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Tuesday, December 04, 2012

Kirk Gibson makes pitch for ‘84 Tigers to fill a Hall of Fame void

(Dwight Lowry Fan Club prepares news release)

“No question in my mind,” Gibson said Monday, when asked whether he considers ‘84 teammates Jack Morris and Alan Trammell to be Hall of Famers. “Remember when I played behind those guys, and comparing them to all the guys I played against, I think they deserve strong, strong consideration.”

Gibson’s own Hall of Fame chances ended after one year on the ballot, when he received only 13 votes (two fewer than ‘84 teammate Lou Whitaker) in 2001. But Morris and Trammell have remained on the ballot, with Morris receiving 66.7 percent of the vote last year, the most of all the candidates who didn’t make it.

Morris has been on the ballot 13 years, giving him just this year and next year to jump to the 75 percent required for election. Trammell, who has been on the ballot for 11 years, received 36.8 percent of the vote last year.

“If you look at Tram and Barry Larkin [who was elected last year], they’re very close,” Gibson said. “And with Jack, people had to see the way he pitched to win. And when you get in the postseason, he was the best there was.”

The only other pre-1995 champion without a player in the Hall of Fame is the 1981 Dodgers, who no longer have any candidates on the ballot. Steve Garvey came closest from that team, and he was never named on even 50 percent of the ballots.

Repoz Posted: December 04, 2012 at 06:24 AM | 81 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. joeysdadjoe Posted: December 04, 2012 at 07:13 AM (#4316175)
Whitaker one and done is a travesty.
   2. Barnaby Jones Posted: December 04, 2012 at 08:08 AM (#4316185)
I was born in the mid 80s, so I did not follow Morris during his prime; but I did come to baseball sentience during the twilight of his career (and I was keenly aware of him as a young Braves fan in 1991), and I can't remember anyone ever treating him like a HOF'er there at the end. He was just a guy; one of those random old-guy pitcher baseball cards that filled out the collection, like Tom Candiotti, Charlie Liebrandt, or Dennis Martinez.

That's what gets me about the recollections about Morris; I was raptly assimilating all the baseball knowledge I could when his career should have been receiving his end-of-career hagiographies. I'm pretty sure I would have remembered him being thought of as a this kind of guy back then. It never happened. He's had the greatest PR campaign ever, or something.
   3. RMc's desperate, often sordid world Posted: December 04, 2012 at 08:18 AM (#4316189)
Gibson can make the HOF...if he wins a couple of rings as a manager.
   4. DL from MN Posted: December 04, 2012 at 08:33 AM (#4316196)
1981 Dodgers have Reggie Smith - who is in the Hall of Merit. Their best player was probably Ron Cey, who is borderline but out.
   5. Bob Meta-Meusel Posted: December 04, 2012 at 09:09 AM (#4316210)
On the other hand, the '81 Dodgers also have Scioscia and Dusty Baker, and it wouldn't surprise me if one of them (much more likely Scioscia) eventually went in as a manager.
   6. Arbitol Dijaler Posted: December 04, 2012 at 09:10 AM (#4316211)
There's a strong desire among many to have an 80s era starter in the Hall, and there's no longer a possibility of pushing for Stieb (or Martinez) as an alternative. Many of the others had abortive runs - Stewart, Gooden, Saberhagen. I'm not sure if Morris makes it, but it would at least be comprehensible to me, though he doesn't stack up well to much of anyone else in the Hall.
   7. They paved Misirlou, put up a parking lot Posted: December 04, 2012 at 09:19 AM (#4316215)
There's a strong desire among many to have an 80s era starter in the Hall,


Nolan Ryan and Bert Blyleven both played every year of the 80's. Clemens and Carlton each won 2 CYAs in the 80's. It may be a little light, but it's certainly not lacking.
   8. SoSH U at work Posted: December 04, 2012 at 11:01 AM (#4316301)
On the other hand, the '81 Dodgers also have Scioscia and Dusty Baker, and it wouldn't surprise me if one of them (much more likely Scioscia) eventually went in as a manager.


And the '81 Dodgers, like the '84 Tigers, are represented in the Hall by their skippers.
   9. DL from MN Posted: December 04, 2012 at 11:06 AM (#4316308)
The 84 Tigers have two obvious, qualified choices - Trammell and Whitaker. They also have HoM player Darrell Evans. Lance Parrish and Chet Lemon are on the wrong side of the line but in the next 150 players. They weren't lacking talent.
   10. chemdoc Posted: December 04, 2012 at 11:18 AM (#4316321)
Whitaker one and done is a travesty.


