Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo
You are here > Home > Baseball Newsstand > Baseball Primer Newsblog > Discussion
Baseball Primer Newsblog
— The Best News Links from the Baseball Newsstand

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Wayne G. McDonnell, Jr.: The BBWAA Pitches a Costly Shutout Against Jack Morris

Prime Nein, dude…Prime Nein.

Morris’ candidacy has challenged all of us to go back and reflect on the intangibles that sabermetrics cannot and will not capture when it comes to measuring a ball player’s heart, intensity and overall influence on a ball club. He is the quintessential “throwback player” that is personified by guts and the constant pursuit of glory. Morris pitched 250 or more innings on six different occasions. Besides winning 15 or more games 12 times, he also had a streak of winning 14 or more games in a season from 1979 – 1988. In 527 career starts, Morris had pitched into the seventh inning or later on 359 occasions (68.12%).

While you have to applaud the Baseball Writers Association of America for taking a definitive stand with regard to ball players who were either associated or could have been associated with performance enhancing substances, they have inadvertently penalized Jack Morris during a critical moment in his time on the ballot. In his final year of eligibility, Morris will once again have to encounter the same cast of characters on next year’s ballot plus first time candidates such as Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine, Mike Mussina, Frank Thomas and Jeff Kent. With only 10 spots on a ballot, Morris could easily lose support and could become an afterthought.

Unless an epiphany occurs and the baseball writers begin to appreciate the significance of Morris’ intangibles as a ball player and leader, he will likely remain on the outskirts of the Hall of Fame. However, Morris could one day appear on the Expansion Era ballot every three years just like Steve Garvey, Ted Simmons and Dave Concepcion if his 15th attempt at baseball immortality is unsuccessful. In this case, the 16 member Expansion Era Committee will serve as judge, jury and executioner. Currently, Gil Hodges and Jack Morris are both inextricably tied to the fact that only two ball players have ever eclipsed 60% in the Hall of Fame voting and were never elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame.

While the dais at this summer’s Hall of Fame induction ceremony might look and feel strange, the festivities in 2014 could be bursting at the seams. Hopefully, the next year can provide clarity and allow the baseball writers to sift through the dense fog that is performance enhancing substances with the proper knowledge and tools. If so, it wouldn’t be surprising to see the likes of Biggio, Bagwell and Piazza join Maddux, Glavine, Thomas and possibly Mussina as members of the Class of 2014. Also, we could see the Expansion Era Committee elect a quartet of eligible managers (Torre, LaRussa, Cox, and Piniella) plus posthumous honors for Marvin Miller and George Steinbrenner as well! No matter what happens in both elections, a Hall of Fame induction ceremony in 2014 would be incomplete without Jack Morris.

Repoz Posted: January 10, 2013 at 09:17 AM | 91 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: hof, sabermetrics

Reader Comments and Retorts

Go to end of page

Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

   1. Chris Needham Posted: January 10, 2013 at 09:30 AM (#4343978)
If I were to make up a name for a staunch Jack Morris defender, I think Wayne G. McDonnell, Jr. is pretty close to the one I'd come up with.
   2. Jose Is The Most Absurd Thing on the Site Posted: January 10, 2013 at 09:37 AM (#4343984)
Currently, Gil Hodges and Jack Morris are both inextricably tied to the fact that only two ball players have ever eclipsed 60% in the Hall of Fame voting and were never elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame.


To be technical Craig Biggio also has eclipsed 60% in the voting and not gotten elected. Of course he will be eventually while Morris is probably a coin flip right about now.
   3. Biff, highly-regarded young guy Posted: January 10, 2013 at 09:44 AM (#4343992)
There's no way Mussina is getting elected in 2014.
   4. JJ1986 Posted: January 10, 2013 at 09:44 AM (#4343993)
All these people who think it's so obvious that Morris has to go in - I wonder when they started voting for him. They can't all have been doing it for 14 years.
   5. John Northey Posted: January 10, 2013 at 10:01 AM (#4344010)
It is just like Jim Rice all over again. Ignored for years, and rightly so, then suddenly they start to pick up steam and people who can read statistics and not run screaming go 'uh wait a minute' and the BBWAA goes nuts and feels a need to elect them just to show who is boss. Very sad as next year Morris could easily be viewed as the 23rd best player (rWAR, WAR7, JAWS), 22nd best (HOFs), 18th best (HOFm).

For pitchers if you just go by 'traditional' measures he is #5 (wins), #11 (ERA), #6 (strikeouts), or for negative stats #1 (most HR given up) or #3 (walks given up). Heck, in many respects Kenny Rogers (1st ballot next year) has a better case than Morris. How sad is that?
   6. RJ in TO Posted: January 10, 2013 at 10:03 AM (#4344014)
Currently, Gil Hodges and Jack Morris are both inextricably tied to the fact that only two ball players have ever eclipsed 60% in the Hall of Fame voting and were never elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame.

This seems reasonable to me. Both were arguably the best at their position at a time where (for whatever reason) the position was unusually weak in terms of Hall of Fame candidates. There's not necessarily going to be a Hall of Fame worthy guy at every position from every generation - it just happened that these guys both were the best candidates, and still not quite good enough.
   7. Tricky Dick Posted: January 10, 2013 at 10:03 AM (#4344015)
"Guts" and "constant pursuit of glory" make you a throwback player?
   8. JJ1986 Posted: January 10, 2013 at 10:04 AM (#4344016)
A throwback player is either a white guy who wears stirrups or a white guy with a big mustache.
   9. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: January 10, 2013 at 10:12 AM (#4344029)
All these people who think it's so obvious that Morris has to go in - I wonder when they started voting for him.


