Wednesday, July 18, 2012

HOF Sketch Card Project: Paul Molitor

Paul Molitor played in the Majors for 21 years, starring for the Milwaukee Brewers between 1978 and 1992 before moving on to play for the Toronto Blue Jays (1993-95) and Minnesota Twins (1996-98). Known for his exceptional hitting and speed, Molitor was elected to the Hall of Fame in 2004, his first year of eligibility, becoming one of the first players who spent a significant portion of his career as a designated hitter to be enshrined. 

I completed this sketch card in July 2012.

10 random facts about Paul Molitor:
  • Molitor started his career as a shortstop, and he would subsequently go on to play second base, third base, and designated hitter (a position he would spend almost half of his games playing).
  • He had five hits in Game 1 of the 1982 World Series, establishing a World Series record.
  • In 1987, he had a 39-game hitting streak, which still stands as the fifth longest in Major League history.
  • He was named the 1993 World Series MVP, as he batted .500 in helping the Blue Jays win their second consecutive championship.
  • In 1994, a strike-shortened season, Molitor led the AL in games played (115) and singles (107).
  • He stole 20 bases during the 1994 season without ever being caught, one short of Kevin McReynolds' 1988 Major League record of 21.
  • Molitor is the only player in Major League history to collect a triple as his 3,000th hit.
  • In 1996, Molitor became the second 40-year-old (fellow Hall of Famer Sam Rice is the other) to have a 200-hit season, leading the league with 225.
  • His 3,319 hits rank him ninth all-time.
  • Molitor is one of four players in Major League history with at least 3,000 hits, a .300 lifetime batting average, and 500 stolen bases. The other three are Ty Cobb, Honus Wagner, and Eddie Collins, none of whom played the game beyond 1930.

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