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Wednesday, January 05, 2011

Alomar, Blyleven Elected to Hall of Fame

Finally.

NEW YORK, N.Y.—Roberto Alomar, a 12-time All-Star and 10-time Gold Glove winning second baseman, and Bert Blyleven, a 287-game winning pitcher who ranks fifth on the all-time strikeout list, were elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America in balloting verified by Ernst & Young.

See below the fold for the full voting results.

90.0% Roberto Alomar (523)
79.7% Bert Blyleven (463)
—————————————-
62.1% Barry Larkin (361)
53.5% Jack Morris (311)
45.4% Lee Smith (263)
41.7% Jeff Bagwell (242)
37.5% Tim Raines (218)
32.9% Edgar Martinez (191)
24.3% Alan Trammell (141)
20.3% Larry Walker (118)
19.8% Mark McGwire (115)
17.9% Fred McGriff (104)
15.3% Dave Parker (89)
13.6% Don Mattingly (79)
12.6% Dale Murphy (73)
10.0% Rafael Palmeiro (64)
5.2% Juan Gonzalez (30)
—————————————-
4.8% Harold Baines (28)
4.6% John Franco (27)
2.1% Kevin Brown (12)
1.0% Tino Martinez (6)
0.7% Marquis Grissom (4)
0.7% Al Leiter (4)
0.7% John Olerud (4)
0.3% BJ Surhoff (2)
0.2% Bret Boone (1)
0.2% Benito Santiago (1)
0.0% Carlos Baerga (0)
0.0% Lenny Harris (0)
0.0% Bobby Higginson (0)
0.0% Charles Johnson (0)
0.0% Raul Mondesi (0)
0.0% Kirk Rueter (0)

Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: January 05, 2011 at 09:04 PM | 245 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: hall of fame

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   201. Walt Davis Posted: January 06, 2011 at 05:51 AM (#3724589)
But that was a stretch of some loaded newbies (with total votes per ballot for all newbies given at the end in parathesis):

1989: Yaz, Bench, Perry, Jenkins, Kaat (3.35)


OK, this is a nice way to look at it (or multiply by 100 to get the %ages I used above).

In the non-roid controversy universe, the big 1st year 2013 names (rounded a bit) would look something like this:

Bonds (1), Clemens (1), Biggio (.75), Piazza (.65), Sosa (.55), Schilling (.3) for a total of 4.25. That would blow 1989 and even 1999 (3.62) out of the water.

But in our world that might look like:

Bonds (.5), Clemens (.5), Biggio (.85), Piazza (.4), Sosa (.2), Schilling (.3) for a total of 2.75 which is still high but obviously not historic. 2007 (Ripken, Gwynn, McGwire) was 2.2 and Gossage still managed to go up 6% as the top backlogger (and following Sutter's election).

If votes per ballot also go up in 2013, then Morris can gain plenty of ground -- probably not enough for 75% but maybe enough to put him at 70%.

In 2014 though we're probably looking at something like this:

Maddux (1), Thomas (.85), Glavine (.85), Kent (.2), Mussina (.3) which is 3.2.

God only knows what a 6 over 2 years does to a ballot. Especially if my 3.75 guesstimate for the 2013 backlog (without Morris boost!) above is in the ballpark.

This is the backlog problem for those who haven't clued into it yet.

Even if Larkin is elected and Morris doesn't get a boost (but some others do), the 2013 backlog comes in with about 3.75 votes.

Even in my pessimistic scenerio, the 2013 newbies add 2.75 votes. To keep everyone the same would already require an increase to 6.5 votes per ballot. Biggio gets elected at 85% so the 2014 backlog (if everybody stays the same) would be 5.65

To keep everyone the same in 2014, you need an increase then to 8.85 votes per ballot. That's simply not going to happen. And it's going to be extremely difficult for even Bonds or Piazza to make progress much less Raines.

The backlog in this scenario gets some relief in 2015 with Maddux, Thomas, Glavine and Morris (15th year) coming off but it's still ... whaddya know ... 5.65 just in time for:

Johnson (.9), Pedro (.85), Smoltz (.3), Sheffield (.2?? lower?) -- so that's another 2.25 votes and we're still up to 8 ballots to keep everyone the same.

Chris would be a far better judge, but I'll guess the chances of us seeing more than 7 ballots per is extremely slim. At 7 ballots per, you have to take away 185 % points away from the backlog coming into 2014. You can still fairly easily keep everybody above 5%, probably even 10% but nobody can make progress and most of our faves are going to have to fall back by 5-10 points.

The 2016 ballot? Griffey for sure with a 1st ballot induction. Hoffman for near sure. Moyer will likely be on the ballot, no idea how he'll do. Edmonds quite possibly. Some outside chance of Thome or Chipper or Pudge. So probably some relief but possibly another problem year. The next 5 years will see (most of) Manny, Jeter, Rivera, Pettitte, Andruw, Vlad, Abreu, Ichiro, Rolen, Hudson, Berkman and Helton. Griffey, Thome, Chipper, Jeter, Rivera and Ichiro seem like good chances at 1st ballots. Pudge, Hoffman, Manny, Pettitte, Vlad and maybe a couple others seem like good bets for 20%-50% debuts. I'm sure I've missed a few viables.

