Paul Molitor

Paul Leo Molitor
Inducted to the Hall of Fame in: 2004
Primary team: Milwaukee Brewers
Primary position: 3rd Baseman

When Hall of Famer Ted Williams was asked what he saw when he watched Paul Molitor, the Splendid Splinter’s response was, “I see Joe DiMaggio.”

As one of the game’s most unheralded stars, Paul Molitor played numerous defensive positions on the field in relative obscurity before his short, compact swing vaulted him to baseball’s forefront late in his long and illustrious career.

Making his big league debut as a middle infielder with the 1978 Brewers, Molitor’s manager at the time, George Bamberger, said, “He had tremendous instincts and you could see right away he was a talented athlete. Not only physically, but mentally too. He played the game like he had been up here for years.”

“Molly” would remain a Milwaukee fixture for 15 years, though he would switch positions, playing third base, out-field and designated hitter, and battle injuries throughout his tenure. In 1982, “The Ignitor” helped the Brewers to their first-ever World Series appearance, leading the league with 136 runs scored while also collecting 201 hits and bat-ting .302.

After signing with Toronto following the 1992 season, the 37-year-old Molitor collected 111 RBI, becoming the old-est player in major league history to post his first 100-RBI season. When Toronto defeated the Phillies in six games in the 1993 World Series, Molitor was named MVP with a .500 batting average (12-for-24), two home runs and 10 runs (tying a Series record.)

After spending two more seasons with the Blue Jays, Molitor signed with his hometown Twins as a free agent. In 1996, at age 40, he batted .341, collected 113 RBI, and led the league with 225 hits, becoming the first 40-year-old since Sam Rice in 1930 to have 200 hits in a season. Molitor, a seven-time All-Star, retired following the 1998 campaign, when he became only the fifth player with at least 3,000 hits and 500 stolen bases, and only the third player (along with Ty Cobb and Honus Wagner) with at least 3,000 hits, 600 doubles and 500 stolen bases.

"Molitor didn't walk across the lake to get here, and he didn't change his clothes in the phone booth. He's just another tough hitter. "
Doc Edwards

Career stats

ESSENTIAL STATS
Year Inducted: 2004
Primary Team: Milwaukee Brewers
Position Played: 3rd Baseman
Bats: Right
Throws: Right
Birth place: St. Paul, Minnesota
Birth year: 1956
Played for:
Milwaukee Brewers (1978-1992)
Toronto Blue Jays (1993-1995)
Minnesota Twins (1996-1998)
CAREER AT A GLANCE
GamesG
2683
At BatsAB
10835
RunsR
1782
HitsH
3319
Doubles2B
605
Triples3B
114
Home RunsHR
234
RBIRBI
1307
Stolen BasesSB
504
WalksBB
1094
Batting AverageBA
.306
OPSOPS
.817
On Base %OBP
.369
Slugging %SLG
.448