Open Thread: 2010 HOF Ballot


Amidst the Black Friday madness, the 2010 Hall of Fame ballot was released to the public this year, as 15 new names joined the 11 holdovers from last year. Here’s the list, via the self-proclaimed Worldwide Leader

Roberto Alomar, Kevin Appier, Harold Baines, Bert Blyleven, Ellis Burks, Andre Dawson, Andres Galarraga, Pat Hentgen, Mike Jackson, Eric Karros, Ray Lankford, Barry Larkin, Edgar Martinez, Don Mattingly, Fred McGriff, Mark McGwire, Jack Morris, Dale Murphy, Dave Parker, Tim Raines, Shane Reynolds, David Segui, Lee Smith, Alan Trammell, Robin Ventura, Todd Zeile

Players in bold are the holdovers. Blyleven and Dawson were far and away the closest to being voted in last year, coming in at 63% and 67%, respectively (75% is required for enshrinement). I’d vote for Alomar, Blyleven, Larkin, Martinez, McGwire, Raines, and Trammell, but that’s just me. I’ll defend my picks in the comments, if anyone dares to challenge me.

Who would you vote for?

* * *

Here’s your open thread for the evening. The Rangers are in Tampa, the Knicks are in Denver, and The Quest For 0-82 continues in Sacramento. Talk about whatever you want, just make sure you follow the guidelines and be cool.

Roberto Alomar
Kevin Appier
Harold Baines 32 (6%)
Bert Blyleven 338 (63%)
Ellis Burks
Andre Dawson 361 (67%)
Andres Galarraga
Pat Hentgen
Mike Jackson
Eric Karros
Ray Lankford
Barry Larkin
Edgar Martinez
Don Mattingly 64 (12%)
Fred McGriff
Mark McGwire 118 (22%)
Jack Morris 237 (44%)
Dale Murphy 62 (12%)
Dave Parker 81 (15%)
Tim Raines 122 (23%)
Shane Reynolds
David Segui
Lee Smith 240 (45%)
Alan Trammell 94 (17%)
Robin Ventura
Todd Zeile
Categories : Open Thread


  1. Steven says:

    Everyone will probably say something about mcgwire and how he doesn’t deserve to make it due to steroids but he used a legal substance, or at least was caught with a legal substance, had 500 homers, and was one of the best players in baseball for a solid 5-10 year period

    • Mike Axisa says:

      Yep. When you could prove to me that none of the pitchers he ever faced used PED’s, then we’ll talk.

      • Renny Baseball says:

        So by that reasoning, Roger Clemens gets in too because he likely faced hitters who used PEDs? Same logic for Barry Bonds or Palmeiro? What about Conseco?

        I think the maxim of “two wrongs don’t make a right” applies.

        McGwire wouldn’t have my vote. Maybe with more light on his case, and with greater perspective on the era over time, but not now.

  2. Tom Zig says:

    Robin Ventura gets my vote for getting epically pwned by Nolan Ryan

  3. Blyleven, Raines, and Edgar for sure. I could definitely be convinced for Trammell and/or Larkin.

    • Add McGwire to the list of people receiving my vote.

      • Alomar, too. I need to read more carefully.

        • Pete C says:

          The votings a joke, how does Blyelevin not get in after all these years, while Ozzie Smith gets in on a first ballot? Yeah I’ll take a hit on that one, I’m not saying Smith doesn’t belong, I’m saying 1st ballot inductions belong to players like Ricky Henderson, Mays or Arron, not a relatively light hitting glove man like the cuddly Wizard. While guys like Blyelevin, and Kaat don’t get taken seriously.
          Remember, the guys who vote for the players are the same ones who ignored steroid use, starting in the mid 90′s, until they all of a sudden got religion , and were, shocked, shocked I tell you, when they “found out the players were using”. These hypocrites are the gatekeepers to the hall.

          • leokitty says:

            Why does it matter which ballot you get in on? If you’re a HoF caliber player you’re a HoF caliber player.

            The “first ballot player” thing is overblown and one of the most irritating thoughts put into ballots.

  4. Chelo says:

    Whats the case for Alomar? And Edgar Martinez, I think they should be in, But I want to hear it from other people here, ie, stats, etc lol

  5. The Artist says:

    “I don’t know who Toronto will wind up with,” a major league executive said Friday. “I don’t know when he is going and I don’t know where he’s going.

    “But I do know that Halladay has told the Jays he’ll approve a trade to the Yankees.”


    A Minnesota Twins official confirmed in July that Halladay would not approve a deal to the Twin-Cities and Texas Rangers president Nolan Ryan said in September he was told Halladay would block a deal to Arlington, Tex.

    Halladay has never said yeah or nay to the Yanks and still hasn’t, but this third party news clears the decks for Halladay to follow the path of Cone and Clemens.

  6. I love how we’ve now officially dubbed it “The Quest for 0-82″

  7. Jesse G. says:

    I would vote for the same seven but think that Edgar, Larkin, and Trammell are somewhat borderline.

  8. The Artist says:

    Marlins Looking To Deal Josh Johnson
    By Zach Links [November 27 at 6:20pm CST]

    The Marlins are “very willing” to trade Josh Johnson for the right package, according to John Perrotto (via Twitter). Just a few weeks ago, it seemed as though the Marlins intended on signing the 25-year-old ace to a multi-year deal.

    The 6’7, 250 lb righty is arbitration eligible and due for a big raise from the $1.4MM he earned last season. Johnson earned a trip to the all-star game in his best campaign to date, registering a 3.23 ERA with 8.2 K/9.

    • Reggie C. says:

      Alright Cash. Get to work on it!

      Offer Joba Chamberlain, Ivan Nova, Man-Ban, & Austin Romine.

    • The Artist says:

      I’m with Mike A, if I’m going to deal away top prospects I want to do it for a guy like him before Halladay.

      But lets go a step further with this. Lets say Montero+ package gets you Halladay, but a Montero+Joba/Hughes is needed to land Johnson. Which one you go for?

      • I wouldn’t even consider giving up Montero for Halladay. And I’m very much pro-Halladay.

        I’d prefer Johnson to Halladay, although ideally I’d like to see him have another productive season.

