SportsNation Blog Archives Chipper Jones
Friday is Chipper Jones' 43rd birthday, and though the Braves legend hasn't played in the majors since his 2012 retirement, it's still easy to picture him mashing home runs in an Atlanta uniform. Jones was one of the best sluggers of his generation, and the fact that he was a switch-hitter made him all the more valuable.
In Chipper's honor, here are the best switch-hitters in MLB history:
10. Lance Berkman
Berkman spent most of his career knocking around the National League, recording three seasons above 1.000 OPS in his first 10 years.
9. Frankie Frisch
Among the players on this list, Frisch has the highest batting average, and he has the rare distinction of hitting more triples than home runs in his career.
8. Roberto Alomar
One of the steadiest hitters in baseball for many years, Alomar smacked 504 doubles and stole 474 bases in his 17-year career.
7. Bernie Williams
A major reason why the Yankees won so many titles in the late '90s, Williams just recently retired officially -- after not playing since 2006.
6. Carlos Beltran
Beltran still hasn't won a World Series in his distinguished MLB career, but that hasn't been for lack of trying -- he has a postseason OPS of 1.128 and is ninth on the all-time postseason home run leaders list.
5. Tim Raines
Raines continues to slowly creep up the Hall of Fame vote percentages list, although it's odd he's not in already -- he's likely the second-best leadoff hitter of all time, behind the incomparable Rickey Henderson.
4. Eddie Murray
Weird stat: Eddie Murray is the all-time MLB leader in sacrifice flies, with 128 -- one ahead of fellow Orioles legend Cal Ripken Jr. We're sure Murray's 504 home runs made a slightly bigger impact, but still, every little bit counts.
3. Pete Rose
The all-time leader in hits, Rose was a three-time batting champ and the 1973 MVP.
2. Chipper Jones
Always an exceptional hitter, Jones enjoyed something of a late-career renaissance -- he had a three-year stretch from 2006 to '08 (ages 34 to 36) when his OPS eclipsed 1.000, and he won a batting title in '08 with a .364 average.
1. Mickey Mantle
Mantle would rank pretty high on any list related to offensive prowess, and he's the obvious choice for best switch-hitter of all time. Among his accomplishments: his 1956 Triple Crown campaign, his 536 career home runs and his three MVP awards.
Chipper Jones has entered his last week of regular season baseball. In his honor, Jayson Stark took a look at Jones' career, causing a few readers to get teary-eyed. How will you remember Chipper Jones? Comment below!
Future baseball Hall of Famer Chipper Jones has announced he is calling it quits after this season. He will leave behind a legacy that includes multiple division titles, a World Series ring and a .300+ lifetime batting average. He will also be remembered for his hitting ability from both sides of the plate. He is just one of 13 players to switch-hit for 250 or more home runs. Can you name them all?More games from ESPN Arcade »
Chipper Jones looks like a pretty good No. 1 overall pick no matter which standard you use. When you consider Jeff George (NFL) and Derrick Coleman (NBA) were also No. 1 overall picks in 1990, well, Jones looks positively legendary. But on the day after Jones hit his 450th career home run, is he making a case as one of the best ever? Rank baseball's best third basemen.
Was this the last milestone?
Jones already said he's coming back for 2012, and his contract even includes a club option for 2013. So does he have time to hit 50 more homers?
A challenger in the wings?
Alex Rodriguez has played more games at shortstop than third base, but that may change in the next year or two. Will that change the debate?
It's been a pretty heavy week. Wimbledon got underway with its normal share of upsets, the United States stunned Spain in soccer and a bevy of NBA trades preceded a draft that saw Blake Griffin go No. 1 and Ricky Rubio slip. South Carolina lost, and then found, its wayward governor. And two entertainment legends passed away well before their time.In other words, we need a breather. And few things in sports are as ultimately meaningless, or as simultaneously entertaining, as Hall of Fame debates in baseball.
Do you think Chipper Jones will be a first ballot Hall of Famer?
Ryan, My sense is yes. If he doesn't make it on the first ballot, I don't think he'll last beyond 2-3 years. One of the greatest switch-hitters ever. Full transcript.