A number of Hall of Famers have donned the Orange and Black over the years, but Giants broadcaster Dave Flemming believes at least two have flown under the radar. Flemming expressed his confusion about the players, both of which featured on the 2002 World Series team, when he joined Tolbert, Krueger and Brooks Tuesday afternoon.
The first on his list was 2000 NL MVP Jeff Kent.
“Oh my goodness, 100 percent I think so,” Flemming said when asked about Kent as a Hall of Famer. “I don’t want to knock anybody, but Bill Mazeroski is in the Hall of Fame. Bill Mazeroski and Jeff Kent to me that’s just a non-comparison. Mazeroski was a terrific defensive player, but he wasn’t even in the same neighborhood as Jeff Kent as an offensive player. Not even close.
“He went to the playoffs with different franchises a bunch of times, he led the Giants there several times, led a Giants resurgence. It sounds silly but maybe…the moped ‘wash my car deal’, I don’t know sometimes that stuff can have a subconscious effect.”
The moped incident that Flemming is referring to took place in 2002, when Kent lied about breaking his wrist while washing his truck, when it was eventually discovered that he was injured during a moped accident, which was in direct violation of his contract.
Kent’s numbers speak for themselves. In addition to his MVP, Kent was a five time All-Star and four-time Silver Slugger Award winner, finishing with a career slash line of .290/.356/.500 with 377 home runs.
“The other guy who I think of that era, and it’s not as if he’s a slam dunk Hall of Fame case, but just got totally dismissed and I didn’t know why, was Kenny Lofton. Like Kenny Lofton if you look at his career, he didn’t spend a ton of time with the Giants but maybe that’s why he popped into my mind, that guy was a tremendous player for a long time, and basically got no consideration whatsoever. Like hardly got any votes.
“I think he’s better than players who are in the Hall of Fame now. Like certainly worthy of a much longer look. That stuff is funny. I don’t know why some players get dismissed, but those are two of them and Jeff Kent might be near the top of the list for me.”
Though Lofton played for just half a season for the Giants, his career accolades are arguably as impressive as Kent’s. One of the best defensive center fielders of all time, Lofton won the Gold Glove Award in four consecutive seasons and was a six time All-Star. He also led the league in stolen bases five times.