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Alan Trammell: you’re not helping

Feb 20, 2014, 2:12 PM EDT

Alan Trammell

Alan, dude. You’re my childhood idol. I wore number 3 when I played little league and Babe Ruth baseball because I adored you. And I have been outraged to the point of insanity that, since you have retired, neither the Tigers nor the BBWAA has given you your due. Your number 3 should be retired. You should be in the Hall of Fame. It’s as simple as that.

So, when you say magnanimous, seemingly reasonable and charitable things about how you’re cool with Ian Kinsler wearing your number, you really blow a hole in all of that outrage I’ve been working up. It’s like fighting your way to Jerusalem in a Holy Crusade, only to have God Himself yell down “No, it’s all good. No need to take the Holy City for Christendom.”

Please get with the program. Say some intemperate things about how Ian Kinsler isn’t fit to carry your jock. And while you’re at it, get on Jose Iglesias for wearing Lou Whitaker’s number 1 too. For Pete’s sake, this is unbelievable.

  1. El Bravo - Feb 20, 2014 at 2:21 PM

    “For Pete’s sake, this is unbelievable.” I knew you were a Pete Rose apologist deep down.

    • stevedrc - Feb 21, 2014 at 10:36 PM

      With all due respect to the author of this article. Although I applaud your dedication to the Detroit Tigers Baseball Club and to Alan Trammell, to make such a blanket statement that Ian Kinsler isn’t qualified to carry his Jock Strap is so way off mark it is not funny! I, grew up just outside of Detroit and many a summer day/evening, I could be found in the bleachers cheering on my Tigers! There were those who felt Trammell would never be as good as the ones he replaced over the years. Yet, he did!
      Now, I live in Texas. And am now a Texas Ranger’s fan (grow where you’re planted) where I saw Ian Kinsler come up and be such a tremendous force to be reckoned with both on the field (his defensive coverage of 2nd base is short of spectacular!). I personally think Detroit got the better end of the trade and think Prince is just another Josh Hamilton, decent numbers during the season but notably absent in any playoff game or series. So, before you post another hair brained rant about Ian Kinsler, please look at the facts. And, come September, I expect to read a retraction from you because Ian is going to blow you away. He is great with the glove. Fast as greased lightning on the base paths, can be COUNTED on during clutch hitting situations. Texas is surely going to miss Ian Kinsler. And if you still feel this way, I invite you to send him back and we will gladly give you Prince back!!
      Enjoy you day!

  2. bigharold - Feb 20, 2014 at 2:25 PM

    “ fighting your way to Jerusalem in a Holy Crusade, only to have God Himself yell down “No, it’s all good. No need to take the Holy City for Christendom.””

    You saw Kingdom of Heaven on HBO Encore too.

    • bigharold - Feb 20, 2014 at 2:28 PM

      ““I have no problem at all with it,” Trammell said in a telephone interview this week. “I hope he gets plenty of hits in it. All the best.

      “I hope he does very well. I’ve followed him, and I know he’ll be a nice addition to the Tigers.””

      Oh, .. and all that reasonableness is some of the reason you like the guy too.

  3. karlkolchak - Feb 20, 2014 at 2:26 PM

    Okay, whether or not Trammell deserves to be in the HOF, how for Pete’s blessed sake has Detroit not retired his number and Whitaker’s?

    Memo to to the Tigers: It’s okay–there’s still lots and lots of unretired numbers left.

    • scatterbrian - Feb 20, 2014 at 3:57 PM

      This was my first thought too. Shame on the Tigers.

    • sportsfan18 - Feb 20, 2014 at 4:00 PM

      Trammell DOES deserve to be in the HOF. There are currently 22 SS in the MLB HOF and Trammell is better than half of them… BOTH offensively and defensively…

      Tammell’s Career, Peak and JAWS are ALL higher than those of the average HOF SS.

      Barry Larkin recently sailed into the HOF (deservedly so) and his career wins above replacement number is 70.2. Trammell’s career wins above replacement number is 70.3.

      As far as all time WAR for shortstops, Trammell is TIED for 7th with Barry Larkin at 70.4

      Here is Trammell’s ranking on offense for all shortstops.

      “Among all those who logged at least 7,500 career plate appearances and spent at least half their games at shortstop, Trammell ranks 10th with an OPS+ of 110. ”

      In terms of offensive bWAR, Trammell is #10 ALL TIME for shortstops. ALL TIME. Again, there are currently 22 shortstops in the HOF. He beats MOST of them…

      And for DEFENSE…

      “He was also one of the best defensive shortstops ever. In defensive bWAR, he ranks 10th all-time among primary shortstops. All of this squares with Trammell’s reputation; he won four Gold Gloves in a span of five years.”

      Again, ALL TIME he ranks as the 10th best defensive shortstops EVER.

      There is NO doubt he should already be in the HOF.

    • frank433 - Feb 20, 2014 at 6:09 PM

      Maybe they are waiting until he dies, like they did with Sparky.

    • umjm13 - Feb 21, 2014 at 2:43 PM

      Because the Tigers have a high bar for retiring numbers, and they’re no doubt waiting for the HoF process to play itself out. It’s not just the number, they’ll do a statue too, and the whole ceremony attached to all that would be much better if it’s attached to him taking his rightful place in the hall.