        • The Artist says:

          It was reported today their #1 need is a catcher. Montero+ could very well get it done. I understand that he will be a very productive bat, but straight up for one of the best pitchers in Baseball is something I would do. I wouldn’t do him with Hughes or Joba, but alone I would.

          • Montero looks like about as close to a sure thing with the bat as there is, and he might play a position at which major offensive production is rare. If we’re giving him up, it has to be for someone at the front end of their prime. I like Halladay, and on the whole I’m in favor of acquiring him, but a 33 year old pitcher doesn’t give you enough value, IMO, to justify trading Montero.

            • Evil Empire says:

              Montero’s value right now, while there’s still a chance of he being a catcher in the Bigs, might be as high as it ever is. Capitalizing on that by getting a player of JJ’s caliber is a smart move.

            • The Artist says:

              You make a fair point, and I’m not saying you’re wrong. I’ve already stated in this thread I prefer to trade for Johnson.

      • Mike Axisa says:

        I’d go with Johnson. Younger, have him longer, and his best years are ahead of him. Halladay’s great, but he’s going to be what, 34 next year?

        • Evil Empire says:

          Halladay will be 33 for the 2010 baseball campaign but that’s besides the point. Johnson is the much better player to go after, there’s very little doubt about that. He is now what we could only hope Joba or Hughes to one day become.

          • Renny Baseball says:

            I’d do that trade, Montero-for-Johnson. The passing concern that Johnson is an NL’er goes out the window for me because of the way he dominated the Yank lineup in Florida (albeit sans A-Rod).

  9. By the way, Mozilla’s got a browser just for social media. It’s kind of awesome.

  10. I’d vote for Alomar, Martinez, Larkin, Raines, Blyleven, McGriff, and McGwire. I’d like to hear your case for Trammell.

  11. Tim Raines, Bert Blyleven, Roberto Alomar, Mark McGwire, Barry Larkin, and probably Alan Trammell. I need more time to think about Edgar Martinez but I’m leaning no.

    • Mike Axisa says:

      My biggest complaint about Edgar is that he’s a DH, but the bulk offense is absurd. .312-.418-.515 career line, 12-yr stretch of .319-.431-.548. Crazy.

      He’s borderline because of the DH thing, but I put him in. Such a great hitter.

  12. The Artist says:

    There’s a bunch of Tweets and stories from Jordan Bastian of that shed some light on what the Blue Jays will likely be looking for in a prospective Halladay deal. First, he has a story up on saying that the Blue Jays are likely to lose Catcher Rod Barajas this off season. They plan on offering him arbitration, but it appears he has a multi-year deal elsewhere. He also quotes Blue Jays GM Alex Anthopoulos on his Twitter, saying in reference to the Barajas situation:

    “We’re going to keep the dialogue open. But, right now, I don’t see there being good chances of Rod coming back.”

    He later Tweeted that Travis Snider has been told he will have to earn a spot on the Jays’ roster during spring training, leaving the possibility of an opening in the outfield as another hole that would need to be filled. Finally, he sums up the info with a quote from the Blue Jays GM

    Anthopoulos: No. 1 need right now is at catcher, but Jays are also looking for help in the outfield.

    My first impression is that this is an attempt to draw the Yanks in to the bidding, having a plan in place for their Catching position next year that could very well be bringing Barajas back on a 2 year deal. But any good GM has a series of contingency plans, so there’s nothing really ‘skull and dagger’ about that. So I’ll take all of this on face value.

    This means a few things right away. First, the Red Sox are not as good a match as we initially thought. Casey Kelley is too far away and the don’t have any good catching prospects anywhere near the level of what the Yanks have to offer. The Phillies are an excellent match, maybe the best of all. They could do a Drabek/Brown package and blow everyone else out of the water. But are they willing? Coming as close as they did this season, and being a pitcher (or two) short of winning it all, you’d have to think they are. But Phillies GM Ruben Amaro has shown a willingness to go for lower cost options, opting to pass on Halladay and go for Cliff Lee last Season at the trade deadline. His two top prospects may be more than he’s willing to give.

    Next, we can start drawing up packages that suit the Jays needs while avoiding giving up the kind of multiple high ceiling talents and/players on the current 25 man roster that most Yankee fans want to avoid for a single year of Halladay’s services. Offer a package that fits their needs directly, but without giving up Joba or Hughes. A Montero package would be one where you look to give up less around him, since he’s such a high-upside bat that is almost MLB ready. Some combination of Jesus Montero or Frankie Cervelli, Austin Jackson or Brett Gardner or Melky Cabrera, and one of our AAA arms like Zach McCallister, Ian Kennedy or Ivan Nova. I’m not going to speculate on specific packages since they instantaneously become Pinatas, and I’m sure we all have opinions on which combination is too high and which is too low to get it done. But the point is we are a good match for the Jay’s needs both in terms of position(s) and MLB readiness.

    So the question becomes, would you be willing to give up a bat like Jesus Montero (with some other useful MLB players) for an arm like Roy Halladay? If one high upside prospect gets it done, I’d have to think the answer is yes.

    • Evil Empire says:

      One high upside prospect? Yeah, I’m down with that. If the deal included Montero, however, I would be tentative to offer anything else of much value in the trade package.

      • The Artist says:

        Exactly, the rest of the package could be MLB ready (Nova/IPK/Gardner/Melky) but nobody you’d lose sleep over.

        I’d lose sleep over Montero, I think he’s going to be tremendous. But Halladay is a great pitcher, you have to give something up.

        • Evil Empire says:

          This is all assuming there’s the contract window so we can give Doc a very large amount of money in return for the guarantee of his services for the next 4 or 5 years.

          But yeah, you gotta do what you gotta do. From the impression I’m getting, Montero is like a 50/50 chance at sticking at catcher. His bat is a sure thing but where he will actually play is still up in the air. Selling him now while his value is as a catcher is a smart thing to do if you’re getting the right piece back in return.

          Making him the centerpiece of a big JJ deal is a better idea but him as the only major part to get Doc in return is also worth doing.

          • The Artist says:

            Selling him now while his value is as a catcher is a smart thing to do if you’re getting the right piece back in return.

            Excellent point. Had we stuck him at 1B/LF 3 years ago, his value wouldn’t be as high. Yet that may very well be his natural position, and therefore not a fit for us long term.

