Back again with another roster issue. Who knew putting a baseball team together was this hard?
As you know, we have decided to put a spot on the roster for Designated Hitter, considering that the Milwaukee Brewers played in the American League from their inception in 1970 until 1997. While I certainly appreciate National League play a lot more (the reasons which are a topic for another discussion) it is equally important to honor the team’s history, and leaving off the DH position would be ignoring some amazing players in the franchise’s history.
The harder decision was who exactly to put in this position. So it shall be put to a vote, and the rules are the same. Here are the candidates, their story, and your chance to put one of them on the All-Brewers squad.
Henry “Hank” Aaron (1975-1976)
Hammerin’ Hank’s story ought to speak for itself. He is the man most baseball fans still consider the Home Run King – and with good reason. His 755 career Home Runs are emblazoned in the mind of everyone who even pretends to know a lick about the game, not only because of the hits themselves – but the way he did it. He was class personified. Never flashy, and always gracious. He stayed in the top ten in almost every offensive category for his entire career. His career Wins Above Replacement sits at 141.6. Essentially taking Hank out of a lineup was losing an entire season. You can’t imagine production like that.
His time in Milwaukee was undoubtedly the twilight of his career, a swan song in the home that gave Hank his start. That isn’t to say that Aaron didn’t go some good work. He garnered All Star recognition in 1975 and proved to be serviceable in the 202 games he played for the team. His statistics in Milwaukee are not on the level with the rest of his career. But to leave Hank Aaron out of the discussion knowing he played on the Brewers would be doing a disservice not only to him, but the general idea of All-Time teams, baseball, and rational thought.
If you think about offensive production in the last six years in Milwaukee, if Prince’s name isn’t the first thing that comes to mind there’s something wrong with you. In his relatively short career, he has managed to lead the team all-time in On Base Percentage (.385), and On Base Plus Slugging (.919) and sits third in slugging percentage (.535). Basically, he’s really good at his job. If that doesn’t do it for you, how does 192 career home runs and 536 RBI’s sound? Sure it isn’t exactly Hank Aaron, but it sure is a hell of a start. Prince’s career averages are off the charts in almost every major category. Though he currently plays first base and only works DH in limited inter-league play, there is little doubt that come the end of the season, he might make a nice long career in that position if some American League team is lucky (and rich) enough to grab up the young superstar.
So, we have the candidates up now, and your chance to vote. Choose wisely, although in this case, I don’t think you have a losing bet.