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Thursday, December 12, 2013

The Marc Maturo HOF Ballot

Maturo’s full 10 + 1 HOF ballot.

Maddux, Glavine, Bonds, Clemens, Piazza, Biggio, Kent, J. Morris, Raines, E. Martinez…and Mr. Pete Rose.

This year’s ballot again features such players (chiefly Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens), but generally recognized “clean” performers such as pitchers Tom Glavine and Greg Maddux are eligible for the first time and likely to receive strong support, especially Maddux.

Members of the BBWAA are permitted to vote for as many as 10 players. This scribe, for the first time ever, has taken that opportunity – not to mention my perfunctory if unrecognized “write-in,” Mr. Pete Rose, the banished all-time hits leader and one of the game’s greatest ambassadors across his storied career.

Repoz Posted: December 12, 2013 at 11:16 AM | 50 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: hof

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   1. DL from MN Posted: December 12, 2013 at 11:40 AM (#4616619)
Ugh. Pete Rose is no longer eligible for the BBWAA ballot because he's been retired too long. I'm glad he didn't use Rose to bump someone else off the ballot. Jack Morris instead of Schilling or Mussina is a terrible choice. Jeff Kent instead of Jeff Bagwell is not a great choice.
   2. Bitter Mouse Posted: December 12, 2013 at 11:48 AM (#4616628)
I count this a a very good ballot but not perfect. It loses because of the reasons above, but filling ten slots and recognizing the best of the best (Bonds and Clemens) puts into the well above average.
   3. Eddo Posted: December 12, 2013 at 11:50 AM (#4616629)
Does anyone know what will happen with this ballot, given he voted for eleven players? Will it be voided?
   4. gehrig97 Posted: December 12, 2013 at 11:55 AM (#4616634)
I know it's wrong to pass a "black or white" judgement on a ballot that, by its design, allows for various shades of gray... but I immediately categorize any ballot that includes Jack Morris as stupid.
   5. BrianBrianson Posted: December 12, 2013 at 11:58 AM (#4616639)
Any ballot getting nine of the ten spaces right is fine by me. Morris is a mistake but we all make mistakes.
   6. Baldrick Posted: December 12, 2013 at 12:02 PM (#4616645)
Yay 10 slots!

But...he doesn't even give Mussina an honorable mention. Or Walker for that matter. Voting for Jack (The Jack) Morris while not even acknowledging the existence of the far superior Mussina is madness.
   7. Mickey Henry Mays Posted: December 12, 2013 at 12:12 PM (#4616658)
I love Edgar, but how do you have him but not Thomas who was a better version of offense only? If it's the 1st ballot thing, then why Kent yet not Bags?
As for Morris over Schilling and Moose; I believe this has been addressed once or twice.
   8. Random Transaction Generator Posted: December 12, 2013 at 12:22 PM (#4616663)
Morris, Kent, or Martinez has to be dropped to make room for Thomas.
That's a glaring error from my point of view.
   9. John Northey Posted: December 12, 2013 at 12:26 PM (#4616669)
Glad to see Kent as I want him to stick around and have a shot at the HOF - most HR at a position is impressive (well, other than pitcher although it would raise an eyebrow) and deserves serious consideration. Has Palmeiro made a ballot yet? He already holds the record for fewest votes for a 3000 hit or 500 HR guy I'd think and if he goes sub 5% (and I can easily see how he could) it'll be a weird sight.
   10. Mickey Henry Mays Posted: December 12, 2013 at 12:37 PM (#4616678)
Expanding on Thomas, Here's a list of players who after their first 8 yrs. min. 3000 PA had a higher OPS+ then him...Ted Williams.
Frank Thomas after 8 yrs. and almost 5000 PA had an OPS+ of 182. I know 8 yrs. does not a career make, but that's some pretty rarefied air in quite a prolonged period.
   11. TJ Posted: December 12, 2013 at 12:51 PM (#4616695)
Not the worst ballot we will see. I see three bottom tier guys for their HOF position (Kent, Raines, Morris), but Kent and Raines are borderline middle tier and both have those somethign extras (Kent's homers for a second baseman, Raines steal), so I can see the argument. A few silly points raised to support his call (Morris wasn't always "tough in the clutch", and does anyone really think there is any defensive value in the HOF case for Kent and Piazza?), but at least Maturo gives some reasoning for his choices. I am tired of the Biggio "most doubles by a right-handed hitter" comment though- John Franco had the most saves by a left-handed pitcher (4th overall), so what?

