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Wednesday, December 25, 2013

The 2013 HOF Ballot Collecting Gizmo!

The 2014 HOF Ballot Collecting Gizmo!

Final: Jan.9 - 11:30 ~ 209* Full Ballots ~ (36.7%* of vote ~ based on last year) (*new ballot/pct. record!)

99.5 - Maddux
95.7 - Glavine
89.0 - F. Thomas
79.4 - Biggio
———————————
67.9 - Piazza
61.7 - Jack (The Jack) Morris
56.5 - Bagwell
54.5 - Raines
42.1 - Bonds
40.7 - Clemens
36.8 - Schilling
26.8 - Mussina
25.4 - E. Martinez
24.4 - L. Smith
22.0 - Trammell
15.8 - Kent
12.0 - McGriff
10.5 - McGwire
  8.1 - L. Walker
  7.2 - S. Sosa
  5.7 - R. Palmeiro
———————————
4.8 - Mattingly
0.5 - P. Rose (Write-In)

Thanks to Butch, Ilychs Morales, leokitty & Barnald for their help.

As usual…send them in if you come across any ballots!

Repoz Posted: December 25, 2013 at 03:56 PM | 2002 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: history, hof

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   1901. The Yankee Clapper Posted: January 08, 2014 at 07:45 PM (#4634099)
There is no argument against Maddux...none.

If you felt strongly that the anti-steroids zealots should not have a veto, you'd have a pretty full ballot already, and might not have room for Maddux, or believe it was more important to vote strategically to keep other candidacies alive, even while acknowledging Maddux is Hall-worthy and among the top 10 on the ballot.
   1902. cardsfanboy Posted: January 08, 2014 at 07:56 PM (#4634106)

What if Biggio's support declines next year thanks to the logjam?


Barring a steroid confession, Biggio goes in easily next year. There is a logjam, but not nearly as big as this years, 4 spots opening up with only two locks coming onto the ballot makes it fairly easy for Biggio to go in. Add in the knowledge of knowing that Biggio missed by just two votes, and I imagine every one who is thinking he is their 11th choice, will err on the side of inclusion.
   1903. cardsfanboy Posted: January 08, 2014 at 08:03 PM (#4634108)
If you felt strongly that the anti-steroids zealots should not have a veto, you'd have a pretty full ballot already, and might not have room for Maddux, or believe it was more important to vote strategically to keep other candidacies alive, even while acknowledging Maddux is Hall-worthy and among the top 10 on the ballot.


There are a lot of ways that I could see someone legitimately not voting for Maddux, but the reality that I'm pretty certain, is that 12 or so of the people who left him off the ballot do not have any real arguments for leaving him off. They will be blank ballots, or people who refuse to vote for anyone from the "ped" era or just a nobody gets a first ballot vote.
   1904. Kiko Sakata Posted: January 08, 2014 at 08:05 PM (#4634111)
Barring a steroid confession, Biggio goes in easily next year. There is a logjam, but not nearly as big as this years, 4 spots opening up with only two locks coming onto the ballot makes it fairly easy for Biggio to go in. Add in the knowledge of knowing that Biggio missed by just two votes, and I imagine every one who is thinking he is their 11th choice, will err on the side of inclusion.



That's absolutely true. But I really hope that the way in which Biggio missed out this year prompts the BBWAA to eliminate or at least raise the ballot cap. It's been said on this thread already - by me, I think - but over 75% of the voters in this year's Hall-of-Fame election believe that Craig Biggio deserves to go into the Hall of Fame. There were at least two voters - and actually quite a bit more than that - who left Biggio off their ballot only because of the 10-man cap. If your standard for election is support of 75% of the electorate and a player who has the support of >75% of the electorate isn't elected, your election process is broken. Surely even the BBWAA can see that and see how easy it would be to fix.
   1905. youneverknow47 Posted: January 08, 2014 at 08:28 PM (#4634125)
Changing the subject slightly, but how is it that Joaquin Andujar never got on the ballot? Doesn't deserve enshrinement, clearly, but 13 years in the league, 4 All Star selections, 2x 20-win seasons and a WS ring with which he won Game 7. Hell, Randy Quaid played him in a SNL skit. What more does a guy have to do?
   1906. cardsfanboy Posted: January 08, 2014 at 08:46 PM (#4634138)
I don't remember the issue with Andujar, I remember it making some type of news around here but not sure if there was any rationale. Of course this is the ballot that had Simmons one and done and Pete Rose with 19? votes...
   1907. Ryan Thibodaux Posted: January 08, 2014 at 08:50 PM (#4634142)
I'm continuing to update my tracker with ballots as they come in (so send them my way if you see one!), and have added some new features like Tangotiger's scoring system.

Thanks to all of you for making the last week so much fun.
   1908. Monty Posted: January 08, 2014 at 09:10 PM (#4634161)
Before this thread recedes into the distance, I would like to say that the Gizmo is super-cool.
   1909. DL from MN Posted: January 08, 2014 at 09:16 PM (#4634167)
Trammell has 2 years left. Should voters abandon ship?
   1910. Chris Fluit Posted: January 08, 2014 at 09:27 PM (#4634177)
Trammell has 2 years left. Should voters abandon ship?


Nope. The better he does in the BBWAA voting, the better his chances of getting elected by a future Vets Committee.

   1911. Kiko Sakata Posted: January 08, 2014 at 09:29 PM (#4634178)
Trammell has 2 years left. Should voters abandon ship?


The only way Trammell gets in via the BBWAA would be if you could somehow convince all of Jack Morris's supporters that they should support Trammell on the grounds that, like Morris, he also played pre-steroids, and the '84 Tigers ought to have at least one player in the Hall of Fame and Trammell is now their last chance. But I doubt that would be terribly successful, so, realistically, he's not getting elected via the BBWAA.
   1912. Don Malcolm Posted: January 08, 2014 at 10:56 PM (#4634222)
I'm continuing to update my tracker with ballots as they come in (so send them my way if you see one!), and have added some new features like Tangotiger's scoring system.


Good on you, Ryan. This was useful to have open in a separate window in order to keep tabs on the additional detail that your spreadsheet was able to provide.

Wondering if you want to try to look at the voting breakdown by number of players on the ballot. Even with a limited sample, such a breakout might be interesting as a "voting component."
   1913. John Northey Posted: January 08, 2014 at 11:19 PM (#4634232)
Weird that the 1984 Tigers have no one in the HOF yet. However, the only real candidates are Trammell, Whitaker, and Morris. Parrish was good but not HOF, same for Kirk Gibson. Darrell Evans was solid but a bit shy of HOF imo (414 HR, 2223 hits, 119 OPS+, 1442 games at 3B and 856 at 1B, 253 at DH). Trammell/Whitaker really should be there.

Being a Jays fan I had to check the 92/93 teams....
1992: Alomar, Winfield with Morris & Kent possible
1993: Alomar, Henderson, Molitor, with Morris possible and Delgado a faint hope
The best team for the Jays (99 wins in 1985) didn't have a future HOF'er or anyone close...Dave Stieb did make the HOM though and Bobby Cox (the manager) is in now.
   1914. Ryan Thibodaux Posted: January 08, 2014 at 11:47 PM (#4634248)
Wondering if you want to try to look at the voting breakdown by number of players on the ballot. Even with a limited sample, such a breakout might be interesting as a "voting component."


Interesting, and should be easy enough to do. I'll do it ~next week, when the ballots slow down (and the BBWAA posts their list).
   1915. maven of all things baseball Posted: January 08, 2014 at 11:55 PM (#4634255)
Palmeiro upon learning that he's out...

"“I'll look at the bright side,” Palmeiro said. “I'll be eligible in [12] years, and maybe at that point things are a lot different and people see it in a different light. I'm disappointed. I am not going to lie. I won't say I was hoping for a miracle and that I'd get elected, but I was hoping to stay on it a little longer.”

