Andy Pettitte: HOF?

Andy Pettitte retired this week.  Putting aside the steroid stuff for a moment, I believe he belongs in the HOF five or so years from now.

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The raw stats (240 wins, high-ish 3.88 ERA) might not bear this statement out, but (at least to me) what Pettitte always signified was “winning”.  This guy just, plain and simply, won ballgames.  His overall winning % is .635 over 16 seasons, and if you look at the stats there are just so many seasons where he won 9-10 more games than he lost.

Plus, Pettitte was the epitomy of a big-game pitcher.  Sure, he got the chance to pitch under the October lights so many times because of his Yankee pinstripes, but his career postseason #’s are 19-10, 3.83, in 263 innings.  So, basically, he pitched an entire season in the postseason, and almost exactly duplicated his regular-season stats (high win percentage, highest-3′s ERA).  Not bad at all on the biggest of stages for the biggest of teams.  When he pitched against my Twins in a big game, I had very little hopes for pulling out a victory.

The one problem, of course…

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Andy Pettitte is inside that steroid cloud based on his relationship with Roger Clemens.  In fact, Pettitte admitted using HGH on multiple occasions, supposedly in order to heal an injury and help return to the team faster, not necessarily to improve performance (definitions, definitions, I know).  I’m usually wary of these guys, but for whatever reason I’ll give Pettitte the benefit of the doubt.  Considering that no firm anti-doping rules were in place before the mid-2000s, players in a situation like Pettitte’s WERE likely unsure what was “right” or “wrong” to do chemically and still play by the rules.  While I truly believe that Clemens knew that what he was doing was wrong but did it anyway because he just didn’t care, I think that Pettitte was caught in that grey area of past steroid usage.

Thus, if I’m voting, I’m putting Mr. Pettitte in the Hall.

5 Comments

Good career, excellent playoff record, 3.88, HGH. He’s not going in
http://wrigleyregular.mlblogs.com/

If you totally put his PED chatter in an envelope and drop it intothe ocean….he is a HOF’er.
The problem is that the BBWAA have the mind of elephants, they never forget.
Sure Pettitte was a master of the pick-off and pressure starts, but his buddy-buddy days in rehab in Tampa with a vial will be a red flag come 5 years time.
But, we love a comeback story,and after that was revealed he did still have some great seasons without the aid of that clear product.
I say 7 years from now he is in a Cooperstown kind of mood.

Rays Renegade
http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

I believe he will get in, but not on the first ballot. I believe the BBWAA will make sure they don’t vote him in on his first time being eligible. But I respect Pettitte for admitting his use and not lying about it after the fact.

Ron

http://strictlycubsbaseball.mlblogs.com/

I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but if Jack Morris isn’t going in, with better career numbers, equal postseason mystique, and no steroid rumors, then I don’t think Pettitte stands much of a chance.

Mussina, though, I’ll get behind. I think the Gold Gloves are his X-factor….

Good point about the Morris/Pettitte comparison. Because I didn’t see Morris pitch in his prime, I always overlook him on the HOF ballot.

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