Nationals Baseball: Random Hall of Fame Thoughts

Thursday, January 09, 2014

Random Hall of Fame Thoughts

Because we don't get/have to talk about this for another 360 days or so. 

Greg Maddux - Everyone made a big deal about that one guy's "Only Jack Morris suckas!" ballot making Maddux un-unanimous only to watch 15 other guys do the same. Hear me now and believe me later, no one will ever be unanimous. You have 571 different agendas going on here. Never going to align. Mike Trout plays the next 20 years like his first 2, hits 800 homers and is the hero of 5 World Series? Maybe, he does it. Maybe. Stop worrying about this.

Tom Glavine - seems high. I mean if you should be in, you should be in but it's a higher percentage than I would have thought given history.  Goes to show you numbers count.

Craig Biggio - Speaking of numbers counting, yesterday I said Biggio was Grich, Whitaker, Randolph with 3000 hits. I stand by that. He was a very good offensive player (as were Grich and Whitaker, Randolph was more fielding heavy) for a very long time (not so much for Grich) in a very good offensive time (not so much for all three). That's why he's a Hall of Famer and those guys can't stay on the ballot. Talent + Timing + Health = Numbers. 

Biggio brings up another point, the idea of positional representation. The idea that there are too many OFs and not enough 3b/2b/C in the Hall. It's arguable that Grich, Whitaker, maybe Randolph should be in the Hall too because how good they were relative to other 2nd basemen. Perhaps. But isn't possible that that's where the worst players are stuck a lot of the time? I mean if a Biggio didn't help a team as much as say Jim Edmonds shouldn't that mean he's a borderline case and not a slam dunk? I can see both arguments.

Mike Piazza - EVERYONE went down in vote percentage. That's an exaggeration, but only a slight one. EVERYONE did... except Biggio, who's on the fast track to the Hall, and Piazza. What's that mean?  Why does he go up and Bagwell go down? My take is that they all realize Piazza is special for a catcher, while Bagwell,while a great hitter, is still just another great hitting first baseman. Hard to keep Piazza off when you see that his SLG is 50 pts higher than the next HOF catcher, steroid rumors or no steroid rumors.

Clemens/Bonds - everyone went down but these two went down a conspicuously small amount, 2-3%, in comparison to the rest. Means that people are coming around on the whole "good enough even without PEDs" thought train. Not enough to matter right now, but it is happening.

Lee Smith - CRASH!

Schilling and Mussina - both were around 10% lower than I thought. It's kind of ridiculous but these guys will just have to wait until the Maddux, Johnson, Pedro trimutive gets in because it's too easy for non-thinking voters to say "well they weren't like THOSE guys"

Alan Trammell - The only one that's really hurt by the whole "10 vote controversy" is Trammell because the other guys will have time to hit the deader times coming up. Trammel doesn't get that luxury. Of course he just sat through some of the deadest HOF voting times in history and couldn't drum up support so it's not like he was going to make it in. I think that's what people don't get. The 10 vote isn't keeping anyone out. It'll delay a couple entries and depress some numbers but it's not going to make an overall difference.

Jeff Kent - ok now I see him and... I think he never gets in.

Mark McGwire - No one cares about this guy anymore. He is arguably the greatest HR hitter of all-time and yet he can't get the votes of a Fred McGriff. I mean I know why this is the case. Steroids = HR so take away HRs and how does the case look? (Answer: not good), but still I would have expected more support.

Larry Walker - Coors Field confuses people.  GET OUT TROY! GET OUT IF YOU WANT INTO THE HALL!

Moises Alou / Luis Gonzalez - more guys "hurt" by the 10 vote limit. Good enough to get the "Bernie Williams year" tip of the hat in a vote with less potential choices. Boo Hoo.

Paul LoDuca - 0 votes. Don't completely denigrate the voters. They get some things right.


cass said...

Trout would not be unanimous. I imagine there will be a bloc insisting he get fewer votes than Miguel Cabrera. When both were in their primes, Cabrera won two MVP's in a row. He has to be better.

To bring this back to the Nats(LoDuca reminded me): Pudge will be the first new Nationals player to be inducted, right? He won't wear a Nats uniform, but I believe he'll be the only player to ever play for the current incarnation of the Nationals to be in the Hall.

Harper said...

You may be right. Zimm can't be completely discounted yet but he'd need a couple year like '09-'10 again to really have a shot and I'm not sure anyone thinks that is happening. Otherwise, unless something crazy happens, it's seeing what goes on with Byrce/Stras

Wally said...

Trout doesn't get to be unanimous because the Babe wasn't, and no one was better than the Babe - that'll be the argument. So Trout can't compete against a dead hero.

I think the numbers for Bonds and Clemens represent the bloc within BBWAA that disregards PEDs from consideration. I think it is their floor because there is absolutely no other reason to not vote for them. The other PED-tainted guys don't have such clear numbers and get caught up in your argument on positional representation. Like, 'sure, Piazza was the best hitting catcher, but compared to other hitters, he is not so extraordinary. So when I add in PEDs, I can not vote for him for a couple of reasons.' To be clear, I would ignore PEDs from consideration, so I don't agree with this, but I think it is implicit in some voters.

Frank Thomas got me thinking about this whole PED thing again, from maybe a different angle. He played during an undeniably 'up' period for offense, and seems like everyone thinks PEDs are the reason. But he is unquestionably 'clean' right? Spoke out against them at the time when it wasn't in vogue, etc. Obviously he is a great hitter, but is he the 18th best ever? Better than Mike Schmidt, DiMaggio, Joe Morgan, etc? Doesn't feel that way to me, especially taking into account that he was facing a whole slew of pitchers hopped up on PEDs. So I think it lends credence to the argument that there must have been something else going on during that period, maybe in addition or maybe instead of, PEDs.

Zimmerman11 said...

OK... so this is a Nats blog. The Nats is the Expos Franchise and you didn't mention Rock Raines? Is he tainted by drugs the way the others are tainted by PEDs? His totals dipped this year w/ the stacked ballot...

blovy8 said...

Harper, you'll be happy to see that Jamey Carroll can now retire as a Nat if he wants. Naturally, they had to wait until after the Hall of Fame annoucements, so they wouldn't be stealing the spotlight.

Harper said...

Wally - I think it may be a perception issue. OBP is a big part of that OPS but taking a walk doesn't add anything to the feel of a hitter. So Joe D can have a much better average, slug better but because his OBP is .30 pts lower he loses out.

Z11 - not much to say. He isn't tainted by drugs. He's just a fringe guy who's talent lies all over the field when for the Hall "at the plate" matters most. The drop is just the ballot issue (too many names) but he'll bounce back in a couple years.

blovy8 - I hear Maddux is still PISSED. Carroll talk is all over the radio now!