OMAR!!! Also Giambi, Posada, Carpenter (nice peak) and 2 to 5 Molinas.
   202. bunyon Posted: January 06, 2011 at 06:01 AM (#3724599)
This may have been asked, but how is Bagwell "tainted" while his teammate, through his entire career, Biggio, is "clean"? Is this just a random choice, who is accused and who is considered clean?
   203. Lassus Posted: January 06, 2011 at 06:10 AM (#3724608)
(BTW, mourning Caprica's demise at all?)

I've turned my sadness into anger and dismissiveness of SyFy as a network. They're pathetic.


This may have been asked, but how is Bagwell "tainted" while his teammate, through his entire career, Biggio, is "clean"?

As demonstrated by the dipshits on the panel today, size. Period. That's it, basically. No one ever brings up the huge number of smallish doofus non-power fungibles on the Mitchell report, though, because they are too stupid.
   204. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: January 06, 2011 at 06:17 AM (#3724613)
This may have been asked, but how is Bagwell "tainted" while his teammate, through his entire career, Biggio, is "clean"? Is this just a random choice, who is accused and who is considered clean?


Home runs = Steroids

I've turned my sadness into anger and dismissiveness of SyFy as a network. They're pathetic.


Ahem, they reran the Langoliers and Tommyknockers miniseries earlier this week!
   205. JJ1986 Posted: January 06, 2011 at 06:34 AM (#3724624)
Piazza would be much much higher than .65 if no one cared about steroids. He'd be over 80%.
   206. Dag Nabbit is part of the zombie horde Posted: January 06, 2011 at 06:45 AM (#3724629)
But in our world that might look like:

Bonds (.5), Clemens (.5), Biggio (.85), Piazza (.4), Sosa (.2), Schilling (.3) for a total of 2.75 which is still high but obviously not historic.


Depends how you define historic. 2.75 newbies per ballot would be the third highest total of the last half century. No, it isn't 1999. No, it isn't 1989. Yet it's STILL better than everything else.

Top newbie years since 1962:
1999: 3.62 Ryan, Brett, Yount, Fisk, Murphy
1989: 3.35 Yaz, Bench, Perry, Jenkins, Kaat
2007: 2.32 Ripken, Gwynn, McGwire
1982: 2.28 Aaron, F. Robinson, B. Williams, Oliva
2001: 2.12 Winfield, Puckett, Mattingly
1981: 2.11 Gibson, Killebrew, Marichal
1993: 2.09 Jackson, Niekro, Garvey
1994: 2.06 Carlton, Sutton, Sutter
1962: 1.99 Feller, J. Robinson, Rizzuto
2010: 1.90 Alomar, Larkin, E. Martinez, McGriff

First, a few random thoughts - someone mentioned that Marichal may have gotten a Roseboro penalty the same way it's hypothezied [sic] that Perry got a spitter penalty. Perhaps, but both came on the loaded newbie ballots (and it didn't get any easier in 1982 after Marichal's debut in 1981). Also, I now have an idea how Billy Williams could rise so fast after a fairly tepid start - of course his start stunk - he's up against Frank & Hank!

Back on point. Two clearly burst from the pack, but then again your hypothetical 2013 ballot bursts from the pack. I hate to tell you this Walt, you just convinced me that Morris will have trouble rising up in 2013.

Let's say 2013 newbies get 2.75, as you suggest. Well, there's nothing close to it, but the closet was 2007. There were 12 backloggers heading into the 2007 ballot. 12 had their numbers go down. The other two were Dave Concepcion (a big jump from 12.5% to 13.6%. If Morris experiences a similar 1.1% jump, whoop-de-doo for him. THe other rising backlogger was Gossage, who went up 64.6% to 71.2%. Somehow he went up by 6.6%.

Let's look at Gossage then. There are similarities with Morris: both were near the top of the backlog. Both had their most similar candidate go in the year before, aiding them. Sutter just went in, and now Blyleven has gone in.

There are also differences. First, relievers are a dangerous comp for anything. In my annual prediction piece one of my ten guidelines is called Primordial Conversations. My point is simple: BBWAA balloting can be predictable because there's so much history built up for what is a HoF 2B that it drives candidates up or down. (This isn't perfect, but it holds fairly well). There's not nearly the history with relievers. The BBWAA is still figuring that one out. The 2000s were a key decade in this with Sutter, Eck, and Gossage going in and Smith left waiting. Also, Gossage was - on paper - clearly superior to Sutter, which isn't the case with Morris & Blylven.

More importantly, the 2007 election, which saw virtually the entire backlog flounder, was "only" 2.32 newbies per ballot, not 2.75.

Even if Morris goes up 6% like Gossage, that won't get him in. I don't see him sprinting to 69% next year, not after his 1% dead rise this year.[
   207. Dag Nabbit is part of the zombie horde Posted: January 06, 2011 at 06:56 AM (#3724640)
nevermind, fixed bold error in previous comment without needing this one after all.
   208. Dag Nabbit is part of the zombie horde Posted: January 06, 2011 at 07:06 AM (#3724643)
God only knows what a 6 over 2 years does to a ballot.

