It’s official — Andre Dawson will be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in July with a Montreal Expos cap – NOT a Chicago Cubs hat.
Dawson played his first 11 MLB seasons as an Expo in Montreal and then the next 6 years of his career on the North Side of Chicago as a Cub. Dawson won the NL Rookie of the Year Award with the Expos in 1977 and has was also named an NL All-Star 3 times as an Expo. He hit .285 and racked up 225 HR’s and 838 RBI’s in a Montreal Expos uniform.
Dawson’s most memorable major league season, however, came in a Cubs uniform. In 1987, Dawson captured the hearts and minds of the Wrigley Field faithful with his amazing season in which he hit .287 with 49 HR’s and 137 RBI’s. He was named the National League MVP for his Herculean efforts that summer.
How did Dawson take the decision by Major League Baseball? Not well. Dawson spoke with Tom Waddle and Marc Silverman on ESPN Radio 1000 in Chicago on Wednesday morning. Dawson made the following statements about the process: “I’m disappointed. I can proudly say that because Chicago was my preference… I repsect the Hall of Fame’s decision to put an Expos logo on my cap, and I understand their responsibility to make sure the logo represents the greatest impact in my career. Cubs fans will always be incredibly important in my heart, and I owe them so much for making my time in Chicago memorable, as did the fans in Montreal, Boston and South Florida, my home. But knowing that I’m on the Hall of Fame team is what’s most important, as it is the highest honor I could imagine.”
The Hall and Major League Baseball have stated that Dawson had a greater impact for the Montreal Expos than he did for the Chicago Cubs. More than half of his hits came in an Expos uniform (1575 out of 2774) and he won 6 of his 8 Gold Glove Awards as a member of the Expos. Dawson was also instrumental in leading the Expos to their own playoff series win over the Philadelphia Phillies back in 1981.
Gotta give Dawson credit – he is a stand-up guy and his quotes indicate that. On the other, he’s not afraid to tell it how it is and acknowledge that he would have preferred to go into the Hall of Fame with a Cubs logo on his cap. You da man Hawk – you deserve it…