Probably the best face he could put on it, but you have to figure that underneath the brave front, he's seething...

http://www.baltimoresun.com/sports/orioles/blog/bal-exorioles-1b-rafael-palmeiro-falls-off-hall-of-fame-ballot-rhp-mike-mussina-receives-203-percent-of-20140108,0,2525747.story#ixzz2ps070zK3
   1916. John Northey Posted: January 09, 2014 at 12:27 AM (#4634266)
Checking that spreadsheet a few numbers... Note: all but the singleton had Maddux.
1 vote: for Morris
2 votes: none
3 votes: 5 people, 3 Glavine, 3 Morris, 2 Biggio, 2 Thomas
4 votes: 9 people, 9 Glavine, 7 Morris, 6 Thomas, 2 Biggio, 2 Smith, 1 Trammell.
5 votes: 6 people, 6 Glavine, 5 Thomas, 3 Piazza, 2 Biggio, 2 Schilling, 1 each for Bagwell, Bonds, Clemens, McGriff, Morris, Smith

Seems the magic number is 5. Under 5 votes the brain doesn't work too well (more Morris votes than anyone but Maddux and Glavine) but once they reached 5 some smarts started to kick in.
   1917. Ryan Thibodaux Posted: January 09, 2014 at 12:29 AM (#4634267)
Apologies for the lenght of this comment, but I ran quick version of what Don requested above. Here are the results:

Among voters with 9 or 10 names on their ballot (147 thus far): Bagwell - 71.4% | Biggio - 85.7% | Bonds - 53.1% | Clemens - 51.7% | Glavine - 95.9% | Kent - 15.0% | Maddux - 100% | Martinez - 33.3% | Mattingly - 4.8% | McGriff - 12.9% | McGwire - 11.6% | Morris - 62.6% | Mussina - 29.9% | Palmeiro - 6.8% | Piazza - 82.3% | Raines - 66.7% | Schilling - 46.9% | Smith - 21.8% | Sosa - 8.2% | Thomas - 93.9% | Trammell - 23.1% | Walker - 10.9%

Among voters with 5 to 8 names on their ballot (45 thus far): Bagwell - 28.9% | Biggio - 71.1% | Bonds - 20.0% | Clemens - 15.6% | Glavine - 78.8% | Kent - 17.8% | Maddux - 100% | Martinez - 13.3% | Mattingly - 2.2% | McGriff - 13.3% | McGwire - 4.4% | Morris - 51.1% | Mussina - 15.6% | Palmeiro - 2.2% | Piazza - 46.7% | Raines - 44.4% | Schilling - 24.4% | Smith - 37.8% | Sosa - 2.2% | Thomas - 91.1% | Trammell - 20.0% | Walker - 0%

Among voters with 0 to 4 names on their ballot (15 thus far): Bagwell - 0% | Biggio - 26.7% | Bonds - 0% | Clemens - 0% | Glavine - 80.0% | Kent - 0% | Maddux - 93.3% | Martinez - 0% | Mattingly - 0% | McGriff - 0% | McGwire - 0% | Morris - 73.3% | Mussina - 0% | Palmeiro - 0% | Piazza - 0% | Raines - 0% | Schilling - 0% | Smith - 13.3% | Sosa - 0% | Thomas - 53.3% | Trammell - 6.7% | Walker - 0%
   1918. GregD Posted: January 09, 2014 at 01:05 AM (#4634280)
Thanks, Ryan. That last section is really depressing! People who cast 0-4 names voted by a 20-point margin for Morris over Frank Thomas?
   1919. gabrielthursday Posted: January 09, 2014 at 01:17 AM (#4634287)
Weird that the 1984 Tigers have no one in the HOF yet. However, the only real candidates are Trammell, Whitaker, and Morris. Parrish was good but not HOF, same for Kirk Gibson. Darrell Evans was solid but a bit shy of HOF imo (414 HR, 2223 hits, 119 OPS+, 1442 games at 3B and 856 at 1B, 253 at DH). Trammell/Whitaker really should be there.

Very much agreed. Growing up in the 80s, I was a big fan of the Blue Jays, and their nemesis was Detroit. My impression was always that Lou Whitaker and Alan Trammell were the stars of the Tigers, not Morris. Morris was boosted by the broadcasters a little, but never more than Whitaker and Trammell, and I always thought a really good pitcher should have lower ERAs. Trammell and Whitaker, though - they were the best keystone combination ever, and very good players on both sides of the ball.

The idea that Morris was seen as the star of the Tigers simply doesn't jibe with my memory of the period.
   1920. SandlotBB Posted: January 09, 2014 at 02:18 AM (#4634308)
Weird that the 1984 Tigers have no one in the HOF yet.


Just curious as to why any particular championship team has to have a representative in the HOF. To me, as a admittedly biased Yankee fan, the biggest snub in recent memory was Bernie Williams getting a grand total of 19 votes last year. His WAR total admittedly doesn't scream HOF, but it's close to the imaginary cutoff line of 50 for legitimate HOF candidates. His non-sabermetric credentials might not necessarily have entitled him to election (although I would have loved to have seen him elected, and that's my partiality talking), but he 1) played for one team his entire career, and 2) played on six WS teams. Even though he was terrible in the WS, his overall postseason power numbers were amazing. Again, I expected him to be a longshot candidate, but never expected him to get bounced so quickly.
   1921. Baldrick Posted: January 09, 2014 at 03:06 AM (#4634317)
Just curious as to why any particular championship team has to have a representative in the HOF. To me, as a admittedly biased Yankee fan, the biggest snub in recent memory was Bernie Williams getting a grand total of 19 votes last year. His WAR total admittedly doesn't scream HOF, but it's close to the imaginary cutoff line of 50 for legitimate HOF candidates. His non-sabermetric credentials might not necessarily have entitled him to election (although I would have loved to have seen him elected, and that's my partiality talking), but he 1) played for one team his entire career, and 2) played on six WS teams. Even though he was terrible in the WS, his overall postseason power numbers were amazing. Again, I expected him to be a longshot candidate, but never expected him to get bounced so quickly.

Kevin Brown, Lou Whitaker, etc. Heck, Kenny Lofton was knocked off the same ballot in his first year and is the much better version of Bernie.

Williams is one of the best players in the Hall of Very Good, which certainly makes him a marginal HOFer, but I'm not particularly bothered about him falling off the ballot. He was the ~15th best guy on there last year, and if he had gotten 5% would only just have been eliminated this year.
   1922. John Northey Posted: January 09, 2014 at 08:28 AM (#4634336)
Hmm... I wonder... WS winning teams in the 80's and number of HOF'ers (so far)
1980 Phillies: Carlton, Schmidt
1981: Dodgers: None
1982: Cardinals: Ozzie Smith, Sutter
1983: Orioles: Murray, Palmer, Ripken
1984: Tigers: none
1985: Royals: Brett
1986: Mets: Carter
1987: Twins: Blyleven, Carlton, Puckett
1988: Dodgers: Sutton
1989: A's: Eck, Henderson

So the Dodgers of 81 and the 84 Tigers are the only teams in the 80's without a HOF'er so far. I figure Trammell/Whitaker will get in someday as will Morris, tying those 84 Tigers with the 82 Cards, 83 Orioles and 87 Twins for most players in the HOF. The 81 Dodgers best shot was Steve Garvey (42.6% in his 3rd year on the ballot, lasted all 15 years) with Pedro Guerrero and Fernando Valenzuela both being very good but not HOF good.
   1923. flournoy Posted: January 09, 2014 at 09:05 AM (#4634345)
By comparison, the 1990s:

1990 Reds (1): Barry Larkin
1991 Twins (1): Kirby Puckett
1992 Blue Jays (2): Roberto Alomar, Dave Winfield
1993 Blue Jays (3): Roberto Alomar, Rickey Henderson, Paul Molitor
1995 Braves (2): Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine (Bobby Cox)
1996 Yankees (1): Wade Boggs (Joe Torre)
1997 Marlins (0): --
1998 Yankees (0): (Joe Torre)
1999 Yankees (0): (Joe Torre)

And other guys who were on this year's ballot:

1990 Reds (0): --
1991 Twins (1): Jack Morris
1992 Blue Jays (2): Jeff Kent, Jack Morris
1993 Blue Jays (1): Jack Morris (Carlos Delgado next year)
1995 Braves (1): Fred McGriff (John Smoltz next year)
1996 Yankees (2): Tim Raines, Kenny Rogers
1997 Marlins (1): Moises Alou (Gary Sheffield next year)
1998 Yankees (0): --
1999 Yankees (1): Roger Clemens
   1924. John Northey Posted: January 09, 2014 at 09:06 AM (#4634346)
Here is an interesting factoid - Todd Jones, 319 saves, no votes. The third man with 300+ saves and not a single vote (Roberto Hernandez and Jose Mesa last year broke the ice on that). I find it interesting because at one time it was thought 300 saves might become like 300 wins, an auto entry to the hall. That was with Fingers in, Goose and Sutter looking likely and few others in eyeshot. Then the one inning save took over and now we have 3 guys in the 400's and 2 more in the 600's with only Rivera a lock to get in. The others are Hoffman (of course), Lee Smith (still has a shot), John Franco (one and done with just 27 votes), and Billy Wagner (2016 ballot with no shot... surprisingly he never led in saves, his only black ink is for games finished).
   1925. Misirlou was a Buddhist prodigy Posted: January 09, 2014 at 09:14 AM (#4634349)
By comparison, the 1990s:

1990 Reds (1): Barry Larkin
1991 Twins (1): Kirby Puckett
1992 Blue Jays (2): Roberto Alomar, Dave Winfield
1993 Blue Jays (3): Roberto Alomar, Rickey Henderson, Paul Molitor
1995 Braves (2): Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine (Bobby Cox)
1996 Yankees (1): Wade Boggs (Joe Torre)
1997 Marlins (0): --
1998 Yankees (0): (Joe Torre)
1999 Yankees (0): (Joe Torre)


Well, yo can write Jeter and River next to those Yankee teams in permanent ink, and Chipper next to the Braves. The Marlins are the only iffy team with Sheff as their best shot.
   1926. Jose Is The Most Absurd Thing on the Site Posted: January 09, 2014 at 09:25 AM (#4634357)
The Marlins are the only iffy team with Sheff as their best shot.


Does Leyland have a shot? I'm not really clear on what is or is not a Hall of Fame manager but he won 3 pennants, a World Series, , made the LCS with three different teams (off the cuff that last one sounds rare to me) and is extremely well regarded around the game it seems.
   1927. Chris Fluit Posted: January 09, 2014 at 09:42 AM (#4634364)
Leyland has a shot but he's going to go up against Davey Johnson and Lou Piniella (plus holdover candidate Billy Martin).
   1928. Mike Emeigh Posted: January 09, 2014 at 09:59 AM (#4634372)
If you felt strongly that the anti-steroids zealots should not have a veto, you'd have a pretty full ballot already, and might not have room for Maddux, or believe it was more important to vote strategically to keep other candidacies alive, even while acknowledging Maddux is Hall-worthy and among the top 10 on the ballot.


There were, reportedly, at least three or four voters who did just this. There was also (surprisingly, only) one blank ballot according to the report I saw this morning.

-- MWE
   1929. Davo's Favorite Tacos Are Moose Tacos Posted: January 09, 2014 at 10:09 AM (#4634376)
1926--Also, a great mustache, which definitely plays well with HOF voters.
   1930. Misirlou was a Buddhist prodigy Posted: January 09, 2014 at 10:15 AM (#4634387)
made the LCS with three different teams (off the cuff that last one sounds rare to me) and is extremely well regarded around the game it seems.


OTTOMH:

LaRussa
Martin (4, I think. Can't remember if the 1981 A's won the DS)
Dick Williams (sort of. Made pre-LCS WS with Red Sox, then A's and Padres. that's actually 3 different pennants.)
Dave Johnson
   1931. Don Malcolm Posted: January 09, 2014 at 10:45 AM (#4634414)
Ryan, thanks much for that fascinating first cut at the ballots by number of votes--illuminating and depressing, as GregD noted.

Are there more known voters overall for the 2013 election in your spreadsheet? If so, when you have some time, it would be also interesting to do the same breakout for last year's vote, particularly given the fact that no one got elected. I'm also curious to see if there were a bunch more folks voting for only one or two candidates in 2013 who voted for four-five-six this year.
   1932. bunyon Posted: January 09, 2014 at 11:00 AM (#4634430)
It seems to me 10 is a fine limit so long as voters use the limit. It would be a very large change, but I almost wonder if they shouldn't go to a system more similar to CYA and MVP voting. Ten spots, you must fill all ten, and points given to each spot (X for 1, X-Y for 2, X-Z for 3, etc.).

But even if you did something like require voters to fill their ballot, the guys who don't want to vote for more than 3 or 4 will vote for their choices then 6 schlubs rather than 6 more deserving HOFers. Thus, more guys will stay on the ballot but more guys won't, necessarily, be elected.* Also, in a weak ballot, you'll get some pretty weak HOFers elected. Not an issue for the next few years but it could be, probably would be, eventually.

Basically, the only way "out" of the mess** is to change who is voting (i.e. eliminate the guys voting "only Morris" or "Morris and 3 chumps" or "no player from the 90s on" etc.


* It obviously would've changed this year's election in that Biggio goes in. But that is going to be the exception not the rule.

** If, indeed, you think there is a mess. Plenty of people don't want PED users in. Plenty of people have decided only the "greats" get in (never mind that that is not the historic bar) so aren't bothered that, say, Mike Mussina or Tim Raines, aren't getting in. I'm talking average (not even casual) fan here, not hardcore devoted fans. So, I think as long as 2-3 guys go in every year, "the public" will be fine with how it's going. We have some serious nostalgia going on that basically pushes the idea that an outer circle HOFer of 1955 is better than most of the candidates on today's ballot. It's crazy, but it's there.
   1933. soc40 Posted: January 09, 2014 at 12:23 PM (#4634539)
So looking at future ballots. Next year continues to stay crowded with a couple of no brain candidates and a couple of ones that'll get votes on already maxed out ballots. Then everyone says it'll get easier. I'm not so sure. That next class is led by Griffey, a no brainer. But people are leaving out Hoffman. He could get in first ballot as the second best reliever in history. He has over 400 saves, held the all time record, would be the God if not for Rivera. I know a lot of voters discount the closer position, but it'll be very hard to overlook him even on a crowded ballot. The next 3 years after that, the ballot stays jam packed with 3-4 worthy candidates every year. The logjam will continue forever...or until the voters get on the same page or the Hall eliminates the 10 vote rule/complete overhaul of the voting system.
   1934. soc40 Posted: January 09, 2014 at 12:54 PM (#4634580)
Check that. 600 saves!
   1935. kwarren Posted: January 09, 2014 at 01:05 PM (#4634602)
But people are leaving out Hoffman. He could get in first ballot as the second best reliever in history. He has over 400 saves, held the all time record, would be the God if not for Rivera. I know a lot of voters discount the closer position, but it'll be very hard to overlook him even on a crowded ballot.


It was interesting reading your post Mrs. Hoffman. I'm not sure why you would say that Trevor is the 2nd best reliever in history. JAWS has him at #21. The good news though is that Fingers is #26 and he somehow got in. So keep the faith !!
   1936. Mike Emeigh Posted: January 09, 2014 at 01:14 PM (#4634609)
But people are leaving out Hoffman. He could get in first ballot as the second best reliever in history.


Hoffman's going to be an interesting test case for how the voters will handle relievers. He's hardly the "second best reliever in history"; his usage was severely restricted, compared to other closers of his own era let alone compared to relievers of an earlier era, and that helped him a lot. I think he's closer to Sutter than to Rivera, among HoF-level closers; I'd absolutely take Smith before I'd take Hoffman, and I'm leaning to Joe Nathan (one of the more underrated closers of our time) before Hoffman.

I should clarify that when I look at relievers, I look at the contexts in which they were used relative to other relievers of the era as well as the numbers they put up - performance in context of usage patterns of their era. I downgrade Wilhelm a lot because he didn't pitch as his team's go-to reliever for much of his career; he was always either sharing the role with guys like Marv Grissom, Stu Miller, Eddie Fisher, and Bob Locker, or was clearly behind one of them in the team's relief pitching pecking order.

-- MWE

EDIT: JAWS is, IMO, useless for relievers because of the lack of consideration for usage context.
   1937. TJ Posted: January 09, 2014 at 01:29 PM (#4634635)
Trammell has 2 years left. Should voters abandon ship?