While there are guys I would rank ahead of some of Maturo's votes (Thomas, Bagwell, Trammell, Mussina, Schilling), we will see ballots like this with legit HOFers being left off for other legit HOFers to be included because of the BBWAA-generated backlog...
   12. Mickey Henry Mays Posted: December 12, 2013 at 12:58 PM (#4616710)
Another thing regarding Raffy possibly being dropped, is with offense falling to pre 1993 numbers, the stats put up by Palmeiro are really going to have future generations scratching their heads wondering how he had so little support. Of course things are cyclical and we can see another crazy offensive era but it was roughly 60 yrs. between the first two sillyball era's.
Either way, it does seem crazy that a guy with 569 HR and 3000+ hits is in danger of falling off the ballot after 3 yrs. For a so called compiler the guy had a 9 yr. run of at least 38 HR and 100+ RBI. I guess you can compile some pretty big career numbers like that.
   13. LargeBill Posted: December 12, 2013 at 01:09 PM (#4616726)
While including Morris over much better candidates keeps this from being rated a great ballot, I can't call it bad. This year bad ballots are any with less than 10 names checked off.

I haven't kept track, but it's looking real good for Maddux as I haven't seen anyone who has left him off their ballot. Biggio and Glavine also seem to be showing on most ballots. Does someone have a link to the spreadsheet that showed who each voter voted for last year? Curious to compare to see who is gaining & losing support. Have to assume Biggio improves just by adding those who stupidly have a different standard for first ballot. Morris has competing situations. You get the last ballot sympathy votes. However, that should be off-set by the arrival of several much better starting pitchers. Some voters will only select one or two players at a position so how do you vote for the 6th best starter on ballot?
   14. Dag Nabbit: secretary of the World Banana Forum Posted: December 12, 2013 at 01:12 PM (#4616730)
Anyone know who he voted for in 2013? (Repoz?) It would be interesting to see who he dropped, if anyone.
   15. Moeball Posted: December 12, 2013 at 01:12 PM (#4616731)
Maddux, Glavine, Bonds, Clemens, Piazza, Biggio, Kent, J. Morris, Raines, E. Martinez…and Mr. Pete Rose.


What a weird, weird ballot. It is both great and terrible at the same time. At least this guy is willing to publicly disclose who he voted for, so there is something in that.

A lot of the truly terrible ballots yet to come will be kept secret for a reason...
   16. Kiko Sakata Posted: December 12, 2013 at 01:17 PM (#4616737)
Morris, Kent, or Martinez has to be dropped to make room for Thomas.
That's a glaring error from my point of view.


Morris doesn't belong in the Hall of Fame, so, fair enough. But if you have a list of 18 guys who you think are deserving Hall-of-Famers, the BBWAA offers no guidance for how to pick which 10 get listed on your ballot. If you accept Kent and Martinez as deserving HOFers - and they have reasonably strong cases - I can't see how it's a "glaring error" to include them on your ballot. If you're listing as many players as you're allowed to, then, again, I can't see how it's a "glaring error" to have left somebody else off of the ballot. This is a problem that the BBWAA should have seen coming from a mile away with an obvious no-downside solution (expand or dump the ballot cap). To the extent that Maturo's a member of the BBWAA, I guess he deserves some share of the blame for failing to fix this, but listing Kent but not Thomas is well within the range of things that a reasonable and conscientious voter could do to meet the inane balloting criteria here.
   17. rudygamble Posted: December 12, 2013 at 01:19 PM (#4616742)
I'm fine w/ this ballot as, other than Morris, I think all the players are HOF-worthy. While Frank Thomas is a glaring exception, a vote for Kent at least might keep him on the ballot for next year (he'll be dangerously close to 5%).
   18. Kiko Sakata Posted: December 12, 2013 at 01:23 PM (#4616747)
Have to assume Biggio improves just by adding those who stupidly have a different standard for first ballot.