In 2000 he got 22.2%
2001: 19.6
2002: 20.6
2003: 22.8
2004: 26.3
2005: 33.3
2006: 41.2
2007: 37.1
2008: 42.9
2009: 44.0
2010: 52.3
2011: 53.5
2012: 66.6
2013: 67.6

In his initial years he kind of balloted half of what Garvey did his initial years (35-40), but Garvey never gained any traction his support collapsed and he stayed around 20 virtually his last 10 years on the ballot. Garvey, while playing, in his prime, passed the "smells like a HOFer test for most people (in those pre-Sabr days)- Morris did not- guys who "smell" like a HOFer do better their first time on the ballot- in fact his drop in support after year 1 is more typical of those players the voters deem borderline.

Then after 2003/04 he seemed to begin a slow steady ascent- at this point his polling was kind of tracking Blyleven but lagging, it was also tracking Lee Smith to some extent- one thing that in hindsight was obviously helping him was that no new obvious HOFer SPs were coming on the ballot these years- compqre that to the balloting history for guys like Luis Tiant and Jim Bunning
-

he had a noticeable boost in 2010 and again in 2012

One thing I noticed was that at about the same time that Morris was pulling 35-40- Rice was pulling around 50%+
Rice started about 7 points ahead of Morris- then gained in year 2 (Morris dropped in year 2) Rice hit 42.9 in year 3 (Morris was 20.6)
Rice was 51.2 in year 5, Morris 33.3
Rice was 59.4 in year 10, Morris 44.4
Rice was 72.2 in year 14, Morris 67.6
Rice cleared at 76.4 in his last year (a gain of 4.2) Morris will need a gain of 7.4, and he needs to do it in a year that Maddux and Glavine are on the ballot (moose too, but I'm guessing that while he'll beat how Wells and Brown, he won't seriously impact Morris' vote)

Bunning was at 74.2 in 1988, then Bench, Yaz, Perry, Jenkins and Palmer came on, he dropped back and had to wait for the Veteran's committee.

A year ago I thought his induction by the BBWAA was likely, 75% maybe, now I'd drop it to 25%, he needed to split teh distanec between 2012 (66.6%) and 75% (i.e, around 70-71%) he didn't.


   10. Bug Selig Posted: January 10, 2013 at 10:18 AM (#4344036)
Currently, Gil Hodges and Jack Morris are both inextricably tied to the fact that only two ball players have ever eclipsed 60% in the Hall of Fame voting and were never elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame.


This marks the first time in history that two people have been "inextricably tied" to a fact that is both temporary and untrue.
   11. Juilin Sandar to Conkling Speedwell (Arjun) Posted: January 10, 2013 at 10:23 AM (#4344040)
Is the BBWAA pitching to the score?
   12. SoSH U at work Posted: January 10, 2013 at 10:30 AM (#4344047)
A year ago I thought his induction by the BBWAA was likely, 75% maybe, now I'd drop it to 25%, he needed to split teh distanec between 2012 (66.6%) and 75% (i.e, around 70-71%) he didn't.


Still too high. I'd peg him less than 5 percent. He needed to make hay on this ballot, which was thin on pitchers who were clearly better.* He obviously couldn't do it. His only hope now is if a bunch of non-supporters in the BBWAA fear another empty election and vote more strategically for the top of the backlog, which seems pretty damn unlikely, but can't be ruled out. This was his chance, and he made virtually no progress.

* To the BBWAA. Obviously Schilling was clearly better.

   13. JRVJ Posted: January 10, 2013 at 10:31 AM (#4344049)
With all due respect, I think the stop-Jack-Morris campaigns are doing a lot more harm than good to the HoF.

Granted, 2014 is Morris' last year on the ballot, but I definitely think that his not being voted in in 2012, messed up this year's ballot and will certainly mess up next year's ballot.

Any and all energies regarding the HoF should be channeled towards actually getting the good candidates in that need to go in, as opposed to opposing Morris.
   14. OCF Posted: January 10, 2013 at 10:33 AM (#4344050)
Heck, in many respects Kenny Rogers (1st ballot next year) has a better case than Morris. How sad is that?

In an HoM thread a few days ago, I called Rogers a "poor man's Morris." There are a lot of similarities, including that both have actual W-L records that are much better than their neutralized RA+ based records, and by about the same amount. But Morris does have a career length and durability advantage over Rogers, and should rank ahead of him.
   15. RJ in TO Posted: January 10, 2013 at 10:34 AM (#4344051)
Granted, 2014 is Morris' last year on the ballot, but I definitely think that his not being voted in in 2012, messed up this year's ballot and will certainly mess up next year's ballot.

How did it mess the current ballot up? It's not like the majority of writers were using up all 10 spots on their ballot. They had room to vote for other worthy candidates, whether or not they were voting for Morris. Most voters had an additional 3 or 4 slots to them.
   16. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: January 10, 2013 at 10:37 AM (#4344053)
It is just like Jim Rice all over again. Ignored for years, and rightly so, then suddenly they start to pick up steam and people who can read statistics and not run screaming go 'uh wait a minute' and the BBWAA goes nuts and feels a need to elect them just to show who is boss.


This. There's a newish phenomena in the voting behavior that can be summed "oh, the stat dorks say no? Then he's got my vote!"
   17. SoSH U at work Posted: January 10, 2013 at 10:42 AM (#4344059)


This. There's a newish phenomena in the voting behavior that can be summed "oh, the stat dorks say no? Then he's got my vote!"


No, we don't really matter that much. Jim Rice's path to Cooperstown was rather unspectacular, no matter what kind of narrative we want to attach to it. He started at 30 percent of the vote and climbed slowly from there.
   18. DanG Posted: January 10, 2013 at 10:42 AM (#4344060)
I think the unfortunate necessity of the stop-Jack-Morris campaigns are doing a lot more harm than good to the HoF.

FTFY
   19. JJ1986 Posted: January 10, 2013 at 10:48 AM (#4344066)
No, we don't really matter that much. Jim Rice's path to Cooperstown was rather unspectacular, no matter what kind of narrative we want to attach to it. He started at 30 percent of the vote and climbed slowly from there.