The only way Trammell gets in via the BBWAA would be if you could somehow convince all of Jack Morris's supporters that they should support Trammell on the grounds that, like Morris, he also played pre-steroids, and the '84 Tigers ought to have at least one player in the Hall of Fame and Trammell is now their last chance. But I doubt that would be terribly successful, so, realistically, he's not getting elected via the BBWAA.


I thought Trammell's only chance via the BBWAA would be A) Morris to fall short and him to gain votes as the last 1980's Tiger standing, and B) Biggio to get in and Trammell to gain votes as the best middle infielder on the ballot. Both needed to happen, only one did. Whatever chance Trammell had (and he is a well-deserving HOFer) went out the window with Biggio falling short. Call it collateral Biggio damage...
   1938. TJ Posted: January 09, 2014 at 01:32 PM (#4634641)
I should clarify that when I look at relievers, I look at the contexts in which they were used relative to other relievers of the era as well as the numbers they put up - performance in context of usage patterns of their era. I downgrade Wilhelm a lot because he didn't pitch as his team's go-to reliever for much of his career; he was always either sharing the role with guys like Marv Grissom, Stu Miller, Eddie Fisher, and Bob Locker, or was clearly behind one of them in the team's relief pitching pecking order.


Well thought out, MWE. Too bad the BBWAA won't look any deeper than 600 career saves. Lee Smith had better jump up to 75% next year or he's done once Hoffman hits the ballot...
   1939. soc40 Posted: January 09, 2014 at 02:02 PM (#4634675)
Let me clarify my Hoffman comment. Lee Smith destroyed the saves record, retired and held it for 15 some years. Then Hoffman comes and completely obliterates it with one of the nastiest change-ups in baseball history. That is fact, not opinion. He was the major leagues' first player to reach the 500- and 600-save milestones, and was the all-time saves leader from 2006 until 2011. That screams HOF, probably not first ballot due to bias of that position. He will get a healthy chunk of votes from the get go.
   1940. kwarren Posted: January 09, 2014 at 02:12 PM (#4634683)
EDIT: JAWS is, IMO, useless for relievers because of the lack of consideration for usage context.


So this means that Mariano Rivera, putting up the exact same stats as a set-up man doesn't cut it for you.....because his "usage context" does not meet your criteria.

I downgrade Wilhelm a lot because he didn't pitch as his team's go-to reliever for much of his career


Wilhelm (3rd best reliever all-time behind Mariano and Eckersley) is not a HOFer because he was miscast (in your opinion) by his managers. How does one determine a "team's relief pecking order". After all it is entirely possible that a 7th or 8th inning situation has a higher leverage than the 9th inning. Maybe his managers simply used him when they thought the urgency for a good perfromance was greatest.
   1941. Davo's Favorite Tacos Are Moose Tacos Posted: January 09, 2014 at 02:13 PM (#4634684)
I'm hoping Trevor Hoffman and Gary Sheffield get elected to the Hall of Fame in the same year, as they were traded for each other on June 24, 1993.

(Would Hoffman also become the first Hall of Famer who was selected in an Expansion Draft? I can't think of any OTTOMH.)
   1942. Joyful Calculus Instructor Posted: January 09, 2014 at 02:19 PM (#4634691)
Here's the thing that bothers me about relievers and the Hall of Fame. GMs have shown that they value expected HoF-level production at about $20-$30m per year. No reliever has ever been given more than $15m. The best relievers get paid like above average starters. Given that the people in baseball have determined that even the best relievers are no more valuable than average to above average starting players, why should they have to be represented so heavily?
   1943. SoSH U at work Posted: January 09, 2014 at 02:26 PM (#4634698)
(Would Hoffman also become the first Hall of Famer who was selected in an Expansion Draft? I can't think of any OTTOMH.)


I found one.

Guesses?
   1944. Joey B. Posted: January 09, 2014 at 02:26 PM (#4634699)
Now that the actual election has taken place, what do you say we remove the Gizmo from the top of the page?
   1945. kwarren Posted: January 09, 2014 at 02:27 PM (#4634702)
Let me clarify my Hoffman comment. Lee Smith destroyed the saves record, retired and held it for 15 some years. Then Hoffman comes and completely obliterates it with one of the nastiest change-ups in baseball history. That is fact, not opinion. He was the major leagues' first player to reach the 500- and 600-save milestones, and was the all-time saves leader from 2006 until 2011. That screams HOF, probably not first ballot due to bias of that position. He will get a healthy chunk of votes from the get go.


Mrs. Hoffman:

Saves are a bupkus stat. They are much more highly co-related to team success, manager usage, career longevity than pitching skill.

I couldn't find any metrics to measure the "nastiness of a change-up". I'm sure you have studied all the relievers of all-time and somehow managed to arrive at this conclusion. Even if true, how does one determine the career value of such a distinction. There is no mention in your analysis of the pitcher friendliness of his home park, nor his very poor HR/IP ratio (in a ballpark that doesn't allow many home runs). Maybe some of those change-ups weren't quite as nasty of some others.

He's the 21st best reliever of all-time. Career saves, home town fan bias, and hyperbole doesn't change that. I would definitely support his induction into the Padres' Hall of Fame (a very worthy candidate).
   1946. John Northey Posted: January 09, 2014 at 02:28 PM (#4634703)
Saves are a tough one to factor in. 300 was viewed as a major milestone once, now is a 'so what'. 400 seemed impressive when Smith reached it, but no credit at all for John Franco on reaching it and odds are the same for Billy Wagner.

Sept 17th 1993 was Lee Smith reaching 400. Franco made it on April 14 1999. Hoffman in 2005, Rivera in 2006, and Wagner in 2010.
500 was reached by Hoffman in 2007, Rivera in 2009.
600 by Hoffman in 2010, Rivera in 2011.

So a long break in magic numbers (voters love round numbers) between Smith in 1993 getting 400 and Franco 6 years later. It took 14 years for someone to reach the next level (500) but just 3 years for 600 to be reached. 700? Who knows but I doubt it'll be within a decade as Joe Nathan 341 (age 38 tied with Fingers) is closest, then Francisco Rodriguez at 304 (age 31) and Papelbon (32) is tied with Valverde (35) at 286. Craig Kimbrel with 139 at age 25 is the best shot I think but far away.
   1947. flournoy Posted: January 09, 2014 at 02:31 PM (#4634708)
(Would Hoffman also become the first Hall of Famer who was selected in an Expansion Draft? I can't think of any OTTOMH.)


There is exactly one so far, and it looks like SOSHU found him too. He's been mentioned in this thread.

The only other expansion draftee I see with a shot at making the Hall of Fame is Bobby Abreu.
   1948. Davo's Favorite Tacos Are Moose Tacos Posted: January 09, 2014 at 02:35 PM (#4634715)
I found one.

Guesses?
I know Richie Ashburn played for the '62 Mets, but I didn't think he was drafted.

...Eddie Mathews by Houston?

EDIT: Oh duh, now I remember! Hoyt Wilhelm!
   1949. soc40 Posted: January 09, 2014 at 03:01 PM (#4634753)
Correct me if I'm wrong, but baseball is about winning games and collecting the last out. Hoffman and Rivera did that better than anybody in history. Both over 600 times. That speaks volume for longevity and excellence. A season is 162 games and on average teams win 80 games per year. Some are close ones, some blowouts. These guys gave their teams 600 close wins. I don't care if they got 1 batter out to secure the win, they did it and at an epic scale.
I guess some people will always to treat closers like the NFL HOF treats punters. They both are key positions on the field but get little credit.
   1950. Davo's Favorite Tacos Are Moose Tacos Posted: January 09, 2014 at 03:12 PM (#4634775)
I'm totally fine with the Best-of-the-Best closers making it to the Hall of Fame. And that would include Rivera and Hoffman.

I wouldn't want every guy who kept the job for a dozen years to get in, but I think it's cool to recognize the absolute best in history at the job (even if a glance at their WAR total would otherwise leave them short).
   1951. ThickieDon Posted: January 09, 2014 at 03:12 PM (#4634776)
Relievers are probably worse than punters.
   1952. Baldrick Posted: January 09, 2014 at 03:13 PM (#4634783)
Correct me if I'm wrong, but baseball is about winning games and collecting the last out.

