OK, We Get It -- Moyer’s Old

Phillies starter keeps racking up age-based accolades.

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    NEWSLETTERS

    TK
    Getty Images
    Moyer holds plenty of firsts.

    It’s said that with age comes wisdom. So, in 47 years Phillies lefty Jamie Moyer must have learned a thing or two.

    That wisdom has likely translated into success for the Professional this season as he has posted a respectable 9-7 record with an average 4.13 ERA and a fourth-in-the-league-best 1.06 WHIP.

    But most of the chatter about Moyer has little to do with his 2010 stats and rather deals mostly with his push to 50.

    Moyer’s age -- and longevity -- has brought along ridiculous weekly milestones that aren’t worth much salutation or celebration. But, every time Moyer has stepped on the mound this season, the audacity of his accomplishments continues to fill the ears of Phillies fans and baseball fans alike.

    Moyer isn’t being honored for greatness. He’s being revered for being just enough above average to hang around for 25 years in baseball.

    Honestly, who cares that he is the oldest pitcher to defeat the New York Yankees?

    The assumed silence speaks volume.

    And is it really an honor to have been taken yard more than any guy ever to put on a uniform?

    This is no indictment of the savvy left-hander who has used his brains and wit to remain an important piece of contending team’s starting rotation. (It surely isn’t arm strength -- his fastball barely reaches 80 mph at this point.)

    Yet, 2010 has been good to Moyer. Somehow he still manages to win games with wit, precise pitch location and perhaps a generous strike zone.

    Wednesday night, Moyer will take the mound in the rubber game of a huge mid-season series against the NL East-leading Braves.

    Moyer has already earned an over-hyped milestone against the Braves this season. His shutout victory in May over Atlanta made him the oldest player ever to pitch a shutout. He also became the first pitcher ever to toss a shutout in four decades.

    That shutout was proof of his current success but that shouldn’t reflect upon Moyer's career and if that career is worthy of enshrinement into Cooperstown. It just shines a bright light that he has been around a long time.

    Just because he has hung around shouldn’t make him a Hall of Famer. And the usually accurate BaseballReference.com agrees. In all three of BR’s Hall of Fame categories Moyer comes in far below the average Hall of Famer.

    There is no need to keep track of meaningless stats just because the savvy left-hander's arm hasn't fallen off yet.

    We get it -- he's OLD.

    Moyer can claim another spot in (not-so-impressive) history if he chops down the Braves. He will be going for his 268th career win. That would tie him for 34th all time with Hall of Famer Jim Palmer.

    But, there is a sharp difference between Moyer's accomplishments and Palmer's. The Orioles' Hall of Famer (Palmer) did it in fewer years with a 2.86 career ERA. Moyer's career ERA is well north of 4.

    Palmer's victories are a worthy celebration. Moyer's wins are a product of a guy who can't seem to hang it up.

    The 2010 portrait of Moyer's spectacular career is an absolute farce. His recent accomplishments, that are now seemingly growing exponentially by the minute, reflect nothing but an extended mediocre career.

    Jamie is a likable figure, one of baseball’s good guys but that reputation has possibly led to an exaggeration of his on field contributions. Sports heroes are born from domination, going beyond what even the best in the world can do.

    This is why athletes are celebrated. Surely, not career length.

    As Moyer takes the mound this season, Phillies fans should cheer for him to help the Phillies stick in the playoff hunt and not because he was born when JFK was president.

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