It's a traveshamockery.
   11. RB in NYC (Now Semi-Retired from BBTF) Posted: December 04, 2012 at 11:58 AM (#4316391)
The only other pre-1995 champion without a player in the Hall of Fame is the 1981 Dodgers
Thinking about this:

1995 Braves: Chipper, Maddux, Glavine
1996, 1998, 1999, 2000 2009 Yankees: Jeter, Rivera
1997 Marlins: ???
2001 Diamondbacks: R. Johnson
2002 Angels: ???
2003 Marlins: I. Rodriguez
2004, 2007 Red Sox: Pedro
2005 White Sox: ???
2006, 2011 Cards: Pujols
2008 Phillies: ???
2010, 2012 Giants: TBD

That's just naming guys I am extremely confident will be elected. Obviously someone like Schilling or Tim Raines could make it in and give some of those more HOFers, but I'm just naming the obvious ones.

The best candidate on the '97 Marlins is Sheffield, who has some PED and personality issues. Kevin Brown, though he has both of those as well, the latter in spades. (He's also already dropped off the ballot, of course.) It doesn't look like the 2002 Angels are going to have someone, unless you think Scioscia gets in as a manager. If Frank Thomas gets in, that's the guy for the '05 White Sox, no one has a real chance unless Buehrle wins 300 games or something. Similiarly, I don't think anyone on the '08 Phillies is getting in. A lot of guys on the most recent Giants teams aren't getting in, but enough of them (Posey, Cain, even Sandoval and Lincecum) are young enough that they could do it.

Interesting that pre-1995 there's only two teams without a Hall of Famer, whereas we could easily have 3 since.
   12. bachslunch Posted: December 04, 2012 at 12:06 PM (#4316408)
2003 Marlins: I. Rodriguez

He may (or may not) have a PED issue -- if so, that's presumably the kiss of death for his HoF chances.
   13. Blastin Posted: December 04, 2012 at 12:07 PM (#4316409)
So we're not counting managers?


Anyway, I think Thomas makes it, and Scioscia might eventually make it, since he started young and they just love him over there (enough to let him stay foreeeever and rack up the win total).

08 Phillies, no idea. Lots of talent. But Rollins, Utley, Howard aren't going to make it I don't think. Hamels would have to take a leap forward and/or stay at his absolute best for the next decade.

If I-Rod doesn't make it because of silly PED stuff, I bet Miggy Cabrera does.

1995 Braves, Smoltz is making it.
   14. PASTE Thinks This Trout Kid Might Be OK (Zeth) Posted: December 04, 2012 at 12:12 PM (#4316413)
Taking the long term view, all of the PED guys, the guys who are obviously qualified Hall of Famers but won't be voted in by the BBRAA because PEDs, will go into the Hall of Famer eventually. Maybe not before they're dead, but 100 years from now they will all be in. So calling Ivan Rodriguez a Hall of Famer for that exercise is fine. So that gives the 2005 White Sox Frank Thomas, and Gary Sheffield will almost certainly represent the 1997 Marlins eventually.

Nobody on the 2002 Angels or 2008 Phillies is going into the Hall of Fame, however (Cole Hamels is the 2008 Phillies' last chance; good luck with that). And as for the 1984 Tigers, look, it's not our fault most BBRAA members are dimwitted or juvenile and refused to vote their two obviously qualified players in.

(edit: I'm stupid and typed '2005 Sox' instead of '2002 Angels')
   15. SoSH U at work Posted: December 04, 2012 at 12:14 PM (#4316417)
He may (or may not) have a PED issue -- if so, that's presumably the kiss of death for his HoF chances.


I think if you review these teams 40 years hence (as we are for every World Series winner through 1972), some guys that don't look like Hall of Famers now (Sheffield, Brown) may become Hall of Famers through some future Vet's Committee or newfangled mechanism used by Cooperstown. It's not really an adequate comparison if you simply look at how the BBWAA is treating the current guys vs. how the BBWAA and Vets committees judged the players of older teams.

Granted, the 2002 Angels still won't have a Hall of Fame player, but that's an entirelly (absence of) merit-based distinction.
   16. Eddo Posted: December 04, 2012 at 12:17 PM (#4316425)
If Frank Thomas gets in, that's the guy for the '05 White Sox

If?!?!?!

Is this a common thought, that Thomas isn't likely to make the Hall of Fame? Wouldn't any of the arguments against him (steroid suspicion) also go against Pujols?
   17. Blastin Posted: December 04, 2012 at 12:24 PM (#4316438)
I tend to agree, too. Pudge, Thomas, Smoltz, Sheff probably eventually make it. Even a Kevin Brown might go in from the VC way down the line. After all, Whitaker is up for it within a few years.

The only PED guy who might just never make it is a Manny because he kept getting caught later on.
   18. PASTE Thinks This Trout Kid Might Be OK (Zeth) Posted: December 04, 2012 at 12:25 PM (#4316440)
Frank Thomas was a very loud PED denouncer and offered to be tested every day and meant it, right? I can see no way he can be tossed in the "suspected user" bin, other than for the loonies who categorically reject everyone who played in the 1990s.
   19. RB in NYC (Now Semi-Retired from BBTF) Posted: December 04, 2012 at 12:39 PM (#4316475)
Is this a common thought, that Thomas isn't likely to make the Hall of Fame? Wouldn't any of the arguments against him (steroid suspicion) also go against Pujols?
Obviously, I would vote for Thomas in a second. And I know his PED credentials are as clean as anyone's can be. But I think he's going to suffer from the PED-era taint in general, and that he spent many, many years as a DH. I suppose he and Pudge are probably about the same amount of likely.

