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Thursday, February 16, 2017

Lou Whitaker on the Hall of Fame: “I didn’t even get daylight”

Whitaker, who played from 1977 to 1995 with the Detroit Tigers, ranks among the best second basemen in baseball history by various sabermetrics — sixth by Wins Above Replacement, seventh by Wins Above Average, and 12th by JAWS according to Baseball-Reference.com. But Whitaker drew just 2.9 percent of the vote for Cooperstown in 2001, his only year on the Baseball Writers’ Association of America’s ballot, disqualifying him from future consideration by the writers.

...

So what’s taken Trammell and Whitaker so long? Why haven’t the 1984 Detroit Tigers, who won 104 games and the World Series, had a single Hall of Famer?

“We were just consistent,” Whitaker said. “We were a team with consistent players. We played, we won.”

The Hall of Fame, though, isn’t always great about rewarding consistent players who are good in a number of areas but seemingly not elite at any. Just ask Trammell, Dwight Evans or Bobby Grich.


Wednesday, January 04, 2017

Jay Jaffe: JAWS and the 2017 Hall of Fame ballot: The All-Overlooked Team

For stat-minded fans of a certain age, Grich’s absence from Cooperstown ranks among the great injustices of the universe, making him the keystone equivalent of long-neglected, belatedly enshrined third baseman Ron Santo. From 1970 through ‘86, Grich combined good power with excellent plate discipline and outstanding defense (+71 runs) while playing on five division-winning teams in Baltimore and Anaheim. He earned All-Star honors six times, won four Gold Gloves and led the AL in homers and slugging percentage during the strike-shortened 1981 season.


 

 

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