The Sports Daily > Hall of Very Good
Cooperstown 2018: Hideki Matsui

First Year on Ballot

PLAYING CAREER: Yomiuri Giants (1993–2002), New York Yankees (2003–2009), Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim (2010), Oakland Athletics (2011) and Tampa Bay Rays (2012).

ACHIEVEMENTS: Career .293 batting average, 2643 hits, 507 home runs, 1649 RBI and 1557 runs scored in 20 seasons of Japan and Major League Baseball. In Japan, appeared in nine All-Star Games (1994-2002), won three Japan Series (1994, 2000 and 2002) and won the Central League MVP three times (1996, 2000 and 2002). In the Majors, won one World Series (2009). Named to two All-Star Games (2003-2004). Did not miss a game in his first three seasons with the Yankees, putting together a streak of 518 games played. Before that, he played in 1250 consecutive games with Yomiuri, for a total professional baseball streak of 1,768. Matsui holds the record for longest streak of consecutive games played to start a Major League Baseball career


HOVG THOUGHTS:  If the National Baseball Hall of Fame lived up to its name and recognized all players and not just those who had success in the Major Leagues, Matsui doesn’t even need to go to a vote. He’d be in. Unfortunately, the BBWAA not looking at his combined stats (.293 batting average, 507 home runs and 1649 RBI) is a travesty.