Biggio has already lost at least one vote that was linked here (Sansavere, I think was his name - I think he's in the Twin Cities). He had a full ballot last year and dumped Biggio and three other guys (McGwire was one, maybe Bagwell?) to make room for Maddux, Glavine, Thomas, and Mussina.
   19. Baldrick Posted: December 12, 2013 at 01:29 PM (#4616755)
Agree with 11, 16 and 17. If you think Edgar, Kent, etc. are HOFers (as he clearly does), it's hard to argue that there is only one proper way of selecting your 10 guys out of more than 10 good candidates.

That said, I don't think he is 'voting strategically.' From the write-up it sounds like he really does think these are the 10 best candidates.
   20. cardsfanboy Posted: December 12, 2013 at 01:43 PM (#4616769)
Ugh. Pete Rose is no longer eligible for the BBWAA ballot because he's been retired too long. I'm glad he didn't use Rose to bump someone else off the ballot. Jack Morris instead of Schilling or Mussina is a terrible choice. Jeff Kent instead of Jeff Bagwell is not a great choice.


There is no requirement that you have to vote for the best eligible. If you have a full ballot, and you think 14 people deserve to go, there is nothing wrong with voting for the guy you feel is 14th best.

Mind you, I clearly think that Morris doesn't belong in the hof, and have a problem with his inclusion, but this guy apparently does(which is why it's a vote) and as long as someone is maxing out their ballots, I can't fault them. He might fully think that Mussina is better than Morris, but realizes Morris is on his last ballot, has voted for him in the past(and I can't fault the thought process that says "once I vote for someone, they don't lose my vote.") etc....

I just don't understand how people can campaign for a player excluded from a ten name ballot.
   21. Good cripple hitter Posted: December 12, 2013 at 01:44 PM (#4616771)

Anyone know who he voted for in 2013? (Repoz?) It would be interesting to see who he dropped, if anyone.



Here you go:

It is a very meaningful trust we have in this historic process, and it was my decision to ignore any influence that “The Steroid Era” should play in my thought process – thus the names of Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens were checked on my ballot, as well as five others: Craig Biggio, Jack Morris, Rafael Palmeiro, Mike Piazza and Tim Raines.

In addition, I have once again written in the name of Pete Rose, who is Major League Baseball’s all-time hits leader but who continues to remain on MLB’s ineligible list and thus, shall not be an eligible candidate.
   22. The Clarence Thomas of BBTF (scott) Posted: December 12, 2013 at 01:47 PM (#4616772)
It's not my ballot, but it's not bad. I only disagree with the Morris choice, but otherwise I think you can make strong arguments for everyone on that ballot even if I personally

And he used the whole ballot, which is essential. Screw the hoopla about the Deadspin ballot, the real crime is people like Murray Chass only voting for a handful of players and effectively raising the number of votes needed for enshrinement. Anyone with fewer than 6 names on their ballot should have their vote revoked.
   23. jdennis Posted: December 12, 2013 at 03:19 PM (#4616891)
This guy probably dumped Thomas strategically and felt he could defend it, in order to give a vote to somebody else he's afraid will fall off. And he couldn't stomach taking off Maddux or Glavine. But he probably did it because he thought Thomas would get 90% or something, and was safely in, and he'll be wrong on that. I would not be surprised at all if Thomas does not get in. I have a sneaking suspicion Thomas will be between 70 and 75 percent.
   24. TR_Sullivan Posted: December 12, 2013 at 03:43 PM (#4616903)
Here is my Hall of Fame ballot, revealed first on BTF as always

This would be a tough vote if it were one and done. It is not. So there are some guys left off who I will vote for in the future but didn't feel an overwhelming need to do so right now.

