Monday, January 4, 2016


My Baseball Hall of Fame ballot- Just A Bit Outside

Last year I posted a few blogs about the Baseball Hall of Fame.  This Wednesday is the announcement of the 2016 class, and since I really enjoyed doing those posts, I decided to do it again.  My picks weren't the same as the ones that went in, and to be honest, maybe not all deserved to go in, but my picks were based on who I deserved at least a look, and I kept some names off I obviously knew was going in anyway.  This will be a two part post with today's focusing on the players that didn't make my top ten list.  Some of the names I like but while last year I think was a tougher class, some names still didn't crack the top ten that deserved it.  First I will mention the one I never considered for my top ten and then work towards ones I did.

Brad Ausmus- nope
Mark Grudzielanek- no, but maybe the Scrabble Hall of Fame
David Eckstein- he was solid, but nowhere near my top ten
Billy Wagner- see David Eckstein
Mike Lowell- he had a long solid career but I never considered him
Garret Anderson- not on my radar
Randy Winn- really?
Luis Castillo- somewhere between Ausmus and Winn
Mike Hampton- never had a thought of him

So those were easy to cross off.  I don't think any will get more than 20 votes total, most getting 3-5 if any. So now are some that I considered if only for a brief moment.

Troy Glaus- I think I considered him more because of being a fan versus his career.  In reality he should be on the above list, but I think he had a good career.

Jason Kendall- I was a big fan of Kendall, and I really thought he would be as big as Mike Piazza, but I just don't think it ever developed.  He was a solid catcher for the most part, but I couldn't put him in my top ten, too many names I considered before him. If he lasts a few years on the ballot and the ballot gets lean, then he has an outside chance.

Sammy Sosa-  In reality, I was never going to put him on my ballot.  Even if he did or didn't take steroids, he had two spectacular years, and then mediocre-solid years.  Take away those two big years and his home run numbers wouldn't look that great.  Plus I was never a fan.

Mark McGwire- If it was purely on steroids issues, than no he wouldn't go in, but as I stated last year (and you'll see later), I have no problem with the steroids issues.  I liked McGwire in Oakland, but once he moved to St. Louis I grew to hate him.  Sure he and Sosa brought a lot of fans back to baseball when they really needed it, and that's why I consider him more than last year, but overall, I just don't care for him.  Maybe its because of my bordeline hate (hate is a strong word, but I really really really don't like them) of the Cardinals, but something will likely always prevent me from putting him on my ballot.  My top reason may be his attitude, he seemed phony to me, and still does at times.

Gary Sheffield- Now we start getting to players I did consider a lot more.  Gary I never considered a lot, and I think the main reason is because I don't remember him playing much.  Sure I grew up watching when he played, but nothing stands out to me beyond his Future Star status.  He was solid, but without looking at stats I can't think of one time I actually saw him play, I know I did, but he did his job, nothing beyonf extraordinary.  Maybe I'm too critical as I'll admit he'll likely deserve a spot in the Hall more than others I voted for.

Larry Walker-  I like Larry Walker and was always amazed at how talented he was.  However he played a lot of his career in Coors Field, and that helped his stats a lot.  Overall, he was a solid player, but I just didn't consider him as much as players above him.

Jeff Kent- Okay, maybe I considered Walker more than Kent.  Kent was another player that did his job.  He was on some solid teams as well, and that really helped too.  My mind remembers his name on some great plays, but I can't remember those plays.  Maybe its because I'm getting older, or because they don't seem to stand out as much now.

Mike Mussina-  In a weaker class, he would definitely deserve a spot on my top ten, but as it stands now, he's around the top 15.  That isn't a slight on him, I just placed others above him.  There is a chance he won't get the 5% and that would be a shame, but I see him as a guy that will either get a lot of surprise votes or no votes at all.

Edgar Martinez-  The man could hit!  Having said that, the question starts to become should a designated hitter be elected into the Hall of Fame?  His numbers really make you consider it, but in the end, I just can't yet.  I will say though that I can't think of many if any DH's that had a better career.  I don't think the floodgates will open if he gets elected, but if he doesn't I don't see much chance for others to even be considered.

Roger Clemens-  Last year I talked about how I didn't like Clemens.  I still really don't, but I have considered him a lot more this year.  He had a long career, and though steroids likely helped him stay competitive longer, I've never seen evidence that pitchers benefit from steroids aside from healing from injury.  Then again I never looked into it a whole lot.  Besides, even if they did, the question is when did he start taking them?  Because the first part of his career was Hall worthy on its own.  In my opinion I think he will make it in, I just don't think it will be this year or the next two after that.  He should gain votes though.

