This morning on my way to work I forgot to bring my newly-burned Coldplay CD which meant that I was stuck listening to AM Sports Radio. While putting up with Sid Rosenberg on 790 The Ticket I was somewhat perplexed when he starting ranting on about Yankees pitcher Mike Mussina. Basically, in the most eloquent manner Sid can come up with he called Mussina overpaid and extremely overrated. Huh?
Looking at Mike’s stats over 18 seasons you can’t help but put him in the top 5 pitchers of the last two decades. He may have never reached that 20-win plateau but he’s hit 19 wins twice, 18 three times, 17 twice, and at least 15 three times. He is perhaps the most reliable pitcher who is not a superstar and for some reason, he gets absolutely zero love from the hobby. In fact, you can buy cards with certified autographs for under $20 dollars all day long on eBay.
Meanwhile, there is a kid in Cincinnati that has gotten off to a great start and could very well spit on a baseball card and sell it for $500 to a bunch of Beckett Message Board zombies. At 39 years of age, Mussina is less than 50 wins away from 300 for his career. If and when he reaches that number, the question still remains: Will he enter the Hall of Fame?
I’m willing to bet on Mussina over Bruce any day of the week. After all, we’ve seen rookies get off to amazing starts only to end up playing in Mexican leagues by the end of their third season. Mike Mussina may not be as appealing as a Joba but has proven he is among the all-time greats. He’s got at least one vote, too bad it doesn’t count.