  13. Roberto Alomar, Bert Blyleven, Andre Dawson, (maybe) Edgar Martinez, Fred McGriff, Dale Murphy, and (maybe) Tim Raines get my vote

  14. Oh and Fred McGriff. What sucks is Crime Dog is going to be left out ’cause he didn’t hang around to hit seven more homers.

    • It would suck more if he had hit 7 more and got in because of that.

      • My point is that voters will likely just glance and say “No 500 HRs? Not in!” I bet if he did get to 500, though, they’d say “Oh, he just stuck around to get 500. Not in.”

        I’ll reach (again) my boiling point if Blyleven gets passed up again. It’s ridiculous.

        • Raines pisses me off more, but yeah. I’m starting to think Blyleven is a big-dick-standoff topic with the round number, wins and RBIs voters.

          • Now, as I’m only 22, I never saw the dude’s playing days. Did he do something to piss the writers off and is that why they won’t vote him?

            • whozat says:

              They don’t want to vote him in because he doesn’t have some of the big counting numbers, but that’s because he was on bad teams and never got a lot of run support. If you try to look at how good _he_ was, it’s clear that he was among the best ever, but his teammates were often not that special.

              • Also, there’s the black coke versus the white coke (Molitor) thing.

                • Renny Baseball says:

                  I agree, Fred McGriff is on my list and has got to get in. First ballot. He led (twice) or nearly the league in HRs for years but then his yearly HR totals — remaining at the same level that sufficed to lead the league previously — were surpassed by sluggers hitting in the 50+/year range, the McGwires, Sosas and lesser known players. You can never know if a player like McGriff used PEDs or not, but I hadn’t seen anything reported that links him to steroids. Given the contrast between skyrocketing HR totals for McGriff’s peers and his consistent levels, to not let him in would seem to be rewarding confirmed or suspected steriod users.

                  If you sidestep the steroid-related reasons, he still deserves to get in because of the 493 HRs and 2400+ hits, which were enough to get Jim Rice in. And McGriff has a WS ring with Atlanta.


                • Renny Baseball says:

                  *or nearly LED the league

  15. By the way, Gawker’s tapping Jeter for Sportsman of the Year

  16. I’d do a Joba topped package for Johnson in a hot second.

  17. So my dad and I threw the turkey carcass outside in the backyard after dinner last night and it has been 100% picked clean and is totally gone, bones and all.

  18. YankFanDave says:

    Over due: Bert Blyleven, Lee Smith and Andre Dawson
    Deserving in first year: Roberto Alomar and Barry Larkin
    Someday but not this year: Mark McGwire and Edgar Martinez
    Too close to call: Tim Raines, Jack Morris and Alan Trammell
    Love him but the door stays closed: Harold Baines, Dale Murphy, Don Mattingly, Andres Galarraga and Dave Parker

    • steve (different one) says:

      Lee Smith?

      Dawson in but Raines is too close to call?

      • YankFanDave says:

        The case for Lee Smith: 7 time AS, 4 times in top ten CY voting (once as a runner up), 11 30 save seasons, 4 times led league in saves, 478 saves are 3rd all time and one of only 4 with 400+ saves, 8.73 SO/9 innings, 2.57 SO/balls. Gossage had over 100 less saves and their ERA and whip are basically identical (ERA-Goose 3.01, Smith 3.03; whip-Goose 1.23, Smith 1.25) Can’t fault the guy for playing on bad teams. It is fair to say he was dominant during his career.

        Why Dawson over Raines:
        Dawson was ROY, 8 time AS, MVP, 8 time gold glover, 4 time silver slugger, 400+ hr, 1500+ rbi, 300+ sb, 2700+ hits, averaged 98 rbi/yr over career. He was one of the best players during his career and a true 5 tool guy.

        Raines was a great player but 1 fewer AS appearance, no MVP, no ROY, 1 silver slugger, no gold gloves, he did led the league in batting once, he did the league in OBP once, and we know about his steals. He definitely could hit but still had 100 less hits than Dawson and he could steal a base but in 23 seasons even in his area of note he led the league 4 times.

        Dawson could take over a game in more ways than Raines and was simply the better, more complete player.

  19. The Artist says:

    My HOF votes would go to Robbie Alomar and . . .and . . . ugh.

    -I’d love to say Edgar Martinez but I value fielding and therefore have to penalize a DH, especially one who doesn’t have any of the magic numbers.

    -Raines is close, but is the type of guy who will wait to get in on a weak year, like Gossage did. He’s borderline, so I’m in no rush to put him in either way.

    • Mike Axisa says:

      See, that kind of bothers me. If it was up to me, the guys would be on the ballot for one year, and that’s it. Nothing makes someone more worthy in the 5th or 9th or 15th year than in the 1st. You’re either a HOFer, or you’re not.

    • The Artist says:

      -Bert Blyleven is a no. I saw him pitch, and never thought of him as being outstanding. Struck out a ton of guys, had good control but was very hittable with his fastball. Way too many of his numbers are too weak for me. He’s 136th in adjusted ERA, 260th in H/9 IP, 127th all time in WHIP. Everything except the SO totals doesn’t make the cut for me. You should be top-50 in at least a few categories, preferably 3-4. His 287 wins are high, but so are his 250 losses. The numbers confirm what I saw, he just wasn’t a great pitcher. He was a very good pitcher that lasted a long time.

      He’s also a black ink/grey ink guy. If you look at the typical standards for HOF election, he falls short. If you dig through his peripherals, you can make a case. But I always wonder what they’ll put on his plaque. A plaque filled with rate stats may be interesting, but would make a lousy plaque. If he’s great, you should be able to explain it in plain English.

      • Dammit, I just had a whole response all typed out and it got lost.

        • The Artist says:

          I knew you would, we’ve debated this before.

          • The Artist says:

            Matt, make me a Bert Blyleven plaque. Maybe that will convince me.

            • Here goes:

              An incredibly durable pitcher, Bert pitched a remarkable 4,970.00 innings across 692 games, 685 of them starts, amassing 3,701 strikeouts, 60 shutouts, and 242 complete games in a long 22 season career. Throughout his career, Bert was a model of consistency and longevity.

