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Jim Furtado
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Editor - Baseball Primer


Hall Of Fame Newsbeat

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Will Clark has a complicated Baseball Hall of Fame case

Playing nine years in Candlestick did Clark few favors. “The wind switched around all the time,” he said. “One minute it was blowing in from left, the other it was blowing in from right. One minute, it’s blowing out to right-center.”

Clark had to look for other strategies as a hitter in San Francisco, between the wind and his manager his first seven seasons, Roger Craig, deliberately having the infield grass cut high to encourage more double-play balls.

“Playing in Candlestick, it didn’t matter if you had a golf ball out there,” Clark said. “When that wind was going, you better hit it good, and you better hit it on a line. Otherwise it ain’t going nowhere.”

When told he rated better by advanced metrics than several other Hall of Fame first basemen, Clark replied, “I can tell you this right now: If you take some Hall of Fame first basemen and put them in Candlestick Park, I guarantee we’d have about the same stats.”

Clark estimated that Candlestick cost him “eight to 10 home runs a year and at least 20 to 25 RBIs a year.”

Dennis Eclairskey, closer Posted: October 12, 2016 at 03:05 PM | 52 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, veterans committee, will clark

Thursday, October 06, 2016

Will HOF Voters Have the Audacity to Vote Selig in While Keeping McGwire Out?

Selig deserves to be in the Hall of Fame. McGwire deserves to share the stage with him on induction day.

gehrig97 Posted: October 06, 2016 at 01:28 PM | 48 comment(s)
  Beats: bud selig, hall of fame, mark mcgwire

Tuesday, October 04, 2016

Hall of Fame ‘Eras Committee’ to vote on these 10 names for 2017

This week, the Baseball Hall of Fame announced 10 names that will be considered for induction in 2017. For this round, the Eras Committee is tasked with considering the Hall merits of Bud Selig, George Steinbrenner, John Schuerholz, Davey Johnson, Lou Piniella, Harold Baines, Mark McGwire, Albert Belle, Orel Hershiser, and Will Clark.

I can see Selig, Schuerholz and maybe Von Steingrabber making it.  I doubt any of the players will

Srul Itza Posted: October 04, 2016 at 06:47 PM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame

Monday, October 03, 2016

Hall of Fame voters exhibit a clear anti-recency bias. | Sports on Earth

Hall of Famers are better when you haven’t seen them.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 03, 2016 at 03:27 PM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame


Five former big league players, three executives and two managers comprise the 10-name Today’s Game Era ballot to be reviewed and voted upon Dec. 5 at the Baseball Winter Meetings in National Harbor, Md.

Harold Baines, Albert Belle, Will Clark, Orel Hershiser, Davey Johnson, Mark McGwire, Lou Piniella, John Schuerholz, Bud Selig and George Steinbrenner are the candidates the Today’s Game Era Committee will consider for Hall of Fame election for the Class of 2017. Baines,

reech Posted: October 03, 2016 at 02:46 PM | 64 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame

Sunday, October 02, 2016

Bret Saberhagen could soon get another Hall of Fame look

While injuries curtailed the career of the former Royals ace, limiting him to 167 lifetime wins, Saberhagen ranks by other measures as one of the best pitchers in baseball history not in the Hall of Fame. His 36.8 Wins Above Average are seventh-best among all pitchers retired since 2010 who aren’t enshrined. Saberhagen’s 59.1 WAR ranks 14th among unenshrined pitchers retired since 2010.

In November, Saberhagen will be eligible for Cooperstown for the first time with the newly-created Today’s Game Committee, which will review players who made their greatest contribution to the game between 1988 and 2001. There’s a chance Saberhagen could be the best pitcher on the ballot, though his eligibility and strong sabermetric case were news to him when reached this week by Sporting News.

“Was it created after my last name?” Saberhagen said of sabermetrics.

He isn’t expecting much from Cooperstown this year.

“I’ve never really dug deep into why I wasn’t on the ballot anymore after one year and only getting [one] percent, what it takes to get into the Hall of Fame,” Saberhagen said. “Would the Veteran Committee look at my numbers and possibly think about putting me in? Don’t have any idea.”

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Pete Rose petitions Hall of Fame for inclusion on ballots in lengthy letter

This is tiresome.

Disgraced hit king Pete Rose has asked National Baseball Hall of Fame officials to reconsider the bylaw that blocks his candidacy for enshrinement, petitioning Hall president Jeff Idelson in a seven-page letter that argues for his inclusion on future ballots.

