August 13, 2002

How many HRs would Ted Williams have hit: had he not gone off to war? Maybe as many as 700.

posted by JawaKing to baseball at 11:04 PM - 6 comments

Interesting article and its always fun to speculate on woulda, shoulda, coulda. But "did" is all that matters. Because what if the Mariners stayed in the Kingdome and Griffey stayed with the Mariners and never got hurt? He might have hit a thousand. What if andro was a banned substance? McGwire might have ended at 450. What if Josh Gibson's entire career was recognized as Major League and had been given the same opportunities as white players? No doubt with Williams basically volunteering to go off to war and costing himself numbers that way there is more of a sense of recognizing what he could have done. But still...Aaron hit 755 no ifs ands or buts.

posted by vito90 at 09:12 AM on August 14, 2002

No doubt with Williams basically volunteering Except that there's no "basically" about it, at least for Korea. That's a big difference between woulda, coulda, shoulda.

posted by yerfatma at 12:12 PM on August 14, 2002

What if I had decided to play baseball, instead of programming? 700, 800? I mean that's as realistic as asking this question.

posted by patrickje at 01:35 PM on August 14, 2002

I don't know patrick...can you hit the deuce?

posted by vito90 at 03:24 PM on August 14, 2002

You know I can...

posted by patrickje at 08:00 PM on August 14, 2002

It's not an unrealistic question. Ted Williams was an established major league baseball player, and a damn good one at that. And he lost five years of his prime; it's not very hard to guess or theorize what might have happened. The question isn't "What would Ted Williams' career as an accountant have been like?" or anything. So, no, it isn't an unrealistic question. Obviously we'll never know, but we can guess.

posted by nath at 10:00 PM on August 14, 2002

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