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A Slow Start to the New Year

Mike SteffanosMonday, January 2, 2006
By Mike Steffanos

Greetings, everyone. There isn't a lot out there today, and I am in the process of working on a project for another web site, but did find a couple of items of interest featuring Doc Gooden:

Mets.com: Marty Noble on Dr. K
Marty Noble offers a nice piece on Dwight Gooden, highlighting his amazing 1985 season, when it seemed inevitable that he would eventually make it to Cooperstown, and the sad reality of Gooden's chances now that his name appears on the ballot:

Now, the ballot for the Hall of Fame class of 2006 is out, and Gooden is included on it. For the first time, voters have been asked to examine his credentials and measure them against their own definitions of what makes a Hall of Famer.

And now it is clear that the sense of inevitability that existed in 1985 was a case of foregone delusion.

You have a way with a phrase, Marty.

Mets.com: Another look at Gooden
Mike Bauman offers another look at the waste of talent Gooden represented:

He was supposed to be a strikeout king for the ages. Instead, he became a cautionary tale about human frailty and the perils of instant stardom.

Every December, when the Hall of Fame ballot arrives, there is particular pleasure in reviewing the first-year candidates. The vast majority of them will never be inducted into the Hall, but these are all careers of substance, guaranteed to produce distinctly positive recollections.

There is one name on this year's ballot that does not produce any warm and fuzzy associations. That would be the name of Dwight Gooden. In viewing this candidacy, there is mostly sadness. Dwight Gooden was one of the most magnificently talented pitchers anyone has ever seen. But he will not be going to Cooperstown, unless the National Baseball Hall of Fame opens a What-Should-Have-Been wing.

If the HOF does open that What-Should-Have-Been wing, maybe Gooden's friend and teammate Daryl Strawberry can be enshrined next to Doc.

The Hardball Times: Legendary Player Agents
If you've had enough of Gooden's depressing story, Maury Brown offers a fascinating look at Jerry Kapstein, Dick Moss and Randy and Alan Hendricks in part 1 of a series he is writing on the Player Agents' role in major league baseball. According to Brown:

The player agent is now part and parcel with how MLB does business. With the astronomical salary figures and terms with which they are derived, rarely do we see an individual player negotiating his contract without an agent attached to his side. They're the ying to the yang of management's teams of lawyers. One deal (e.g. the Texas Rangers and one Alex Rodriguez) can shift the entire landscape of one or more off-seasons, where baseball lives and breaths in a market driven system of supply and demand. The sky is the limit and the only thing that can stop some clubs is the paper ceiling of the competitive balance tax, or as we all know it, the luxury tax. Names can be made, along with a small fortune.

Mets Walkoffs: New Years Metsolutions
Mark at Mets Walkoffs offers a funny and slightly scary look at the way the Mets do their business.

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