I've always loved the "Mt. Rushmore" discussions. Don't know what that is? It's thinking hard on who would be the four faces on each team's Mt. Rushmore, or better explained, the four biggest icons from each team. I think I will do this for the next week or so. There will be one rule with my Mt. Rushmore's for each team: A player can only be on one Rushmore. For example: I could easily put Nolan Ryan on the Rangers, Astros, or Mets...but, he will only be able to go on one.
So, let's get crackin'. We're going to start with the National League East.
Los Angeles/Brooklyn Dodgers: Sandy Koufax, Jackie Robinson, Fernando Valenzuela, and Duke Snider.
Defense: Koufax and Robinson need no defense. Each of those two defined their position during their time period. Both were easily selected to the Hall of Fame. Duke Snider was a masher and was widely considered one of the best ball players of his era. Therefore, I feel that I don't need to justify having the Duke on here. Now, Fernando. Yes, some of you may be able to skewer me for adding Fernando but the man was awesome. Many of you don't remember how good he was...YouTube him. You'll see.
Arizona Diamondbacks: Luis Gonzalez, Mark Grace, Curt Schilling, Jose Valverde
Defense: It's hard to put up a Rushmore Four for a fairly new team. 1998 really wasn't all that long ago. So, it's kind of hard to give four faces of the franchise. Luis was the Diamondbacs. He just defined what that team was and is. A class act that will never sniff the Hall of Fame. Grace was a gamer and people loved him. Schilling, even though he made his legacy in Boston, was a force in the World Series vs. the Yankees. He was great on this team and he would never make the Boston Rushmore. Valverde...I was having trouble of thinking of anyone better. Thoughts?
San Francisco/New York Giants: Barry Bonds, Willie Mays, Willie McCovey, and Orlando Cepeda.
Defense: This list needs absolutely no defending. If you disagree with any of these then you need to read some history. OR stop following baseball...the NBA is calllllliiiiiinnnnngggg.
Colorado Rockies: Todd Helton, Larry Walker, Troy Tulowitzki, Dante Bichette
Defense: Another new-ish team. However, the Rocks weren't that hard to find four guys who defined what the team is. Helton should be a HO'Fer...Rookie of the Year, Silver Sluggers, blah blah blah. Todd is the MAN (capital MAN) in Colorado. Walker and Bichette were also great players during their times on the Rockies. Lots of RBI's and lots of HR's....were they both clean during this time? Well, that's another debate for another time. Finally, Tulo...it's quite strange to put a current player on a Mt. Rushmore list but Troy is the real deal. He is destined for greatness.
San Diego Padres: Tony Gwynn, Dave Winfield, Trevor Hoffman, Gary Sheffield.
Defense: Gwynn is the face of the franchise in San Diego and probably the most consistent hitter that I have ever seen play. Winfield played on a number of other teams but his chances for making a Rushmore were the best in San Diego. So, here he is. Same with Sheffield. Sheff was a friggin' phenomenal hitter. Just awesome. Right behind Mariano Rivera, when it comes to closers, is Trevor Hoffman. He was that good.
Well, that's the NL West Mt. Rushmore's. There are some really good players on that list. Mays, Bonds, Schilling, Helton...etc. The NL West has seen some great players but...the good news is that the other divisions have seen far greater. Stay tuned for the rest of the list.
Don't agree? Email or respond and we can debate...defend your team! Defend your favorite player!
ON DECK: AL WEST