The 2018 Hall of Fame Ballot has plenty of worthy contenders to join the Hall of Fame this upcoming year. 14 players return to the ballot, and 19 new players have been listed on the ballot. Today, we look at the career of outfielder Vladimir Guerrero.
One of the biggest power hitters in the game, right fielder Vladimir Guerrero was always synonymous with power. Guerrero was one of the most electrifying players to watch in baseball. For the casual fan, or for the more intense fans of the league, Guerrero could always bring a hypnotic awe over any crowd.
Making the Case: Vladimir Guerrero and the 2018 Hall of Fame Ballot
Signed as an international free agent on March 1st, 1993 by the Montreal Expos(now the Washington Nationals), Guerrero would wait 3 years before making his MLB debut in 1996. His first full season in the MLB would be the year after in 1997. After spending 8 years in Montreal, Guerrero would sign a 5 year, $75 million contract with the Anaheim Angels(now Los Angeles Angels) as a free agent after the 2003 season. Guerrero would go on to spend 6 years with the Angels. After those 6 years, Guerrero would sign a one year, $5.5 million contract with the Texas Rangers as a free agent on January 10th, 2010. After that year in Texas, Guerrero would sign a one year, $8 million contract with the Baltimore Orioles as a free agent on February 18th. 2011.
The next year, he would sign a minor league contract with the Toronto Blue Jays, and would not get the chance to play for the organization. After that time in the Blue Jays system, Guerrero would play for Tigres del Licey of the Dominican Professional Baseball League.
On March 31st, 2014, Guerrero would officially announce his retirement, signing a one day contract with the Angels to retire as an Angel.
Statistics and Accomplishments
In his eight years playing for the Expos, Guerrero would hit a stunning .323 with 234 home runs and 704 RBI. In 6 years with the Angels, Guerrero hit a .319 batting average with 173 homeruns and 616 RBI. Guerrero’s career stats include an incredible .318 batting average with 449 homeruns and 1.496 RBI. During his career, Guerrero would win 8 Silver Slugger Awards. Four of them were won consecutively from 2004-2008. He would win the other four in 1998, 1999, 2002, and 2010. Guerrero would also be named a 9 time All Star. He would be nominated consecutively for this honor as well from 1999-2002, as well as in 2004-2007. Guerrero would make his final All Star appearance in 2010. And perhaps the most impressive of all these accomplishments, Guerrero won an MVP Award in 2004.
The Arguments For and Against
For the argument that Guerrero should be inducted, he has accomplished nearly every individual goal possible in MLB. And not only that, but he was known for his arm in the outfield and was at one point the leading hitter from the Dominican Republic.
The argument against would be the big thing that Guerrero is missing from his resume, a World Series title. A championship is obviously the ultimate goal for players, and the ultimate trophy for fans to recognize a career.
With everything considered, Vladimir Guerrero should absolutely be inducted into the Hall of Fame. His individual accomplishments are too impressive to be ignored, and he is tied with Kirby Puckett for the highest batting average since World War II. Guerrero was always able to make a play worth watching, and the Hall of Fame would be even more impressive with him in it.
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