These guys gave their teams 600 close wins.

No they didn't.

The goal in a baseball game is to score more runs than your opponent over nine innings. These guys contributed to 1/9 of 1/2 of that purpose, in some games. They 'gave' them those wins in the same way that your deadbeat brother 'gives' your parents a birthday present by wrapping it and signing his name on the card.

Now, I think Rivera deserves induction, and I could still be persuaded about Hoffman. But '600 savez!' is not going to get the job done.
   1953. kwarren Posted: January 09, 2014 at 03:19 PM (#4634790)
(Would Hoffman also become the first Hall of Famer who was selected in an Expansion Draft? I can't think of any OTTOMH.)


Oh duh, now I remember! Hoyt Wilhelm!


Only back-up pitchers (aka failed starters - yes I'm looking at you Mariano and Nathan) could find themselves in an expansion draft and the HOF.

Baseball is the only sport that I can think of where part-time players are seriously considered and actually inducted into the Hall of the Fame. Ironically, there is also loads of empirical evidence that shows that they are also not worthy of such consideration, even after allowing for numerous attempts by sabrematricians to invent leverage to boost their credentials . And before the SAVE was invented nobody would have dreamed of even giving them a second thought.

I think that back-up shortstops and centre fielders should have leverage added to their WAR when they come into the late innings of a close game to pinch hit or play defense. If their team hangs onto to win the game I also they should be credited with a non-pitching save. In fact if a short stop comes into a tie game and is the shortstop of record when his team takes the lead, he should get the shortstop win instead of the starting shortstop.

   1954. kwarren Posted: January 09, 2014 at 03:21 PM (#4634795)
(even if a glance at their WAR total would otherwise leave them short)


And a longer look would confirm that they have no business being in a HOF discussion.
   1955. SoSH U at work Posted: January 09, 2014 at 03:23 PM (#4634796)
Baseball is the only sport that I can think of where part-time players are seriously considered and actually inducted into the Hall of the Fame.


Jan Stenerud is in the Pro Football HoF. I think he qualifies.
   1956. Swedish Chef Posted: January 09, 2014 at 03:25 PM (#4634800)
The Marlins are the only iffy team with Sheff as their best shot.

On the other hand the atrocious '98 Marlins featured HoF-lock Piazza (very briefly).
   1957. flournoy Posted: January 09, 2014 at 03:30 PM (#4634811)
Only back-up pitchers (aka failed starters - yes I'm looking at you Mariano and Nathan) could find themselves in an expansion draft and the HOF.


The Blue Jays left Jack Morris unprotected in the '92 expansion draft. Ah, what could have been, on both accounts.
   1958. kwarren Posted: January 09, 2014 at 03:32 PM (#4634814)
Correct me if I'm wrong, but baseball is about winning games and collecting the last out.

These guys gave their teams 600 close wins.


Is this guy for real !!

Yup, if Rivera and Hoffman hadn't been around the guys who closed instead of them would have had only 580 saves. And of those 20 saves that were lost by the alternate closer their team would have come back and won the game about 8 times. (40% of the time a team has a blown save opportunity, the team wins the game anyway). So Rivera probably was responsible for about 12 extra wins.


Hoffman and Rivera did that better than anybody in history. Both over 600 times.


And who in their right mind would, other than possibly some rabid Padre fan, would dare to treat Rivera (ERA+ 205) and Hoffman (ERA+ 147) as remote equal
   1959. soc40 Posted: January 09, 2014 at 03:33 PM (#4634817)
Nice firey debate. How'd you know I have a deadbeat brother?
With all that's been said, what percentage of the vote do you think Hoffman gets on his first try? On which year does he get in? Does he get in?
   1960. Davo's Favorite Tacos Are Moose Tacos Posted: January 09, 2014 at 03:37 PM (#4634825)
1954--I have a very idiosyncratic Hall of Fame!

Guys who were close to the best ever at something get a huge bonus. I'm totally fine with Bill Mazeroski and Lou Brock in the Hall for the same reasons I'd be fine with Trevor Hoffman in there.
   1961. kwarren Posted: January 09, 2014 at 03:38 PM (#4634829)
Jan Stenerud is in the Pro Football HoF. I think he qualifies.


I knew that was coming !

He did not gain his position by failing at another position. But even in his case I don't think his value to his team would make him a HOF.

Would be interesting to see what his relative value is on FootballReference - where they now rank players similarly to baseball WAR.
   1962. kwarren Posted: January 09, 2014 at 03:59 PM (#4634863)
With all that's been said, what percentage of the vote do you think Hoffman gets on his first try? On which year does he get in? Does he get in?


22%

Hard to say, but probably never.

If there were no Mariano he would probably make it in 2029.

More and more people are beginning to realize that there is a reason why teams don't draft back-up pitchers in the June draft, don't build teams around them, and don't pay them anywhere near as much as starting pitchers. They don't provide that valuable a service, are relatively easy to replace, and wouldn't be a back-up pitcher if they could make it as a starter. Every GM in baseball would happily deal an elite closer for a 105 ERA+ starting pitcher. And even Mariano clearly provides less value than a 110 ERA+ starter. The new younger voters will work this out and the perception of back-up pitcher will go back to what it once was.

Mariano is a lock to get in for several reasons:

- played for the Yankees
- great post season record
- unbelievable ERA+
- the only major league pitcher ever who had a "statistically" demonstratable ability to impact the BABIP
- all-time saves record which will stand for a very long time
- loved by all, very personable, great team guy

   1963. ThickieDon Posted: January 09, 2014 at 04:02 PM (#4634870)
#1960 - What about Belanger?
   1964. ThickieDon Posted: January 09, 2014 at 04:05 PM (#4634878)
Would be interesting to see what his relative value is on FootballReference - where they now rank players similarly to baseball WAR.


It's quite low.
   1965. Pete L. Posted: January 09, 2014 at 04:14 PM (#4634896)
Others are much better at this than I am, but I will take a stab at the numbers surrounding the balloting, and what they could mean for next year.

We had 571 ballots (which is exactly the average of the last three years in terms of ballots cast, so a good number to expect again next year), containing 4793 votes, for an average of 8.394 names per ballot. I do not expect a higher number next year, frankly; that's the highest number per ballot since 1960 (8.6). For the purposes of prediction, I'll assume the same number of total votes cast, as well as ballots.

With a goal of making more progress towards reducing the backlog and giving qualified down-ballot candidates a chance to move up, how likely is that to happen? Is it even possible, or we more likely to see a couple candidates make a modest jump, and the rest of the ballot sacrificed to make that happen and elect 2-4 new Hall of Famers? What will the holdovers' totals look like if that happens?

The number of votes "freed" by coming off the ballot is 395 (351 Morris votes, 25 Palmeiro votes, and 25 throwaway votes for Gonzo, Nomo, Gagne, etc.), or 0.526 per ballot. Another 1558 are freed by virtue of being cast for players who were elected, or 2.73 per ballot; taken together, there are 3.52 votes "freed by player coming off the ballot.

What would be an acceptable result in terms of clearing the backlog, while not seeing holdovers lose ground, and the primary newcomers getting a minimum acceptable and realistic debut? I'd say Biggio, Piazza, Griffey, and Pedro getting exactly 75%, Smoltz getting 50%, Sheffield getting 10% (given his PED association, prickly personality, and historically awful defense, that is realistic, I think), and 5% each for Nomar, Giles, Erstad, and Delgado. I realize this isn't ACTUALLY realistic, as the top will actually exceed 75% (Griffey and Pedro should each exceed 95%, and Biggio 80%; the difference between 75% and 95% is 114 votes, and the difference between 75% and 80% is 28 votes), at least some of the holdovers will improve, some of the bottom will exceed 5% and others not quite make it, there will be some additional throwaway votes, etc.

