Metro Boston Top 25 of the last 25: Reaction and more lists

Metro Boston Top 25 cover by Gina Angelotti.
Metro Boston Top 25 cover by Gina Angelotti.

Metro Boston has garnered plenty of reaction from its “Top 25 of the last 25″ list featuring the top Boston athletes of the last 25 years. Click here for the final list. Here are some of the best responses we’ve seen via Twitter and e-mail.

Metro reader Brian O’Connor: “Can you ask some of your voters how I don’t see a single mention of Nomar Garciaparra anywhere? I don’t think he’s top 10 but I do wonder how his stellar eight year career (prior to the ’04 meltdown) doesn’t find SOME spot in there. He won a batting title at .372 with a wrist that required surgery. He posted an OPS of over 1.200 in each series of the 98 and 99 playoffs and was a solid defensive player at one of the toughest positions in baseball. He’s no Pedro or Brady, but I’d like to hear the rationale for taking, say, Wade Boggs over him. Is it the PED suspicion? The ugly departure (not that Boggs going to the Yankees wasn’t without some acrimony)? The winning the WS without him in 2004? Seems to me all your voters have blocked his tenure here out of their minds. That’s really the only explanation I can see.” 

UFC commentator Jon Anik on Chad Finn’s (of The Boston Globe) list, which included the former Red Sox shortstop: “Glad Nomar made the cut … @GlobeChadFinn’s Top 25 Boston athletes over the last 25 years has me making a list of the Top 20 UFC fighters over the last 20 years.”

@JoeHarveyJr on Mike Mutnansky’s (of WEEI) list: “Troy Brown over Ben Coates in my book. The rest of the list is good but BIRD/Brady should be tied at 1.”

Famed Boston sports radio caller Mike from Attleboro on Mutnansky’s list: “Good list. Nice to see Bourque get the love he deserves. A+528 for his career isn’t too shabby.”

 

Here are a few more of the lists that went in to compiling the final Top 25:

Metro Boston contributor Tony Lee:

1. Tom Brady

2. Paul Pierce

3. Pedro Martinez

4. Larry Bird

5. David Ortiz

6. Cam Neely

7. Jason Varitek

8. Dustin Pedroia

9. Troy Brown

10. Kevin Garnett

11. Tim Thomas

12. Tedy Bruschi

13. Adam Vinatieri

14. Curt Schilling

15. Roger Clemens

16. Manny Ramirez

17. Patrice Bergeron

18. Kevin Faulk

19. Nomar Garciaparra

20. Zdeno Chara

21. Ray Bourque

22. Rajon Rondo

23. Drew Bledsoe

24. Ty Law

25. Mo Vaughn

 Comments: The hardest thing was not being tainted by recent memories, and keeping in mind that Bourque and Neely led two teams to the Stanley Cup Final during this timeframe.  Tried to give glue guys like Brown, Bruschi, Faulk a boost over other Pats who may have had more personal achievements or better stats. Bird was on the downside of his career by 1989, and obviously did not win any titles in this time period, but he is easily No. 1 in my view if you extend it to 30 years, so he remains high. Gave Neely a big boost because of his role in the front office that helped the Bruins return to greatness.  Wanted to put Antoine in the top 5.  Garnett gets tons of credit, but that was always Pierce’s team. Boggs, McHale, Parish, Tippett and others were just too far on the back end of their Boston careers to gain much consideration on my end.  Again, 30-35 years and this list is very different. Hard to put a kicker so high but Vinatieri’s role was a big one.

 

Metro Boston sports editor Matt Burke:

1. Tom Brady

2. Larry Bird

3. Pedro Martinez

4. Ray Bourque

5. Roger Clemens

6. Cam Neely

7. Paul Pierce

8. Kevin McHale

9. Manny Ramirez

10. Adam Vinatieri

11. Kevin Garnett

12. David Ortiz

13. Ty Law

14. Tim Thomas

15. Curt Schilling

16. Wade Boggs

17. Wes Welker

18. Zdeno Chara

19. Richard Seymour

20. Vince Wilfork

21. Dustin Pedroia

22. Ben Coates

23. Drew Bledsoe

24. Randy Moss

25. Tedy Bruschi

Comments: I would have actually had a problem leaving the PED guys off the list (or dropping them). While we assume we know when certain guys started juicing, who is to say Clemens was using when he tossed the second 20-strikeout game of his career in 1996 against the Tigers? Most people spent that season wondering what the hell was wrong with him and I have a hard time believing he waited until September of that year (the time of the 20-K game) to “get right.” And Manny was the best hitter I’ve ever seen. Until we’re sure he started using in 2001, his first year in Boston, I’m placing him high.

 

Metro Boston Red Sox writer Ryan Hannable: 

1. Tom Brady

2. Larry Bird

3. Pedro Martinez

4. Paul Pierce

5. Kevin McHale

6. Cam Neely

7. Ray Bourque

8. Adam Vinatieri

9. Kevin Garnett

10. Manny Ramirez

11. Tim Thomas

12. David Ortiz

13. Vince Wilfork

14. Curt Schilling

15. Richard Seymour

16. Zdeno Chara

17. Dustin Pedroia

18. Ty Law

19. Tedy Bruschi

20. Jason Varitek

21. Patrice Bergeron

22. Rodney Harrison

23. Jonathan Papelbon

24. Randy Moss

25. Lawyer Milloy

 

Comments: A tough list to compile. A lot to factor in. No doubt Brady was No. 1 though. Three Super Bowls, two Super Bowl MVPs – no one can compete with that. Winning championships was a major factor for me. Ortiz and Pedroia seem too low to me, but just the way it worked out. Also feel like Bergeron should be higher as well. Five years or so from now, he definitely would be.

 

Metro Boston Bruins writer Rich Slate

1. Tom Brady

2. Larry Bird

3. Pedro Martinez

4. Ray Bourque

5. Nomar Garciaparra

6. Manny Ramirez

7. Kevin McHale

8. Paul Pierce

9. Adam Vinatieri

10. Tedy Bruschi

11. David Ortiz

12. Troy Brown

13. Ty Law

14. Robert Parish

15. Zdeno Chara

16. Kevin Garnett

17. Roger Clemens

18. Curt Schilling

19. Dustin Pedroia

20. Vince Wilfork

21. Wade Boggs

22. Mike Vrabel

23. Mo Vaughn

24. Rajon Rondo

25. Patrice Bergeron

 

Comments: I’m bias towards the guys I saw more with my own eyes. I realize Clemens should be way higher, but he’s such a dink that I couldn’t do it.

 



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