As I have said before, I decline the honor of judging players on the basis of possible PED use. I just don't feel qualifying to judge on that basis. But as in the case of Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa, it's hard to keep voting for guys who are not going to get in and overlook guys who have a legitimate chance. So...

In alpha order

1. Jeff Bagwell - I have one spot on the ballot for him or Frank Thomas. They are very close. I went with Bagwell this year. I feel certain Thomas will get his due and I will eventually vote for him. But right now I took Bagwell.
2. Craig Biggio - He is a Hall of Famer, no doubt about it in my mind. Trammell and Kent deserve strong consideration.
3. Barry Bonds - Right now I still have to vote for him and...
4. Roger Clemens - because they are still two of the best ever regardless
5. Tom Glavine - To the victor go the spoils
6. Greg Maddux - No need to amplify
7. Jack Morris - I voted for him. Obviously there is strong disagreement on this one but he is getting my vote
8. Mike Mussina - He was the last one checked. I gave the last one to a pitcher because of the era. Schilling will likely get my vote in the future as well.
9. Rafael Palmeiro - Mainly because he is in danger of falling off the ballot. It's getting harder to justify expending a vote on him but I did once again. This vote only hurts Tim Raines because he most likely would have been next.
10. Mike Piazza - One of the best catchers ever

That's it. Let me have it... TR.Sullivan@mlb.com

   25. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: December 12, 2013 at 03:49 PM (#4616913)
Not bad, TR. Not bad! Any idea why your brethren aren't all in on Piazza? I don't understand the hesitation on him from so many voters. (And Tim Raines, man. Tim Raines!)
   26. Der-K: Hipster doofus Posted: December 12, 2013 at 03:50 PM (#4616915)
Apart from Morris... it has become tough to let almost any individual have it, as there's such a backlog of qualified candidates + I think it's reasonable to take a harsh anti-PEDs stance, even as I disagree with them. Would my ballot look different? Sure. But just because I'd put Thomas on over Palmeiro, for instance, doesn't mean that I don't see the strategic value in voting differently. Too big a backlog...

Thanks for your annual post on this, TR.
   27. LargeBill Posted: December 12, 2013 at 04:26 PM (#4616968)
TR, No need to rip into you over the ballot. Sure most of us feel Morris falls short but other than that we would only be disagreeing about including this guy or that guy among 16 or 17 very worthy candidates when you are limited to 10 picks. If anyone uses all 10 slots then they have tried to fix the backlog problem and don't deserve too much grief. We all have our favorites or pet candidates so there is no pleasing all of us.
   28. Booey Posted: December 12, 2013 at 04:26 PM (#4616969)
For a so called compiler the guy had a 9 yr. run of at least 38 HR and 100+ RBI. I guess you can compile some pretty big career numbers like that.


Averaged 40 HR's and 120 RBI's for 9 straight years (1995-2003), and it would've been 11 if not for the strike (1993-2003). Sillyball era or not, that's one hell of a compiler!

I have a sneaking suspicion Thomas will be between 70 and 75 percent.


I'd actually be surprised if he's even that high. He's still a big slugger from an era when all of those types seem to be frowned upon, actual PED evidence or not. Plus - while still very good - I think the dropoff in health and production in his 30's will cause some people to forget how great he was in his 20's. I'm guessing he pulls in a similar vote total as Piazza's first year - somewhere in the 50-60% range.
   29. Gonfalon B. Posted: December 12, 2013 at 04:44 PM (#4616985)
Maturo's ballots, 2013-2014: Palmeiro drops off, Maddux, Glavine, Kent, and Edgar Martinez are added. (+3 names)

