Let me start by saying I don’t think any team wins 95 games in all of MLB. Very competitive and not so much parity as a lack of dominance. The game doesn’t lend itself to one team – or a handful of teams – asserting themselves, so you’re going to have the upper tier, and everybody else is going to battle. A good brand of baseball, if you will.
Below you will find the link to the2014 Hall of Fame ballot names from Baseball-Reference.com, along with a full range of statistical measures for all players on the ballot. ‘Years on Ballot,’ % of Ballots named in 2013, Bill James Hall of Fame Monitor (HOFm – the system is flawed, 100 is ‘likely’ in this metric) and Bill James Hall of Fame Standard (HOFs, in which 50 is the ‘average’ Hall of Famer, a score that exceeds that is considered superior than Hall of Fame average). This is definitely one of the more ‘crowded’ ballots I can remember, so I’ll make my piece snappy.
My opinions have not changed dramatically from last year’s lackluster HoF class. This new crop is pretty incredible, though. Here’s my “ballot” for 2014:
with apologies to Jack Morris on his final attempt, the crop of:
are first year shoo-ins for me. I’m sure Glavine will have the most pushback, but 300+ wins and reinventing himself as a late-career pitcher help greatly.
My next wave of entrants are holdovers that were slighted for one reason or another:
Raines has been a lightning rod for a few years and I imagine he won’t get in for a while. That said, he’s one of the prototype leadoff hitters in the modern era and was completely overlooked in Montreal. The 80’s were a tough era for elites, and his measurables stack up well.
I think Jeff Kent and Mike Mussina eventually get in, but not this year. People hate Kent, but his numbers are top five ever as a second baseman. He’s in. Mussina is frustrating because he was never an Ace or even a Cy pitcher, but he racked up wins and had longevity in an era defined by arm injuries.
Curt Schilling is a total cusp guy for me, probably more than most, because of his postseason success as well as the few big years. I ultimately vote ‘no’ – because he’s an asshole? – because the stats just aren’t quite Hall-worthy.
Hideo Nomo will probably be enshrined eventually as a special contributor type, as he really ushered in the era of Asian crossover.
This crop deserves it’s own mention, because NONE of them receive my ‘vote’ in 2014 and they were all really good first basemen:
I could see myself likely ‘vote’ for McGwire in the future, but Bagwell – despite his similarities to the Big Hurt – just doesn’t have that brand recognition that I’d like. I’m probably shorting him and reserve my right to ‘vote’ him in down the road, but not now. My guess is he DOES ride with the first wave and get in this year, however. Mattingly somehow gets in on the Veterans Committee one day. His reputation as ‘everybody’s favorite player’ is just too strong, and when history shines back on him with the moustache in the pinstripes, he’ll be enshrined.
I refuse to listen to cases for:
because none of them were ever the best player at their position, much less Hall-worthy.
Regardless, good ballot and i’d love to hear your opinions.
So my pops and I attended the Dodger game tonight, and in the course of conversation, the Hall of Fame arose. . .we thought about which modern-day (post-roid) ballplayers are locks for the Hall. This Excludes young dynamos such as Kemp, Cain, Trout (!), etc, that are sub-30 years old. . .accordingly, we came up with a grand total of. . .
four of whom play for the Yankees:
the non-Yankees include:
Notable ‘perhaps soon’ names included:
But that’s IT. Two points here: 1) any omissions? 2) this list is conspicuously light on players that started their career between ’95-’04, eg Roid Era players. I mean has there been a ten year span with only SEVEN players that started their careers entering the Hall? Hmmm . . .
I tried not to include the corny or cliche, but this IS baseball so it is inherent. That said, here’s a quick ‘guided’ tour to our pictures from our visit to Cooperstown, NY, Baseball Hall of Fame, November 4 – 5, 2010:
Yes this really is a “VILLAGE” – population 2,032
1950 or 2010?
Our wonderful domicile, the Tunnicliff Inn– Established 1802. Seriously
We walk in – first exhibit, “House of David” a band of roving Jewish ballplayers. Sweet.
The Hall suggests you begin the visit with a trip to the Grandstand Theater.
The original rules of the game, as established in 1845 by the Knickerbocker Base Ball Club.
Yes, they played versions of baseball in medieval Spain.
Come see the Babe in Fresno, CA (1934)
. . .or just check out Babe Ruth‘s actual Yankee locker.
I was underwhelmed by the Negro Leagues exhibit, but we asked one of the museum docents why there wasn’t much in the way of memorabilia – “the players were underpaid and oftentimes sold equipment, jerseys. . .the demand is extremely high because there really aren’t too many artifacts remaining.”
Did NOT realize that the Yankees were one of the last teams to integrate. . .
Brooklyn Dodgers, baby! Note the sad clown icon. I had a pennant handed down to me as a child from my Dad’s brother that featured that ‘logo.’
Stan the (literal) MAN’s locker. Check out his numbers – easily one of the top five players ever and seriously underrated nonetheless.
Uniforms from the women’s game. . .
A copy of the New York Times from when lefty female Jackie Mitchell struck out Babe & Lou at Yankee Stadium.