It might not affect how many votes Rice or Morris get, but it certainly makes their more vocal supporters much angrier.
   20. SoSH U at work Posted: January 10, 2013 at 10:51 AM (#4344071)
It might not affect how many votes Rice or Morris get, but it certainly makes their more vocal supporters much angrier.


I'm sure it does, seeing as being called every variant of ####### idiot tends to have that effect on people. OTOH, they don't have a monopoly on anger, as yesterday's threads demonstrated.
   21. bobm Posted: January 10, 2013 at 10:52 AM (#4344073)
FTFA:

The 1991 World Series Most Valuable Player and former ace on three ball clubs that had won world championships has seen his candidacy for baseball’s greatest honor dissected beyond belief by a new generation of baseball analysts, the electronic media and reporters. Instead of the new age statistics and sabermetrics community endorsing his candidacy, Morris has suffered at the hands of Wins Above Replacement (WAR), Earned Run Average Plus (ERA+) and Win Probability Added (WPA).At initial glance, the modern metrics for evaluating ball players paints an ominous picture for Morris and concludes that he is not a Hall of Famer. Even if you were to compare Morris to the average statistics of a Hall of Fame pitcher in 11 traditional categories plus Wins Above Replacement (WAR), he would still be a borderline candidate at best.


To recap:

1. BBWAA members taking a definitive stand with regard to ball players who were either associated or could have been associated with performance enhancing substances: worthy of applause.

2. BBWAA members taking a definitive stand with regard to ball players whose statistics do not merit induction: unenlightened (and evidence of the absence of an epiphany)
   22. RJ in TO Posted: January 10, 2013 at 10:54 AM (#4344075)
OTOH, they don't have a monopoly on anger, as yesterday's threads demonstrated.

But the anger here is righteous, whereas theirs is foolish and wrongheaded.
   23. Bob Tufts Posted: January 10, 2013 at 10:55 AM (#4344076)
While you have to applaud the Baseball Writers Association of America for taking a definitive stand with regard to ball players who were either associated or could have been associated with performance enhancing substances


The new standard: Guilt by Could Have Been Associated.

posthumous honors for......George Steinbrenner


The second new standard: It is fine for someone who was suspended twice by MLB while an owner to be honored by the HOF without tainting its legacy.

   24. JRVJ Posted: January 10, 2013 at 11:11 AM (#4344097)
15, (1) The average ballot had 6.6 candidates on it.

Considering that we know that 5 ballots were sent empty and that at least 2 had only Morris on them (Ken Gurnick and Murray Chass, as some kind of statement), then you are wrong: most writers did not have 3 or 4 slots available to them.

http://bbwaa.com/13-hof-ballots/

(2) Yesterday I posted how 3 writers (Mike Imrem, Joe Christensen & Jeffrey Flanagan) whose ballot has been disclosed voted for 10 people (including Morris) but not for Baggio.

18, are they really necessary at this point? I would rather have Morris in if it means not having Edgar, Tramell or Raines logjammed.

I doubt very seriously that any of those gentlemen make it in now (via the BWAA).



   25. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: January 10, 2013 at 11:12 AM (#4344103)
No, we don't really matter that much. Jim Rice's path to Cooperstown was rather unspectacular, no matter what kind of narrative we want to attach to it. He started at 30 percent of the vote and climbed slowly from there.


Yes, Morris OTOH started from a lower level than Rice, and began climbing letter than Rice- Morris induction considering the voting on him the 1st 5 years would be fairly unusual- and the "curve" his voting has taken seems more like Blyleven's than it does Rice's...

   26. Ok, Griffey's Dunn (Nothing Iffey About Griffey) Posted: January 10, 2013 at 11:12 AM (#4344104)
Besides winning 15 or more games 12 times, he also had a streak of winning 14 or more games in a season from 1979 – 1988


Maddux won at least 15 games 17 years-in-a-row, which is as many years as Jack Morris had 100ip seasons.
   27. fra paolo Posted: January 10, 2013 at 11:16 AM (#4344108)
A year ago I thought his induction by the BBWAA was likely, 75% maybe, now I'd drop it to 25%, he needed to split teh distanec between 2012 (66.6%) and 75% (i.e, around 70-71%) he didn't.
Still too high. I'd peg him less than 5 percent.

This. The silver lining on any cloud associated with yesterday's electoral shut-out is that Jack Morris' candidacy is probably a lost cause now, as far as the BBWAA vote goes.

Saberists should try to be a bit more 'glass half full', he said, platitudinously.
   28. fra paolo Posted: January 10, 2013 at 11:18 AM (#4344111)
Edgar, Tramell or Raines logjammed.

I doubt very seriously that any of those gentlemen make it in now (via the BWAA).


I wouldn't count Raines out yet. Let's see what happens to his vote next year. If it holds up, I'd be optimistic.
   29. SoSH U at work Posted: January 10, 2013 at 11:18 AM (#4344112)
Yes, Morris OTOH started from a lower level than Rice, and began climbing letter than Rice- Morris induction considering the voting on him the 1st 5 years would be fairly unusual- and the "curve" his voting has taken seems more like Blyleven's than it does Rice's...


Not as unusual as Bert's, but atypical. Morris benefited most from the paucity of starting pitchers coming on the ballot who's career centered around the 1980s. But as with Rice, the anti-Morris crusade followed his ballot ascension (and those climbs are how a borderline/mistake makes it to Cooperstown. And once those guys start to build momentum, it tends to continue). But it was a backlash, not a forward one.

Edgar, Tramell or Raines logjammed.

I doubt very seriously that any of those gentlemen make it in now (via the BWAA).


Trammell has no hope through the BBWAA (but he didn't before yesterday anyway). Edgar, probably not, though I think hardline anti-DH types have always been his biggest impediment.

