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Jack Clark

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Jack Anthony Clark
(Jack the Ripper)

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[edit] Biographical Information

Jack Clark was one of the biggest stars of his era. He hit 340 home runs lifetime in the majors and led the league in walks three times.

Clark broke in with the San Francisco Giants in 1975. Originally drafted as a pitcher, Clark was switched to the outfield while in the minors with the Great Falls Giants.

After a cup of coffee in 1975, and after 26 games in 1976, Clark became a regular outfielder in 1977. In 1978, he came into his own with a .537 slugging percentage, which was the second highest of his career. He played with the Giants until 1984, usually hitting between 20 and 27 home runs a year. He was 5th in the MVP voting in 1978, and 7th in 1982, although the Giants did not win the division in any of his years with them.

He was traded to the St. Louis Cardinals in early 1985, and played primarily first base in his three years with the Cardinals. His peak year was 1987, when he was 3rd in the MVP voting, leading the league in on-base percentage as well as in slugging. The Cardinals won the pennant in two of the three years that he was with them (1985 and 1987).

In 1988, he played a year with the New York Yankees, but the results weren't particularly good, although he hit 27 home runs. He then finished out his career with two years on the San Diego Padres, and two with the Boston Red Sox. He hit 25+ home runs each year from 1989-1991. Neither team won the division.

Although his career numbers are not of Hall of Fame quality, he has a lifetime OPS+ of 137, showing that he played at quite a high level. An OPS+ of 137 puts him in the top 100 of all time, tied with his contemporary Pedro Guerrero (who was called the best hitter of the 1980s by Bill James) and with Hall of Famer Chuck Klein.

According to similarity scores, the most similar players to Jack Clark are Boog Powell, Gil Hodges, and Roy Sievers.

Clark was once on his way to the ballpark when he passed a car lot and liked the look of some fancy sports cars. He dropped in and quickly bought two for $90,000 each before continuing on to the game.

Clark managed the River City Rascals of the Frontier League in 1999 and was a Los Angeles Dodgers coach from 2001 to 2003. He was hosting a radio show on a St. Louis station in 2013 when he got himself in trouble by making unsubstantiated accusations that former Cardinals star Albert Pujols and Detroit Tigers pitcher Justin Verlander had used steroids. He had had the gig for barely a week when he made his claims on [[August 9]th, and was fired a day later, along with the show's co-host. Worse, Pujols indicated he would take legal action over what he called "irresponsible and reckless" false accusations.

[edit] Notable Achievements

  • 4-time NL All-Star (1978, 1979, 1985 & 1987)
  • 2-time NL Silver Slugger Award Winner (1985/1B & 1987/1B)
  • NL On-Base Percentage Leader (1987)
  • NL Slugging Percentage Leader (1987)
  • NL OPS Leader (1987)
  • 3-time NL Bases on Balls Leader (1987, 1989 & 1990)
  • 20-Home Run Seasons: 11 (1978-1980, 1982, 1983, 1985 & 1987-1991)
  • 30-Home Run Seasons: 1 (1987)
  • 100 RBI Seasons: 2 (1982 & 1987)

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