              • The Artist says:

                See that’s the thing. We know he pitched a long time (which is significant) but there’s too much quantity there and not enough quality. Thanks for the effort, but I’m still not in the Bert column.

                • How about:

                  Category (top ten times)
                  ERA: 10
                  IP: 11
                  WHIP: 11
                  K/9: 14
                  K: 15
                  K/BB: 16

                  As for the wins, Blyleven got 3.77 runs of support a game. Even for his era (/alexgonzalez’d), that was shitty. It’s estimated, by Rich Lederer (I’d link the article but I think it set off the spam filter last time; it’s from ESPN, though, so I’m nto sure why) that if Blyleven got even average run support, his record would be something like 313-224, rather than 287-250.

                  I’m glad, though, that you’re not supporting Morris. People who support Morris and not Blyleven annoy me.

                • Evil Empire says:

                  I am in the Blyvelen camp. He was trill.

                • The Artist says:

                  I’m glad, though, that you’re not supporting Morris. People who support Morris and not Blyleven annoy me.

                  Hahahah! Yeah, I don’t put either one in. But I’m a hard marker, I think too many guys are in already who I wouldn’t have voted for.

                  BTW-Your 2nd post was much more persuasive. But I’m still not there.

                • Well, to be fair, my first post was just the plaque, per your request. I’m not sure who writes that/how they decide what gets on. That’d be a cool job.

                • whozat says:

                  So…the argument is “plaques have counting numbers on them. Blyleven doesn’t have the counting numbers that I like, so he shouldn’t be in the hall of fame.”

                  If his teammates had been better hitters, he’d have those numbers (in addition to the ones that actually say something about his ability to pitch). That’s a reason to keep him out of the hall?

                • larryf says:

                  On the bottom of the plaque:

                  PS: he had the best curveball in the game for years (just saying)

      • leokitty says:

        My mom saw Blyleven pitch and she saw him as a dominating force.

        Anecdotes wooo.

  20. Joey H says:

    I agree with putting McGwire in but Mike, can you honestly admit that you favoring him to get in has NOTHING to do with A-Rod being outed?

    • Mike Axisa says:

      Oh no, not at all. I’ve been aying McGwire should get in for the 3-4 years (or whatever it is) that he’s been on the ballot. All of the PED guys should be in – Sosa, Clemens, Palmeiro, etc. They weren’t the only ones.

      • Joey H says:

        So basically what it comes down to is truly judging the player based on their era even if that era is known as the steroid era?

        • Mike Axisa says:

          Yep, absolutely. Players have always cheated, and they’ll continue to do so.

        • What it comes down to is what the players did on the field, and what they did on the field isn’t magically wiped from the record by PED issues… Especially when we have no idea who used and who didn’t.

          • Joey H says:

            “Especially when we have no idea who used and who didn’t.”
            While I agree with most of what you said but let’s cut through all the bullshit. We do know who they. Most of the cornerstones of this era that are on/will be on the ticket the Sosa’s the Bonds’ the Palmerio’s A-Rod’s and so on.

            • We know who some of them are, but what I meant is we don’t know who else, of their opponents, was using PEDs. I assume all that matters is the level playing field, and since it seems like a vast majority of them were using PEDs anyway, then it really doesn’t matter. So, no, we don’t know who they are. Like Mike said, we don’t know if the pitchers throwing to Bonds were using, or if the hitters facing Clemens were using, etc.

              To be honest, I personally don’t think I’d have any problem with MLB saying ‘you use PEDs, you lose HOF eligibility.’ The users were breaking the law and breaking MLB rules, so they have to suffer whatever the consequences may be. But unless and until MLB makes that kind of a decision, I think PEDs should be irrelevant in HOF voting.

              • Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

                I agree, but they can never make the rule that if you used PED’s you’re out of the HOF because there are too many people we’re only guessing have used or deny they used or have sketchy evidence. What happens to guys like Piazza (sketchy evidence) and Clemens (flat out denial, even though all evidence points against him)?

                • If they made a rule like that they would have to say that if there was evidence a player used (i.e. if the player failed an MLB administered drug test), that player would be ineligible, but in the absence of such evidence, the player is eligible. Obviously it wouldn’t be as simple as ‘if you used PEDs you’re out,’ there would have to be some sort of mechanism to determine who is eligible and who isn’t.

                • Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

                  My prediction: They’re going to be forced to let steroid guys into the HOF eventually when they figure out that one of the guys they’ve let into the HOF juiced and they didn’t know it. I think it’ll be Piazza. They’ll vote him in, get more or less conclusive evidence he juiced, and be kind of forced to let other juicers in.

                • I think they may soften their stances on the PED guys eventually, but I disagree with your reasoning. There’s probably a PED guy or a few in the HOF already, but I don’t think confirmation of that speculation is going to make anyone suddenly vote for Mark McGwire. I think they’ll lament the fact that there’s a PED guy in the HOF, not change their stance and suddenly not object to PED users being in the HOF.

                • Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

                  I’m sure there are juicers in the HOF, they just don’t know it yet.

                  I think if/when they learn of it there’ll be a big debate and PED guys will slowly get more and more votes each year until a guy is voted in, and he becomes the precedent.

                • Evil Empire says:

                  There is a part of me that wants someone like Nolan Ryan to be linked to steroid use. Just because it would totally shake up the world of the BBWAA and eventually cause them to ease up on a lot of current candidates.

                • Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

                  Nolan Ryan juicing would not shock me.

              • Joey H says:

                Amen. I mean look at Jim Rice, they all but admitted that he was black listed because of his media relationships. Now, his true eligibility isn’t something I’m not debating but you get my point. Blacklisting happens.

      • Evil Empire says:

        No question about it. All of those names deserve to have HOF plaques. If Bonds and Clemens are not in the hall of fame when all is said and done, then the HOF is not going to matter much.

        • Joey H says:

          True, but what is there to say to the guys who didn’t use and because of such their numbers look inferior to those who did? Do we just say, Ah you had your chance to join the party.

          • Evil Empire says:

            I guess we say “You weren’t good enough to make the HOF”.

            I mean seriously, what did we say to the Negro Leaguers who aren’t in the HOF? “Sorry you weren’t white, at least Paige got in!”

            I don’t think that is a question that baseball needs to be accountable for, honestly.