Using those goals as guidelines, how many votes are needed to achieve that? Biggio needs 2, Piazza 74, Griffey and Pedro 429 each, Sheffield 58, and Nomar, Giles, Delgado, and Erstad 29 each. That's 1108 new votes (1.94 per ballot) that need to be added to all the holdovers' current vote totals if the goal is for none of them to lose any ground, which is another 3,186 votes (5.58 per ballot). That' same total of 4,126 votes, offset by the 395 "freed" votes, leaving a net of 3,899 votes (6.83 per ballot) necessary to achieve these minimum goals.

That means there are only 894 votes to be spread around for ANY improvement by ANY player over these bare minimums - barely over 1 ballot spot per voter. Like I said, Griffey, Pedro and Biggio's excess over 75% alone will likely eat up 270 of those votes, throwaways another 30-40, and every 5% improvement for any candidate is approximately 30 votes. If The players who lost votes this year simply regained them and nothing more (which really isn't "improvement" or "progress" at all, and each year without perceived "progress" runs the risk of transforming a player into a "failed" or "failing" candidate who then can't build any momentum) that's 600 votes, give or take a couple.

Quite simply there is no room for ANY players except no-brainer first-ballot candidates and "over-the-toppers" to improve without voters making hard choices about some candidates. I am not a PED moralist, but it seems obvious to me that in light of this situation and the handwriting on the wall (Palmeiro falling off, and everybody else even suspected of PED "taint" except Piazza losing ground), they are the most easily and rationally sacrificed. It might even be a good thing at this point for some of these guys to fall off the ballot sooner than later, as it would force the Hall - or at the very least, some new committee - to thoughtfully consider what to do with that era. Any support for Mattingly is wasted, at this point, and with only two years left on what will still be very crowded ballots (and never having exceeded 37% in voting), Trammell is fast approaching that status as well. With three years left and currently less than 30% support (even though he has topped out at 50%+ previously), Lee Smith too.

If at least a significant minority of voters don't behave that way, the backlog simply will not improve....
   1966. salajander Posted: January 09, 2014 at 04:22 PM (#4634909)
I think that back-up shortstops and centre fielders should have leverage added to their WAR when they come into the late innings of a close game to pinch hit or play defense.

I'm intrigued by your ideas and would like to subscribe to your newsletter.
(No, really, I think that'd be interesting.)
If their team hangs onto to win the game I also they should be credited with a non-pitching save. In fact if a short stop comes into a tie game and is the shortstop of record when his team takes the lead, he should get the shortstop win instead of the starting shortstop.

Oh. Nevermind. Cancel that subscription.
   1967. SandlotBB Posted: January 09, 2014 at 06:28 PM (#4635113)
We had 571 ballots (which is exactly the average of the last three years in terms of ballots cast, so a good number to expect again next year), containing 4793 votes, for an average of 8.394 names per ballot. I do not expect a higher number next year, frankly; that's the highest number per ballot since 1960 (8.6). For the purposes of prediction, I'll assume the same number of total votes cast, as well as ballots.


Given that the number of votes per ballot was the highest in over a half-century, what makes anyone think next year will come close? Glavine rode in on Maddux' coattails. In other words, the presence of a slam-dunk HOFer probably had a subliminal effect on a lot of voters who thought, "well, this is the year to max out the vote." Smoltz is not a slam-dunk candidate, and Pedro is on the fence (I have trouble envisioning him getting over 85% thanks to traditionalists who will complain about his lack of longevity, especially those Morris fanboys who will have an ax to grind).

FWIW, I think that too many people are making the assumption that Biggio will easily make up the two votes next year. He actually benefitted this year from having a top-heavy ballot and from being #1 in 2013. There are simply too many holdovers anymore to count on vote increases, especially after having the most votes per ballot cast in over a half-century. My guess is that Biggio probably doesn't make it in until he is the clear-cut #1 position player on the ballot, for various reasons. Truthfully, I was surprised that Thomas made it in so easily with the PED era judgments.
   1968. Pete L. Posted: January 09, 2014 at 09:58 PM (#4635329)
"Given that the number of votes per ballot was the highest in over a half-century, what makes anyone think next year will come close?"

@ SandlotBB, 1967: Exactly, I agree. I was using that figure as the highest possible figure we can reasonably assume, in order to show that the structural dynamics of the backlog is such that nobody - and especially the middle-to-low-end of the qualified candidates - can make any progress, at least without voters making tough choices to abandon the candidacies of players who are stalled because of either PED associations or not enough time left on the ballot take a big enough run to be elected. If we believe there will be fewer names per ballot in the next few years, the problem is exacerbated, and the tough choices even MORE starkly presented.

If we don't like those choices, then the obvious alternative is to expand the ballot. Either lift the 10-vote limit entirely, or raise it. I can think of no legitimate purpose the limit serves, anyway - having no limit in no way encourages voters to vote for more candidates than they believe are qualified. However, having a limit DEFINITELY makes some voters vote for fewer than they believe are qualified, and enables "small Hall" voters to artificially impose that judgment upon voters who do not share their view.
   1969. SoSH U at work Posted: January 09, 2014 at 10:36 PM (#4635345)
Given that the number of votes per ballot was the highest in over a half-century, what makes anyone think next year will come close?


That's a good point. I don't think it's safe to assume it will be repeated.


FWIW, I think that too many people are making the assumption that Biggio will easily make up the two votes next year.


Not this one, though. Biggio will sail in next year. The new candidates aren't direct comparables, and he was already supported by more than 75 percent of the voters. The only way he fails to get in next year is if he's legitimately implicated in a steroids story.
   1970. Kiko Sakata Posted: January 09, 2014 at 10:53 PM (#4635356)
I'd say Biggio, Piazza, Griffey, and Pedro getting exactly 75%, Smoltz getting 50%, Sheffield getting 10% (given his PED association, prickly personality, and historically awful defense, that is realistic, I think), and 5% each for Nomar, Giles, Erstad, and Delgado.


If the 10-man ballot limit remains in place, I'd be very surprised to see any of Nomar, Giles, Erstad, or Delgado get 5% and I'd be surprised if the first three combine for 5%. Smoltz strikes me as very similar to Schilling, so I expect him to debut lower than 50%, although other people on other threads have talked about how much stronger his case is, so maybe I'm way wrong.

Oh, and all of your references to "Griffey" should refer to Randy Johnson - Griffey debuts in two years.

Unless somebody starts a whisper campaign about PED use, I'd expect Johnson to debut somewhere between Maddux and Glavine. I think Pedro's first-year support is going to disappoint a lot of people. Sandy Koufax got 87% in his first year of election: Pedro has stronger career numbers (most notably >200 wins), but I think his general HOF case is similar to Koufax's and, if anything, I would guess that most BBWAA voters would say that Koufax had the better peak.

I also think that unless the ballot cap is raised or removed, we'll see fewer votes per ballot next year than this year.

My guess is that Biggio probably doesn't make it in until he is the clear-cut #1 position player on the ballot, for various reasons.


Is that ever going to happen (in terms of BBWAA perception)?

More than 75% of BBWAA voters are already on record as believing that Craig Biggio is a Hall-of-Famer. He was left off of at least two full ballots because of the ballot cap only - probably more than that. Given how close he came this year, I suspect that even if the ballot cap stays at 10, anybody that considers Biggio HOF-worthy will find room for him on their ballot and Biggio makes it next year. That said, even with that, it wouldn't surprise me if his final number is fairly low, say, 80% or maybe even a tick lower.
   1971. MelOtt4 Posted: January 10, 2014 at 01:51 AM (#4635442)
Being the best is different than being next in line and Biggio is next in line.
   1972. SandlotBB Posted: January 10, 2014 at 02:55 AM (#4635451)
Someone on here earlier wondered how long it would be before Morris fanboys would come out and blame sabermetricians for his exclusion. Well, leave it up to Morris himself to blame basic statistics for his exclusion. His ego is amazing, as is his ignorance. Did he really think he belonged???

"Seventy-five percent is not an easy thing, especially when the numbers of writers and candidates keep growing," Morris said. "Many of those writers are sabermetricians, who don't really have knowledgeable eyes. And plus, I'm getting more and more removed from this current generation. They didn't see me. They didn't know what I was about."


