Michael Q asked in SportsBaseball · 1 decade ago

Why didn't people make a bigger deal of Clemens' 350 wins. Is 350 wins a bigger feat than 755 HR in this era?

First, I'm a huge Red Sox and Blue Jays fan and don't really follow the NL much so I have a LOT more hate for Clemens than for Bonds. But as much as I think Clemens is a prick I have to give him his props. 7 other pitchers have won 350 games but out of those seven only Warren Spahn didn't spend most of his career in the deadball era or in the 19th century (Before 1920 a really good ace pitcher could win 30 games in a good season and the weight of the ball, the large size of parks and other factors favored pitchers a lot more than they do today.). Even Spahn pitched in an era where there were a lot more pitchers parks and a bigger strike zone.

Today, most factors have swung in favor of the hitter and pitcher usage practices make it a lot more difficult more a starter to get a lot of wins in one season. So, while both are great accomplishments, I think Reaching 350 wins in this era is at least as large an accomplishment as the home run record Bonds is about to break.

10 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    You can equate 300 wins with 500 HRs. The two were once statistically about the same accomplishment, though pitchers had it harder. To get 300 wins a pitcher had to play on winning teams at least half their career. Many excellent pitcher failed to get 300 wins because they threw for really horrible teams and would constantly miss out on wins due to lack of run support and poor defense while other pitchers who were far less talented would win many more games because they got great run support. Sutton was questionable as a Hall of Famer. No way he'd gotten 300 wins if he'd played for the Indians most of his career not the Dodgers. Others like Perry and Niekro did it as much through longevity as anything else. By pitching into their mid 40s they accumulated 300 wins and close too or more than 300 loses as well.

    There was a time not long ago that there was serious doubt anybody would get 300 wins again. Clemens is just one of a few pitchers that are close too or have reached 300 wins in the last decade.

    Bond's record is not likely to still be standing by the time, if he is ever eligible for the Hall of Fame. If Baseball had any sense they'd strike down all the steroid induced records by Bonds, Sosa, McGriff, McGwire, Camminitti, Palmiero, etc. It would ban known steroid users like Sosa, Giambi ,Sheffield and of course Bonds.

    The 500 HR club is now mostly meaningless. Even 600 HRs means little. Sosa with the help of steroids and corked bats now has 600 HRs. No way Bonds gets his 600th HR without steroids. He'd retired with a little over 500 HRs but been an instant first ballot Hall of Famer without steroids. Sosa doesn't get 300 HRs without steroids and so on. This year alone 4 players started the year with a good chance of hitting their 500th HR. Frank Thomas already did, A-Rod needs about a couple weeks too a month to do it. Many Rameriez will probably hit his 500th near the end of the season and Sheffield early next year. Next year Sheffield might be the only one to do it but there are a few that stand a good chance of hitting thier 500th HR in 09. Carlos Delgado, Chipper Jones and Vlad Guerro being three of the most likely but if Piazza can stay healthy he'll be crossing the 500 HR threshold soon as well. By 2010 at least 2 or 3 more will join the already crowded 500 HR club on top of the 4 getting there this year.

    350 wins by contrast is an extroidenary feat. By comparision only Clemens and Maddux are likely to top 350 wins any time soon. It may be at least a decade before any other pitcher does.

    It's not a record though. For a pitcher to break the all time wins record today would be beyond amazing. 511 wins is almost inconvievable now. Pitchers don't get as many starts today. They don't stay in games as long as they used too. They throw a wider array of pitches which stress the arm more and make them more likely to be injured. 350 wins today is like hitting 650 HRs. 400 wins today would be like getting 800 HRs. 512 wins would be like hitting 950 HRs. To do that a pitcher would have to be awesome for years on end, rarely having a bad season and playing with winning teams most or all of his career. Though Maddux is likely to pass Clemens in wins before it's said and done. That doesn't dimminish Clemen's accomplisment. Clemmens is 2-4 so far this year and Maddux is 7-7 so far. Clemmens is really showing his age and this should be his last year while Maddux will barring injury almost certainly be back next year and win at least 10 games.

    Clemens is 2nd in KOs. An extremely impressive feat even in this day and age where KOs are cheaper than HRs. Johnson will probably be back next year to chase his 300th win. Clemens is probably in his last year so Johnson will probably pass Clemens but 3rd place is some very elite company on the all time KO list. Maddux won't come close, Schilling and Pedro are pretty much done and are very unlikely to challenge either of them. John Smoltz is probably going to DL himself out of Baseball before long. Mussina and Glavine are miles away and both are breaking down. So Clemens will likely be one of the top 3 KO artists in Baseball history for many years to come. That too me speaks more of his accomplishments than his win totals. Clemens, Maddux and Pedro are the only 3 modern pitchers in the top 100 in ERA. That says even more about Clemen's ability.