Going off your estimates, it would be "only" 5.15 by the second go-around. Biggio wouldn't be on in 2014 if he gets 85% in 2013.

Especially if my 3.75 guesstimate for the 2013 backlog (without Morris boost!) above is in the ballpark.

I'm not even going to try to crunch/guess numbers, but if it sounds too high to you, start dropping numbers in your estimates. A 50% becomes a 40% and a 20% becomes a 15%. That's how it actually works - too much on one ballot lowers all candidates' totals.

To keep everyone the same in 2014, you need an increase then to 8.85 votes per ballot. That's simply not going to happen. And it's going to be extremely difficult for even Bonds or Piazza to make progress much less Raines.

Well, yeah. The reason I won't come up with numbers: it all depends on too much. If someone get 73% one year, he might get that extra 2% the next year -- even if the ballot is that high. (Assuming he's a candidate like Biggio and not just a backlogger-for-life like Jim Bunning was in 1989). If it's a Biggio type, he won't look overwhelmed in comparison with the onrush. (I'm picking Biggio's name at random here, really).

BIG tendency of the BBWAA: the guys near the top have the bigget rise in votes, and often the smallest fall. Even in 1989, Bunning held his own and even topped Fergie Jenkins, unlikely as it sounds. The backloggers who will get drilled will be the McGriffs.

Chris would be a far better judge, but I'll guess the chances of us seeing more than 7 ballots per is extremely slim.

Disagree. Depending on how it plays out, we could be over 7/ballot. We haven't had it happen in a long time -- but man, look at the 2014-16 newbie classes! Some writers, like Caple and Posnanski, are filling out full ballots for the first time already. Others will down the line as well.

Question: hasn't Pedro Martinez considered the possiblity of coming back next year? I thought he had.
   209. Dag Nabbit is part of the zombie horde Posted: January 06, 2011 at 07:07 AM (#3724645)
This may have been asked, but how is Bagwell "tainted" while his teammate, through his entire career, Biggio, is "clean"?

Big forearms, man. Not many homers in the minors. I think he said he used andro before it was banned, but stopped once it was ban, so clearly he's a burnable witch.
   210. Good cripple hitter Posted: January 06, 2011 at 07:17 AM (#3724651)
This may have been asked, but how is Bagwell "tainted" while his teammate, through his entire career, Biggio, is "clean"? Is this just a random choice, who is accused and who is considered clean?

There were stories in 2008 that a trainer/steroids and HGH dealer in Houston named Kelly Blair was bragging about being the steroid source for Clemens, Pettitte, and Bagwell. That puts him as being roughly lower than Kevin Brown, but higher than, uh, Shawn Green, to pick a name at random, on the MLB game of 6 degrees of syringe separation.
   211.     Hey Gurl Posted: January 06, 2011 at 07:52 AM (#3724656)
Because people still have a stuck notion of what a user "looks like" regardless of the facts.
   212. CFiJ Posted: January 06, 2011 at 08:16 AM (#3724664)
Just wild-ass speculation, but I suspect that the steroids issue is not really germane to Bagwell's case, and from here on out he'll move steadily up. My sense of it was that the anti-Bagwell guys talking about steroids were not doing it with the indignation they summoned for McGwire and Palmeiro, but rather as a convenient argument to justify not voting for him because he "doesn't feel like a Hall of Famer". Basically, the "not on the first ballot" argument in a fancier dress. Not to mention that one of the biggest voices calling out Bagwell for steroids doesn't even have a vote. Next year people will look at his numbers and think, "Well, maybe not first ballot, inner circle, but maybe a Hall of Famer" and his votes will go up. Some of the people talking steroids this year will say next year, "The era is tainted, but there's no evidence against him, so..." Then as his totals rise, cognitive dissonance will set in and normative social influence will lead to more people voting for him.

Assuming that no new allegations come out in the next few years.
   213. Howie Menckel Posted: January 06, 2011 at 08:23 AM (#3724665)
seems like bbtf has not yet addressed a breaking journo story re northeast yet, so g'night

it's profound
   214. Don Malcolm Posted: January 06, 2011 at 09:05 AM (#3724673)
Just wild-ass speculation, but I suspect that the steroids issue is not really germane to Bagwell's case, and from here on out he'll move steadily up. My sense of it was that the anti-Bagwell guys talking about steroids were not doing it with the indignation they summoned for McGwire and Palmeiro, but rather as a convenient argument to justify not voting for him because he "doesn't feel like a Hall of Famer". Basically, the "not on the first ballot" argument in a fancier dress. Not to mention that one of the biggest voices calling out Bagwell for steroids doesn't even have a vote.

This is quite possible. I'm still of the opinion that the writers will have to narrow their "roid rage" to the number of players that can be counted on one hand, and that four of 'em--McGwire, Palmeiro, Bonds and Clemens--have already been chosen. Since Bags got >40% while McGwire and Palmeiro are buried at or below 20%, the steroid taint is largely irrelevant. Next year's ballot, with its "lull", will determine if that hypothesis is valid.

