never would; we are not aqcuaintances in any way and we certainly are not friends. If you must dialogue with me on these pages, I must insist that you do so without referring to me by my first name. Feel free not to refer to me by any name at all.

    Sorry, I don’t mean to make a scene, but that felt like a kick in the stomach from someone wearing steel-toed boots. Agonizingly painful, that was.

  • Anthony Grande

    Ah, why are you so hateful? Natalie. I thought we were freinds.

    Natalie, if you don’t want me to adress you by Natalie then post under Mrs. Davis.

  • http://gratefuldread.net Natalie Davis

    Sadist.

  • Anthony Grande

    Ooh ooh!!!! Phillip, Phillip Winn!!! Natalie is insulting me.

  • http://www.earvolution.com JD

    I think he’s Hall bound. I mean look at the names that have 500 homers and 3000 hits, all great ones. He’s earned his spot.

  • http://gratefuldread.net Natalie Davis

    No, Mr. Grande, I am merely stating a fact. A sadist is by definition one who finds enjoyment in being cruel. If Mr. Winn opts to ban me for presenting an accurate description of you, so be it.

  • http://www.underestimator.com Lynn Schibeci

    Go Rafael! I watched the Os 84 to 92. Now I live in Albuquerque and I love our minor league team, but they ain’t the Os.

  • http://www.livejournal.com/users/djradiohead DJRadiohead

    I understand the argument from people who argue Palmeiro was never a dominant player in this era of offensive basball.

    The numbers speak for themselves. Mays, Aaron, Murray… Palmeiro. He’s a Hall of Famer. Is he the greatest first baseman ever? No. Is he the greatest first baseman of his generation? Not really. The numbers speak for themselves.

  • mike

    Sorry, Steve. Both Raffy and Sammy are ‘roid monsters.

  • http://none.com Bob A. Booey

    Perjurer! Canseco wasn’t lying.

    I think this means Raffy has to wait a couple years before he gets into the Hall of Fame. He’ll still be voted in, most likely, but it’s no shoo-in anymore as one would expect for 3,000 hits and 500 HRs. For the other big names, it’s just rumors. Now he’s tested positive and lied before Congress. I think Palmeiro should have just laid off the steroids this year, played poorly but gotten his 3,000th hit and gone off in the sunset with his reputation intact. This probably means that Palmeiro has to wait a while before he’ll be inducted.

    That is all.