            • Joey H says:

              Fair enough. I think the whole voting is a joke anyway. They have to redo how voting for awards and HOF is done. But as long as you get where I am coming from.

              • Evil Empire says:

                I do see where you’re coming from … but I just think it complicates things too much. There’s too much of a gray area and I think you just need to keep things simple with this shit, because it is already filled with SO MANY FUCKING INCONSISTENCIES. Plus, steroid use does not automatically grant baseball super stardom. There are are a ton examples that demonstrate this.

                I hope as the older generations of the BBWAA die out, we’ll start seeing more consistency in the voting, and more attention paid to advanced statistics. The middle aged voting core – the Buster Olneys of the world – are moderate enough that once the influence of the old timers dies out, they will more fully embrace advanced metrics that the younger members are citing.

          • Yeah, it’s probably a bit unfair, but that’s life. You can’t go back and change history – whatever happened on the field during a player’s career is what happened. If what happened isn’t enough to put a player into the HOF, then so be it, even if he’s a good person who didn’t use PEDs even though his peers were using them. That player gets to hold his head high and know he’s a straight-shooter who played by the rules, and his family and friends will respect him. But that doesn’t put numbers on the back of his baseball card or make him a HOFer.

  21. Ace says:

    How did Edgar Martinez not win the AL MVP in 1995 when he hit .356? Mo Vaughn?

  22. Evil Empire says:

    I’d vote for …

    Alomar, Blyleven, Larkin, McGwire (and then apologize to the guy for not getting him in sooner), Raines, and Trammell (pretty much Mike A’s ballot minus Martinez)

    Edgar Martinez is the most fun guy to talk about. He had 7 core, monstrous years from 1995 – 2001 and a few other high quality seasons, but I’m a small hall guy and I just need more out of a DH to put him in there.

    He’s the best DH that ever played the game – assuming we put Frank Thomas in the 1B category – but I think a guy needs to be like, one of the top 15 hitters of all time to be considered if he didn’t contribute defensively.

    • but I’m a small hall guy and I just need more out of a DH to put him in there.

      He’s the best DH of all time. If you won’t put Gar in there, you are pretty much flatly against the inclusion of DHs.

      • Evil Empire says:

        Well, I am pretty much flatly against the inclusion of all DHs that have played the game thus far, yes.

        I’m not innately disinclined towards putting a DH in the HOF, he just has to be good enough. Its a tough call on Edgar, I will give you that. He’s borderline.

      • The Artist says:

        The problem is he was almost exclusively a DH. Other guys like Frank Thomas/Jim Thome/Paul Molitor played positions for many years earlier in their career before settling in at DH later on.

        If someone is just a DH, they have to blow me away to make up for the fact that they contributed nothing defensively, otherwise it’s not fair to everyone else who played the field that is borderline. Edgar was a great hitter, one of the best I’ve seen. But so was Don Mattingly for a 5 year period, as well as a great glove. But Don doesn’t make the cut, either. I think you have to factor in everything.

        • Mike Axisa says:

          Mattingly’s best year: .352-.394-.573, 35 HR
          Edgar from 1995-2001: .326-.446-.574, 33 HR per yr

          Mattingly had such a short peak because of his back. Maybe if he moved to DH like Edgar did, we’d be talking about him as a HOFer.

          • Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

            I still like Mattingly as a HOF’er. The dude’s best year, as seen above, was epic, plus he played historically great 1b defense.

          • The Artist says:

            You missed my point, now subtract Donnie’s value with the glove at 1B from Edgar’s offensive numbers and then subtract Edgar’s zero with the glove from Donnie’s.

            But to answer your point, I don’t know if DH would have helped Donnie. He didn’t have the frame or the swing of a power hitter, and didn’t hit for much power in the minors. So he had to (by his own admission) put tremendous torque on his body to generate power, and was therefore destined to have a short career.

        • Gar played longer than Donnie and, by extension, had a longer peak

  23. Mike: Larkin and Trammell? Really?

  24. Crazy Eyes Killa says:

    I hate that ESPN is the “worldwide leader”….I wonder if they actually are, I’m sure it’s a subject you could do a lot of research on

  25. Andy in Sunny Daytona says:

    Eric Karros’ hair should have a special wing in the HOF.

  26. Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

    The HOF is totally worthless to me anyway. Rabbit Maranville is in the HOF but Pete Rose isn’t. It doesn’t matter.

    • Ace says:

      Hahahaha…”Rabbit Maranville”

      • Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

        He was good, very good, but HOF? Please.

        Guidry should’ve made it. And I am in the Mattingly camp.

        • No to Guidry. He didn’t do it for long enough, IMO. The same goes for Mattingly. He had a great peak, but his career wasn’t brilliant all the way through.

          Buck O’Neill should be in, too.

          • Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

            I just realized that my comments are kind of contradictory. I just said Maranville wasn’t good enough, but I’d vote in Guidry and Mattingly.

            My response, to myself: Guidry did not pitch long, but he was absolutely outstanding, a great, great pitcher.

            As for Mattingly, he may not have had his peak for long enough, but it was an epicly good peak. You also have to remember that even in his non-peak years he wasn’t bad most of the time and he played historically great 1b defense.

            Maranville was always just very, very good. Never really great.

            • If Guidry had pitched more years, I think he’d have more of a case. He could be like a Blyleven Lite with more innings, but he just didn’t do it for very long.

              Mattingly was very good, but again, he just didn’t do it for long enough.

              If you wanna go for an undeserving candidate, I’d go Kirby Puckett. Though the eye thing was out of his control, it still happened and, like Mattingly w/his back injuries, he can’t be credited for years he didn’t play.

              • Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

                I know but again, Guidry at his peak had one of the greatest single seasons of all time. An ERA below 2 and 25 wins, holy shit. And when he wasn’t historic he was just really, really good. Short career, but still a really good one.

                I think you need to take Mattingly’s defense into account as well, it was historically good. Plus he had those what, 3 great years and then his years that weren’t great were still pretty good.

                • One great single season doesn’t make you HOF worthy. Guidry’s career was quite strong but the fact that it was so short hurts him. Part of being a HOFer is doing it for a long time.

                  Plus he had those what, 3 great years and then his years that weren’t great were still pretty good.