The letter, obtained by Yahoo Sports, contends the terms of Rose’s lifetime ban for gambling – drawn by then-commissioner Bart Giamatti – intentionally excluded language that would have barred Rose from Cooperstown and that, 27 years later, Rose has been unjustly kept from consideration.

Jim Furtado Posted: September 28, 2016 at 08:40 AM | 33 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, pete rose

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Carlos Beltran might struggle to make the Hall of Fame

The players who got in relatively quickly to the Hall of Fame with the writers, for the most part, hit antiquated statistical milestones such as 3,000 hits or 500 home runs, or they had images that suggested more value than they had sabermetrically. That’s not Beltran, who’s built much of his Hall of Fame case around consistency and longevity.
Will Beltran be the next Dwight Evans for Hall of Fame candidates? The two are close in WAR, JAWS, and Hall Rating, with Beltran enjoying a slight edge in all three. The two players share fairly similar narratives, as solid, unsung contributors to many winning teams. They even share some of the same deficiencies, ranking as two of the best defensive outfielders in baseball in their early seasons before declining steeply in their 30s. The key differentiator could be that Beltran played in an offensive era that inflated his peak stats somewhat. This should help him a little with voters.
Beltran could also be the next Larry Walker, the Colorado Rockies legend and former National League MVP who at last check was struggling to stay above 10 percent in the writers’ vote for Cooperstown. Walker actually rates far above Beltran by Hall Rating and is roughly comparable by JAWS, though if he gets in the Hall of Fame, it seems likely to come via committee. Former Rockies seem to fall into their own special class of candidates.

Dennis Eclairskey, closer Posted: September 22, 2016 at 11:55 PM | 140 comment(s)
  Beats: carlos beltran, dwight evans, hall of fame, larry walker

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Who Was George Wright? « Our Game

The Wright brothers had become infatuated with baseball, too. Both had been exposed to the American game and played with verve on fields adjoining the cricket grounds at the Elysian Fields. “There were, of course,” George recalled in 1888, “other base ball dubs in existence in Brooklyn, notably the old Atlantics, Stars, Excelsiors, Enterprise, etc., but the real center of base ball was at Hoboken. Here there were located three grounds, where from six to eight clubs would play practice games on various afternoons of the week, and it was here, while a member of the Gotham club, that I first learned to play ball.”[7]

Jim Furtado Posted: September 20, 2016 at 09:17 AM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: george wright, hall of fame, history

Friday, September 02, 2016

The 10 best MLB players, for talent, without serious Hall of Fame cases

6. Kerry Wood

The one-time Cubs ace is somehow still only 39. In a more just world, Wood’s 20-strikeout performance as a 20-year-old five games into his MLB career wouldn’t have signaled open season for his managers on his arm. Perhaps Wood would be closing in on 300 wins now.

7. Josh Hamilton

If there’s a Hall of Fame for overcoming cataclysmic life issues before finally achieving MLB stardom, the former No. 1 draft pick might command his own wing. As it stands, a .290 lifetime batting average, 200 home runs, and 1,134 hits won’t be remotely enough for Cooperstown voters, even if a few credit him for his 2010 American League MVP season.

Thursday, September 01, 2016

Mike Trout Involved in [minor] Car Crash

Trout was uninjured while trying to avoid an accident on the freeway.

Two questions: is he Bruce Willis from “Unbreakable”? And what in the world was he doing in Tustin?

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Bud Selig might soon be in the Baseball Hall of Fame (try to contain your excitement)

This never would have happened if baseball had a salary cap.

It’s generally more a matter of when than if commissioners get in the Hall of Fame. Selig’s call looks to be coming since the Hall of Fame announced revisions in July to the structure for its Era Committees, which consider players retired more than 15 years as well as managers, umpires and executives.

Selig falls under the newly created Today’s Game Committee, which will meet in December. Because of the rules of the committee and the period it covers, Selig could wind up highlighting a weak ballot this year. He could also help highlight an issue with the new Era Committee structure….

The hitch is determining where players made their greatest contribution and what committee they should be considered by. It’s uncertain how the Hall of Fame is going to do this, though there’s already talk Dick Allen could make the Modern Era Committee ballot a year from now.

If the Hall of Fame is a little loose in determining eras for candidates, it could have a robust Today’s Game Committee ballot this fall made up of first-time eligible candidates like Alan Trammell, Lou Whitaker, and Don Mattingly. It could say Jack Morris’s complete game victory in Game 7 of the 1991 World Series means he made his greatest contribution in the most recent era, even if baseball researcher Adam Darowski said 61 percent of Morris’s career games came before 1988.