Biggest single year gains in HoF voting:

Medwick 62-64 33%
Aparicio 81-82 29%
Aparicio 82-83 26%
Fox 74-75 24%
Hodges 69-70 24%
Rice 99-00 23%
Wynn 70-71 20%
B. Williams 82-83 18%
Aparicio 83-84 18% (elected)
Mathews 72-74 17% (elected)
Perez 99-00 16% (elected)
Alomar 10-11 16% (elected)
Sandberg 04-05 16% (elected)
Snider 79-80 16% (elected)
Kiner 74-75 16% (elected)
Carter 99-00 16%
Hodges 72-73 16%
Gossage 07-08 15% (elected)
Eckersley 04-05 15% (elected)
Fingers 91-92 15% (elected)
Lemon 75-76 15% (elected)

Cepeda 83-84 15%
Fox 82-83 15%
Jenkins 89-90 15%
Marichal 81-82 15%
Sutter 99-00 15%

Carter 01-02 15%
Cepeda 93-94 15%
Roberts 75-76 14% (elected)
Blyleven 07-08 14%

B. Williams 84-85 14%
Hunter 85-86 14%
Gossage 04-05 14%


One would have to analyze the trends to see how many of these in the "non-elected" grouping were based on "weak holdover" scenarios and a lack of strong newbies, but there are a sizable number of pitchers making jumps. But it strikes me that the players likeliest to have these jumps are: Larkin (following the pattern of a dozen other players and getting elected), Bagwell, Raines, and Walker.
   215. yest Posted: January 06, 2011 at 09:08 AM (#3724674)
Let's say 2013 newbies get 2.75, as you suggest. Well, there's nothing close to it, but the closet was 2007. There were 12 backloggers heading into the 2007 ballot.

the fact that those are going to be on the same ballots as opposed to spread out among the whole electorate greatly changes the numbers, because instead of the whole electorate running up against the ten maximum rule only a relatively small percentage will and I wouldn't expect the numbers to change as much as it would under normal circumstances.

However this will probably lead to strategic voting because the steroid voters
   216. Curse of the Andino Posted: January 06, 2011 at 09:32 AM (#3724677)
I remember a game where Jason Johnson of the O's faced Houston. Bagwell hit a double so hard, Johnson promptly gave up two more HRs (and the lead) just so he wouldn't have to face Bagwell again.

Seriously, scary hitter.

/From an AL fan.
   217. Walt Davis Posted: January 06, 2011 at 12:16 PM (#3724683)
Piazza would be much much higher than .65 if no one cared about steroids. He'd be over 80%.

The voters have never elected more than 3. When Ryan, Brett and Yount came on at the same time, Yount barely made it and Fisk was 4th in the 60-65% range. Something similar happened when Yaz, Bench, Perry and Jenkins all came on -- Yaz and Bench sailed in, the 300-game winner was in the mid-60s and Fergie was in the low 50s.

I think that history would have repeated itself when Bonds, Clemens, Biggio, Piazza (and Sosa) all came on in 2013. I'm not certain Biggio would get the Yount role and Piazza the Fisk role but (a) the voters love 3,000 hits and (b) the voters have almost always been hard on Cs (plus they're probably all convinced Piazza was truly horrible defensively).

But I think it's unlikely we'd have seen 4 guys inducted for the first time. If you want to swap Piazza and Biggio in that scenario, that's fine with me.

but if it sounds too high to you, start dropping numbers in your estimates

Oh, it didn't seem high, it's lower than the 2012 backlog. My most generous bump up was giving Bagwell 10%, 5% bumps to Raines and Walker (maybe optimistic there), Edgar going back to where he was, a couple points to Murphy in his last year, Bernie at 10%. If Morris gets a big bump I suppose he'd steal some from Bagwell/Raines/Walker. Quibble around the edges but I've got some wiggle room in that I didn't give any bump to McGriff, Smith or Mattingly and they might see some in such a weak year.

Depending on how it plays out, we could be over 7/ballot.

Maybe but institutions usually don't shift so quickly. You're expecting a very low number in 2012 ... and then it might jump by 1.2-1.3 in a year? 2 years? Seems too dramatic a shift but you know the history and I don't.

There were stories in 2008 that a trainer/steroids and HGH dealer in Houston named Kelly Blair was bragging about being the steroid source for Clemens, Pettitte, and Bagwell. That puts him as being roughly lower than Kevin Brown, but higher than, uh, Shawn Green, to pick a name at random, on the MLB game of 6 degrees of syringe separation.

Except nobody but a few people here seem to remember this story. Did one writer bring this up with regard to Bagwell. I think any voters who didn't vote for him because of roid suspicions base those suspicions purely on his forearms, association with Caminiti (which was pre-roids but what do they care) and possibly an unlikely career arc.

I'm not sure what's going on with Bagwell. At first I thought it was a lot of anti-roid sentiment, now I'm not so sure. Definitely some but Bagwell can be viewed as the sort of candidate who usually debuts around 40-50%. Next year should give us a better idea.