That's a good call by #13, by the way, Miggy Cabrera seems a pretty good bet to make it in. I don't see Brown ever getting in though, he won "only" 211 games, never won a Cy Young award, won 20 games only once, etc. etc. That doesn't seem like a guy the VC is going to put in.
   20. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: December 04, 2012 at 12:44 PM (#4316479)
Pudge, Thomas, Smoltz, Sheff probably eventually make it
Thomas will go in first ballot. Second ballot in a worst-case scenario. Smoltz goes in within his first few years. I'm not sure about Pudge, but I'm guessing he's a relatively quick induction barring any new PED revelations.

Sheffield's probably screwed for BBWAA induction. It's funny that Sheffield and Brown are deserving Hall of Famers from the '97 Marlins, but they're both likely to get overlooked due to a combination of PEDs and being big jerks.
   21. PASTE Thinks This Trout Kid Might Be OK (Zeth) Posted: December 04, 2012 at 12:47 PM (#4316485)
I'm pretty sure Miggy Cabrera would go in even if his career ended now. All of the toy measurements on b-ref score him as already qualified, certainly.
   22. Blastin Posted: December 04, 2012 at 12:49 PM (#4316489)
being big jerks


So who's the best MLB player ever who didn't have some personality issues (from what we know)? Musial?
   23. Blastin Posted: December 04, 2012 at 12:51 PM (#4316493)
I'm pretty sure Miggy Cabrera would go in even if his career ended now.


Yeah, he just made it to ten years, too. He has done everything a person needs for the BBWAA standards aside from longevity pretty much. MVP, Triple Crown, and a ring. Locked.
   24. PASTE Thinks This Trout Kid Might Be OK (Zeth) Posted: December 04, 2012 at 12:53 PM (#4316494)
Willie Mays became kind of a bitter old man after his career, but was pretty squeaky-clean by ballplayer standards during his playing days as far as I know.
   25. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: December 04, 2012 at 12:55 PM (#4316498)
So who's the best MLB player ever who didn't have some personality issues (from what we know)?


Gehrig and Mathewson are the two names that jump at me. Of more recent vintage the guy who I don't recall reading anything to derogatory about is Seaver. Those are names just off the top of my head.
   26. SoSH U at work Posted: December 04, 2012 at 01:00 PM (#4316506)
Not in the class of Stan the Man as a ballplayer, but my own experience (a 90-minute, one-on-one interview that remains one of my most treasured professional opportunities), plus everything I've read from others, would put Brooks Robinson at the top of the heap of any great guy conversations.

   27. PASTE Thinks This Trout Kid Might Be OK (Zeth) Posted: December 04, 2012 at 01:02 PM (#4316511)
Nobody I've ever heard of is in Stan Musial's class as a nice guy, either. Nobody's life has ever produced more boring biographies.
   28. Hello Rusty Kuntz, Goodbye Rusty Cars Posted: December 04, 2012 at 01:05 PM (#4316514)
Of more recent vintage the guy who I don't recall reading anything to derogatory about is Seaver.


I remember hearing Seaver was an attention whore, but nothing really bad. That applies to Gary Carter too.
   29. McCoy Posted: December 04, 2012 at 01:06 PM (#4316516)
Class is like batting averages and brains. The higher your batting average the smarter you are and it can be the same way for virtually any other trait as well.
   30. PASTE Thinks This Trout Kid Might Be OK (Zeth) Posted: December 04, 2012 at 01:08 PM (#4316521)
I don't know, I don't think Rogers Hornsby was ever accused of having any class.
   31. DL from MN Posted: December 04, 2012 at 01:09 PM (#4316522)
27 - Harmon Killebrew and Joe Mauer are also both nice, boring guys though neither one was as good as Musial.
   32. Blastin Posted: December 04, 2012 at 01:09 PM (#4316523)
Or Cobb.
   33. Blastin Posted: December 04, 2012 at 01:12 PM (#4316527)
Now I wonder, is there a higher percentage of nice, terrible players or superstar jerks?
   34. PASTE Thinks This Trout Kid Might Be OK (Zeth) Posted: December 04, 2012 at 01:15 PM (#4316529)
The nice/average selfish/####### distribution among professional athletes is exactly the same as the distribution among the population at large, in my experience.
   35. Booey Posted: December 04, 2012 at 01:22 PM (#4316535)
Thinking about this:

1995 Braves: Chipper, Maddux, Glavine
1996, 1998, 1999, 2000 2009 Yankees: Jeter, Rivera
1997 Marlins: ???
2001 Diamondbacks: R. Johnson
2002 Angels: ???
2003 Marlins: I. Rodriguez
2004, 2007 Red Sox: Pedro
2005 White Sox: ???
2006, 2011 Cards: Pujols
2008 Phillies: ???
2010, 2012 Giants: TBD


Also:

1995 Braves - Smoltz will make it, and McGriff probably has a VC shot decades down the road

Yankees - Boggs is already in for the '96 squad, and Raines has a shot for the '96 and '98 teams. Clemens is too good not to eventually make it for the '99 and '00 teams, ditto A-Rod for '09. TBD for Cano and Sabathia for '09. Bernie and Posada have an outside shot at being VC selections, right?

