A new Sports Illustrated oversized book, “Baseball’s Greatest” ($32.95, 288 pages), shows off more of its archive of photography but shapes it into a series of Top 10 lists that at least adds some conversation.
A panel of SI writers that includes senior writer Tom Verducci, senior contributing editor David Bauer, former SI editor Dick Friedman, senior editor Kostya Kennedy and current staff writer Albert Chen made the decisions.
Among the lists:
= Best first basemen: The Angels’ Albert Pujols is No. 2 all time, behind Lou Gehrig, but not likely for what he’s done the last two seasons. Former Dodger Eddie Murray makes this list as well as current Dodgers hitting coach Mark McGwire.
= Best second baseman: The Dodgers’ Jackie Robinson ranks No. 4
= Best shortstop: Taft High’s Robin Yount (Milwaukee) ranked No. 9
= Best third baseman: El Segundo High’s George Brett (Kansas City) ranks No. 2 behind Mike Schmidt
= Best catchers: The Dodgers’ Roy Campanella is No. 3 (behind Johnny Bench and Yogi Berra), while one-time Dodger Mike Piazza is No. 9, and another who played with the Dodgers toward the end of his career, Gary Carter, is No. 10.
= Best left fielder: Manny Ramirez comes in at No. 10
= Best right fielder: One-time Dodger Frank Robinson is No. 3 (behind Babe Ruth and Hank Aaron) and two spots ahead of former Angel Reggie Jackson. Also note: Pete Rose is No. 7 on this list, and No. 10 on the list of third baseman, the only man on two position lists.
= Best right-handed pitchers: Former Dodger farmhand Pedro Martinez is No. 8
= Best managers: The Dodgers’ Walter Alston is No. 10, with Joe Torre at No. 9 and Sparky Anderson at No. 6.
= Ten best baserunners: Jackie Robinson is No. 6; Maury Wills is not included.
= Ten best uniforms: The 1952 Dodgers ranked No. 9, noting that was the year the red number was added to the front.
= Ten best characters: Current Dodgers reliever Brian Wilson is No. 4. Former Dodger Manny Ramirez is No. 2, behind Mark Fidrych
= Ten best ballparks: Dodger Stadium rates No. 9 (behind Fenway Park, Wrigley Field, Yankee Stadium, Ebbets Field, Camden Yards, Tiger Stadium, AT&T Park in San Francisco and the Polo Grounds. Former SI editor Dick Friedman writes of Dodger Stadium: “A half-century later it has aged as well as did ever-dashing Dodger fan Cary Grant.”)
= Ten best franchises: The Dodgers are No. 4 (behind the N.Y. Yankees, St. Louis Cardinals and San Francisco Giants. Included in that entry is a 2008 SI piece “In Vin Vertias” that Rich Hoffer wrote about Vin Scully).
= Ten best rivalries: The Dodgers-Giants is No. 2 (behind Yankees-Red Sox), while Dodgers-Yankees is No. 5.