Sometimes you're just strolling along and a baseball fact slams into the side of your face. Such as: Paul Konerko now has 400 home runs after hitting that milestone last night.
Suddenly, you are forced to think about this: Might Paul Konerko be in the Hall of Fame someday?
Konerko has certainly been one of the steadier power hitters over the past decade, but we have never thought of him in a Hall of Fame context. He's a Hall of Very Good player in our book.
But the numbers -- and, yes, the milestones -- could say differently. Considering that Konerko is only 36 (we say only because he's a mere 7 months or so older than us, so SHUT UP HE'S NOT THAT OLD), it's not insane to think he could reach 500 homers.
Adding to that notion is the fact that Konerko seems to be getting better with age. He posted two of his best career season in terms of power and average in 2010 and 2011 and is off to another fast start in 2012. Sure, players have been known to hit a wall. But even if Konerko slows down, you have to think he can hit another 30 homers this year and average 20-25 the next three. That puts him on the cusp of 500. He's never been linked to performance-enhancing drugs.
Would 500 homers make Konerko a Hall of Famer, or is he a Fred McGriff -- great career numbers, a very good hitter for a long time, practically in the 500 club (493) but not in the hall?