The final votes are in for the Milwaukee Brewers Franchise Four, and while it is hard to argue Paul Molitor, Robin Yount or Cecil Cooper, Ryan Braun was deserving of the final spot. While Rollie Fingers had great accomplishments throughout his entire career, he should not be mentioned in the top four to ever wear a Brewers’ uniform. Here is a look at why Braun should have gotten the final spot.
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In his career Fingers was a seven time all-star, an occasional starter and one of the best relievers in the game. During his four years in Milwaukee, Fingers appeared in 177 games and had a solid 2.54 ERA. He also won the Cy Young and MVP award in 1981 while pitching in Milwaukee.
But even with these great accomplishments, Fingers shouldn’t be viewed as one of the best Brewers ever. In Fingers’ career, he played less games as a Brewer than he did as a member of the Padres or the A’s. K-Rod, who has been a part of the Brewers roster for parts of the last five seasons, has more appearances and most likely by the middle of next year he will have more saves than Fingers had in his time with the team.
By adding Braun instead of Fingers, the Brewers would have had a face outside of the 1982 team and someone who could represent the last decade of competitive baseball. Yes Braun has the cloud of PED’s around him, but his numbers throughout his last nine seasons are hard to overlook.
Currently Braun is second all-time in batting average, fifth in hits and third in RBI’s as a Brewer. With six more home runs this season, Braun will also overtake Yount as the franchise leader in homers. On top of that Braun has six all-star selections, five Silver Slugger Awards, a Rookie of the Year and an MVP.
The Franchise Four was meant to show the best each team had to offer. While Braun is not a favorite around the league and has questions surrounding his past, it was a grave mistake for him to be left off of the Brewers’ list.