  4. kylewo - Feb 20, 2014 at 2:30 PM

    I think this makes him seem humble. Maybe I wouldn’t be, but this demeanor does contribute to his likability. Though, I agree that the numbers not being retired is very surprising.

    • umjm13 - Feb 21, 2014 at 2:46 PM

      No, it’s really not surprising. All of the retired tigers numbers are in the hall with the exception of Willie Horton who is there primarily there for his contributions to the city itself. That’s what makes those statues special. Maybe if Trammell doesn’t get into the hall they’ll do something anyway, but there’s absolutely no reason to jump the gun.

      • sportsfan18 - Feb 22, 2014 at 1:55 AM

        Based on Trammell’s stats, both offensively and defensively, he SHOULD have been in the hall long ago. He’s better than most of the 22 shortstops in the HOF…

        It is NOT his fault. He’s nice, not a bad apple etc…

        There was an article on this site a bit ago that compared his stats to Jeter’s. Yes, Jeter is better but the author showed that Trammell was much closer to Jeter than people think.

        The author also showed the BEST five seasons for each Trammell and Jeter and Trammell’s best five seasons were better than Jeter’s best five seasons.

        Jeter compares well to Larkin and in many ways to Cal as well (better BA than Cal, a 110 OPS+ to Cal’s 112 OPS+, pretty darn close). Yes, Cal was better, I’m not trying to say that.

        Trammell played a long time and his stats are beyond HOF worth for a shortstop. Many HOF shortstops have stats LESS than his…

  5. stex52 - Feb 20, 2014 at 3:06 PM

    Hey, sounds like Allen is in a good place in his life. Good for him. He knows what he was worth. But add me to the chorus of those surprised his number is still active.

    • stex52 - Feb 20, 2014 at 3:06 PM

      Okay, Alan. Sorry about that.

      • scatterbrian - Feb 20, 2014 at 4:36 PM

        whatever stecks

  6. schmedley69 - Feb 20, 2014 at 3:11 PM

    Your plea would probably carry more weight if you didn’t abandon your childhood team for the Braves as soon as your parents got cable.

    • Craig Calcaterra - Feb 20, 2014 at 3:23 PM

      Well, it was getting cable plus moving out of range of WJR and WDIV in Detroit.

      • schmedley69 - Feb 20, 2014 at 3:31 PM

        Ok, we’ll let is slide then 😉

      • nolanwiffle - Feb 21, 2014 at 9:53 AM

        We’ll? You got a mouse in your pocket? I’m not letting anything slide. Calcaterra isn’t fit to wear the English “D”.

    • historiophiliac - Feb 20, 2014 at 4:03 PM

      Cable ruins everything!

  7. johnnysoda - Feb 20, 2014 at 4:12 PM

    If Trammell himself doesn’t care, I don’t see why anyone else should, frankly.

    • historiophiliac - Feb 20, 2014 at 4:45 PM


      /throws baseball cards

  8. raulduke11 - Feb 20, 2014 at 4:20 PM

    Both should be in the hall of very good, not the hall of fame

  9. pwshrugged - Feb 20, 2014 at 7:00 PM

    Hall of Fame arguments aside, the Tigers do themselves a disservice by not having retired Whitaker’s or Trammell’s numbers. In fact, no member of the 1984 team has had their number retired by the Tigers. Now, to be fair, winning a single World Series doesn’t automatically make players worthy of that kind of fanfare, but let’s face it – the ’84 Tigers had some special players, some of whom stayed with the team for a long time and played at a high level. Tram and Lou are, of course, probably at the top of that list.

    It occurred to me when I saw this news, that perhaps the Tigers are cursed by the baseball gods right now for not giving proper due to their team history. That the 1984 team, which is beloved by fans, seems to be so forgotten by the team… it’s just sad.

    And waiting until he was dead to retire Sparky’s number doesn’t count.

  10. ggallin4evr - Feb 20, 2014 at 7:47 PM


  11. dcarroll73 - Feb 20, 2014 at 10:54 PM

    I posted this before, and I need to write it again. Trammell is a must-have HoFer; put him in or close the place. I will point out that I am a Giants and Yankees fan with no hometown bias. Please just look at the stats. There is no way that any baseball fan who can both read and count should oppose this man’s selection.

  12. Minoring In Baseball - Feb 21, 2014 at 12:23 AM

    I would love to see Tram and Sweet Lou in the HOF, and it’s really a shame what little respect the whole 1984 championship team gets. I’ve always said that there’s no reason the Tigers can’t honor them and retire their numbers. A statue of them ‘turning two’ would look great at Comerica, also.

  13. brewpub420 - Feb 21, 2014 at 5:28 PM

    Good lord , put down the kool aid. I am a lifelong tiger fan , and I realize Alan is without question an icon in Detroit baseball. But hall of fame? really? no , not even close. And neither is Jack Morris either imo. It is the hall of fame , where only the best of the best should be not the fodder and also ran’s they put in for the most part. Alan might make a hall of very good or hall of above average but even he knows he is not a hall of fame caliber player. Hell lets put Wilcox , Parrish , or Dan Petry in as well. Stretch it a bit and we can try and talk Howard Johnson to going in with a Detroit cap. Yeah it’s all delusional

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