Darowski made a good point recently—if the Hall of Fame is strict, this fall’s ballot for the Today’s Game Committee could be fairly slim. Meanwhile, the first Modern Era Committee ballot could wind up not having enough space for all the players who aren’t in the Hall of Fame but have their supporters, players like Bobby Grich, Dwight Evans, and Ted Simmons.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: August 16, 2016 at 05:26 PM | 74 comment(s)
  Beats: bud selig, hall of fame

Sunday, July 31, 2016

SBN: Michael Young was so surprised by Elvis Andrus in a Jigsaw mask that he almost punched him

Too funny.

And for the first time ever, Beltre was in on an Elvis gag, not its victim.

Michael Young, the longtime Texas Ranger, was inducted into the Texas Rangers Baseball Hall of Fame on Saturday night. It’s common for the Rangers to parade special guests into the stadium for occasions like this, but Michael Young’s entrance was anything but ordinary.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Reflections On A Weekend With The Baseball Gods

What in the name of Ty Cobb was I doing there, you ask? Good question. I was there to humbly accept the J.G. Taylor Spink Award, presented annually to someone who’s covered baseball for a long time. But let’s get this straight: The lucky baseball scribe who accepts the award is not “inducted” or “enshrined.” The writer is not a Hall of Famer. That title is reserved for players, managers, and the occasional owner or general manager who has had a seismic impact on the game…

■ Get goosebumps standing next to Juan Marichal at the omelette station in the breakfast room…

■ In mid-afternoon, 48 Hall of Famers, plus retired New York City Fire Department battalion chief Vin Mavaro, Dick Enberg, and I gather in a ballroom, where we wait to be taken to Doubleday Field. Vin and I are nervous because we are going to have to speak. Our speeches are ready in black binders. “Don’t let go of your binder,’’ says Enberg. “Johnny Bench likes to mess with people and hide their speeches.’’ After that, I hold my binder in a vise-like grip.

Monday, July 25, 2016

Will Hall of Fame’s new election rules help former Tigers?

Jack Morris, Alan Trammell, and Lou Whitaker remain three of the most controversial candidates for the Hall. All three have their camps of support, but none of them can be elected by the baseball writers, for separate reasons.

Wahoo Sam Posted: July 25, 2016 at 03:20 PM | 78 comment(s)
  Beats: alan trammell, hall of fame, jack morris, lou whitaker

Every Picture Tells a Story: The Stick « Our Game

The trade card shown at the left is part of a six-card series contrasting “New Style” (1880s) and “Old Style” (1870s). Depicting “The Scorer,” it casts light on an old mystery that I referenced many moons ago in my book Treasures of the Baseball Hall of Fame. I wrote:

We have heard the stories all our lives, and we share them warmly with our children. But we come to the Baseball Hall of Fame to see, to see the instruments of glory, the stuff of legend, the tangible remains of departed heroes and forgotten fields. This is a museum like no other because it is about baseball, that singular American institution by which we mark our days. Not simply historical relics, these artifacts spur us to recall to life an image dormant in our brains for decades. They connect us not only to our own childhood and to our parents, but also to a national, collective past, one whose presence we sense but whose details have been lost.

Jim Furtado Posted: July 25, 2016 at 08:39 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, history

Baseball Hall of Fame: Ken Griffey Jr., Mike Piazza are Cooperstown odd couple

“They each took roads that not many have ever traveled,’’ said former Los Angeles Dodgers first baseman Eric Karros, Piazza’s best friend in baseball. “Mike was the late-round draft pick with people doubting him along the way. Junior had the expectations of having a successful big-league dad. But they both did it on their own. There weren’t any shortcuts. I think that added a human quality to the display of emotion you saw here.’‘

Jim Furtado Posted: July 25, 2016 at 08:24 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, ken griffey jr., mike piazza

Ken Griffey Jr., Mike Piazza deliver emotional Hall of Fame speeches

Well, Piazza lasted two minutes before his voice started cracking, sniffing, and wiping away tears.

Griffey, who made the mistake of looking into the faces of his three children sitting in the front row, lasted all of 20 seconds.

“Nothing can prepare you,” Piazza said, “for how you feel, and the history sitting behind us on stage.”

Jim Furtado Posted: July 25, 2016 at 06:30 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, ken griffey jr., mike piazza

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Changes are coming to baseball Hall of Fame’s veterans’ committees | FOX Sports

Good stuff.