                  I think this makes my argument more than it makes yours. Three incredible years then a bunch of above average ones don’t make you a hall of famer.

                • Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

                  I disagree. It means he was always one of the best performers in the league, and for a while he was THE best.

                • About whom are you talking? “A while” doesn’t mean much if it’s 3-5 seasons. If it’s 8-10 seasons, then, yeah, that means something. But a great period of three years followed by above average seasons for Donnie doesn’t do it. The same goes for Guidry. He had some absolutely brilliant seasons but he also had a bunch that were just above average. If he had done it for longer, he’d have a much, much stronger case but his short career really hurts him.

                • Evil Empire says:

                  Probably best to not use Ws as a qualifier for how good of a season someone had, they’re not an accurate way to quantify how good of a pitcher someone is.

                  Louisiana Lightning is an awesome pitcher and a True Yankee (C) (R) (TM) but definitely not HOF worthy.

                  Neither was Don Mattingly. And apparently neither was Keith Hernandez or Kirby Puckett, per Matt’s wisdom.

                • Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

                  With Mattingly you have to remember his sick defense. Even when he was merely above average his defense was insanely good.

                  As for Guidry he had four years with an ERa BELOW three. FOUR! That’s REALLY damn good. His career ERA is 3.29!

                  Seven times he was above 200 innings. Seven!

                  I know his career was short, but 14 years isn’t THAT short, and it was of tremendous quality.

                • With Mattingly you have to remember his sick defense. Even when he was merely above average his defense was insanely good.

                  Yes, he was a very good defender and a very good hitter. But his career was too short! I’m not saying that he wasn’t very good, or even great, but he wasn’t either one of those things for long enough. Again, longevity counts.

                  As for Guidry he had four years with an ERa BELOW three. FOUR! That’s REALLY damn good. His career ERA is 3.29

                  Yeah, that’s really good. But there are other guys who have done that, too (for example, Kevin Brown did that six times in a much better offensive era). Guidry was a very good pitcher but he was not a very good pitcher for a very long time. Longevity counts.

                • Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

                  Fine, forget wins in that 78′ season (although they are worth something, especially since he was winning at a part of a season the rest of the team was not). Look at the ERA. It was 1.74! He had NINE SHUTOUTS. Nine! He pitched 273.2 innings. It was an insane, unreal season.

                  Wins have use, limited as they are. Except in rare cases, they are at least indicative of going deep into games.

                • Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

                  Longevity counts, but their careers weren’t five years long. They weren’t THAT short.

                • RRR, using one specific season to argue a guy’s HOF candidacy is not wise. You need to take the whole picture into account, Guidry’s whole picture isn’t very good. If he pitched five more years, he most likely would’ve gotten more consideration. But he didn’t. The same goes for Mattingly. They just didn’t play for long enough.

                • Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

                  Kevin Brown may well be a HOF’er. He has a great career ERA, better than Guidry (3.29) and he did it for 19 seasons. Plus he had 9 season where he was over 200 inings pitched.

                • No, but their play wasn’t that great that it could overcome their relatively short careers.

                • Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

                  I was only talking about 78′ again because Evil Empire said “Probably best to not use Ws as a qualifier for how good of a season someone had, they’re not an accurate way to quantify how good of a pitcher someone is.”

                  So I said that in 78′, wins were not the only reason he was insane. And I’m trying to argue that the rest of his career WAS very good. Sure it wasn’t very long. But it wasn’t THAT short.

                • Evil Empire says:

                  Yeah, he had a fantastic year in ’78. That’s not good enough.

                  Lots of pitchers have 1 year good year in their career. This is the Hall of Fame. Your name is being associated with players like Babe Ruth and Tom Seaver.

                  Gator’s numbers are – quite literally – half those of Seaver’s in some major categories such as IP and Ks.

                  If you want to be associated the best, you need to be compared to the best. Gator doesn’t stack up.

                  He’s in the Hall of Really Good, right along with dudes like David Cone (he is also better than Gator, btw).

                • See, Brown and Guidry are almost identical pitchers but I think Brown has a better case because of his longer career.

                  I don’t think either should be in, but Brown’s longevity makes him a better choice.

                • Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

                  I’m looking at the numbers besides the longevity numbers. I think that even w/o the longecity numbers, he’s good enough.

                  (BTW, I know you’re going to write “but you can’t just look past longevity!” I’m not, I’m sayin that he’s good enough despite the lack of longevity.

                • No, he’s definitely not. You want good enough w/o longevity, look at Sandy Koufax.

                • Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

                  Well if he’s your baseline, you’ve got me.

                • No, he’s not my baseline, I was just throwing it out there. But to be in the HOF with a career as short as Guidry’s, you’ve got to be nothing short of dominant every single year. Guidry had four seasons like that, but the years around those great years were not good enough to get him into HOF territory.

                • Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

                  If you look at the end result in ERA and the rate stats like that they are damn good. 3.29 ERA is pretty wicked.

                • Yes, a 3.29 ERA is very good but over 14 years, it’s not enough.

                  Okay let’s just agree to disagree here.

                • Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

                  LOL. Fine. We’re not going to gain closure on this one.

              • Evil Empire says:

                Yeesh…I never really stared that hard at Puckett’s numbers. You are absolutely correct.

                I’m sorry, but 12 years and a career .837 OPS is not good enough. I love me some KP – grew up with him being one of the icons of baseball at the time – but damn. He has a lesser resume than Jim Rice.

          • Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

            And then there’s the Jim Rice travesty…

  27. 162 game averages for two players at first base:

    Player X:
    .296/.384/.436/.821, 128+, 13 HR, 83 RBI, great defense that a lot of people consider to be one of the best ever

    Don Mattingly: .307/.358/.471/.830, 127+, 20 HR, 100 RBI, also very good defense.

    Each won one MVP award, with two other top five finishes. I’ve literally never heard anyone argue player X for the HOF.

  28. Evil Empire says:

    If one of the reasons anyone thinks Edgar Martinez should be in the HOF is by virtue of him being the best DH of all time, read this:

  29. I just tinkered with the Play Index on B-R because it’s free for right now and Derek Jeter’s 2009 (.871) was the 5th highest by OPS by a SS aged 35+. Because I don’t subscribe, numbers 1-4 are not viewable. They are: 1.005, .930, .909, .891, and .876.

    • Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

      What 35 year old SS OPS’ed 1.005? That’s batshit insane.

      • Trying to do some legwork…

        Wagner is the .930 (age 37) and .909 (age 35). The 1.005 is Luke Appling in 1945 when he was 38, but it was only in 18 games.

        • Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

          Okay, so forget Appling’s 18 game year.

          Honus Wagner is the shit. He may be my favorite ever non-Yankee player.

        • Evil Empire says:

          18 games is not enough of the season for it to qualify for the batting title or some shit like that, so it is inelligible IMO. Jeter had the 4th highest ever and Wagner is the record holder. Jeter is only the 3rd player in the history of baseball to ever do it.

          • Lesson of the Day:

            Derek Jeter is fucking awesome.

            • Evil Empire says:

              Derek Jeter at age 36 will most likely still be better than at least 25 other starting shortstops and could conceivably be the best in the league (non-Hanley division). He’s got a chance to play his posish for a few more years and be, overall, above average to average. Which is kind of good since the legitimate alternatives are few.

    • Evil Empire says:

      I followed an obvious hunch and found out that the .930, .909, .891 all belong to Honus Wagner.

      The 1.005 and .876 do not.

    • Jack says:

      I tried to get the share-it link, but B-Ref isn’t quite working right.

      1.005 – Appling (38)*
      .930 – Wagner (37)
      .909 – Wagner (35)
      .891 – Wagner (38)
      .885 – Trammell (35)*
      .876 – Larkin (36)*
      .871 – Jeter (35)
      .870 – Joost (35)
      .859 – Reese (35)
      .833 – Appling (42)

      * Didn’t qualify for batting title

  30. JM says:

    I would be very happy to trade for Josh Johnson. However, a 3.23 ERA in the NL may go up significantly in the AL East and Roy Halladay is proven to be dominant in the AL East. I would rather have the younger Johnson than the older Halladay because I believe it is worth the risk of Johnson’s NL to AL EAST stat translation. I would offer some sort of package with Joba leading it.

    • Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

      I’ve always heard that as a rule of thumb you increase the ERA by 3/4′s of a run, so a 3.98 ERA.

      Ehhh…Not good enugh to trade Joba and others for IMO. He can end up better, but there’s too much of a risk IMO.

      • Where do you hear that, if you don’t mind me asking? Is there any actual math/science behind that?

        • Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

          I think Leiter was the one who said it. I’m not sure why.

          • Oh okay. Well, I know the AL East is much better than everything else in MLB, but I don’t know if we should just take that number at face value and accept it. If MiL Splits had their pitching MLE calculator up, we could test it (albeit in an elementary way).

      • Evil Empire says:

        95.1 average MPH fastballs tend to translate from league to league well.

        This kid is legit, he could very well lower his ERA next year in the AL East by virtue of pitching against guys who are unfamiliar with him in addition to the natural progression of him as a pitcher coming into his peak years and with an established comfort level at the major league levels.

        • Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

          He COULD…but I really think the NL is reaaaally mediocre compared to the AL. I don’t like taking the risk. If it works out, it would be better than Halladay, but if it doesn’t, we may have traded Joba for Andy Pettite. Which isn’t bad by any means, but certainly not what we traded for.

          • Yeah but it’s not like he’s coming to the A.L. East with mediocre stuff or shaky peripherals. Johnson’s legit.

          • Evil Empire says:

            Talent is talent. Josh Johnson put up some really awesome numbers this year and his stuff legitimizes it – it doesn’t seem like it s a fluke. There is a very short list of pitchers that I’d want more than JJ (and they’re mostly untouchable): Greinke, Lincecum, Hernandez, Haren, Wainwright, Verlander, and Lester.

    • JMK aka The Overshare says:

      Also, keep in mind the Marlins had a terrible defensive team. And although there is a difference from the NL East to the AL East, as Matt wondered, there’s no specific measurement (that anyone here seems to know of, at least) to quantify the difference.

  31. NC Saint says:

    Alomar, Blylevin, McGwire, Martinez (bonus points for pissing off anti-DH purists), and maybe Raines.

    If the voters don’t get over themselves and vote McGwire in, they are setting a precedent that will turn the HOF into a complete joke. Right now, whatever you think about any particular borderline call, the HOF has every truly great player minus Pete Rose, who did something that was never winked at or considered acceptable, and the penalties for which were pretty clear before the fact.

    I hate McGwire, and while he should definitely be in, it isn’t by a mile. But if they stick to their guns on these guys, they will end up excluding 4 of the biggest names in home runs, two of whom are on the short list of greatest hitters ever to play the game, and one guy who is on the short list of greatest pitchers ever to play the game.

    Meanwhile, there are plenty of admitted cheaters in there already, and people who juiced and weren’t caught will get in in the future. Who will be able to say they honestly give a shit about the HOF if all that happens?

  32. So, for the “Small Hall” crowd who would be hesitant to vote in a DH, where do you stand, then, on closers? Aren’t they the “DH’s” of pitchers so to speak?

    • NC Saint says:

      I think you can be “small hall” in the sense of being pickier than most people, and still not rule out DHs or closers. You’d be crazy not to take points off for being a DH, of course. Defense matters, and if the guy DHing were good at defense, somebody worse at it could be DHing instead. But some DHs are just that good.

      Similarly, closers don’t contribute anywhere near as much as starters, and there should definitely be relatively few of them in there. But the Gossages of this world belong in the Hall.

      It would be an insult, obviously, to put Mariano in the Hall with all those other people, but founding a Hall of Deities for him would be appropriate.

    • Esteban says:

      Closers also have much higher leverage (usually) to deal with, so that boosts their value by some. I think really of modern closers Mo, and maybe Hoffman

    • Evil Empire says:

      Closers – and all relief pitchers in general – really need to be at ridiculous performance levels and have a very long career in order for me to be sold on them for HOF eligibility.

      Hoyt Wilhelm deserves to be in it, but I need to look at the rest closer to see how many undeserving people are in there. In the whole land of currently active relievers, probably only Mo and Hoff are worthy.

