Monday, January 22, 2018

Obligatory Hall Of Fame Voting Post

In a few days, the Hall of Fame will announce which players will be honored as its newest members. Based on the BBHOF Tracker, it looks like 5 players may get elected to join Alan Trammell and Jack Morris in one of the biggest classes in history.

I'm always fascinated by the voting process. I love reading about different writers' ballots, and the methodology they used to determine who is worthy, and why others fell short.

I obviously do not have an official vote, but I too have thought about who is worthy and who would make my unofficial ballot. Before I list my choices, a few clarifications into my voting process:

  • I'm a big Hall type of guy - I believe that the Hall's main purpose is to reflect the history of the game. I'm not going to cross a guy off just because he's not an inner circle type.
  • As far as PED users go, I generally don't have a strong opinion. Again, the Hall should reflect this era of the game. To be honest, I have genuine reservations as to how much PED usage affects a players overall stats. That being said, those guys are placed in the back of the line. I may feel Manny Ramirez should get in, but as long as there are at least 10 other worthy candidates, he won't make my ballot.
I'm going to categorize players into 3 groups - definitely worthy, probably worthy, and maybe worthy. (Real scientific, I know...)

Definitely Worthy

These are the guys I don't have to think hard about. They belong, and that's all there is to it. Obviously, because of the PED issue, not all of these guys will make my final ballot.

Barry Bonds
Roger Clemens
Vlad Guerrero
Chipper Jones
Edgar Martinez
Manny Ramirez
Curt Schilling
Jim Thome

1991 Bowman #68 Jim Thome (RC)

Probably Worthy

These players have strong cases, but not airtight. There are usually some reservations.

Trevor Hoffman - I'm a bit of a snob when it comes to relief pitchers. I think they are over-glorified and the pitching equivalent of a pinch-hitter. I don't think they impact the game as much as most people think. Still, he is the 2nd best all-time for how he was used...

Jeff Kent - Greatest power hitting 2nd baseman of all-time, at least until Cano becomes eligible.

Fred McGriff - He doesn't measure up to the hitters of the "Steroid Era", but I always remembered him as one of the true power hitters of his time. Not everyone has led both leagues in home runs!

Mike Mussina - I get he's got the "numbers", but I never considered him one of the all time best. He never stood out to me.

Gary Sheffield - He may not have been the most likable person, but he was a scary hitter at his peak.

Larry Walker - A perennial .300 hitter, the fact he averaged less than 80% of games played per season bothers me.

1989 Donruss - Bonus MVP's #BC-19 Fred McGriff

Maybe Worthy

I'll be honest, I'm not convinced these guys belong. They have genuine cases though, and I'll have to put more thought into it.

Andruw Jones
Scott Rolen
Omar Vizquel

With all 3 of these players, it seems their cases are tied to their great defensive prowess. I don't trust any attempt to measure defense past maybe the past 5 years. (It's my biggest hang-up with WAR.) Offensively, they didn't do enough.

1997 Collector's Choice #1 Andruw Jones (RCL)

Here's my unofficial 10 player ballot:
  1. Vlad Guerrero 
  2. Trevor Hoffman
  3. Chipper Jones 
  4. Jeff Kent
  5. Edgar Martinez
  6. Fred McGriff 
  7. Mike Mussina
  8. Curt Schilling
  9. Jim Thome
  10. Larry Walker
1991 Score #671 Chipper Jones (RC, FDP)

Bonds, Clemens, Ramirez and Sheffield are end-of-the-line players. As long as there are enough players I feel are at least probably worthy, they won't get on my ballot.

1 comment:

  1. As much as I'd love to see Larry Walker in the HOF, I don't really see him getting in..
    Injuries and the Denver effect kind of ruin it for me..
    That said, he is in the Canadian Baseball Hall..