2001 D-Backs (I accidentally typed D-Bags before I corrected myself!) - Schilling will make it

2003 Marlins - As noted above, Miggy C is looking very likely

2004 Red Sox - Schilling again, plus Manny might be too good to keep out forever. Papi has a chance

2005 White Sox - Yes, Thomas is a lock. Please not Konerko

2006 Cards - Don't Edmonds and/or Rolen have shots at being possible VC choices, depending on how far SABR recognition has advanced by the time they're eligible?

2007 Red Sox - Didn't have Pedro like you listed, but still had Schilling, Manny, and Papi

2011 Cards - Possible VC candidate in Berkman?
   36. SoSH U at work Posted: December 04, 2012 at 01:22 PM (#4316537)
The nice/average selfish/####### distribution among professional athletes is exactly the same as the distribution among the population at large, in my experience.


I'd be surprised by that. I think tremendous success at anything, not just baseball but any endeavor, often requires certain traits that don't really lend themselves to geniality or other characteristics we apply to nice guys. It's not automatic, as Stan the Man shows, but I do think there's probably a tradeoff more often than not.
   37. KT's Pot Arb Posted: December 04, 2012 at 01:24 PM (#4316539)
I'm pretty sure Miggy Cabrera would go in even if his career ended now. All of the toy measurements on b-ref score him as already qualified, certainly.


Sad but true. Hes 6th in wRC+ since 1980.... among First Basemen, most with decline years. By the time Miggys career ends and he has his decline phase, he wont be top ten among his eras first basemen in wOBA, wRC+, any useful rate stats. He will also be one of the worst defenders and baserunners from that group.

Miggy HOF case is built entirely around the precise placement of accomplishments. Value in BA/SLG, not walks, or baserunning, or avoiding double plays, or defense. Hitting more HRs than anyone else in a year he had a ton of baserunners in front of him and gullible MVP voters hungry for a mythical triple crown. Being in right place, right time on good teams. Being great at things voters can see and remember, being awful at things they ignore or forget. Doing it all in an era where much better first basemen have been disqualified due to, or tainted by, PEDs.

i think Miggys induction should be used to open the halls first beer league softball wing.
   38. BDC Posted: December 04, 2012 at 01:24 PM (#4316542)
Interesting that pre-1995 there's only two teams without a Hall of Famer, whereas we could easily have 3 since

Partly it's that champions are somewhat more random now thanks to the expanded playoffs. Partly it's a matter of definition, though. As we remember less about a player, the fact that he played on champions becomes a self-defining part of his case, as with Lombardi, Lazzeri, Rizzuto, Fox, Gordon. So players from these long-ago champions keep getting added ...
   39. Eddo Posted: December 04, 2012 at 01:26 PM (#4316544)
So who's the best MLB player ever who didn't have some personality issues (from what we know)?
Gehrig and Mathewson are the two names that jump at me.

It's hard to be an old fogey when you never get old.
   40. JJ1986 Posted: December 04, 2012 at 01:29 PM (#4316548)
Papi has a chance


Not in a fair world.
   41. PASTE Thinks This Trout Kid Might Be OK (Zeth) Posted: December 04, 2012 at 01:32 PM (#4316551)
I'd be surprised by that. I think tremendous success at anything, not just baseball but any endeavor, often requires certain traits that don't really lend themselves to geniality or other characteristics we apply to nice guys. It's not automatic, as Stan the Man shows, but I do think there's probably a tradeoff more often than not.


I used to think this way, and it still seems logical to me. But the more athletes I've gotten the chance to talk to and spend time around, the less experience seems to bear that out.

But athletes, especially professional athletes, live in a different, very small and very insulated world from ours. Within that world I think they're jerks, normal and nice guys in about the same percentages as people in general are here in the real world. Much of their interaction with the outside world, however (media, fans) comes as an intrusion to them and they tend to react to it with varying degrees of hostility. Which makes them seem to us like jerks.
   42. Booey Posted: December 04, 2012 at 01:37 PM (#4316556)
Papi has a chance


Not in a fair world.


Rice went in a few years ago. Morris is going in next month.