    So Clemen's 350 is not a record. Pitchers tend to get far less press than hitters today. As such you did not see much hype about Clemens. To be honest given the record Bonds is chasing the coverage is pretty ho hum. I personally could care less as I do not recognize Bonds or any other roider's records. They will just be tossed out eventually. That A-Rod is already breathing down Bond's neck and if Griffy got healthy for a few years he too would be right on top of Bonds just makes the "record" Bonds is trying to break pretty boring. I think the press is trying to hype it up but fans are just not buying.

  • GPC
    Lv 5
    1 decade ago

    Yes and no... I believe that moving forward in baseball, there will be more batters who acheive the 755 HR level than there will be pitchers who reach 350 wins. Guys like Pujols, A-Rod, Fielder, etc. all have good chances at 755. However due to injuries and the way today's pitchers are used, it's almost impossible to expect a pitcher to acheive 350 wins.

    Now, the reason the 755 is getting more press and attention is the fact that it's a record and one of the most heralded ones in sports. Bonds may have cheated to obtain it but due to the poor testing policy for performance enhancing drugs, the entire era of players (Clemens included) is clouded in suspicion of cheating.

    That being said... 350 is now a bigger feat than 755.

    Source(s): Years of watching, reading, living baseball
  • 1 decade ago

    The reason why most non-baseball people don't make a big deal of Clemen's 350 wins is b/c that it isn't as sexy as 755 HR. Like that old ESPN commercial chicks dig the long ball. Even people who don't like/understand baseball knows what a home run is. And if you grew up in the US the number 715 and 755 is synomous with the names Babe Ruth and Hank Aarron. Which is why its such a big deal.

    On the other hand it 350 wins isn't a record, it's more of a level of accomplishment, like 2,000 hits, or 500 homers. And its harder to explain to a person who is not familliar to baseball what a win is (for a pitcher) and its something that you have to be a fan of the game to really understand its significance. This is not to say that it is not as important or as difficult to achieve as 755 homers. In fact it is probably harder now than ever before even without factoring the offense .(with 5 man rotation, relief specialist) But to the average person, 350 wins just don't mean as much as 755.

    And lastly, blame Babe Ruth. Remember the stories of how japanese soliders were insulting Babe Ruth in WWII to infuriate the GI's. Babe Ruth has become such a part of American pop culture that the home run has become a symbol of American life. These are the reasons why 755 is a bigger deal the 350 wins to most people

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    First, let me say I'm not a fan of either Bonds or Clemens.

    Clemens' 350+ wins is a much bigger deal. No one has reached 350 in over 50 yrs. Since then, pitching rotations have gone from 4 to5 starters so fewer starts per yr. Ballparks have become smaller, therefore giving hitters a better advantage. And even though the increased use of relief pitching has reduced innings pitched, increasing longevity, I'm sure there's a lot of games lost due to blown saves.

    Bonds feat-although great- is tainted because of the steroid scandal. He might not have known he was taking them but he did take them. To what extent, we'll probably never know. Plus just as it has become harder to get to 300 wins, it has gotten easier to reach 500HR. 500 is now no longer the mark to get in the HOF automatically. And the reasons it's harder to reach 300 wins are the same reasons it's easier to get to 500 dingers.

    Clemens feat is greater than Bonds.

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  • 1 decade ago

    I would have to say no. People are obsessed with the long ball now a days. No one cares about the people that work hard and do great things they love steroid shooting big headed bombers!!! (not all but some like them)

    I would much rather watch clemen's get his 350 wins which took alot of long and hard innings to get there and it required a team effort instead of Bonds who goes in the locker room shoot's up and takes one swing and calls it a day!

  • 1 decade ago

    350 wins has been done a few times before; 755 homers has been done only once. Just on rarity, one feat is historically more difficult than the other.

    Which really is irrelevant. What Rocket's wins total (and his other, more important, more impressive numbers) indicates is that he truly has been a rare bird.

    Now, the baseball haters will whine he's on "steriods" or some other such nonsense. Give these people a cookie and ignore them. Losers don't know how to give proper credit to success, particularly genuinely great success, and so have no other approach but to try and demean it. One wonders why these people even follow baseball since they clearly do not enjoy or appreciate it.

  • 4 years ago

    Barry Bonds because he set a new record. Clemens did not set a new record. Nobody could break Bonds' record yet. Cy Young won more than Clemens did.

  • Dmel
    Lv 4
    1 decade ago

    i think 350 wins could become and has become a bigger feat because there is too many reports of steroids. i know pitchers could take steroids also but for the most part when talking about steroids its batters and homeruns aren't as big of a deal because people don't know who is on steroids and who isnt

  • 1 decade ago

    I think a lot of people don't like Clemens because of his huge ego and bigger "half season" contracts, but I agree, he didn't get enough mention when he won his 350th.

  • 1 decade ago

    us yankees fans give him his props

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