I hadn't realized until this discussion but not only has McGwire not gone up one inch, but he didn't budge even though the newbies were quite weak during this run. If he had been a "we'll consider him more as we go" candidate, you would have thought he'd move up on weak ballots.
   218. Dale Sams Posted: January 06, 2011 at 12:32 PM (#3724686)
Without some fundamental directive, such as from the HOF or...God help us, a sweeping Presidential pardon, McGwire is never getting elected by the BBWAA. And if Bonds doesn't get in....none of them (Im looking at you Manny and Pettite) are getting in.
   219. Fancy Pants Handles lap changes with class Posted: January 06, 2011 at 01:19 PM (#3724694)
God help us, a sweeping Presidential pardon


Those are only available for true heroes, like people who electrocuted dogs... such as Jack Morris. They aren't for evil PFD-o-philes!

Consider this an opportunity to talk about politics,

FPH
   220. Zach Posted: January 06, 2011 at 01:22 PM (#3724696)
I think Bonds or Clemens eventually breaks the dam, due to being clearly better than other candidates that people want to vote for. After that, the steroid guys start moving up.

Even if the steroid guys don't draw any votes, I wonder if they'll suppress voting for other candidates. I could see a voter being reluctant to vote for Edgar Martinez or Larry Walker while leaving McGwire off of his ballot. Even if you're strongly anti steroids, it's got to feel weird voting for the third or fourth best hitter on the ballot.
   221. LargeBill Posted: January 06, 2011 at 01:33 PM (#3724698)
219. Dale Sams Posted: January 06, 2011 at 06:32 AM (#3724686)
Without some fundamental directive, such as from the HOF or...God help us, a sweeping Presidential pardon, McGwire is never getting elected by the BBWAA. And if Bonds doesn't get in....none of them (Im looking at you Manny and Pettite) are getting in.


If you're right, then in a round about way Pete Rose is to blame. All the astonishment about how can you keep the "all time hit king" out has already played out (unless you're here in Cincinnati) to no avail. His situation is not really analogous since his infraction warranted permanent expulsion. However, I don't expect most voters to notice the distinction between the cases. Instead Rose on the outside will be used as precedent. So, IMO if Rose hadn't been an idiot the guys you listed would be more difficult to keep out for a larger segment of the electorate. I do think your idea of a directive from the HOF has merit, but you won't see that until Cooperstown suffers through an induction week with just an executive & Spink award recipient & maybe some long dead player getting recognized. I won't predict future ballots two or three years out, but no selections are really quite possible.
   222. deputydrew Posted: January 06, 2011 at 02:10 PM (#3724709)
I haven't read all the comments, so it could be that I owe at least one coke for this, but I've been thinking about the "increase the number of votes permitted" idea. Is it possible that increasing the number of votes will help the marginal candidates more than the good ones?

Don't you think that some (many) voters would view the HoF's increasing the vote limit as a direct sign that the HoF wanted more players elected? I could easily see someone thinking "he, they give me more votes so they want more guys. Maybe Morris/Murphy/Mattingly/other M-named player wasn't good enough for me last year, but the HoF wants a bigger class, so I should vote for 'em."
   223. Benji Gil Gamesh Rises Posted: January 06, 2011 at 02:48 PM (#3724721)
seems like bbtf has not yet addressed a breaking journo story re northeast yet, so g'night

it's profound


???
   224. Dag Nabbit is part of the zombie horde Posted: January 06, 2011 at 04:32 PM (#3724777)
The voters have never elected more than 3.

They have, but not in over a half-century. In 1936, they elected five. Still the record.
   225. JL Posted: January 06, 2011 at 04:44 PM (#3724783)
the writers will have to narrow their "roid rage" to the number of players that can be counted on one hand, and that four of 'em--McGwire, Palmeiro, Bonds and Clemens--have already been chosen.

I wonder if Juan Gon has also been chosen. A two time MVP with a reputation as an RBI machine typically does better than 5.2%.

I also wonder how Sosa will be viewed. Minimal evidence (at least as far as I recall seeing), but he sure fits every profile of how people think a steroid user will look and perform.
   226. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: January 06, 2011 at 04:46 PM (#3724787)
The voters have never elected more than 3.

They have, but not in over a half-century. In 1936, they elected five. Still the record.


That was back when the candidates were of pristine character and sportsmanship, such as Cobb, Ruth, McGraw, and Anson.
   227. SoSH U at work Posted: January 06, 2011 at 04:46 PM (#3724788)
Don't you think that some (many) voters would view the HoF's increasing the vote limit as a direct sign that the HoF wanted more players elected?


I do think that would be the hope with an increased ballot. That it would lead those guys typically choosing 3 to go with 6, or 5 to go to 9, thereby increasing the chances for those guys in the middle. The voters who fill out the ballot may also increase to 15, though those votes aren't likely to go to guys on the brink of induction.
   228. flournoy Posted: January 06, 2011 at 05:23 PM (#3724814)
Useless trivia: Roberto Alomar is the first player elected to the Hall of Fame to have played for the Diamondbacks. Now only the Rockies remain without such a player. (Dawson for the Marlins, Boggs for the [Devil] Rays.)
   229. Karl from NY Posted: January 06, 2011 at 05:30 PM (#3724827)
Franco vs. Brown -- the voters just love relievers all out of proportion.