The world ain't fair.
   43. DL from MN Posted: December 04, 2012 at 01:39 PM (#4316558)
Good point about the outside world placing more demands on an athlete than it does on me. Nobody asks me for an autograph when I use a public bathroom or check into a hotel.
   44. SoSH U at work Posted: December 04, 2012 at 01:43 PM (#4316564)

But athletes, especially professional athletes, live in a different, very small and very insulated world from ours. Within that world I think they're jerks, normal and nice guys in about the same percentages as people in general are here in the real world. Much of their interaction with the outside world, however (media, fans) comes as an intrusion to them and they tend to react to it with varying degrees of hostility. Which makes them seem to us like jerks.


Possibly. I can't help but think the focus on self necessary to become a top-level anything, on top of the way we enable bad behavior from the gifted from such an early age, wouldn't lend itself to strong character development.

OTOH, during my days as a sportswriter, most of my interactions with high-level athletes were pretty positive, so my personal experience matches yours. (For the record, most of the beat writers were also really nice fellas. Columnists were much more likely to be ########).

   45. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: December 04, 2012 at 01:45 PM (#4316570)
Don't Edmonds and/or Rolen have shots at being possible VC choices, depending on how far SABR recognition has advanced by the time they're eligible?
I wouldn't 100% rule out either Edmonds or Rolen from BBWAA consideration. Edmonds isn't on the ballot until 2016, and Rolen still isn't retired, so as long as they survives the first couple years, they'll be on the ballot until 2030 or so. That's a lot of time for old BBWAA voters to die off and new, better-informed ones to take their place.
   46. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: December 04, 2012 at 01:51 PM (#4316575)
Miggy HOF case is built entirely around the precise placement of accomplishments. Value in BA/SLG, not walks, or baserunning, or avoiding double plays, or defense. Hitting more HRs than anyone else in a year he had a ton of baserunners in front of him and gullible MVP voters hungry for a mythical triple crown. Being in right place, right time on good teams. Being great at things voters can see and remember, being awful at things they ignore or forget. Doing it all in an era where much better first basemen have been disqualified due to, or tainted by, PEDs.
Miguel Cabrera as a Hall of Famer tomorrow would be pretty bad. Miguel Cabrera, however, is only 29 years old. He's very likely to do enough with his bat alone in the next five years to be a perfectly worthy HoFer.

A comparison, first nine full seasons in the league, listed best to worst by B-Ref WAR:

7.3, 6.9, 6.1, 5.5, 4.9, 4.7, 3.2, 3.0, 2.3 - Cabrera (43.9 total)
7.9, 6.9, 6.2, 6.0, 5.7, 5.5, 4.9, 2.4, -0.3 - Willie McCovey (45.2 total)

Cabrera wasn't quite as good as McCovey, but we're comparing McCovey's age 25-33 seasons to Cabrera age 21-29. Willie McCovey, like Miggy, was a poor fielder and a poor baserunner with a whomping power bat that could cover all his deficiencies. I don't think there's anything wrong with McCovey as a Hall of Famer, and I expect Cabrera will get there, too.


   47. ASmitty Posted: December 04, 2012 at 01:59 PM (#4316589)
Cabrera never should have driven in those runners in front of him.
   48. RB in NYC (Now Semi-Retired from BBTF) Posted: December 04, 2012 at 02:42 PM (#4316664)
2007 Red Sox - Didn't have Pedro like you listed, but still had Schilling, Manny, and Papi
Oops. If Manny really gets slammed for PED use--he will--and Schilling gets caught in the ballot shuffle--unlikely, but possible--the '07 Sox could end up without a player. I tend to think that's really unlikely, but I'm surprised that it is at least plausible.

Incidentally, I had also forgotten Coco Crisp was on that Red Sox team. For a team that won a World Series relatively recently, they're awfully forgettable for me.
   49. TDF, situational idiot Posted: December 04, 2012 at 02:50 PM (#4316678)
If Cabrera has any sort of "rest of his career", I'd say he's an easy HOFer. If you look at the top hitters through age 29, it's a Who's Who of inner-circle guys; Cabrera shows up rarely but his numbers are often just below the top-10.
   50. Biff, highly-regarded young guy Posted: December 04, 2012 at 03:37 PM (#4316743)
Incidentally, I had also forgotten Coco Crisp was on that Red Sox team. For a team that won a World Series relatively recently, they're awfully forgettable for me.

The Red Sox got him as part of the Andy Marte shuffle before 2006. I remember Red Sox fans being excited by the acquisition of Marte and then puzzled by what they traded him for. Of course, everyone knows Marte turned into a star.
   51. Moeball Posted: December 04, 2012 at 04:01 PM (#4316778)
2007 Red Sox - Didn't have Pedro like you listed, but still had Schilling, Manny, and Papi


I also will enjoy watching Dustin Pedroia's career progress. Already has a ring and an MVP - if he adds a bunch of solid seasons with more All Star appearances and Gold Gloves, he has a good shot. Obviously not saying he's a lock - anything such as injuries can happen - but he does seem to be on the right trajectory.
   52. RB in NYC (Now Semi-Retired from BBTF) Posted: December 04, 2012 at 04:19 PM (#4316811)
Obviously not saying he's a lock - anything such as injuries can happen - but he does seem to be on the right trajectory.
I'm not sure I agree with that. He's put up some great seasons, but he's also going to be 29 and has only played 856 games. (For sake of comparison, but only insofar as giving perspective, Cano just had his age 29 season and he's played 1214 games.) The MVP is a nice boost, but he's only gotten MVP support in one other season ('11). We can of course debate phrases like "right trajectory" but if Pedroia falls victim to the early decline of 2B--and even if not--it seems a tough sell to say he'll earn election.

