The Zionist Conspiracy

A clandestine undertaking on behalf of Israel, the Jets and the Jews.

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Monday, April 17, 2006
Keith Hernandez's Place in History

Gil Student in a post in Hirhurim takes issue with an article in "Baseball Today" whereby Murray Chass claims that Keith Hernandez was not really a baseball gadol as has been claimed many times by many of his students. Gil goes on to refute every point made by Mr. Chass, which is all well and good but frankly I'm tired of all the bashing of the Mex from the Bronx. I don't know if Murray Chass is a Yankees fan or not but it doesn't matter. If he minimizes the Mex's greatness in any way he might as well be. KH was one of the ten biggest sporting influences of the last millennium in my view. The top ten in my view were:

1. Babe Ruth
2. Michael Jordan
3. Wayne Gretzky
4. Jim Brown
5. Willie Mays
6. Wilt Chamberlain
7. Ted Williams
8. Hank Aaron
9. Gordie Howe
10. Keith Hernandez

One can debate if there were others. There probably are some I did not list who were as great as or greater than those I listed. Two immediately come to mind: Jim Thorpe in his generation and Joe Montana in mine. I had my reasons for choosing these ten, but even if one expands the list to include these two as well as others, the list isn't going to be that long.

Was Keith Hernandez the greatest home run hitter of our time? I don't know but homers alone are not what makes a player a Gadol (although it can be as it was with Hank Aaron). One has to look at the totality of the individual and what it is he contributed to the sporting world, and even the entire world. There were few like him (if any) who were as brilliant, encompassed so much knowledge, both baseball and history, and had so much influence. His knowledge of opposing hitters had few peers. Even Don Mattingly who was known to have won many Gold Gloves said that the Mex knew how to play a bunt better than he did.

The fact that the Yankees fans refuse to recognize this does not make this any less true. But it does prove how myopic and politicized Yankees fans are.