I think this isn't a particularly big mystery. The voters are writers, and relievers create the Story. Everybody knows Mariano's blown save in 2001, the Mets bullpen collapse in 2007, Calvin Schiraldi's wild pitch, Brad Lidge giving up the moonshot to Pujols. It's much easier to write the Story when a reliever is involved, rather than drumming out a boring recap of a team scratching out single runs in the second and fifth innings. The writers consistently gravitate to Story in HOF voting - that's why Rice and Puckett are in, Morris is way closer that he should ever be, and on the flip side Blyleven took forever and Brown just vanished. They also love counting stats (the no-effort way to create a Story out of a career), and saves are pretty much the easiest counting stat to rack up.
   230. Karl from NY Posted: January 06, 2011 at 05:56 PM (#3724858)
Chris, did you ever examine the weird sequence in Rice's voting percentages in the late 90s (43% in '98, 29% in '99, then up to 52% in '00)? What was going on there?


The other funny thing about Rice is how his vote jumps track with Red Sox success in the preceding season. I have a pet theory that as the Red Sox became a national media darling, some of that glory reflected back on perception of Rice.

1999 - Red Sox make ALCS (no shame in losing to that killer Yankees team), Rice makes his biggest jump on the ensuing 2000 ballot
2003 - Red Sox dramatically lose ALCS, Rice drops (55% to 52%, not big, but hardly any 55%er ever declines)
2004 - Red Sox win the title, Rice jumps to 60% after years of no noticeable gain in the 50's
2006 - Red Sox miss playoffs, Rice makes his last drop (64% to 63%, again hardly any 64%er ever declines)
2007 - Red Sox win the title, Rice makes his second-biggest jump from 63% to 72% and inevitability

For another incidence of this "reflected glory" theory, see the 1983 White Sox. Right after the team's division title, White Sox HOF candidates Nellie Fox, Luis Aparicio, and Hoyt Wilhelm all made substantial jumps.
   231. Kiko Sakata Posted: January 06, 2011 at 05:57 PM (#3724860)
Even if you're strongly anti steroids, it's got to feel weird voting for the third or fourth best hitter on the ballot.


But "if you're strongly anti steroids" you probably don't think that Mark McGwire is the best hitter on the ballot, because his stats don't count in your mind. I say this as somebody who isn't "strongly anti steroids" and who puts McGwire on his mock HOF ballot, but I don't think that "steroids are the food of the devil" sportswriters have any problems with discarding entirely what the "dirty stinking steroid cheaters" did.

I'm still of the opinion that the writers will have to narrow their "roid rage" to the number of players that can be counted on one hand


In the same vein, I see no reason to believe that this is true. Voters who believe that steroid use should be an absolute bar to the Hall of Fame (and I believe that right now, this is a majority of voters) will have no difficulty excluding all steroid users, be they Barry Bonds, Mark McGwire, Juan Gonzalez, or Alex Sanchez. The distinctions among such voters will rest entirely on the standard of proof they require before identifying somebody as a "steroid user".
   232. Kiko Sakata Posted: January 06, 2011 at 05:58 PM (#3724861)
[sorry, double post. It wasn't profound enough to warrant saying twice.]
   233. Karl from NY Posted: January 06, 2011 at 06:32 PM (#3724890)
Biggest single year gains in HoF voting:

Hodges 69-70 24%
Hodges 72-73 16%


These are both easily explained. The first came right after he managed the 1969 Amazin' Mets, which catapulted him to national attention. The second came right after he suddenly and tragically died.
   234. CFiJ Posted: January 06, 2011 at 06:34 PM (#3724891)
The Future of the Hall of Fame.
   235. JE (Jason) Posted: January 06, 2011 at 06:58 PM (#3724910)
While watching the House read aloud the text of the Constitution, I felt bummed that no one had suggested during the Lame Duck session a public reading of the BBWAA Hall of Fame voting guidelines.
   236. Walt Davis Posted: January 06, 2011 at 07:56 PM (#3724966)
Don't you think that some (many) voters would view the HoF's increasing the vote limit as a direct sign that the HoF wanted more players elected?

Possibly. It might depend on how the HoF handles it and the context. One is if many writers start publicly complaining that they want more than 10 slots in which case the HoF just says "fine with us but don't abuse them." Another is the HoF says something like "given baseball's expansion from 16 to 30 teams and concurrent growth in the size of baseball's talent pool (increased US population, expansion to Latin America and Asia), we feel it is fair that voters be allowed up to X votes." The latter would suggest "we think your standards are too high, we want more HoFers."

But, from a business standpoint, why would the HoF want more HoFers? I'd imagine the HoF kinda quietly grumbled when Ripken and Gwynn, two guaranteed major draws, got inducted at the same time. The ideal quasi-realistic induction schedule for the HoF would probably be something like:

1st ballot superstar
1st ballot star + backlogger
good backlogger + popular other (Santo, a beloved broadcaster, etc)
Repeat

If the voters started electing more than that -- 3-4 guys a year -- they'd probably go to two induction ceremonies a year like those double-gate double-headers teams do sometimes.