I simply cannot believe that he admitted to pitching to the score and then seriously expected, to the point of envying much more deserving candidates, to enter baseball's shrine. I maintain that his candidacy cost many players who were far more deserving their fair shot at the Hall. Take him off this year's ballot, and many candidates such as Raines and Trammell get better showings--Raines perhaps to the point where he gains momentum for eventual induction. Biggio gets in. If Reuschel and Rogers really were better pitchers, Morris never had any business on the ballot.

BTW, it is still hard to believe that Don Larsen topped out at 12.3%. A guy with a lifetime total of 81 wins and 849 Ks. An ERA+ of 99, with nary a showing in any awards voting. If the old-school thinking still predominates, that means that a mediocre or awful candidate might really gain ten percentage points thanks to one highlight-reel moment. My dad is an old-school fan, and he supports BOTH Joe Carter and Morris for the HOF!!! I will probably never understand how Morris got as close as he did because when he entered the ballot back in 2000, very, very few insiders seriously considered him as a HOFer.
   1973. The Yankee Clapper Posted: January 10, 2014 at 03:31 AM (#4635456)
Given that the number of votes per ballot was the highest in over a half-century, what makes anyone think next year will come close?

Next year's candidate pool will be very similar to this year's & the voter pool will also be very similar. Why wouldn't the number of votes per ballot be similar? The ballot glut didn't go anywhere.
   1974. Pete L. Posted: January 10, 2014 at 04:00 AM (#4635459)
@ Kiko, 1970:

If the 10-man ballot limit remains in place, I'd be very surprised to see any of Nomar, Giles, Erstad, or Delgado get 5% and I'd be surprised if the first three combine for 5%. Smoltz strikes me as very similar to Schilling, so I expect him to debut lower than 50%, although other people on other threads have talked about how much stronger his case is, so maybe I'm way wrong.


Don't get me wrong, I agree with this. I was presenting a sort of hybrid "what would we like / expect to see" together with an ideal scenario for clearing the ballot. I personally think both RJ (doh! I was posting in a hurry on my way to a meeting and got my Mariner HOF boys mixed up) will both exceed 90% (RJ over 95%) but I purposely projected them both at 75% so that the maximum number of votes would be "available" - even if I then noted that I don't think they will be. The point was to show that even if everybody could stay on the ballot, every holdover at least hold their ground except the two we want to push over (and they only JUST get to 75%), and even if the votes per ballot stay at record levels, there isn't more than about a vote per ballot to be spread among 10-14 mid-to-lower ballot qualified guys. The reality is unless voters start to abandon some of these guys, or they raise or eliminate the limit, almost everybody loses ground AGAIN next year. I don't think the voters are (collectively) smart enough to realize that isn't about erosion of support as much as voting dynamics. Raising the limit is the easiest way to ease the crunch, and least disruptive ballot reform.

I definitely agree with you that not all of Nomar, Delgado, Erstad, and Giles will get 5%. My guess is Giles is the most likely to fall off, but honestly, all could (Delgado least likely to me, then Nomar). I just think it would be better if each of them got a couple years' consideration - in an ideal world. This isn't that. The more who fall off earlier the better, if the judgment is they are un-electable, which I think those four ultimately are.

I hope you are wrong about Pedro and I am right. I believe he is, at peak, the best pitcher I ever really saw pitch. And Unit may be #2 (not to take anything away from Maddux or Clemens, or 60s/70s pitchers; I saw 60s through 80s pitchers - I'm 54 - but don't really remember Gibson and Koufax well enough to consider them for that honor, as deserving as they may be). With apologies to Lefty, too, who I rate very, very highly as well. In my world, RJ and Pedro get 100%. Smoltz, I agree with you on where he should end up but think there will be a bit of a lagging coattail from Maddux/Glavine and think he ends up at about 50%, give or take 5-8%.
   1975. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: January 10, 2014 at 04:24 AM (#4635464)
Here's the math problem:

Hall of Fame balloting, 2013: 569 ballots, 6.6 names per ballot = 3,755 slots filled
Hall of Fame balloting, 2014: 571 ballots, 8.39 names per ballot = 4,791 slots filled
Increase in overall slots filled = 1,036
Votes for Maddux, Glavine and Thomas = 1,558

   1976. ajnrules Posted: January 10, 2014 at 08:23 AM (#4635476)
There's no way Griffey gets 75% next year...he won't even be eligible until 2016
   1977. maven of all things baseball Posted: January 10, 2014 at 12:33 PM (#4635725)
I have seen a lot of hand-wringing concerning the 10 vote limit - some of it here in this discussion group. However, in looking back to when the BBWAA didn't have a 10 vote limit, it doesn't seem to have resulted in a far greater number of inductees. In the 2 highest years of average ballot votes (both 10+ averages), in 1942 only Hornsby was put in - and he only received 78% of the vote. In 1945 NO ONE was elected. In the present climate, how many of the voters would fill in more than 10 names? Would it reach 5% or higher? And wouldn't it need to be considerable higher than 5% to reduce the backlog significantly? If I am right (and I have no idea whether I am or not) then wouldn't it make more sense for the HoF board to offer the voters more guidance when it comes to the whole PED issue?
   1978. The District Attorney Posted: January 10, 2014 at 12:38 PM (#4635731)
   1979. DL from MN Posted: January 10, 2014 at 12:47 PM (#4635738)
Giles has no hope of 5%.
   1980. flournoy Posted: January 10, 2014 at 12:52 PM (#4635744)
I definitely agree with you that not all of Nomar, Delgado, Erstad, and Giles will get 5%. My guess is Giles is the most likely to fall off, but honestly, all could


I must be missing something. I'd sooner expect Darin Erstad to get zero votes than I'd expect him to get 5%.

Giles may get a vote or two. Nomar will probably get two or three percent. Delgado may get 5%, but I doubt it.
   1981. alilisd Posted: January 10, 2014 at 12:55 PM (#4635750)
However, in looking back to when the BBWAA didn't have a 10 vote limit, it doesn't seem to have resulted in a far greater number of inductees. In the 2 highest years of average ballot votes (both 10+ averages), in 1942 only Hornsby was put in - and he only received 78% of the vote. In 1945 NO ONE was elected.


I don't think comparing the 1940's to today's voting environment is meaningful.

In the present climate, how many of the voters would fill in more than 10 names? Would it reach 5% or higher?


I believe 22% of voters filled out a full 10 names in 2013. I think a comparable percentage, if not higher considering 50% of voters voted for 10 this year, would vote for more given the opportunity.
   1982. Davo's Favorite Tacos Are Moose Tacos Posted: January 10, 2014 at 12:57 PM (#4635751)
Giles has no hope of 5%.

Because you fear the BBWAA won't properly assign him MLE credit for his AAA years when he was stuck in the minors in Cleveland?

(I kid, I kid!)
   1983. Poulanc Posted: January 10, 2014 at 01:00 PM (#4635754)
I maintain that his candidacy cost many players who were far more deserving their fair shot at the Hall. Take him off this year's ballot, and many candidates such as Raines and Trammell get better showings--Raines perhaps to the point where he gains momentum for eventual induction.



How do you figure? I haven't looked at the ballots closely, but I can't imagine that there were too many voters who used all 10 spots on their ballot and included Jack Morris in place of Raines. I don't see any way that Jack Morris hurt any other player's shot at the Hall.
   1984. maven of all things baseball Posted: January 10, 2014 at 01:21 PM (#4635782)
However, in looking back to when the BBWAA didn't have a 10 vote limit, it doesn't seem to have resulted in a far greater number of inductees. In the 2 highest years of average ballot votes (both 10+ averages), in 1942 only Hornsby was put in - and he only received 78% of the vote. In 1945 NO ONE was elected.



I don't think comparing the 1940's to today's voting environment is meaningful.


