Thursday, May 12, 2005
May 12th, 2001
Carlos Delgado Homers
This is a noteworthy event as it was Delgado's 204th home run for the Blue Jays, which moved him past Joe Carter and into the number one spot all-time for the team. He would total 336 homers for the Jays before moving on to the Marlins this past off-season. I did a little bit on team saves leaders a couple of weeks ago and mentioned that on account of recent usage patterns and prominence of the save statistic, fans of nearly every team would instantly recognize their all-time saves leader. This is also true of home runs; team leaders are almost exclusively all-time greats, and those that aren't would be recognized by their fans on account of their prominent standing in team history. Actually, that's not quite doing it justice; excluding the 1990s expansion clubs, only a handful have a player as their home run leader who isn't a Hall of Famer or future Hall of Famer.
The teams which do not have an all-time great as their HR leader are an interesting bunch. In addition to the aforementioned Jays, the Mets' all time leader is Darryl Strawberry with just 252; that will belong to Carlos Beltran (or David Wright) someday. The Angels have Tim Salmon who is a good player who's just hung around a while and only played for one team. The Padres have easily the most forgettable home run leader, probably the only one who wouldn’t be recognized by his team’s fans, Nate Colbert. The Rangers can offer only Juan Gonzalez who will be in the Hall of Very Good next to Delgado and possibly Jim Thome (the Indians leader) if his struggles this season for the Phillies are not just a blip.