This is the point where I get on my soapbox for the speedsters of baseball who could change the game as fast as a home run.
Both Juan Pierre and Kenny Lofton are in that class of players from the 90s and early 2000s who aren’t getting their due when it comes to the Hall of Fame. Lofton’s 2,428 hits are more than Ryne Sandberg, Barry Larkin, and many other great players in the Hall of Fame.
Where Lofton made his money was on the bases. In 17 seasons he had six years with at least 50 stolen bases and four with at least 60, finishing his career with 622 bases stolen.
In his first five seasons Lofton led the league in steals every time and during his 17-year career, Lofton led all of baseball in stolen bases. During that same time frame, he was second in baseball with 116 triples, two behind Steve Finley.
There’s no easy comp for Lofton when you’re looking at the Hall of Fame, but Tim Raines is one you can start with. Raines did play 399 more games than Lofton, but their WARs are almost identical, 69.4 for Raines and 68.4 for Lofton. However, Raines only has 117 more hits, 47 more doubles, 40 more home runs, and 186 more stolen bases.
Lofton rarely played full seasons, playing 150 games only two times a season in his long career. In a 162 game season he would average 187 hits, 30 doubles, and 48 stolen bases. If you project full seasons for Lofton when he played less than 130 games seven times (excluding his first year) those numbers would be on par with Raines.
Their average stats for a 162 game season are similar as well. Lofton averaged 18 more hits, two more doubles, and four fewer stolen bases than Raines.