Friday, February 6, 2009

#30 - Tim Raines

Remember when "Rock" started appearing as Raines' first name on cards in the early 90s? I never understood that. Did he insist that he be referred to that way in official communications? If he did, I can't say I blame them because I doubt I'd have the stones to disagree with this guy.

This is a nice shot of a great player. We get the full body photo as Raines drives a ball to what looks like right field. You can even see the bat he just dropped and the lines of the batter's box. My only quibble is that I'd rather Topps picked a shot where Raines was either running the bases (they almost never used photos like that back then) or taking off after a line drive.

Raines was one helluva baseball player and it bothers me that most people don't seriously consider him for the HOF. I'm not saying he should be a lock by any stretch, but just that there should be more debate about his qualifications. This is a guy who stole 70+ bases 6 consecutive seasons, something Rickey never did. He also hit .300+ for four straight seasons over that same stretch, another thing Henderson never accomplished. Keep in mind I'm not saying he was a better player than Rickey, but they're closer than people seem to accept. Take a look at their career numbers:

Henderson: .279 BA, 297 HR, 1406 SB, 127 OPS+
Raines: .294 BA, 170 HR, 808 SB, 123 OPS+

Sure, Raines isn't close in SB, but no one is, and Rock IS 5th all time. And despite all those walks Rickey racked up and his superior homer totals, Raines still has an OPS+ right in the same range.


  1. I was under the impression that he was called "Rock" on just his 1989 Topps card. Certainly that was the first time. (Gooden was called "Doc" in the same set.)

    I think Raines will get in the HOF, and he'll get a lot more support now that Henderson is off the ballot and out of people's minds. When comparing the two, Henderson obviously gets the nod. Now that he's not lingering around, Raines will get more support. He'll get in around 2018 I think.

  2. I love the new blog. While this is far from my favorite set, it is a very memorable one.

    I was looking through all of your posts tonight and I noticed that your oldest card's scans weren't that great. You may want to redo them when you get a chance. I was looking at the Davey Lopes record breaker and I couldn't tell what record he broke. Just a thought. I know that I have a ton of crappy scans on my blog. But, now that I have a new scanner, I will fix them, eventually.

  3. I'm pretty sure he is "Rock" on at least the '89 and '90 Topps cards, as well as several Topps-affiliated collections. I seem to remember a Stadium Club card from one year with "Rock" on it. Of course, I could be wrong, which is often the case.

  4. And I'm going fix those scans eventually. It took me a couple before I realized I could upload decent sized photos.