HOF ’09: David Cone

“The Yankees’ David Cone, who could have played linebacker, is what I call a junkyard dog because he’ll knock you out of the box without blinking. He’s got a better-than-average fastball and a real hard slider. Those two pitches help set up one of the best change-ups in either league.”

Umpire Durwood Merrill in You’re Out and You’re Ugly Too

Despite not being a household name, David Brian Cone put together a pretty good career between the years of 1986-2003.  Though he missed the 200 win mark at 194 victories, his .606 winning percentage ranks among the best (95th all-time). 

  • Cone Facts
    Drafted in 3rd round by Kansas City Royals in 1981
    Played for KC (twice), NYM (twice), Tor, (twice), NYY, Bos
    Four time All-Star, won Cy Young 1994
    Pitched perfect game 1994
    12-3 postseason record


Cone won a Cy Young award in the shortened season of 1994 with a 16-5 record and a 2.94 ERA.  Typical of his style, his K/BB ratio was excellent that year at 132 to 54. 

One of Cone’s most outstanding seasons came in his first full year in the majors.  In 1988 for the Mets, he went 20-3 with an ERA of only 2.22.  He struck out 213 that year.  Cone’s other 20-win season came ten years later in 1998 while pitching for the cross town rivals, the Yankees.  Along with his 20-7 record, he struck out 209 while walking only 59 with an ERA of 3.55. 

coned A hard thrower, Cone led the league in Ks in 1990-91 and K/9 1990-92.   He has 2668 career strikeouts which is good for 22nd all-time. 

Mostly by virtue of playing for the Yankees, Cone had the privilege of playing on World Champion teams.  Five to be exact.  What was his World Series record?  5-0 with a 2.12 ERA.  Nice.  His ALCS record?  5-1. 

He probably won’t make it to the Hall but in my eyes it’ll be closer that people think.  Let’s face it, the idea at least in my opinion, is to induct players who dominated in their eras.  At least for a short while, Cone did that.  And the postseason performance doesn’t hurt either.  Let’s put him in the Hall of Very Good.  


  Hall of Fame

Hall of Very Good

  Why is he even on the Ballot?


While we wait for January 12 ballot results, The Baseball Zealot will be profiling those players who are on the 2009 Baseball Hall of Fame ballot.  Read the rest the of the profiles.

2 Responses to “HOF ’09: David Cone”

  1. If only in some small way, it seems that we should consider number and degree of big-time gutsy performances along with the numbers. In my book, he’s pretty close to Orel Hersheiser in that category. What say you?

  2. agreed… the “big game” factor does help him

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