Feel: An exploration of what it means to touch and be touched…in the head. (William Baldwin-Shares used, of course)
Forget any stats – advanced or otherwise- let’s do a fun exercise and vote for the Hall of Fame based on “feel.” This isn’t easy since you would have to see someone play for a majority of their career.
As mentioned before, if I had a Hall of Fame Ballot it would include Jeff Bagwell, Edgar Martinez, Mark McGwire, Rafael Palmeiro, Jack Morris, and Tim Raines. These selections were based on a combination of data and watching the participants during most or all of their career. In the case of Morris and Raines, I watched them play in the latter-half of their career so it was more data based. For that reason I will abstain from judging them on the “feel” test.
...The one player that I was staunchly against on my ballot but looks better on the feel test is Don Mattingly. I first started watching baseball in the mid-eighties and he was considered the best player of that time. Again, you can see I am from New York, but throwing stats out the window Mattingly has more of a Hall of Fame candidacy. Who was a better offensive player in the mid to late eighties?
The rest were all very good players. Larkin, Palmeiro, Trammell, Walker, Murphy, Lee Smith, and Bernie Williams. I never remember thinking I was watching a future Hall of Famer when their teams came to town.
Of course, I am not advocating this practice as being the sole method of voting for the Hall of Fame. A combination of stats and “feel” is the best way to come to the final conclusion.
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