   53. AROM Posted: December 04, 2012 at 04:30 PM (#4316831)
“And with Jack, people had to see the way he pitched to win. And when you get in the postseason, he was the best there was.”


Quotes like this don't hold up when you consider what they mean. Yeah, he was great in the 84 and 91 postseasons. Best best? As in nobody else could pitch in the postseason as well as he did?

Kirk Gibson won championships with Jack Morris and Orel Hershiser as his team's aces. Does Kirk really think that Hershiser wasn't as good as Morris?
   54. pikepredator Posted: December 04, 2012 at 04:32 PM (#4316836)
That pre/post 29 list is a fun example of Hank Aaron's consistent domination. He (and basically nobody else) shows up on most of the pre- and post- lists for the major counting stats - except for games played! Sorta like Rickey being two hall of famers in one.
   55. BDC Posted: December 04, 2012 at 04:40 PM (#4316850)
As others have suggested, it's unheard of to hit as well through age 29 as Cabrera has and not make the Hall of Fame: the only remotely relevant example is Sherry Magee, who played over 100 years ago and is in the HOM, anyway.

There are many HOFers who are similar to Pedroia through age 28, but by contrast, there are also quite a few who missed by wide margins – including Petrocelli and Garciaparra, to name examples close to home. Which doesn't contradict Moeball's well-qualified point, but puts it in perspective.
   56. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: December 04, 2012 at 04:53 PM (#4316884)
Incidentally, I had also forgotten Coco Crisp was on that Red Sox team. For a team that won a World Series relatively recently, they're awfully forgettable for me.

That was also the year the Red Sox had Eric Gagne. And Eric Hinske. And Bobby Kielty, who even got a hit in the World Series. I'm pretty sure I never knew he was on the team.

And 23 starts from Julian Tavarez.
   57. alilisd Posted: December 04, 2012 at 04:59 PM (#4316909)
Thomas will go in first ballot. Second ballot in a worst-case scenario.


Hm, coming onto an incredibly crowded ballot with Maddux, Glavine and Mussina does not bode well for even your worst-case scenario, IMO.
   58. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: December 04, 2012 at 05:02 PM (#4316915)
Worst-case scenario, nobody goes into the Hall of Fame in the next ten years except Greg Maddux and people born over 130 years ago.
   59. BDC Posted: December 04, 2012 at 05:10 PM (#4316927)
people born over 130 years ago

Julio Franco is a lock.
   60. PASTE Thinks This Trout Kid Might Be OK (Zeth) Posted: December 04, 2012 at 05:15 PM (#4316940)
Kirk Gibson won championships with Jack Morris and Orel Hershiser as his team's aces. Does Kirk really think that Hershiser wasn't as good as Morris?


I'd compare the two, but it would be embarrassing to Morris.
   61. Jittery McFrog Posted: December 04, 2012 at 05:32 PM (#4316978)
For a team that won a World Series relatively recently, they're awfully forgettable for me.
[...] And 23 starts from Julian Tavarez.


Oh come now, surely Julian Tavarez, with his Spring Training fisticuffs, porn star aspirations, and Ferengi face, must go in the "memorable" category.
   62. KT's Pot Arb Posted: December 04, 2012 at 07:27 PM (#4317168)
As others have suggested, it's unheard of to hit as well through age 29 as Cabrera has and not make the Hall of Fame: the only remotely relevant example is Sherry Magee, who played over 100 years ago and is in the HOM, anyway


Again which supports my point of the HOF bias towards big whomping bats, despite their failings in every other aspect of the game.

And I wasn't saying that Miggy wouldn't likely be deserving of the HOF by his careers end, his consistent excellence at the plate is pretty amazing. I just find it sad that the standard criteria for the HOF is so simpleminded that he practically qualifies now, despite not being a top 5 first baseman of the past 2 decades.
   63. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: December 04, 2012 at 07:30 PM (#4317174)
Does Kirk really think that Hershiser wasn't as good as Morris?

He seems to.
   64. KT's Pot Arb Posted: December 04, 2012 at 07:31 PM (#4317175)
Cabrera never should have driven in those runners in front of him.


I don't blame Miggy, I blame Henry Chadwick!
   65. Srul Itza Posted: December 04, 2012 at 07:57 PM (#4317194)
Yeah, he just made it to ten years, too. He has done everything a person needs for the BBWAA standards aside from longevity pretty much. MVP, Triple Crown, and a ring. Locked.


Even that is selling him short, since he has 2 batting titles, 2 home run titles, and 2 rings.