Why? Has human nature changed that significantly in the last 70 years? I mean in 1945 with an unlimited number of spaces to fill, and with the average voter casting nearly 2 additional names than this year and with nearly 60 eventual HOFers on the ballot, NO ONE got 75%. Clearly the system was broken ;-)
   1985. Good cripple hitter Posted: January 10, 2014 at 01:38 PM (#4635799)
BBWAA posts 136 ballots


This has probably come up before, but an honorary member by the name of Lawrence Rocca submitted a ballot of:

Morris Nomo Raines Trammell

They probably shouldn't honor him with a vote after that ballot.
   1986. maven of all things baseball Posted: January 10, 2014 at 01:38 PM (#4635800)
Why can't the HoF board create its own "blue ribbon" panel to take up the issue of the "steroid era?" It seems to me that it did something similar with Negro League players, 19th Century players, etc... Find a group representative of all points of view, lock them all in a room for a couple of days and have them vote up/down on Bonds, Clemens, Sosa, McGwire, and Palmeiro. Then this will light the way for the BBWAA voters to look at the credentials of Bagwell, Piazza, etc ...
   1987. maven of all things baseball Posted: January 10, 2014 at 01:44 PM (#4635804)
This has probably come up before, but an honorary member by the name of Lawrence Rocca submitted a ballot of:


Morris Nomo Raines Trammell

They probably shouldn't honor him with a vote after that ballot.


Yeah, I was trying to figure out the logic of the ballot. All I could come up with was Gurnick's logic carried out a bit farther - Raines, Morris Trammell all started careers well before "steroid era" and Nomo is Japanese so he never heard of steroids when he came over here...
   1988. Riley Esco Posted: January 10, 2014 at 02:36 PM (#4635835)
Yeah, I was trying to figure out the logic of the ballot. All I could come up with was Gurnick's logic carried out a bit farther - Raines, Morris Trammell all started careers well before "steroid era" and Nomo is Japanese so he never heard of steroids when he came over here...


This may have something to do with the Nomo vote:
(via LinkedIn)
Deputy Managing Director, Business Operations
Chiba Lotte Marines Baseball Club
January 2005 – November 2009 (4 years 11 months)
Corporate sales, marketing, and business development for Nippon Professional Baseball franchise. Worked closely with field manager Bobby Valentine on baseball-related business initiatives.
   1989. Kiko Sakata Posted: January 10, 2014 at 02:43 PM (#4635842)
In the present climate, how many of the voters would fill in more than 10 names?


The BBWAA posted 142 ballots (that number will probably go up over time - see the link in #1978). Of the 142 ballots there when I looked, 97 of them included 10 names. That's more than two-thirds (68.3%).
   1990. Kiko Sakata Posted: January 10, 2014 at 02:51 PM (#4635851)
I haven't looked at the ballots closely, but I can't imagine that there were too many voters who used all 10 spots on their ballot and included Jack Morris in place of Raines. I don't see any way that Jack Morris hurt any other player's shot at the Hall.


I count 18 of the 97 full ballots listed on the BBWAA's website that included Morris but not Raines.
   1991. The District Attorney Posted: January 10, 2014 at 02:54 PM (#4635853)
The bar has been set so low by this point that I'll at least give Rocca credit for voting for the two actually deserving '80s candidates, which makes his ballot worlds better than Gurnick's.

Still, the fact that the guy threw in Nomo most likely because he knows him personally illustrates how a lot of these "at-large"/"honorary" guys aren't taking this seriously. A lot of them are, but a lot of them aren't. Certainly no one is checking to see who is and who isn't.

(That said, a vote for Nomo makes way more sense than Jacque Jones, Armando Benitez, or anyone else with no off-field argument in addition to no on-field argument.)
   1992. Davo's Favorite Tacos Are Moose Tacos Posted: January 10, 2014 at 02:58 PM (#4635859)
This has probably come up before, but an honorary member by the name of Lawrence Rocca submitted a ballot of:

Morris Nomo Raines Trammell

They probably shouldn't honor him with a vote after that ballot.

Lawrence Rocca is the author of a 1996 book called Nomo in America. (Amazon.com
   1993. Davo's Favorite Tacos Are Moose Tacos Posted: January 10, 2014 at 03:03 PM (#4635865)
Factoring in his role as an innovator (" the first Japanese-born Japanese major leaguer to permanently relocate to Major League Baseball in the United States"), and giving him very generous MLE-like credit for the years he pitched in Japan...sure, I can understand someone thinking Hideo Nomo belongs in the Hall of Fame. He'd be better than Jesse Haines.

...But that's only if you had an unlimited ballot. This guy only voted for 4 people!
   1994. Good cripple hitter Posted: January 10, 2014 at 03:07 PM (#4635870)
Factoring in his role as an innovator (" the first Japanese-born Japanese major leaguer to permanently relocate to Major League Baseball in the United States"), and giving him very generous MLE-like credit for the years he pitched in Japan...sure, I can understand someone thinking Hideo Nomo belongs in the Hall of Fame. He'd be better than Jesse Haines.


I agree with that, if you had an unlimited ballot and wanted to give him a pioneer nod there's nothing particularly wrong about a vote for Nomo. But if you've written a book about him and are only voting for three other players (none of whom is Greg ####### Maddux) it's a joke ballot and embarrassing for the BBWAA.
   1995. alilisd Posted: January 10, 2014 at 03:36 PM (#4635895)
@ 1984: maven, I'm open to the idea the two may be analogous, but I'm sceptical. I think there are likely substantial differences. For example, I believe Chass is the only voter still active today who was voting in the 40's. It's also possible there may be other differences beyond the change in composition of the electorate. But I'm willing to be convinced.
   1996. Pete L. Posted: January 10, 2014 at 05:10 PM (#4635952)
The BBWAA posted 142 ballots (that number will probably go up over time - see the link in #1978). Of the 142 ballots there when I looked, 97 of them included 10 names. That's more than two-thirds (68.3%).


It's 146 as of this writing. By my count, there were 72 ballots revealed either there or by one of our intrepid counters (usually @Weird_Meat or @icho1977) AFTER the Gizmo count finished. By appearances (this isn't something I track directly, but I think Ryan does), the later revealed votes were much lower names/ballot. I'm also interested in the differences between active and honorary member voting patterns. I may be able to figure that out (might take me until next year...). My sense is they vote for even fewer per ballot, and have disproportionately more difficult to defend ballots.
   1997. John Northey Posted: January 10, 2014 at 05:15 PM (#4635958)
The BBWAA should interview all those who kept Maddux off their ballot and get an explanation of why they should be allowed to keep voting. The same should be done for anyone who is an overwhelming choice (over 95% I'd say). So the guys you'd have to explain why you left them off would be...
98%+: Tom Seaver, Nolan Ryan, Cal Ripken, Ty Cobb, George Brett
97%: Hank Aaron, Tony Gwynn, Greg Maddux
96%: Mike Schmidt, Johnny Bench
95%: Steve Carlton, Babe Ruth, Honus Wagner

Rickey Henderson would just miss that cut-off (94.8%) as would Willie Mays (94.7%) and Carl Yastrzemski (94.6%).

Only Ryan would get any argument (wild, 112 ERA+, 526 winning percentage) but he certainly qualifies in the 'wow' factor (7 no-hitters, record K's, lowest H/9 lifetime as well). I could see writers leaving him off and was shocked when he got the 2nd highest percent ever. Why anyone left the rest off is beyond me outside of the 'never vote for a guy who went on strike' or other dumb stuff.
   1998. Infinite Joost (Voxter) Posted: January 10, 2014 at 05:24 PM (#4635970)
The level of pessimism I'm seeing here strikes me as totally unwarranted. It's an exceptionally long shot that Biggio doesn't go in next year, especially after the number of voters who wanted to vote for him but ran out of space see how close he got. He'll clear 75% easily next year, and if you don't believe that, I have some property to sell you on the moon.

Pedro probably won't have the kind of support Maddux did, or maybe even Glavine, but the idea that he won't go in on his first ballot is baldest fantasy, also. The guys who remember Koufax fondly enough to impact their votes re: Martinez are . . . well, they're dead, mostly. For context, Koufax retired in 1966, when my father was 21. My father turns 70 this year. The dudes who were old enough to cover Koufax are the exception, not the rule, in this voting class.
   1999. Ryan Thibodaux Posted: January 11, 2014 at 09:52 PM (#4636668)
I'm posting this for two reasons:

1 - I'm still collecting ballots, and I now have >50% of the vote!

2 - I want to see this post get 2,000 comments.
   2000. John Northey Posted: January 11, 2014 at 10:21 PM (#4636682)
Glad to see someone is still collecting ballots. Guess this makes 2000 :)
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