Raines remains on a clear path to induction. But yes, right now the logjam is the only thing that stands between him and eventual election. I still think he gets there, but it will be a lot harder than it would have been without the jam (but the jam was somewhat inevitable considering the sheer volume of Cooperstown-worthy players hitting the ballot. The BBWAA has just made it worse).
   30. DanG Posted: January 10, 2013 at 11:21 AM (#4344117)
18, are they really necessary at this point? I would rather have Morris in if it means not having Edgar, Tramell or Raines logjammed.

I doubt very seriously that any of those gentlemen make it in now
Yes, for one more year. After that Morris won't be around to suck votes away from deserving candidates.

From the beginning Trammell has never drawn enough support to put him an a track to election; the next two years are only prelude to his VC candidacy. As for Edgar and Raines, Morris' presence has had no meaningful impact on their non-elected status, and they still have many years left on the ballot.
   31. Nasty Nate Posted: January 10, 2013 at 11:24 AM (#4344122)
Morris’ candidacy has challenged all of us to go back and reflect on the intangibles that sabermetrics cannot and will not capture when it comes to measuring a ball player’s heart, intensity and overall influence on a ball club.


After this scolding of everyone to get away from the stats and consider intangibles .... he immediately lists his stats.

While you have to applaud the Baseball Writers Association of America for taking a definitive stand with regard to ball players who were either associated or could have been associated with performance enhancing substances


wow.
   32. Ok, Griffey's Dunn (Nothing Iffey About Griffey) Posted: January 10, 2013 at 11:30 AM (#4344131)
Besides winning 15 or more games 12 times, he also had a streak of winning 14 or more games in a season from 1979 – 1988


Maddux won at least 15 games 17 years-in-a-row, which is as many years as Jack Morris had 100ip seasons.


Heck, Mickey Lolich won at least 14 games in a season from 1964-1974, had a season where he finished 2nd in the Cy voting, pitched at least 300 innings 4-years-in-a-row and never got more than 25.5% of the vote. These numbers of Jack's just aren't that impressive in the context of the time he was playing.
   33. valuearbitrageur Posted: January 10, 2013 at 11:58 AM (#4344158)
Morris pitched 250 or more innings on six different occasions


Schilling did it 5 times, in an era where IP were significantly lower for starters, which was good enough for only 35% of the vote, so Jack should be pleased.
   34. JRVJ Posted: January 10, 2013 at 12:04 PM (#4344162)
29, you sort of get my point at the end of your post. The logjam was inevitable for historical reasons, but keeping players on the ballot in a high 60s limbo hinders all candidates.

Let's look at next year's ballot. You have 3 first-ballot-level candidates (Maddux, Glavine & Frank Thomas) and 2 pretty-strong-candidates-to-get-in-eventually-in-normal-times (Mussina and Kent). Since Morris is either going in or being dropped in 2014, the HoF has to enshrine at least 4 non-Morris candidates to keep the logjam as it is (which means keeping.

The 2015 has Randy, Pedro, Smoltz and Sheffield (2 first-level guys, 1 pretty-sure he's in and 1 borderline candidate).

So again, the HoF has to vote in at least 3 of these 4 gentlemen (because of Sheffield is a debatable candidate), in order to keep the logjam at the same level.

The fact that Morris was not voted in last year means that he helped clog up this year's ballot. And the fact that he is still on this year's ballot (essentially with the same level of support as last year: 2/3rs of the voters), means that he is going to clog up next year's ballot.

And this clogging up effect is screwing everybody else/will have ripple effect that will be felt at least for 3-4 more years.

   35. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: January 10, 2013 at 12:42 PM (#4344204)
Maddux won at least 15 games 17 years-in-a-row, which is as many years as Jack Morris had 100ip seasons.


Maddux isn't the in/out line, he's nowhere near where that line is (or should be)

Morris problem, is not that he isn't as good as Maddux, it;'s that he's not demonstrably better than a raft of other guys, like Frank Tanana or Dennis Martinez
not to mention someone like Tommy John who laps Morris on longevity or Saberhagen who blows him out of the water on peak

Why Morris and not Luis Tiant?
Tiant was a star when pitching, was seen as a big game pitcher, had a far higher peak, and career nearly as long...

   36. SandyRiver Posted: January 10, 2013 at 12:45 PM (#4344208)
15, (1) The average ballot had 6.6 candidates on it.

Considering that we know that 5 ballots were sent empty and that at least 2 had only Morris on them (Ken Gurnick and Murray Chass, as some kind of statement), then you are wrong: most writers did not have 3 or 4 slots available to them.

This may be correct, as it only requires that at least 285 of the 569 voters listed 8 or more names. However, the 7 ballots cited above make only a tiny bit of difference. Assuming exactly 6.6 (not 6.64 or 6.57) per ballot, removing the above 7 and their 2-name total would increase the names per ballot all the way to 6.68.

Apologies for the arithmetical pedantry...

Edit: Or to be a real pedant, it would be true if at least 285 listed either 8/more, or 5/less, as only the remainder of voters would have precisely 3 or precisely 4 open slots. ;)
   37. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: January 10, 2013 at 01:02 PM (#4344231)
And this clogging up effect is screwing everybody else/will have ripple effect that will be felt at least for 3-4 more years.


You can always put people in the Hall later, but there's currently no mechanism for taking people out.
   38. Squash Posted: January 10, 2013 at 01:04 PM (#4344233)
No, we don't really matter that much. Jim Rice's path to Cooperstown was rather unspectacular, no matter what kind of narrative we want to attach to it. He started at 30 percent of the vote and climbed slowly from there.