Assuming any sort of reasonable conclusion to his career, and he will be an easy BBWAA choice.
   66. cardsfanboy Posted: December 04, 2012 at 08:15 PM (#4317206)
Worst-case scenario, nobody goes into the Hall of Fame in the next ten years except Greg Maddux and people born over 130 years ago.


Locks over the next eight years are Maddux, Griffey, Randy, Biggio, and Chipper. I imagine that Schilling, Smoltz, Pedro, and Glavine also go in fairly easily. Frank Thomas and Vlad should probably go in depending on their ballot situation, but I don't see anything keeping them out, and I think Irod will be the first player with "suspicion of PED" to go in.(Either Irod or Bagwell, longshot is Piazza as the first with 'taint' to go in)
   67. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: December 04, 2012 at 08:43 PM (#4317216)
I just find it sad that the standard criteria for the HOF is so simpleminded that he practically qualifies now, despite not being a top 5 first baseman of the past 2 decades.

1. There have been some really, really good first basemen in the last two decades. Even with that being stated, it's not yet clear that Cabrera won't make the top 5 in the group.

2. Cabrera hasn't spent his entire career at first base - a plurality of his games have been there, but not a majority. If he plays third all year again next year, he'll have spent more time there. He appears to be en route to a Harmon Killebrew-type career - kills the ball and can field any corner position at just-above-embarassment level.

Even that is selling him short, since he has 2 batting titles, 2 home run titles, and 2 rings.

You and I watched very different World Series this year.
   68. AndrewJ Posted: December 04, 2012 at 09:06 PM (#4317229)
So who's the best MLB player ever who didn't have some personality issues (from what we know)?
Gehrig and Mathewson are the two names that jump at me.


Honus Wagner and Walter Johnson appear to have been gentlemen as well.
   69. RMc's desperate, often sordid world Posted: December 04, 2012 at 09:07 PM (#4317230)
Miggy HOF case is built entirely around the precise placement of accomplishments. Value in BA/SLG, not walks, or baserunning, or avoiding double plays, or defense. Hitting more HRs than anyone else in a year he had a ton of baserunners in front of him and gullible MVP voters hungry for a mythical triple crown.

Yeah, everybody knows that batting average and slugging and home runs never won no ballgames! And driving in all those runners? That's just rude!
   70. Biff, highly-regarded young guy Posted: December 04, 2012 at 09:32 PM (#4317236)
Oh come now, surely Julian Tavarez, with his Spring Training fisticuffs, porn star aspirations, and Ferengi face, must go in the "memorable" category.

Tavarez himself was memorable, but I had suppressed the memory of him starting 23 games.
   71. cardsfanboy Posted: December 04, 2012 at 09:37 PM (#4317242)
1. There have been some really, really good first basemen in the last two decades. Even with that being stated, it's not yet clear that Cabrera won't make the top 5 in the group.


Over the past 20 years, Miggy is 4th in ops+ among first baseman so on a rate stat, he is probably already there(of course no decline phase, but it's arguable he'll improve on his career ops+ over the next several years then decline to where he is at now) I think it's very likely that he will probably finish top five(past 30 years) when it's all said and done.
   72. KT's Pot Arb Posted: December 05, 2012 at 12:17 AM (#4317328)
Few players increase their career OPS+ after the they turn 30. McGwire is the most notable exception, and he suffered through a long injury assisted decline during his late twenties. He also rebounded in his thirties to finish with a career 163 OPS+. Miggy ain't coming close to catching Big Mac in OPS+, and he's likely not moving up this list.

Player/Age 30 OPS+
McGwire/143
Thome/144
Clark/145
Berkman/146
Miggy/151
Bagwell/159
Votto/155
Pujols/174
Thomas/182

More importantly, OPS+ may be the single most misleading stat to measure Miggy by. It doesn't weight OBP properly, ignores the cost of his bad base running and defense, and all those extra outs he creates by hitting into double plays. And the difference it makes is profound.

- He drops to 6th in wRC+, and again that's at his peak. If he follows a normal aging curve he drops below Berkman and Thome, and possibly Giambi.
- The cost of his bad defense and base running means that Miggy has less fWAR than Keith Hernandez in almost the same number of games.
- Miggy is still 15th in fWAR among first basemen since 1980. If he plays 10 more years he should end up with 80 WAR, good for 3rd on this list and with maybe 200 more games than anyone else on it, and nearly a thousand games more than the list average.

That's going to be his entire argument, and its going to be a valid one, amazing hitter who made the HOF because he had such a long career it offset the cost of being bad at every other baseball skill.
   73. KT's Pot Arb Posted: December 05, 2012 at 12:33 AM (#4317339)
Yeah, everybody knows that batting average and slugging and home runs never won no ballgames! And driving in all those runners? That's just rude!


