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Joe Morgan had his statue unveiled at Great American Ballpark. And he said something interesting.

Sep 7, 2013, 3:00 PM EDT

Joe Morgan

Last night Joe Morgan became the sixth former Red to have a statue at Great American Ballpark. Before him: Joe Nuxhall, Ted Kluszewski Frank Robinson, Ernie Lombardi and  Johnny Bench. The statue was dedicated before the game and sits at the northwest entrance to the ballpark, which is the main entrance. So: pretty cool.

Also pretty cool: all eight starting position players for the 1975-76 World Series champion Reds — the Great Eight, as some call them — were on hand. Including Pete Rose, who was given permission from Major League Baseball. Cincinnati never lets you forget about the Big Red Machine, but man, when you have a lineup with Morgan, Bench, Rose, Perez, Concepcion, Griffey, Foster and Geronimo in it they can be excused for reminding you. Just insane.

A third pretty cool thing? What Joe Morgan said at the presentation. After noting that Johnny Bench once said that getting his statue was more important to him than getting into the Hall of Fame — and noting that, at the time, he doubted that — Morgan said this:

“Johnny, you were right,” Morgan continued. “Today is a better day. The Hall of Fame is about numbers and playing on great teams. You only get a statue or a sculpture if they want you to be remembered.”

I love that sentiment on an emotional level in that, absolutely, the statue thing or any other honor the home team gives former players comes from a much more heartfelt place in which fan sentiment and history and all of that are mixed up into nothing short of a big hug.  On a personal level that has to be among the most satisfying things that can happen to an athlete.

But I also love it because, even though I’m sure he didn’t mean it this way based on his past comments on the matter, maybe it will nonetheless help remind those who seek to keep PED users out of the Halll of Fame that it’s not their job to decide who will and who will not be remembered. It is not their job to make the judgment that, baseball accomplishments aside, some players are to become part of history and others aren’t. That’s the stuff of statues and memorials and special days. The Hall of Fame is — or at least should be — about baseball.

  1. chukpark - Sep 7, 2013 at 3:18 PM

    Wow! Joe Morgan said something interesting? That truly is a day to celebrate!

    • tfbuckfutter - Sep 7, 2013 at 3:50 PM

      They’re already working on another statue to commemorate the moment.

      • aceshigh11 - Sep 7, 2013 at 5:58 PM

        Heheheh.

  2. scoutsaysweitersisabust - Sep 7, 2013 at 3:54 PM

    I miss firejoemorgan.com

    • tfbuckfutter - Sep 7, 2013 at 4:00 PM

      Totally.

      Fuck the heck was up with them shuttering it?

      (I know, because they got involved with Parks and Recreations….but I just like saying fuck the heck).

      • scoutsaysweitersisabust - Sep 7, 2013 at 4:05 PM

        They got involved in Parks and Rec? No shit! I love that show. Guess I know why now.

      • tfbuckfutter - Sep 7, 2013 at 4:14 PM

        Yeah. Ken Tremendous is the pseudonym for Michael Schur who played Mose on The Office and also wrote and produced for the show before co-creating Parks and Recs.

        Next time you watch it, at the end of the credits look for the Fremulon logo.

      • jwbiii - Sep 7, 2013 at 4:18 PM

        Michael Schur, aka Ken Tremendous, is the creator and lead writer for Parks and Recreation. He has also written for The Office and SNL, so his resume for writing funny stuff is pretty solid.

      • scoutsaysweitersisabust - Sep 7, 2013 at 4:33 PM

        I knew of their connection to the Office and their departure from the show signaled the end of that show being funny for me. I quickly became a huge fan of Parks and Rec. I did some research and found that one of them also writes for Workaholics, which is another fantastic comedy. This bit of trivia really brightened my day. Really glad to hear I’ve been enjoying their work without even knowing it.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Sep 7, 2013 at 8:13 PM

        KenTremendous (Michael Schnur) and Junior (Alan Yang) both write for P&R. Dak (Dave King) started working for P&R later in season 4.

        I’m not sure if you guys remember, but the best part of FJM was how they decided to reveal themselves. Basically KenTremendous made a comment about getting married to a famous person’s daughter in LA one weekend, and someone was watching Regis who mentioned he was leaving for the weekend for his daughter’s wedding. The guy puts two and two together and emails FJM asking if he’s marrying Regis’s daughter.

        Within a week or so they outed themselves.

    • chunkala - Sep 7, 2013 at 11:10 PM

      Miss FJM but Office and P&R both suck. NBC liberal humor to the extreme.

  3. psunick - Sep 7, 2013 at 4:37 PM

    OMG, Craig. Give it up, will you?
    I do admire your bulldog approach to your cause, but it gets very weary at times.
    Like, this time.

  4. cohnjusack - Sep 7, 2013 at 5:12 PM

    The best player of the 1970s and the best player on the Big Red Machine.

    It’s a shame that he is arguably more well known nowdays for his moronic commentary.

  5. mybrunoblog - Sep 7, 2013 at 5:14 PM

    Will Pete Rose ever get a statue?

    • DJ MC - Sep 7, 2013 at 5:42 PM

      At this point, he’s more likely to be forgotten by getting reinstated and going into the Hall.

    • aceshigh11 - Sep 7, 2013 at 6:06 PM

      I think Selig the Hutt would prefer Rose be frozen in carbonite and mounted on his office wall as one of his favorite decorations.

    • dexterismyhero - Sep 8, 2013 at 7:42 AM

      Pete has a statue at the local horse track!!!

  6. jimmywho14 - Sep 7, 2013 at 6:11 PM

    Rose=HOF!

  7. jimeejohnson - Sep 7, 2013 at 9:42 PM

    Very few teams have been as dominating as the Big Red Machine of 1976. They were one of the few teams to counter the long established premise that good pitching beats good hitting. Those Reds were a SCORING machine and Joe Morgan was an integral part of it.

  8. stercuilus65 - Sep 7, 2013 at 10:47 PM

    Amaazing and pathetic how craigy can turn ANYTHING into a chance to propogandazise for the ped cheaters.

  9. tc4306 - Sep 8, 2013 at 6:23 AM

    What your really mean is that the HOF is about stats, whether they were achieved legally or illegally. Could not disagree more.

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