Depends what you mean by much. Anti-stat backlash doesn't account for 50% of Morris's vote, but I would feel pretty comfortable saying it's 5-10% at this point (and maybe more), given how many Morris voters seem to specifically say something about throwing out the stats or new fangled-statistics or whatever, and that's from all the relatively young writers who still have a beat. Given that Morris does significantly better in the non-Gizmo writers i.e. the old fogies one would expect that sentiment to run even higher among them. It's not a huge chunk but that 5-10% means a whole lot to Morris's candidacy.
   39. JE (Jason) Posted: January 10, 2013 at 01:09 PM (#4344242)
Shorter JJ1986: Jack à de longue moustache. Je répète: Jack à de longue moustache.
   40. spike Posted: January 10, 2013 at 01:11 PM (#4344245)
Both were arguably the best at their position at a time where (for whatever reason) the position was unusually weak in terms of Hall of Fame candidates

No snark intended, but what year was either considered the best at their position, and by whom? Just flipping through Hodges stats, he never seemed to be an AS starter, and Morris never finished higher than 3rd in Cy Young voting.
   41. SoSH U at work Posted: January 10, 2013 at 01:19 PM (#4344253)
Depends what you mean by much. Anti-stat backlash doesn't account for 50% of Morris's vote, but I would feel pretty comfortable saying it's 5-10% at this point (and maybe more), given how many Morris voters seem to specifically say something about throwing out the stats or new fangled-statistics or whatever, and that's from all the relatively young writer's who still have a beat. Given that Morris does significantly better in the non-Gizmo writers i.e. the old fogies one would expect that sentiment to run even higher among them. It's not a huge chunk but that 5-10% means a whole lot to Morris's candidacy.


Just because they're acknowledging the anti-arguments doesn't mean their votes are in response to them (which is obviously true if they've been voting Jack since the beginning, as 1/3 of Jack's supporters have been doing).

The anti-Morris sentiment didn't start in earnest until he cleared 50 percent (when it became possible that he'd get elected). Since then, he's only picked up another 15 percent or so (and almost nothing this year, when the anti-argument has been at its strongest). You can ascribe his gains to anti-stat sentiment, but you could just as easily, and with more historical evidence to support it, attribute it to the natural momentum that happens when a guy clears 50 (and, in Jack's case, when the single better candidate at his position is finally elected. Morris made his biggest gain, by far, in the year following Bert's election.).

As for the oldest of fogies, the ones Gizmo doesn't catch and the demographic where Jack's support is strongest, there's a real possibility that a great many of them don't even know us statnerds exist.
   42. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: January 10, 2013 at 01:28 PM (#4344264)
Both were arguably the best at their position at a time where (for whatever reason) the position was unusually weak in terms of Hall of Fame candidates

No snark intended, but what year was either considered the best at their position, and by whom?


At no point in time while he was playing did anyone other than the random Morris fanboy say, gee, Jack Morris is the best pitcher in baseball, it was ALWAYS someone else, Gooden, Saberhagen, Clemens etc.,
what happened was AFTER he stooped playing the "Most wins in the 80s" stuff transmorgified into "best pitcher of the 80s" and "most dominant pitcher of the 80s" assertions which if made IN the 80s would have induced spittakes.

Of course the best argument against the "most wins in the 80s stuff is to say, "Mark Grace for the HOF!"

Hodges was before my time, but he made 8 all star teams, and received MVP votes in 9 years, he never came close to winning- what it looks to me is that he was a very highly respected player while playing (as as Morris- as he should have been) but I don't see that he was thought of as a dominant or GREAT player at the time


   43. DanG Posted: January 10, 2013 at 01:29 PM (#4344265)
To add to #41, when Jim Kaat left the ballot, Morris moved over the 25% line for the first time. When Tommy John left the ballot, Morris moved over the 50% line for the first time. Best in class means a lot on the HOF ballot.
   44. mathesond Posted: January 10, 2013 at 01:44 PM (#4344284)
I have to say, I chuckled (quietly, to myself)at #11
   45. homerwannabee Posted: January 10, 2013 at 02:16 PM (#4344320)
To be honest the only good thing about this log jam is Morris is probably not getting elected by the writers. Besides the ability to not get injured in his career, there is nothing really special about Morris.
   46. Squash Posted: January 10, 2013 at 02:37 PM (#4344346)
The anti-Morris sentiment didn't start in earnest until he cleared 50 percent (when it became possible that he'd get elected).

Why do we assume all anti-stat support for Morris only began after he cleared 50% (i.e. when stat guys started disavowing his election)? The mid-late 2000s ballots when guys like Sutter and Rice were getting elected and Morris was starting to pull big numbers were an orgy of "the fear" and "beyond the stats" and "old school numbers" sentiment, and was right in the peak of the stats-anti stats war in all the baseball media. Remember the uproar from old school guys in 2008-10 when pitchers started winning Cy Youngs with Win totals in the mid-teens? That's right when Morris started getting his big bumps and "pitching to the score" and "most wins in the 80s" took center stage. I would say part of that 5-10% I theorized was built into him reaching 50% (or 40% or whatever) in the first place and reaching the electionable point, when the whole thing took off and Morris gained more support, predominantly from traditional momentum and Blyleven being cleared out, but also from a few more wait-a-minute-you-whippersnappers voters jumping on as a result of stat guys collectively going nuts over the idea that Morris might be elected.

As for the oldest of fogies, the ones Gizmo doesn't catch and the demographic where Jack's support is strongest, there's a real possibility that a great many of them don't even know us statnerds exist.

I think that's underestimating the old fogies, unless if you're talking about guys in their 80s+ who never pick up a newspaper and don't watch baseball on TV anymore. There aren't many of those guys. I think all of us overestimate how many voters there are who have no connection whatsoever to the game anymore, have no idea of the changes that have occurred in the baseball landscape over the last 10 years, and are just picking names out of a hat.