Sullivan's ballots, 2013-2014: Raines, Sosa and Trammell drop off; Maddux, Glavine and Mussina are added. (both ballots at 10 names)
   30. The Clarence Thomas of BBTF (scott) Posted: December 12, 2013 at 04:49 PM (#4616986)
As I said about the original ballot by Maturo, I disagree with Morris but otherwise everything is completely defensible. And I certainly understand the strategic nature of voting, I'd be very hard pressed to pick just 10 of the ~19 players I think merit consideration for enshrinement this year. Thankfully, Deadspin didn't make me choose and I could vote for all of the players I felt deserved consideration, including the ones that I'm not sure if I'd put on the ballot if it was merely who I thought should be in.
   31. dlf Posted: December 12, 2013 at 04:51 PM (#4616987)
Thanks for posting that TR!
   32. Baldrick Posted: December 12, 2013 at 06:03 PM (#4617038)
Yeah, thanks TR. Always fun to have you drop by to post the ballot.

While I don't like the Morris vote, I completely understand it. He wouldn't go in my HOF, but he won't be the worst guy when he eventually goes in. And if you think he deserves it, it would be pretty cruel to stop voting for him right at the end.
   33. cmd600 Posted: December 12, 2013 at 06:16 PM (#4617054)
On top of Rose not being eligible because of the ban, and not being eligible because he retired too long ago, there are no write-ins even allowed. Write all you want that Rose deserves to be in the Hall, but at least follow the basic guidelines, they aren't that difficult to remember. This is my biggest issue, too many writers get an inch when it comes to interpreting the ballot rules, but take a yard. I don't see why the Hall isn't gravely concerned that the people they ask to make decisions for them can't follow first grade level instructions.
   34. TJ Posted: December 12, 2013 at 06:17 PM (#4617055)
TR Sullivan- thank you for sharing your ballot in an open, honest, and respectful manner with us fans. I have nothing to add to the conversation regarding your ballot specifics, but wanted to throw out a question to everyone- with the ballot so crowded this year, whose HOF chances via the BBWAA will be crippled so much by a drop in votes that they will never recover?

My guess- Trammell, Raines, Walker, L. Smith, and maybe Martinez, with Palmeiro falling below 5%...
   35. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: December 12, 2013 at 06:39 PM (#4617068)
My guess- Trammell, Raines, Walker, L. Smith, and maybe Martinez, with Palmeiro falling below 5%..


I think Walker and Edgar are the ones likely to be most hurt. Neither guy has huge totals yes (22% and 36%) and a drop off of substance effectively has them starting over in their 5th and 6th years of eligibility. Edgar of course has a bit more wiggle room and I think he benefits from David Ortiz' heroics this post-season. I think Ortiz got a huge Hall push but that kind of shoves people to look at Edgar's numbers which you'd hope would be an "a-ha" moment.

Raines and Smith will take a hit but I think Raines still gets in eventually. Smith is a funny one, I think he's 50-50 to get in and I think that won't be impacted by this year. I don't think he'll drop off that much. For better or worse he's the best candidate among closers until his final year of eligibility when Hoffman joins him. I don't know if Hoffman hurts him "601 saves, 130 more than Smith, wow!" or helps him "y'know, all these years later and Lee is still 3rd all time, wow!"

I don't think Palmeiro or Trammell is really affected because I don't think either guy has a chance already (talking BBWAA only here). I agree that Palmeiro has an excellent chance of dropping below 5% and you didn't mention Sosa but I won't be shocked if it happens to him too.
   36. John Northey Posted: December 12, 2013 at 06:46 PM (#4617072)
It'll be tough for anyone to climb for awhile.
2015: Randy Johnson, Pedro Martinez, John Smoltz all add to the crowding while Gary Sheffield should get over 5% but might not (weird to say that about 500 HR hitters)
2016: Griffey Jr. Some feel Jim Edmonds should get serious consideration but he won't, might get one or two names off backlog
2017: Another PED battle with I-Rod, Manny Ramirez. Plus Vladimir Guerrero. Good year to clear some backlog
2018: Chipper Jones & Jim Thome - should be locks but who knows
2019: Mariano Rivera, Roy Halladay, Andy Pettitte - more ballot crowding as all 3 should get in eventually, but just Rivera year one probably.