This was sweet – Ted WIlliams hitting zone based on his timeless The Science of Hittting.
Really unexpected, deserved and spectacular – Viva Baseball, celebrating baseball in Latin America throughout the history of the game. Really nice exhibits on Cuba, Mexico, Venezuela, etc. Also, did you know Ted Williams was Mexican?
This was the one controversial exhibit in my eyes; baseball lore says that Fidel Castro had a tryout with the Pirates sometime around 1947, yet the placard at the HoF states that “research now confirms that he was never a pro prospect.” Interesting. . .except reading the bilingual Spanish translation, the placard says “Las investigaciones confirman ahora que Castro nunca fue un asipirante a profesional.” Translation: “The investigations confirm that Castro never aspired to be a professional.” Semantic, yes – but a HUGE differentiation. Which is it, Hall of Fame?!?!? We want answers!!!
Viva al beisbol de Mexico!
Yes, that is an Anaheim Angels (California Angels?) sombrero. Think it’d look mighty nice on Mike Scioscia. . .
Jamie Jarrin gives both the Spanish and English ‘tour’ at the Hall.
You remember Fernandomania, right? Did you remember that there were hit records dedicated to the hearthrob?!?!
Stuff like this is what gives me chills. The original scouting card for Roberto Clemente. Filled out by Al Campanis, nonetheless – “a real good looking prospect!”
The Count in front of the Dodgers display.
Yes that IS Sandy Koufax‘s glove and jersey.
I believe Pete Rose was the only player – ironically – that had two jerseys represented in the Hall.
Rickey Henderson‘s cleats.
Yep, rocking the Puckett shirt in the Hall.
Baseball cards. . .wow, wow, wow. The Hall has quite a collection, as you can imagine. Enough so that I was inspired enough to pick up Mint Condition by Dave Jamieson – check it out if you like cards, baseball, nostalgia or all of the above. ps – if you’re not a card nerd, you might want to scroll a bit – this is where I get nuts-o about the game. Baseball cards really sucked me in during the 1980’s.
This sign was noted in at least three places in the Hall. Very interesting and well-intentioned approach to the PED controversy.
This is the closest you’re going to get to seeing The Count worshipping.
The Mariners locker featured Ichiro, who’s going to be in here personally in about 12 years. . .
The Aaron Boone bat.
The base from Armando Galarraga‘s not-so-perfect game.
The bat/guitar & lyrics from John Fogerty‘s Centerfield.
The Mangus and designstILes gave a great effort, but after a couple hours, they had to head back to the Village.
A really great wing of the Hall was dedicated to Henry “Hank” Aaron. Some really good detail from his childhood and early struggles in the Negro Leagues, on through the racial attacks he experienced while chasing down the Babe. Class act, and truly deserving of his own Ruthian section.
Honestly, did you know Jamie Moyer is the active leader in strikeouts?!?!?
The hats from each of Nolan Ryan‘s seven no-hitters.
Again, I’m a sucker for these things – a scouting report on Nolan from High School. Wow.
The Dodgers 1988 World Series Ring, along with the Pennant Pendants.
Orel Hershiser‘s World Series clinching jersey.
The hilarious and classic Abbott & Costello routine is on constant rotation in the HoF.
The members of the Baseball Hall of Fame. . .
. . .and those that served their country.
And now a look at a few of the Plaques:
(above: Hank Greenberg, Ted Williams, Josh Gibson, Sandy Koufax, Don Drysdale, Mickey Mantle, Willie Mays, Hank Aaron, Tommy Lasorda, Kirby Puckett)
“The First Class” in the Hall.
The announcer/writer’s wing was a bit smallish for my taste, but certainly represented the legends well, as Vin Scully was part of the six-announcer rotation of all-time greats.
Best. Movie. Ever.
And a trip to Cooperstown could not be complete without a visit to Doubleday Field, the first ‘official’ ballfield of the Game of Baseball. Talk about evoking the ghosts. . .
Forget Elvis Andrus‘s spark, forget Cliff Lee and his mastery, forget Josh Hamilton and his MVP pursuit, forget Ian Kinsler’s cockiness, Michael Young’s sticktuitiveness, Ron Washington’s redemption, C.J. Wilson’s return, Neftali Feliz’s dominance. . .even (for now), forget Nolan Ryan, Jon Daniels and the amazing resurrection of this band of Castaways posing as dominant, exciting MLB franchise. Even try to forget this organizational breakthrough that had football-sick Dallas even forgetting about the Cowboys and their slow start. . .
The Rangers absolutely exciting win last night was best exhibited by the legendary, ageless Vladimir Guerrero – his mad dash home from second base on the would-be double play, coupled with his gazelle-like yet gawky slide into home, just barely beating the tag was something to behold. . something that baseball fans nation/worldwide should remember as an indelible image not just for the team, the city and the man – but the Sport in general.
What a thing of beauty – check it out in frame-by-frame from the moment he slides in to home through the dramatic safe call by umpire Jeff Kellogg.
That is baseball, folks. And that, in a nutshell, is the man they call Vlad.
Bytheway, Angels fans – how do you feel about that decision last year to let the man leave?