I think Morris is a complicated candidate, and his candidacy is due to a perfect storm of a lot of different factors all coming together at once - a long patch of no excellent durable SPs, the stat wars, the steroid era, bullpen evolution, the decline of moustaches as non-ironic fashion choice, etc. That he and Blyleven, who both seem specifically constructed to tweak different aspects of this perfect storm both came up at essentially the same time in HOF voting is proof that the baseball gods have a sense of humor.
   47. GuyM Posted: January 10, 2013 at 02:49 PM (#4344360)
Any and all energies regarding the HoF should be channeled towards actually getting the good candidates in that need to go in, as opposed to opposing Morris.

Regardless of how much or how little of Morris' current support you believe stems from an anti-stats backlash, I think this is good advice. Probably the only way Morris makes it now is IF his election becomes a proxy vote on whether or not the BBWAA is a bunch of idiots. So those who don't think Morris should go in will do more to accomplish that goal if they focus on making a positive case for players likely to be undervalued by the writers (Raines, Bagwell), with a particular focus on the non-automatic pitchers who deserve more support than Morris: Schilling, Mussina, Glavine. If you do that, the combination of the 10-vote limit and the logjam of strong candidates will prevent Morris from reaching 75%.
   48. SoSH U at work Posted: January 10, 2013 at 02:55 PM (#4344362)
Why do we assume all anti-stat support for Morris only began after he cleared 50% (i.e. when stat guys started disavowing his election)?


Because that's when the anti-stat side started taking his case more seriously. Before he cleared 50 percent, he wasn't seen as a terribly realistic candidate. There was always some refutation of the pitching to the score silliness and spotty anti-Jack commentary, but the growth in anti-Morris sentiment was in response to rising support, not a fuel for it. And there's no doubt it was at its most vocal after the 2012 election, and the 2013 election provided almost no movement in the Jack for HoF case.

It's possible there's some anti-stats backlash behind his vote. It's an entertaining narrative, no doubt, as it thrusts us right into the action. But making it involves considerable mindreading, which I find is best left in the hands of the professionals (DiPerna, mostly).


I think that's underestimating the old fogies, unless if you're talking about guys in their 80s+ who never pick up a newspaper and don't watch baseball on TV anymore.


You don't need to be that unconnected to be largely oblivious to the strong strain of anti-Morris sentiment. Our voice isn't exactly taking over the MSM.

Edit: And despite my comments, I agree with Guy's 47 and similar remarks. It's better to advocate for than to rail against.
   49. The Non-Catching Molina (sjs1959) Posted: January 10, 2013 at 03:02 PM (#4344369)
Yes, because while I agree that Morris isn't necessarily worthy, I am not going to weep if the VC puts him in a few years down the road, which I suspect will happen to Trammell. Let's just keep pushing for Raines and not worry about Morris.
   50. JRVJ Posted: January 10, 2013 at 03:13 PM (#4344379)
37, to quote Sports Illustrated: "there's no point in becoming a member when you are too old to enjoy it" (or dead, ala Ron Santo).

Check page 78 of this SI Issue for the quote.
   51. Fernigal McGunnigle has become a merry hat Posted: January 10, 2013 at 03:21 PM (#4344389)
Heck, in many respects Kenny Rogers (1st ballot next year) has a better case than Morris.


Rogers was the only man to be the 2006 Cardinals juggernaut in the World Series. Seriously, his 2006 postseason was pretty sweet -- 3 starts and 3 wins, 23 IP, 0 runs, 9 hits, 7 BB, 19 K.

Rogers lead the league in games pitched in 1992 and in batters faced in 2000. That's an unusual combination, and makes me wonder if any other pitcher has matched it since the live ball era. A quick check shows that Feller did it, but when he led the league in games pitched it was with 43 and 44 (in 1940 and 1941), two of the lowest totals in the history of the AL (Joe Haynes had 40 appearances in 1942, and Eddie Plank had 43 in 1903). Point is that Rogers is the most interesting guy to do this, as he was a near-LOOGY in 1992 (80 games, 78.2 IP) and then a guy who made 34 starts and threw 227 innings in 2000. Feller was just a guy who made a lot of starts.

Several dead ball guys pulled off the feat -- Johnson, Mathewson, Ed Walsh, Joe McGinnity, Plank, Pud Galvin, Old Hoss Radbourn, and I stopped looking after that. Early guys tended to do both in the same year, as whoever made the most starts almost inevitably faced the most batters.
   52. jmurph Posted: January 10, 2013 at 03:28 PM (#4344397)
Any and all energies regarding the HoF should be channeled towards actually getting the good candidates in that need to go in, as opposed to opposing Morris.


It's the same thing- not even two sides of the same coin, it's the same side. The Hall of Fame is for the best players. He isn't one of the best. His getting in would lessen the honor*, just like Rice getting in lessens it, just like Trammell and Piazza being kept out lessens it (I'm not particularly fired up about Raines, love him though I did).

*"Lessen" in the context of these discussions. I doubt the players think this way, but I could be wrong.
   53. Bug Selig Posted: January 10, 2013 at 03:29 PM (#4344400)
Morris never finished higher than 3rd in Cy Young voting.


But the BBWAA guys are so much smarter than the guys who vote for...

Never mind.
   54. DL from MN Posted: January 10, 2013 at 03:33 PM (#4344404)
Best in class means a lot on the HOF ballot.