Crazy eh? Raines best hope is 2016 or 2017 depending how messy it gets after this year.
   37. Mickey Henry Mays Posted: December 12, 2013 at 06:56 PM (#4617082)
There are two guys who I believe are almost guaranteed to get in this year and one of them, although fully qualified, will ride the others coattails because the voters love theater.
   38. zonk Posted: December 12, 2013 at 07:09 PM (#4617093)

As I have said before, I decline the honor of judging players on the basis of possible PED use. I just don't feel qualifying to judge on that basis. But as in the case of Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa, it's hard to keep voting for guys who are not going to get in and overlook guys who have a legitimate chance. So...


I am genuinely curious how many writers with ballots are voting 'strategically' in this fashion....

As much as I think Clemens, Maddux, and Bonds are clearly the top 3 names -- and probably the best (maybe only?) inner circle HoFers of recent memory, I have to be honest... If I had a ballot, I think I might leave Maddux off it. He's almost certain to sail in without my vote and there are some legitimately deserving guys that I'm very worried might get glutted off consdieration by the crunch.

Maddux will be fine without my vote... but as TR says in putting Raffy on - there's a very good chance Palmeiro falls below the danger zone. Trammell might also be in trouble.
   39. Peter Farted Posted: December 12, 2013 at 09:14 PM (#4617170)
I do see the logic for leaving Maddux off. (Be careful though - folks on not-so-intelligent forums are ready to behead you for it) I wonder how many voters are actually going to do it. I haven't seen a Maddux-less ballot yet, though it's too early. I do suspect there will be just enough to keep him from beating Seaver's record. (That's in addition to Ken Rosenthal who, last time I checked, is leaving Maddux off for other reasons)

The pessimist in me has a sinking feeling that every bottom feeder, including Mattingly and Palmeiro, will get enough "defensive" votes to stay on. I sincerely hope I'm wrong, because this ballot needs as many eliminations as possible (via election, tenure or the 5% rule). It'll be interesting to see what happens once the annual tracker starts counting live ballots.
   40. Kiko Sakata Posted: December 12, 2013 at 09:36 PM (#4617182)
I am genuinely curious how many writers with ballots are voting 'strategically' in this fashion.... Maddux will be fine without my vote... but as TR says in putting Raffy on - there's a very good chance Palmeiro falls below the danger zone. Trammell might also be in trouble.


Partly it depends on what your strategy is. If the goal is to clear out the ballot logjam and increase the possibility of actually electing people, then having guys hang around the ballot with 5-6% of the vote actually works against that. If Kent and Palmeiro and Sosa drop off the ballot next year, it sucks for them and all, but it reduces the number of Hall-of-Famers on next year's ballot. And if enough people "strategically" vote against Maddux (or, more realistically, guys like Glavine, Biggio, Thomas), figuring they don't need the help, that reduces the likelihood of those guys getting elected, which leaves them all around to clog up next year's ballot as bad as this year's.
   41. Gonfalon B. Posted: December 12, 2013 at 10:17 PM (#4617197)
Congratulations to the BBWAA for introducing the concept of collateral damage to Hall of Fame voting.
   42. Anonymous Observer Posted: December 12, 2013 at 10:46 PM (#4617208)
Maddux will be fine without my vote...


Greg Maddux belongs in the Hall of Fame.

However, with 100% sincerity, I want to see the fallout of him falling below 5%, because enough voters thought, "Greg Maddux will be fine without my vote."
   43. the Hugh Jorgan returns Posted: December 12, 2013 at 10:47 PM (#4617209)
I would not be surprised at all if Thomas does not get in


Thomas won't get in this time. He should, but won't. Maddux is really your only ironclad lock this time around.
However I believe that Biggio will get the extra % points required and Glavine, his 300 wins and the Maddux association should squeak in with about 78%.
I think Morris comes next, just falling short, then Thomas with around 65%. Bagwell and Piazza should move up into the 60th percentile. I see Raines falling(pun intended) and Schilling moving up into 45-50% range. Schilling is a newsworthy guy, he attracts attention and 3000Ks is nothing to sniff at for most HOF voters. I think most voters see him as a better candidate then Mussina. Bonds and Clemens will hold around the same as last year. Edgar, Trammel, Walker and Crime dog all falling. Raffy will be gone I reckon.

