A good way to evaluate whether a hitter is Hall of Fame worthy is to see how he did against the very best. Any Major League hitter could hit against a pitcher such as Anthony Young (record holder for most consecutive losses with 17), but what about against a crafty left-hander like Steve Carlton or against a Nolan Ryan fastball?
Andre faced eleven current Hall of Fame pitchers during his career: Carlton, Ryan, Tom Seaver, Phil Niekro, Bruce Sutter, Dennis Eckersley, Don Sutton, Fergie Jenkins, Rich Gossage, Gaylord Perry, and Rollie Fingers. How did he fare?
In 473 at-bats, Andre had 126 hits, 15 home runs, 70 RBIs, 9 triples, 29 doubles, and a .266 average. Keep in mind that his .266 average is against the very best of his time. Pretty impressive, but the stat that I like the best is that 42% of his hits against the HOFs were for extra bases. Andre got it done when stepping up against the elite.*
His numbers are better or equal to other HOF hitters of his time who faced several of the same HOF pitchers.
Jim Rice (429 AB) - .247 avg., 24 HRs, 70 RBIs, 106 Hits
Dave Winfield (493 AB) - .284 avg., 19 HRs, 65 RBIs, 140 Hits
Reggie Jackson (514 AB) - .235 avg., 23 HRs, 62 RBIs, 121 Hits
Mike Schmidt (475 AB) - .234 avg., 28 HRs, 72 RBIs, 111 Hits
Eddie Murray (258 AB) - . 291 avg., 10 HRs, 40 RBIs, 75 Hits
By the way, did you know that only two players hit more home runs off of Ryan, the most feared pitcher of all-time, than Andre? The Hawk hit four homeruns off the Express in his career, Schmidt hit five and Will Clark had six.*
Hopefully in 2010, Andre will once again face those eleven HOF pitchers, not on the playing field, but as a fellow Hall of Famer!