Re: Dave Concepcion VS. Ozzie Smith
Having never seen Davey play in person, I think the problem with Concepcion wasn't the public face of the franchise and his reputation as an all-time great fielder isn't there -- fair or not.
I think there's some feeling that he was a fielding first SS on some really good teams and that his fieldling, while good, wasn't superlative in the way that Ozzie's was. While they did have a WS appearance, the Cards were usually a mediocre team through his tenure. He was able to shine, to stand out on a team that didn't have many other stars. He was speed and defense on teams that won with pitching, speed, and defense. Meanwhile, Davey was simply part of the crew with other household names like Morgan, Perez, Bench, Rose, Foster, etc.
In my mind, the question becomes, how much better defensively was Ozzie than Davey? How does Davey stack up historically. Frankly, unless he can be considered one of the all-time great SS defensively, I'm not sure he has a great case for the hall of fame (though I know that's not the question at hand). I think Omar Vizquel is going to find himself in the same boat.
Personally, I'd take Ozzie.
Games are won on run differential -- scoring more than your opponent. Runs are runs, scored or prevented they all count the same. Worry about scoring more and allowing fewer, not which positions contribute to which side of the equation or how "consistent" you are at your current level of performance.
Last edited by RedsManRick; 01-02-2007 at 02:50 PM.