Unless Mike Piazza clears it up soon, we're in for a few years of speculation over the headwear he'll be wearing on his Hall of Fame plaque.
Because HOF cap selection is one of my favorite argument in sports — I'm already wondering what Jim Thome's going to wear if he gets in — I thought I'd open the Stew floor to hear the cases you'd like to make. In my mind, Piazza's one of the closest calls in recent memory and either one would probably work well.
Here are the cases for both ...
The Dodgers ('92-'98)
The numbers: 6+ seasons, 6 All-Star Games, 177 HRs, 5 seasons of hitting over .300, 2 second-place MVP finishes ('96 and '97)
The case: If he wants to continue being Tommy Lasorda's godson, he may have no other choice to wear Dodger blue into the Hall. There's also the fact that it was Lasorda and the Dodgers gave Piazza his chance in the 62nd round of the '88 draft, when no one else out there would. He won the NL Rookie of the Year in '93 and his trade to the Marlins in '98 is still seen as one of the darkest days in the Dodgers' history in Los Angeles. Wrote the great Jim Murray at the time: "The Dodgers always have adhered to the Branch Rickey theory of roster cutting that it's better to deal a player a year early than a year late. But in Piazza's case, 10 years early?"
The Mets ('98-'05)
The numbers: 7+ seasons, six All-Star Games, 220 HRs, 3 seasons of .300+, 1 third-place MVP finish ('00)
The case: After a brief stint (five games) as a Marlin in '98, Piazza landed in New York and quickly blended in as a New Yorker. He made his only World Series appearance as a Met and was involved in his most well-known highlight, the run-in with Roger Clemens, while wearing the orange-and-blue. He hit a homer in the Mets' first game back from 9/11 and also hit his 352nd homer, passing Carlton Fisk for most HRs as a catcher, while a Met in '04. As this morning's NY Post put it, "Piazza made Mets matter while Yankees owned NY."
So which one should it be? Why?