From a business standpoint, the HoF has nothing to grumble about. Inductions for every year on the foreseeable horizon, including several superstars even if Bonds, Clemens, et al aren't inducted. The voters doing the dirty work of deciding if steroid users get in or not. The business question -- which we certainly don't know the answer to and quite possibly they don't know the answer to -- is what the tradeoffs are between a Bonds induction and a Bonds exclusion in terms of attendance.

Now, if the HoF were to put their mission ahead of their financial statement, then they might have reason to be concerned and might decide (based on the criteria mentioned above) that it is appropriate that more players should be joining the all-time greats and possibly (for all the reasons we argue about) that steroid users should be there too. But a mission-centric HoF could feel the exact opposite on both those issues for various reasons and taken the same (in)actions and be perfectly happy with how things are going.

With regard to the voters, the HoF will choose the path of least resistance -- i.e. let them do what they want, give them more votes if they want -- unless they stop electing anybody (or possibly start electing "too many"). In no way is the HoF looking for a fight with the BBWAA -- that's us ... and maybe some in the BBWAA.
   237. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: January 06, 2011 at 08:03 PM (#3724972)
While watching the House read aloud the text of the Constitution


politics hijack

1: There is new "House Rule" that whenever a bill is put up for a vote the proponent has to offer the Constitutional "basis".

2: Some have proposed an amendment ending the "birth right" citizenship bestowed on anyone born here by the 14th amendment.

3: LI Republigoon* Pete King says that amending the Constitution is too hard, he plans on proposing a statute to do it.

4: Watching Pete explain the Constitutional Basis of a Statute proposing to overrule a part of the Constitution may very well be fun

*Not intended as a slur on Republicans in general, but solely directed at Peter King** who is, in fact imho a goon, or a ghoul, not sure which...

**notwithstanding such status, he is usually right/correct on matters concerning Northern Ireland
   238. Walt Davis Posted: January 06, 2011 at 08:13 PM (#3724980)
I also wonder how Sosa will be viewed.

He's associated with McGwire in the voters' minds because of 1998. He'll do about the same as McGwire, maybe a little worse given most McGwire voters probably consider Sosa a worse player.

The blackballers have "plenty" to "justify" a non-vote for Sosa. He never hit more than 40 in a season, then he hit 68 (strike, shortened season, hand injury missing 6 weeks, really crappy 1997). His name was leaked from the list of 103 -- which is to say the NY Times after calling who knows how many lawyers got one to say he was on there and possibly a second to not deny he was on there. His Congressional testimony in the devil's tongue, Spanish -- a meme that lives on although Sosa's entire testimony was in English. The "collapse" once testing started. The funny-looking skin thing. Watch them even go with "at least McGwire eventually confessed."

If Sosa does significantly outpoll Mac, if he starts over 30% say, that will be a sign of substantial hope I think. It would either mean declining anger and feelings of betrayal or that a substantial chunk of the blackballers do have high levels of evidence. But the latter does seem rather unlikely -- Mac was only getting 25% before the confession when the only evidence we had was "I'm not here to talk about the past" and Canseco pointing the finger.

For years I've been saying that I thought Bonds would make it, Mac wouldn't (I still think he's the scalp they most want) and Sosa would be the real test of whether the blackballers would listen to reason ("reason" of course being my side of the argument :-). I'm far less certain about Bonds now and I don't think Sosa has a chance.
   239. DanG Posted: January 06, 2011 at 09:00 PM (#3725041)
If the voters started electing more than that -- 3-4 guys a year -- they'd probably go to two induction ceremonies a year like those double-gate double-headers teams do sometimes.
I don't think so. Back before the Veterans Comittee was rendered non-functional in 2001, we routinely saw 3-4 players elected per year. In 20 years, 1982-2001, there were 63 players elected to the Hall: 34 BBWAA, 21 VC from MLB, 8 VC from Negro leagues. In 1984 and 1999, five players were elected.

In the decade since then we've had 17 players elected (16 writers, 1 VC).
   240. Kurt Posted: January 06, 2011 at 09:28 PM (#3725059)
Now only the Rockies remain without such a player. (Dawson for the Marlins, Boggs for the [Devil] Rays.)

Nationals?
   241. smileyy Posted: January 06, 2011 at 09:35 PM (#3725063)
[238] Excepting where said Republigoon is guilty of material support of terrorists in the same way he accuses others. But Irish freedom fighters are, well, noble freedom fighters, right?

(NB: it's the hypocrisy I'm condemning, not the IRA position and support)
   242. Walt Davis Posted: January 06, 2011 at 10:00 PM (#3725083)
I don't think so. Back before the Veterans Comittee was rendered non-functional in 2001, we routinely saw 3-4 players elected per year. In 20 years, 1982-2001, there were 63 players elected to the Hall: 34 BBWAA, 21 VC from MLB, 8 VC from Negro leagues. In 1984 and 1999, five players were elected.

I mean real inductions. Almost nobody travels to Cooperstown to see the grandson of some VC, 18th century, etc. candidate say nice words.