Not how I would vote it, just what I think will happen.
   44. Repoz Posted: December 12, 2013 at 11:58 PM (#4617231)
My guess- Trammell, Raines, Walker, L. Smith, and maybe Martinez, with Palmeiro falling below 5%...

I've yet to see Larry Walker on a full/partial ballot. Dropping from 21.6% to under 5% would be a killer.

Oh, and thanks TR!
   45. Monty Predicts a Padres-Mariners WS in 2016 Posted: December 13, 2013 at 02:03 AM (#4617273)
I don't think I could bring myself to stack my vote so I dropped a vote for Greg Maddux to make room for someone else. I'd just prefer to be one of the people voting for the great players, you know?
   46. SouthSideRyan Posted: December 13, 2013 at 03:42 AM (#4617287)
It would hurt, but I'd drop Maddux too. After him, I guess I'd find guys I found most likely to miss, but wind up in the 30-50% range. I've got 19 guys I find worthy on the ballot. (I go back and forth on McGriff, but fear he might fall off completely, so I'd vote for him.)

So I'd say

Guys I think my vote will help go in:

Glavine
Biggio
Bagwell
Piazza

Guys I fear might fall off if not:

Palmiero
Sosa
McGwire
McGriff
Walker
Kent

I mean, what a silly looking ballot that is. It's missing 6 of my top 10 that are up for the vote, and clearly the 3 best players on the ballot.

And I'm not even 100% positive I'm not screwing Thomas or Mussina.
   47. AROM Posted: December 13, 2013 at 10:10 AM (#4617337)
the real crime is people like Murray Chass only voting for a handful of players


A handful would be a huge improvement for a guy who voted for only Morris last year.
   48. AROM Posted: December 13, 2013 at 10:22 AM (#4617341)
Tim Raines, in retrospect, really hurt his case by playing too long. After winning the series with the 1998 Yankees, he played 3 more seasons over 4 years, had 313 AB, and hit .233 with 5 stolen bases.

In 6 years on the ballot he's moved from 24% to 52%, an impressive climb that in normal circumstances would have him on track for induction. His buddy Andre Dawson started higher (45%), but in his 6th ballot was only slightly ahead of where Raines was last year (57%). Dawson got in on his 9th try.

If Raines had been in consideration for a few years he would have looked really good on say, the 2006 ballot, where only Bruce Sutter got in. He wouldn't have been voted in that year, but had he started to gain momentum earlier he might have had a chance between 2010-2012.
   49. SoSHially Unacceptable Posted: December 13, 2013 at 10:26 AM (#4617343)
Guys I think my vote will help go in:

Glavine
Biggio
Bagwell
Piazza


That's the only kind of strategic voting I'd do (if say, I didn't think Biggio was one of the Top 10 on the ballot but still Hall-worthy, I'd vote him to help clear the logjam at the top). The attempts to keep others above 5 percent only mean you run into the same issue next year, and the effort is ultimately doomed anyway.

   50. John Northey Posted: December 13, 2013 at 05:02 PM (#4617690)
I'd love it (in a sick way) to see no one inducted again due to people being 'strategic' and leaving off people like Maddux who clearly should be in. Imagine how ugly it would get next year if no one made it this year (or just Morris...oy would that create a storm)...
You'd have 4 guys with 100+ WAR, 3 more in the 80's and 2 more in the 75+ range with 4 more in the 70's. There are 13 players who are very clearly qualified (assuming none, like Palmeiro, drop off). Smoltz, Raines and Edgar Martinez are high 60's, then Biggio, McGwire, Sheffield in the low 60's. And that isn't adding in Piazza, Sosa, Kent, McGriff, Delgado, ...

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