Baseball’s Hall of Fame has again revamped its veterans’ committees, attempting to increase consideration for more contemporary players, managers, umpires and executives.

Under the change announced Saturday by the Hall’s board of directors, there will be separate committees for Today’s Game (1988-2016), Modern Baseball (1970-87), Golden Days (1950-69) and Early Baseball (1871-1949). Today’s Game and Modern Baseball will vote twice every five years, Golden Days once every five years and Early Baseball once every 10 years.

“There are twice as many players in the Hall of Fame who debuted before 1950 as compared to afterward, and yet there are nearly double the eligible candidates after 1950 than prior,” Hall chair Jane Forbes Clark said in a statement. “Those who served the game long ago and have been evaluated many times on past ballots will now be reviewed less frequently.”

Jim Furtado Posted: July 24, 2016 at 09:12 AM | 65 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame

Ken Griffey, Mike Piazza set for Hall of Fame |

Today’s the day! Congratulations to Ken Griffey and Mike PIazza. Thanks for all the wonderful memories.

Jim Furtado Posted: July 24, 2016 at 09:07 AM | 45 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, ken griffey jr., mike piazza

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Up close and personal with Mike Piazza and his post-baseball life | New York Post

“My career and my life is a miracle,’’ Piazza told The Post. “I always want to give thanks and appreciate what I feel has been a blessing for me.”

Jim Furtado Posted: July 23, 2016 at 09:48 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, hall of fame, mets, mike piazza

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Hall of Fame hopes for Mike Trout, Clayton Kershaw, more MLB stars

Jay Jaffe looks at the Hall of Fame chances of twelve current stars.

With the Baseball Hall of Fame inductions set for this coming Sunday, I took a look at the progress that a handful of stars 35 and older—David Ortiz, Carlos Beltran, Ichiro Suzuki and others—are making toward joining 2016 honorees Mike Piazza and Ken Griffey Jr. in Cooperstown sometime in the next several years. Now it’s time to take a closer look at some players who aren’t as far along but who are building cases for enshrinement as well.

Jim Furtado Posted: July 19, 2016 at 01:57 PM | 160 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, jaws

Thursday, July 07, 2016

Seven Changes that Would Improve the Era Committee Hall of Fame Election Process

Thus far, each sub-committee has convened twice with the Expansion Era voting in 2010 and 2013, the Golden Era voting in 2011 and 2014, and the Pre-Integration Era voting in 2012 and 2015.  However, in its short history the Era Committee process has drawn a fair share of criticism for a variety of reasons and with December’s Pre-Integration Era vote representing two full cycles under the current format it is likely that the Hall of Fame board members will review and possibly modify to the system.  The following are seven changes that would improve the Era Committee election process:
1.  Hold separate elections for player and non-player candidates.
2.  Have more continuity in the voting body.
3.  Lessen the BBWAA’s influence over the Era Committee by having a greater presence of non-BBWAA sabermetricians and historians on the Historical Overview Committee screening panel and Era Committee voting body.
4.  Change the name of the Pre-Integration Era and reopen the book on Negro and pre-Negro League candidates.
5.  Hold more elections for candidates from the Golden and Expansion Eras.
6.  Hold a run-off election when no candidate is voted in.
7.  Create more sub-committees and run multiple elections.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

The rest of this season could make or break Joey Votto’s Hall of Fame case

Votto has had his detractors, people who don’t ascribe to sabermetrics, people who say he walks too much. Perhaps these people could knock Votto as well for the Reds not winning any championships during his career, though great players don’t always experience this. Until this season, Votto’s critics have mostly looked misguided…

Others needed their mid to late 30s to solidify their Hall of Fame cases or watch them collapse.

Take Hernandez, who looked like a Hall of Famer through his 20s, but declined badly in his mid-30s, tallying -0.2 Wins Above Average after turning 33. He retired at 36 and has never rated as a serious Hall of Fame candidate, though he has supporters who could point to him as one of the most underrated first basemen in baseball history. There’s a chance Votto could be his generation’s Keith Hernandez.

Then there’s Helton who was good for a cumulative 1.2 Wins Above Average from his age-32 season through the end of his career. For the more traditionally-inclined, Helton averaged 30 homers, 102 RBI, and a .337 batting average through 2005. For his remaining eight seasons, Helton averaged 12 homers, 61 RBI, and a .289 batting average. It’s like a tale of two totally different careers. The fact that all of it came for the Colorado Rockies is probably enough to prevent Helton from coming remotely close to a Hall of Fame plaque with the Baseball Writers Association of America when he becomes eligible in the fall of 2018.

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