If your point is that Miggy would be a great T-Ball player I agree. Rude is leading the league in hitting into double plays while helping deny Verlander the Cy Young by having the worst 3B range in baseball.
   74. RMc's desperate, often sordid world Posted: December 05, 2012 at 06:42 AM (#4317379)
Yeah, everybody knows that batting average and slugging and home runs never won no ballgames! And driving in all those runners? That's just rude!

If your point is that Miggy would be a great T-Ball player I agree.


No, my point is you're being a jerk about this, trying to dismiss one of the best ballplayers of this generation as a "T-ball player". Please.

He drops to 6th in wRC+, and again that's at his peak.

You know, you might make your point better if weren't using stats that 99% of the public has never heard of. Hell, I'm a numbers fanatic and I don't know what the hell "wRC+" means. (Looks it up.) OK, fine. What's wrong with simple OPS+? Who are you trying to impress?

Rude is leading the league in hitting into double plays while helping deny Verlander the Cy Young by having the worst 3B range in baseball.

Yeah, I remember when Verlander tracked down Miggy with a shotgun, screaming, "That's the last Cy Young Award you'll cost me, Cabrera...!!"

Again, please.
   75. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: December 05, 2012 at 08:10 AM (#4317391)
while helping deny Verlander the Cy Young by having the worst 3B range in baseball.

Verlander pitched about 1/6 of Detroit's innings this year. DRS has Cabrera as a -4 third baseman; TotalZone has -9. If you average those, you'd project that Verlander allowed all of one extra run because Cabrera was playing third.

Don't buy that estimate? Give Cabrera the worst figure of his career, the -19 he posted in his last year at third in Florida according to DRS. Verlander has now allowed roughly three extra runs - maybe fewer, actually, because Verlander is a right-handed strikeout/fly ball pitcher, which isn't a type of pitcher famous for allowing huge numbers of grounders to third.

If you want to talk Verlander and awards, I'm willing to bet that Cabrera's 179 OPS+ had something to do with Verlander's 24-5 record last year, which won him not just the Cy but also the MVP.
   76. Blastin Posted: December 05, 2012 at 08:23 AM (#4317396)
Re: Pedroia. If I had to pick a 2B who would be slowed down by injuries as time moved along, he'd be it.
   77. Rants Mulliniks Posted: December 05, 2012 at 09:20 AM (#4317413)
Yeah KT, I don't get the Cabrera hate. You talk about OPS+ not weighting OBP properly, which it does not, but Miggy has led the league in OBP twice and is at .395 for his career. He does not have a disproportionately slug-heavy OPS - he's not Ron Kittle or Tony Armas.

As for his defense, its nothing to crow about, but he led the league in POs this year, and was third in assists. You can't be a horrible 3b and do that.

He's not Pujols, but Pujols is the best 1B in NL history, so that's a tough comparison. If he has a normal decline phase, he will be a perfectly acceptable HOFer.
   78. BDC Posted: December 05, 2012 at 09:50 AM (#4317435)
my point of the HOF bias towards big whomping bats

But the most comparable hitters to Cabrera, through age 29 (by OPS+ and PAs), are Eddie Mathews, Frank Robinson, and Ken Griffey Jr. Cabrera is not as good a fielder as any of them, granted. But this is not the slice of the HOF where you get in by hitting a few dingers (if there really is such a slice). Cabrera's is an elite level of hitting.
   79. RMc's desperate, often sordid world Posted: December 05, 2012 at 09:55 AM (#4317440)
Miggy's age 29 comps are chock full o' Hall of Famers. Unless he falls apart like Juan Gone (or is caught with a naked bottle of andro), he's in.
   80. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: December 05, 2012 at 10:04 AM (#4317451)
If your point is that Miggy would be a great T-Ball player I agree. Rude is leading the league in hitting into double plays while helping deny Verlander the Cy Young by having the worst 3B range in baseball.

   81. AROM Posted: December 05, 2012 at 10:32 AM (#4317474)
Cabrera is certainly on a HOF path. If he suffered spontaneous human combustion before Spring 2013, he'd probably still get in for his outstanding peak numbers. Enough voters love the triple crown numbers that Miggy specializes in, so I doubt a .318 batting average would be left out, especially when it comes with an average of 32 homers and 112 RBI per season. That and actually owning a rare triple crown.

He would not be a terrible selection, at 44 WAR he's already ahead of Jim Rice, and accumulated that total in less time. But he wouldn't be a great selection either. Compare him to Mark Teixiera, a fellow 2003 rookie.

Cabrera has played 15 more games, Tex has 1 more AB and 84 more PA. WAR is essentially even, 45-44 Tex. Tex has a few more homers and walks. Cabrera big edge in batting average, .318-.279, or 222 hits. Thanks to the BA, Cabrera is the better hitter in OBP, SLG, OPS+, while Tex makes up the value difference by being a better fielder and baserunner.

Despite their similar value, if Tex retired today he'd have no shot at all for the HOF. He may never be a very good candidate. Without unexpected retirements though, Cabrera is much more likely to solidify a future HOF case, since he's 3 years younger and still at his peak.

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