  33. JMK aka The Overshare says:

    Here’s a thought: obviously we take points away from the DH for not being able to play the field since they can’t be as valuable if they don’t appear for a very critical part of the game.

    But think about this: how many guys still play the field and it impacts their team negatively. If they had really strong hitting numbers, they’d be voted in even though they cost their team a ton of runs?

    Adam Dunn gets credit for playing the field, even though he’s so bad at it he really should DH. Edgar gets no credit because he didn’t play the field because he should DH. But he’s not really costing them anything out there, spare a roster spot and some $$. I’m not sure how that could be factored into Hall consideration, but I think it’s worth mentioning.

    I’m rambling, but you guys know what I mean, right?

  34. sk says:

    I’d vote for Mattingly, if I were to be totally partial. He was my childhood hero.

    But, since these voters seem to have to obey this thing called “responsibility,” I’d vote for Dawson and the Crime Dawg. Fred McGriff… The Yankees would’ve won two more championships with you

  35. Doug says:

    Jim Bowden on FoxSports pushes the Yankees to beat Boston to the punch (i.e., before they offer Buchholz and Kelly) and deal Joba, Gardner, and Kennedy for Halladay. Can’t believe the Jays would actually consider this, but if this is all it’d take, I’d certainly pull the trigger.

    Also said we should sign Gonzalez for the 8th and move Hughes back into the rotation (yes, stating the obvious)

    • Evil Empire says:

      Hughes back to the rotation is obvious. Signing Mike Gonzalez? Not so much.

    • JSquared says:

      Yeah, If that’s all it would take to get Halladay, i think Yankees would do it, but i don’t see how thats a better deal than Buccholz and Kelly and others… Unless Blue Jays think Kennedy can be a back end starter…

      Yankees want to get younger, I see Cashman trying to pry someone free like Felix or Josh Johnson before going to Halladay.

      • Doug says:

        yeah, that’d be optimal, but it’d take a hell of a lot more than joba, gardner, and kennedy for either of those two.

        have read of bunch of takes on this, most of which say that if the jays end up dealing halladay, it’s going to be for much less than they current think they can get. or at least what they’re currently asking for. think something only slightly better than the santana deal with the mets.

        • JSquared says:

          Oh yeah, but the way we can sign International Free Agents… i don’t think Cashman would mind sending over Romine or Brackman along with others… Teams want catching, i wouldnt be afraid to go ahead and trade Romine and others with the 3 previous to land Felix. Gary Sanchez looks good and we can land Chapman, Mateo… Yankees are never afraid.

    • No Gonzalez or any Type-A relievers.

  36. aj says:

    Todd Zeile is on the ballot? I hope you’re joking. A whopping 253 career HRs, couldn’t steal bases, hit .346 OBP, .423 SLUG for his career. Oh but he’s “gritty” and he did “great charity work”. Give me a break. Not a HOF player, not even a good player. This must be a joke.

    • larryf says:

      He’s there to show how great Mattingly is.. Hurry up and get Sheppard to do an introductory tape before it’s too late….

  37. larryf says:

    So do we do nothing if Halladay stays or do we go after JJ if Roy is on the Red Sox? Seems like we can be proactive or reactive and still come out pretty darn well….

    I have seen Montero a few times in Tampa spring training games and he is a big body who carries the bat like a toothpick. Doesn’t run well. Don’t know about his defense in terms of quickness/soft hands/arm strength… I’d like to see a piece on him, RAB gurus…

    I would trade him for Roy but I await further education. Whatever we offer PLEASE throw in Molina and we’ll pay his salary…

  38. Renny Baseball says:

    I’d add to Mike’s list, in no particular order, Lee Smith, Jack Morris, Fred McGriff, Andre Dawson, Harold Baines and Dave Parker, but would leave out McGwire. Also ultimately would leave off Edgar Martinez, although he was a great hitter.

    As links for support-
    Here are Smith’s numbers:





    Also, here’s my reasoning on McGriff:

  39. Kiko Jones says:

    Sorry to join the conversation so late. Here goes:

    Bert Blyleven
    Andre Dawson
    Andres Galarraga
    Barry Larkin
    Edgar Martinez
    Don Mattingly
    Fred McGriff
    Mark McGwire
    Jack Morris
    Dale Murphy
    Dave Parker
    Tim Raines
    Lee Smith
    Alan Trammell

  40. sk says:

    i’d never vote for mcguire because he wasn’t a well-rounded, consistent player. look beyond the home run total. what’s there? roids probably ruined his chances of enshrinement, not because of his damaged reputation but because it probably contributed to his numerous injuries and shortened his career by two or so years. And, seriously, who gets over one-third of his hit total from home runs? Serious roid inflation

    On a side note, I was 16 when he hit 70 home runs and everyone knew he was juiced up. When he testified before Congress, all the sports writers pretended that someone pulled the rug from underneath them. Some still do (*cough* Passan *cough*) and they continue to write that same “another black eye for baseball,” “the national past time has lost it’s innocence,” “nothing should surprise you in the steroid era” article again and again. Steroids didn’t ruin baseball. Beat writers writing about steroids ruined baseball.

  41. DCBX says:

    Roberto Alomar – in
    Kevin Appier – really?
    Harold Baines – come on now…
    Bert Blyleven – ridiculous that he isn’t there already.
    Ellis Burks – this is some kind of a formality, yeah? psssh
    Andre Dawson – debatable
    Andres Galarraga – also debatable… neither he or Dawson would be a question if the Expos had ever amounted to squat.
    Pat Hentgen – hellllllll no
    Mike Jackson – yea right
    Eric Karros – no
    Ray Lankford – no
    Barry Larkin – no
    Edgar Martinez – no
    Don Mattingly – WTF?! of course. if Boggs is in, Mattingly has to go too.
    Fred McGriff – debatable
    Mark McGwire – yea, but if Big Mac goes, Rose has to go
    Jack Morris – hell yeah. remember: winningest pitcher of the 1980′s
    Dale Murphy – meh… no
    Dave Parker – rings help, but I dunno how much he deserves it
    Tim Raines – nah
    Shane Reynolds – who?
    David Segui – no
    Lee Smith – still not in?
    Alan Trammell – also a no-brainer and should have been in years ago
    Robin Ventura -no
    Todd Zeile – heck naw

    So I have:


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