Andre Dawson: Hall of Fame or not?

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Welcome to The Show! On Thursday, ESPN.com senior baseball writer Tim Kurkjian will drop by at 2 p.m. ET for another installment of "That's Debatable," a feature in which we break down a hot topic. This week, we're examining some of the candidates on the MLB Hall of Fame ballot.

Wednesday's question: Is Andre Dawson a Hall of Famer or not?

THE CASE FOR DAWSON


He won the NL MVP in 1987, and finished second in two other years. He made eight All-Star teams. He won eight Gold Gloves. He won the NL Rookie of the Year. He had more RBIs (1,591) than all but 33 players in history; he had more than Willie McCovey, Willie Stargell or Al Kaline. He was an amazing athlete, a dynamic blend of power and speed: he, Willie Mays and Barry Bonds are the only players in history with 400 homers, 300 steals.

THE CASE AGAINST DAWSON


He made a lot of outs. His career on-base percentage is .323, which was lower than the league average during his career. He never walked as many as 50 times in a season. He had nearly 1,000 more strikeouts than walks. He hit .279, and only hit .300 in four seasons.

THE VERDICT


Andre Dawson is a borderline guy, but he is a Hall of Famer. To appreciate him, you have to look past some of the numbers, and you have to have seen him play in his prime. He was a team leader in every way. He played as hard as anyone, he played as hurt as anyone. Eleven years on the turf, and in obscurity, in Montreal ruined his knees and his visibility. In 21 seasons, he never played in a World Series. We're not blaming him for that.


In That's Debatable!, we give you the topic, and then we'll have one of our writers stopping by to debate the issue with you. To suggest a topic for "That's Debatable," go here. Or check out the full archive.

Kurkjian Archive: Chats | Columns

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