If the WRITERS start inducting 3-4 a year, players that significant numbers of people will travel to the middle of nowhere to see on induction day, then the HoF will change something about their induction celebration process to take advantage of the fact that they could be drawing two full capacity crowds rather than just one. That's part of the reason why they shifted the HoF Classic away from HoF Weekend.

In short, Ripken draws a capacity crowd on his own; Gwynn draws a capacity crowd on his own. The HoF and the town of Cooperstown saw somewhere between 50-75% of that potential revenue by having them inducted simultaneously.

Granted, a really big taxpayer-funded HoF Induction Facility might be even better!

Is that clear enough?
   243. SoSH U at work Posted: January 06, 2011 at 10:07 PM (#3725091)
Granted, a really big taxpayer-funded HoF Induction Facility might be even better!


At Hall of Fame induction ceremony prices, that might be tough to justify.
   244. Solly Hemus Use Rogaine Posted: January 06, 2011 at 10:16 PM (#3725098)
Karl from NY Posted: January 06, 2011 at 11:56 AM (#3724858)

Chris, did you ever examine the weird sequence in Rice's voting percentages in the late 90s (43% in '98, 29% in '99, then up to 52% in '00)? What was going on there?



The other funny thing about Rice is how his vote jumps track with Red Sox success in the preceding season. I have a pet theory that as the Red Sox became a national media darling, some of that glory reflected back on perception of Rice.


Now do the same analysis for Phil Rizzuto, Karl.
   245. flournoy Posted: January 06, 2011 at 10:34 PM (#3725119)
Nationals?


True enough, though I was grouping them with the Expos.
   246. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: January 06, 2011 at 10:49 PM (#3725130)
Granted, a really big taxpayer-funded HoF Induction Facility might be even better!

Well, if the new House of Reps has anything to do with it, I'm sure it'll include an entire wing devoted to proving that Abner Doubleday invented baseball on his way home from church.
   247. Karl from NY Posted: January 06, 2011 at 11:10 PM (#3725150)
Now do the same analysis for Phil Rizzuto, Karl.


Easy-peasy for his first 3 ballots (every other year.)
27% in 1962 after a Yankees WS win
22% in 1964 after a Yankees WS loss
18% in 1966 after the Yankees had descended to 6th place.

But after that, it's hard to tell since Rizzuto hardly had any big jumps up or down in BBWAA voting, and the Yankees were pretty forgettable for almost the entire time. From 1964 to 1975 he got between 23% and 32% every year never changing by more than 3%. He got no bump from the respectable 93-win 1970 team, though that was overshadowed by Earl Weaver's mighty 108-win Orioles. Rizzuto's peak was 38% in 1976 with a last-ballot bump, on the heels of a not terrible but unmemorable 83-win Yankees team.

Of course, we'll never know if the converse might have held: if the Yankees had started winning again in 1973 or 1974, Rizzuto might have bounced back to prominence and BBWAA election.

Another candidate for the "reflected glory" theory could be Gary Carter. He scored jumps of 15% and 16% right after the 1999 and 2000 Mets NLCS and WS teams.
   248. Austin Posted: January 07, 2011 at 02:45 AM (#3725373)
A munch of you may have seen this already, but I thought that it was pretty funny. As they're sitting down for the press conference, Blyleven demonstrates that he's still a jokester:

http://mlb.mlb.com/video/play.jsp?content_id=13081111
   249. Srul Itza Posted: January 07, 2011 at 04:13 AM (#3725416)
Fergie was in the low 50s.


Don't forget that Fergie had that drug bust and suspension. That may have been a factor in his vote total.
   250. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: January 07, 2011 at 03:19 PM (#3725584)
[238] Excepting where said Republigoon is guilty of material support of terrorists in the same way he accuses others. But Irish freedom fighters are, well, noble freedom fighters, right?

(NB: it's the hypocrisy I'm condemning, not the IRA position and support)
You're right - except the original post was wrong; it was Steve King of Iowa, not Peter King of NY.
   251. Dan Szymborski Posted: January 07, 2011 at 03:39 PM (#3725605)
If you guys wish to discuss the pros and cons of congressional procedure for the new Congress and which members and ideologies are horrible, please take it to an appropriate thread in the forums. People are still talking about the original topic.
   252. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: January 07, 2011 at 04:11 PM (#3725630)
Since I've decided not to be guilty for killing THIS particular thread I've deleted this comment
   253. Karl from NY Posted: January 07, 2011 at 05:05 PM (#3725715)
Piazza would be much much higher than .65 if no one cared about steroids. He'd be over 80%.


In an average ballot year, maybe. But not with Bonds and Sosa and Biggio debuting on the same ballot. People forget how awesomely good Piazza was, have no sense of how big the positional adjustment for catcher really is, and severely overrate Piazza's perceived defensive weakness. The career HR record for a catcher is a minor statistical feat at best. He has no memorable post-season effort and never won a title. His signature moment is a simple regular-season HR that happened to come right after 9/11. Piazza is still eminently qualified for the HOF of course, but it's easy to see how he slips past quite a few writers.
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