Tim Raines-  I said this last year, and I'll say it again.  I never truly saw Raines play much and that gives me a disadvantage.  He was solid, and he obviously has shown to voters and fans he deserves heavy consideration.  Than again, I thought Don Mattingly should have been a lock too, shows how much I know.

Fred McGriff-  I did see the Crime Dog play, but not as much as I would like.  Still, he lands just outside my top ten.  In reality, he'll get a top ten votes on the real ballot I'd imagine, but I had others ahead of him, deservedly or not.

Finally on the just outside the top ten is one I really considered hard because I was a big fan.  However, I needed one last trim of the list and he had to go.  In reality, he will be nowhere near top ten, and will likely not get 5% of the votes, and it won't be a shame.  His name is...

Nomar Garciaparra.  Besides my love of the Royals, I grew up a Red Sox fan.  Not out of family or anything, I just felt sorry for them never winning.  I rooted for them until about 2006, or a year or two after they won a World Series.  I still root for them, but I'm not as devoted to them as I was. Anyways, because of fandom, I would rank Nomar a lot higher than he deserves.  I can't even say Nomar had a solid career, he had a few good ones, then kinda fell off the map.  The best thing he had going for him was entering the league around the same time as other young shortstops like Jeter and A-Rod. It gave the Red Sox some hope, and he helped deliver it some.Then he faded away.  Will he get 5% of the votes?  I was surprised he got it last year.  He could this year, but I would be surprised if he did this year though.

So that is my not top 10.  If you know the full ballot, I guess you know my top ten, but you will still want to read my next post as it will detail why I would vote for them.  Thanks for reading today, I will have that list tomorrow, and then once the results are posted, I will post about that too.  Have a great day!


Write comments
Matthew Scott
1/4/16, 12:02 PM delete

Edgar should be in as his career hitting numbers are every bit as good as David Ortiz and you know Ortiz will go in when he becomes eligible. Raines is starting to get some traction and I think he'll get in within the next couple years. He shouldn't have had to wait this long.

Mussina is one of my favorites and really deserves more recognition for being a top tier pitcher. He was awesome his whole career. He just doesn't have the narrative. Just imagine if he could have turned a few of those one hitters into no hitters.

1/4/16, 12:28 PM delete

Yeah I think Raines will make it in. I won't be mad at it either. Mussina deserves a lot more recognition. It's a shame he was overshadowed by so many other pitchers, but again it was good we got to see so many great pitchers.

As for Edgar, I'm on the fence. He's another one I wouldn't be against it. My only problem I have is the voters don't consider a lot of closers for the Hall because they think they are one-dimensional. If that's the case I can't justify putting in a DH. Overall he did his job, so he shouldn't be punished for being a great hitter, but on the other hand, you can't diminish one position using the same basis as another.

1/4/16, 3:57 PM delete

I saw Raines play many times in Montreal, and man was he disruptive. If he didn't play at the same time as Rickey Henderson more people would have been more aware of how good he was. I think he should be in the Hall, and can't wait for him to eventually get there.

As for the DH issue, I consider it to be the same thing that I thought in football when Ray Guy finally got into their Hall of Fame. A DH is playing a position in the game, therefore a player at that position should be able to get in. It doesn't mean all of them will, but if they are considered to be the all-time best at their position, they deserve to get in.

1/4/16, 10:25 PM delete

Edgar, Tim, and Mike are all deserving candidates. It's a shame Mike doesn't get more recognition, both he and Schilling have better overall numbers than Smoltz, who was elected last year.

Wagner should, and I hope will, get elected some day. He never had the overall saves record, like Hoffman or Rivera, but he was an extremely effective pitcher. He has more strikeouts than Rivera, who pitched three years longer. His 2.31 ERA is second only to Rivera's 2.21 for pitchers with at least 900 innings. He holds the K/9 rate for pitchers with at least 900 innings, at a staggering 11.92 K/9. His 1.00 WHIP is tied with Eckersley for the best among elite relievers.

Maybe next year he can make your ballot. ;)

1/5/16, 7:30 AM delete

All-time DHs (that aren't already in, I consider Molitor & Frank Thomas DHs): 1.) Big Papi. 2.) Harold Baines 3.) Edgar Martinez. Papi's got the Mitchell Report hanging over him, and Baines got screwed by timing, his shot on the ballot coming along just before the Edgar boosters held the sway to make a serious case for pure DHs. I wouldn't mind seeing Edgar get in, but his is NOT the best to ever play the position.