Most unjustifiably, Jim Rice was once again held out of the Hall of Fame last week. But he is not the only former Red Sox player whose talents are often overlooked.
Although Rice is certainly in the pantheon of all-time great Red Sox hitters -- along with the likes of Ted Williams, Carl Yastrzemski, Wade Boggs, and Manny Ramirez -- another Sox great is often overlooked as well.
Who had more career runs, doubles, walks, stolen bases and a higher on-base percentage for the Sox - Jim Rice or Dwight Evans?
Incredibly, the answer is Evans. The former right fielder, who played for the Sox from 1972-1990, also had just one fewer total bases than Rice, and only three fewer home runs. And he did it all with only 500 more at bats than Rice had - about one season's worth. Evans is often overlooked in the history of great Sox hitters. Now this isn't to argue that Evans is worthy of induction into Cooperstown as well, but it's simply to point out that his on field exploits seem to be forgotten, but are surely worthy of greater merit.
After a 20-year career, all but his last spent with the Red Sox, Evans left his mark with 2446 hits, 1384 RBI, 385 home runs, a .272 career average, and a .370 career OBP.
Evans was never a superstar, but he was extraordinarily valuable to the Red Sox during his long career. With a cannon-like arm that could reach home plate with pin point accuracy, and enough pop in his bat to swat at least 20 homers in 11 out 12 seasons - including nine in a row - Dwight Evans is surely an all-time Red Sox great.
Copyright © 2007 Sean M. Kennedy. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without the author's consent.