Let's look at the history of Jack Morris on HOF ballots

2000 - Blyleven, Gossage, Tiant, John, Kaat, Guidry all better pitchers. Bob Welch and Charlie Hough probably rank behind Morris. Morris #7
2001 - All above come back except Welch and Hough. Dave Stewart added but probably behind Morris. Morris #7
2002 - All above except Stewart return, Frank Viola added and I'd put him ahead of Morris. Morris #8.
2003 - Tiant and Guidry leave. Viola fails to get 5% Blyleven, Gossage, John and Kaat still there. Fernando comes on but I like Morris better. Morris #5
2004 - Kaat runs out of time but Blyleven, Gossage and John still available. Dave Stieb only gets 7 votes and he's much better than Morris. Morris #5
2005 - Blyleven, Gossage and John. Morris #4
2006 - Hershiser and Gooden added (Gooden < 5%). Morris #6
2007 - Saberhagen added and draws < 5%. Morris #6.
2008 - Saberhagen and Hershiser don't return. Gossage elected. Chuck Finley added. Morris #5.
2009 - John's 15th ballot. Cone debuts < 5%. Morris #4.
2010 - Appier debuts < 5%. Morris #3.
2011 - Blyleven elected. Kevin Brown debuts < 5%. Morris #3.
2012 - Radke debuts. Jack Morris is legitimately the best SP on the ballot.
2013 - Clemens, Schilling and Boomer Wells debut. Morris #4.

Jack Morris has been the best pitcher available on a Hall of Fame ballot once and only because the voters rejected nine better pitchers after he showed up. the 2012 ballot should have had Cone, Brown, Stieb, Hershiser and Gooden at a minimum but the BBWAA hates pitchers.
   55. MelOtt4 Posted: January 10, 2013 at 03:34 PM (#4344405)
A few differences between Rice and Morris. One is black with a stache the other white with a stache.

Seriously. While the campaigns are similiar, Morris may be #### out of luck next season. Rice on his 14th ballot was at 72.2% and the only newcomer the following year was Rickey Henderson. Jack Morris is still under 68% and the ballot only gets tougher next year.
   56. Squash Posted: January 10, 2013 at 03:40 PM (#4344413)
Because that's when the anti-stat side started taking his case more seriously. Before he cleared 50 percent, he wasn't seen as a terribly realistic candidate. There was always some refutation of the pitching to the score silliness and spotty anti-Jack commentary, but the growth in anti-Morris sentiment was in response to rising support, not a fuel for it.

Well, as I stated I think part of his rise to being an electable candidate was a response by a segment of the MSM to the devaluing of wins as a stat, specifically when new-stat types began saying they weren't as important as previously believed and guys started winning the Cy with 13-15 wins a year. Morris became the candidate for the old guard that wanted to prove wins were still valuable (pitching to the score and so on). That all was going on and discussed widely (beginning in 2008 when Lincecum won the Cy with 15 wins, cresting when Felix won in 2010 with 13 wins, which a lot of people went nuts about) at the very same time Morris was making his major rise from the 35s-40s to where he is today.

The players who gain votes don't just gain votes because that's what players do (many do not) - it's a combination of momentum, familiarity, their numbers getting explained in new and exciting ways, narrative, outside forces (Lederer for Blyleven being the perfect example), etc. I think perhaps we're agreeing in a way - I agree that the growth in anti-Morris fervor was a response to his rising support. And I think part of his rising support was due to other battles that were going on in the stat-anti stat "war" - the valuation of wins to be exact and specifically a reaction to the big win-devaluation that was going on in the late 2000s. The argument became about Morris, but at its root it's a conglomeration of several arguments. And again, I don't think this is the massive majority of his support - I said 5-10%. Small but not insignificant.

It's possible there's some anti-stats backlash behind his vote. It's an entertaining narrative, no doubt, as it thrusts us right into the action. But making it involves considerable mindreading, which I find is best left in the hands of the professionals (DiPerna, mostly).

I don't think you have to work too hard to find anti-stats backlash in many MSM American baseball writers i.e. HOF voters, in fact you have to work incredibly hard not to. I mean, I get that we're all just a bunch of snot-nosed kids who just want to be noticed, but THE story in baseball over the last ten years has been some version of new stats and steroids, and the confluence of the fact that many of the biggest roiders were lumbering high-OBP, high-power sluggers i.e. new-stat favorites. That HOF voters would not have SOME reaction to the new stats wave, both good and bad, seems both extremely unlikely to me and not in keeping with basic human behavior. We react (and overreact) to just about everything.
   57. DL from MN Posted: January 10, 2013 at 03:53 PM (#4344431)
anti-stats backlash


It's not anti-stats. It's anti-value stats. They LOVE stats like wins and complete games and RBI and batting average. They just don't like stats that actually tell you if the guy was any good.
   58. DanG Posted: January 10, 2013 at 04:00 PM (#4344438)
When I said "Best in class means a lot on the HOF ballot", that was preceded by the unspoken phrase "Being perceived as...." IOW, the class of most career Wins.


   59. SoSH U at work Posted: January 10, 2013 at 04:02 PM (#4344440)
When I said "Best in class means a lot on the HOF ballot", that was preceded by the unspoken phrase "Being perceived as...."


I've been there Dan.
   60. DL from MN Posted: January 10, 2013 at 04:36 PM (#4344474)
class of most career Wins.


Even then Blyleven and John were there for nearly every ballot.
   61. Austin Posted: January 10, 2013 at 04:53 PM (#4344493)
Ben Lindbergh and Sam Miller brought up an interesting point on their podcast today. They realized that they couldn't recall ever reading a voter explaining why he switched from voting "no" on Jack Morris to voting "yes." It seems as though voters who write columns every winter explaining their choices just have Morris magically appear one year and spew out some explanation of dominance, intimidation, grit, etc., without saying why they changed their mind. This impression strikes me as accurate, although I suppose it's possible that voters rarely bother to explain their switch from "no" to "yes" explicitly, or that I haven't carefully read enough Morris-for-HOF columns. Can anyone else recall reading such an explanation?
   62. Rob_Wood Posted: January 10, 2013 at 05:16 PM (#4344517)
Many voters take cues from the previous year's results. They vote for players whose pcts are increasing and, to a lesser extent, withhold votes from players whose pcts are decreasing. This is undoubtedly a psychological issue probably named the "bandwagon" effect in academic journals.
   63. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: January 10, 2013 at 05:28 PM (#4344527)
It seems as though voters who write columns every winter explaining their choices just have Morris magically appear one year and spew out some explanation of dominance, intimidation, grit, etc., without saying why they changed their mind. This impression strikes me as accurate, although I suppose it's possible that voters rarely bother to explain their switch from "no" to "yes" explicitly, or that I haven't carefully read enough Morris-for-HOF columns. Can anyone else recall reading such an explanation?


