Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Red Sox in Cooperstown Pt. 32: Andre Dawson

Years in Boston: 1993-1994 (.260/.297/.441, 29 home runs, 115 RBIs)
Best Year in Boston: 1993 (.273/.313/.425, 13 home runs, 67 RBIs)
I was heartbroken in the offseason between the 1992 and 1993 seasons when Wade Boggs, my favorite player, signed as a free agent with the Yankees.  That was alleviated significantly when the Red Sox signed a fading future Hall of Famer of their own in Andre Dawson, who had been with the Chicago Cubs for the previous several seasons.  Boston had been trying to sign Kirby Puckett, who was still very productive, but Puckett ultimately chose to stay in Minnesota.  Dawson had a decent, but not great season with the Cubs in 1992 and there was hope that his power numbers would rebound in Boston.

Unfortunately, Dawson was largely a disappointment in Boston.  His knees were so bad by that point in his career he spent all but 20 games at designated hitter.  That was mostly the plan though, so that part was not the major disappointment.  Dawson simply did not hit enough.  He had never been great about taking a walk, but his on-base percentage in his time in Boston was significantly lower than his career mark and even his slugging percentage was down.

In 1993, Dawson hit .273/.313/.425 with just 13 home runs and 67 RBIs, numbers that were significantly lower than hoped.  He played in 121 games and hit 29 doubles.  His biggest highlight of the year, and of his time with Boston was hitting his 400th career home run.  In 1994, his numbers declined again, though he hit 16 home runs.  He hit .240/.271/.466, with 18 doubles and 48 RBIs.

After the 1994 season, Dawson signed a free agent deal with the Florida Marlins and closed out his career after two seasons on the bench there.  Dawson's best years occurred in Montreal and Chicago by far.  He was mostly just hanging on by the time he played for Boston and Florida.  The one thing he did provide in Boston was veteran leadership and guidance for up-and-coming star Mo Vaughn.  Dawson was on the Hall of Fame ballot for nine years before being elected.  He has a Montreal Expos cap on his plaque.

1 comment:

  1. Dawson was a class act all the way. It's too bad his knees were so bad, because he could have put up even bigger numbers had he been blessed with better joints.