There is, I believe, a very real chance that no one will be elected this year. I find this fascinating because of the 37 names on the 2013 ballot, I consider 21 to be quite legitimate candidates (Woody Williams? Ah, I don’t think so). What the ballot lacks is a drop-dead newcomer, although there should be one were it not for the fact that he, too, is under suspicion.
I am speaking, of course, of Mike Piazza, who may very well be the greatest hitting catcher of all time, but who, despite the lack of any concrete evidence, is regarded as a cheater by some because he flunked the Eyeball Test. See? This is why the drug issue is so insidious. Unless a McGwire or Palmeiro ’fesses up, we’re all guessing, however well-educated those guesses are. There is no reason to avoid voting for Piazza, whose overwhelming credentials include 427 homers, 1,335 RBIs, .922 OBP, 12 All-Star Games), other than the fact that he looked like a steroid guy.
Jeff Bagwell’s résumé is similarly persuasive (449 homers, 1,529 RBIs, .948 OBP), but, he, too, failed to pass the Eyeball Test. He went from 41.7 percent of the vote two years ago to 56.0 last year. Obviously, a few voters revised their opinion of his candidacy upward. Understand that going from 56 percent to the needed 75 in one year is not likely.
...The Morris candidacy has become extremely controversial, his advocates being old-line baseball sorts who view him as the quintessential gun-slinging Ace of the Staff (14 Opening Day starts) and his detractors being Sabermetric zealots who decry a 3.90 career ERA that would be the highest ever to be so enshrined, and who discredit the notion that he pitched to the score, thus accounting for an inflated ERA. I wasn’t always a yes man. But I became one several years ago and I hope he gets in.
Summing it up: Yes to Bagwell, Biggio, Martinez, Morris, Piazza, Raines, and Schilling. Sorry to anyone else not named Bonds, Clemens, Sosa, McGwire, and Palmeiro.
Posted: December 15, 2012 at 08:39 AM | 62 comment(s)
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