1. Welcome to SportsJournalists.com, a friendly forum for discussing all things sports and journalism.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register for a free account to get access to the following site features:
    • Reply to discussions and create your own threads.
    • Access to private conversations with other members.
    • Fewer ads.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon!

Biggest late-career bloomers

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by CD Boogie, Nov 6, 2019.

  1. CD Boogie

    CD Boogie Well-Known Member

    The Hall of Fame candidacy of Dwight Evans got me thinking about other athletes who really blossomed in the second half of their careers.

    In his age-30 through age-37 seasons, he had an impressive line of .280/.385/.496 while averaging 27 homers, 100 runs, 96 RBIs and 96 walks. That type of performance led to Evans finishing in the top five in the AL Most Valuable Player Award voting twice and the top 10 four times. Evaluating Evans' Hall of Fame chances
    Another guy who came to mind was Dave Stewart, who never won more than 10 games until he turned 30, then rang off four straight seasons of 20 or more wins, finishing between 2-4 in the Cy Young voting each year.

    In the NFL, Rich Gannon comes to mind. Never started more than 12 games until he was 34 in 1999, when he made his first Pro Bowl. He later won the league MVP and was a two-time All Pro.

    Who else ya got?
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2019
  2. justgladtobehere

    justgladtobehere Well-Known Member

    Mike Morgan never ended up great, but his career was a lot better than could be expected from his screwed up start. R.A. Dickey was 35 in his first season with the Mets.

    There are a few alcoholic pitchers with the A's who did the good start with a renaissance, if that fits your parameters.
  3. cyclingwriter2

    cyclingwriter2 Well-Known Member

    Phil Niekro has more wins after age 40 than he did before age 30.
    RonClements likes this.
  4. justgladtobehere

    justgladtobehere Well-Known Member

    They aren't nearly the biggest late-career bloomers, but I looked up Kevin Millar and Matt Stairs. There seemed to be a post-Moneyball flourishing of previously overlooked players given a chance and succeeding. The other Giambi was an exception, of course.

    But what about David Ortiz? He was 27 in his first Red Sox season.
  5. cyclingwriter2

    cyclingwriter2 Well-Known Member

    Johnny Bower: debuted in the nhl at age 29, back to the minors for five years. Plays a decade more and ends up in the Hall of Fame.
  6. cyclingwriter2

    cyclingwriter2 Well-Known Member

    Paul Scrieber: pitched a handful of games at age 19 and 20 for the dodgers. Pitched his next game for the Yankees...22 years later. Apparently, he was their batting practice pitcher and when they got caught short handed a couple of times, he was put in.
  7. Regan MacNeil

    Regan MacNeil Well-Known Member

    I was gonna say Cecil Fielder, but his breakout came in his age 26 season, which isn’t much of an aberration.
  8. justgladtobehere

    justgladtobehere Well-Known Member

    Tim Thomas was around 31 before he became the Bruins starting goalie. Before the 2010-2011 season, when he was 36 or so, he wasn't the starter.
  9. wicked

    wicked Well-Known Member

    He had already flamed out though and he had to go to Japan before he got that second chance.
  10. CD Boogie

    CD Boogie Well-Known Member

    That is nuts
    cyclingwriter2 likes this.
  11. MTM

    MTM Well-Known Member

    Rich Hill. He battled injuries and bounced around the majors and minors before finally finding it with the A's and pitching well for the Dodgers, but still battling injuries.
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2019
    wicked likes this.
  12. qtlaw

    qtlaw Well-Known Member

    Darren Oliver; one of the original LOOGYs (or whatever the moniker is).
Draft saved Draft deleted

Share This Page