I've seen a small handful say that early on his career ERA (3.90) bothered them, but since then they've seen perfectly good pitchers post ERAs higher than 4.00 so Morris' wasn't as bad as they thought...

so on the one had they recognize that it was much harder for a pitchers in the 90s-00s to post "good" ERAs (by historical standards) and are they're adjusting in their heads what a good ERA is, but OTOH they are applying those new standards back in time when they shouldn't.

That pretty much is the only explanation I've ever seen from someone who switched to vote yes, the impression I get from most vocal Morris supporters is that they are trying to create the impression that they always supported him
   64. GuyM Posted: January 10, 2013 at 05:46 PM (#4344540)
so on the one had they recognize that it was much harder for a pitchers in the 90s-00s to post "good" ERAs (by historical standards) and are they're adjusting in their heads what a good ERA is, but OTOH they are applying those new standards back in time when they shouldn't.

That's a good point. Morris is very lucky that the offensive explosion basically began right after his career ended. Back in his day, the idea of a "3.90 HOF pitcher" would have just been laughed at. Anything over 4.00 and you weren't even considered good. But writers' standards for a "good ERA" have moved upward since then.

   65. Walt Davis Posted: January 10, 2013 at 07:02 PM (#4344595)
Can anyone else recall reading such an explanation?

Yes, although not in detail and maybe not in recent years. I recall them as usually being something like "Tom Verducci's column about Jack Morris last week made a strong case for him, including the amazing fact that he went 27 straight starts without taking a crap, so I've added him to my ballot this year."

While it obviously helped Blyleven a lot more, I think Lederer's campaign indirectly helped Morris as well. There were a lot of voters out there who saw neither as HoF worthy but roughly similar pitchers. Once convinced to vote Blyleven, a lot added Morris (I'm guessing). Morris may have picked up some anti-Lederer backlash votes but I tend to doubt there were very many of those.

Re-doing DL's list:

2000: debut, 22%, #3 starter in the vote
2001: #3 returning, drops to #4 behind Blyleven
2002: #4 returning, stays #4 but John, Kaat, Blyleven and Morris basically all in a bunch
2003: #4 returning, no progress, Blyleven #1, Kaat leaves
2004: #3 returning, rises with Blyleven to #2, 9 points behind Blyleven
2005: #2 returning, rises with Blyleven, 8 points behind
2006: #2 returning, rises with Blyleven, 12 points behind
2007: #2 returning, falls with Blyleven, 10 points behind (Ripken, Gwynn)
2008: #2 returning, small jump but big for Blyleven, 19 points behind
2009: #2 returning, stagnant with Blyleven, 18 points behind
2010: #2 returning, big jump but less then B, 22 points behind
2011: #2 returning, Blyleven in, stagnant
2012: #1 returning, big jump
2013: #1 returning, Schilling added, small jump

The unusual bits are:

a) getting passed by Blyleven which happened early
b) when John and Kaat fell back to Morris and Blyleven, passed by both
c) when Blyleven added 9 points to his lead on Morris

It's really Blyleven's transition from the #4 SP in the 2000 vote (3rd year on ballot) to the #1 SP in the 2003 vote with 12% more than 2000 while going up against the same 4 pitchers which is hard to explain. Once Blyleven was #1, things flowed fairly normally for him except for the big jump in 2008. And once Morris was #2, things flowed pretty steadily.

Next year he will be the #1 returning starter but certainly the #2 and likely the #3 starter in almost every voter's mind. For some voter's, even supporters, he could be as low as #5. As has been noted by others, if the voters had given Blyleven that last little push in 2010, Morris would have had the ballot to himself for two years and likely would have grown more. Being stagnant in 2011 really did him in.

   66. Austin Posted: January 10, 2013 at 09:48 PM (#4344683)
I've seen a small handful say that early on his career ERA (3.90) bothered them, but since then they've seen perfectly good pitchers post ERAs higher than 4.00 so Morris' wasn't as bad as they thought...

so on the one had they recognize that it was much harder for a pitchers in the 90s-00s to post "good" ERAs (by historical standards) and are they're adjusting in their heads what a good ERA is, but OTOH they are applying those new standards back in time when they shouldn't.

That pretty much is the only explanation I've ever seen from someone who switched to vote yes, the impression I get from most vocal Morris supporters is that they are trying to create the impression that they always supported him


That sounds right to me, although it smells like a rationalization for what's ultimately just a bandwagon vote.

While it obviously helped Blyleven a lot more, I think Lederer's campaign indirectly helped Morris as well. There were a lot of voters out there who saw neither as HoF worthy but roughly similar pitchers. Once convinced to vote Blyleven, a lot added Morris (I'm guessing).


I hadn't heard this explanation before, but I like it a lot. It would certainly seem to account for the dramatic way in which both came back from the depths of 20%-ish vote totals mostly simultaneously.
   67. Howie Menckel Posted: January 10, 2013 at 10:44 PM (#4344711)
Mussina: 270-153, 3.68 ERA, 123 ERA+, 3563 IP, plus 3.42 ERA in 140 postseason IP
JMorris:: 254-186, 3.90 ERA, 105 ERA+, 3824 IP, plus 3.80 ERA in 92 postseason IP

this would be obvious kryptonite for Morris, except:
- Morris started on opening day a lot
- Morris has the Game 7 magic
- Morris went 7-4 and Mussina went 7-8 even though Mussina had the better career postseason ERA

The 2014 ballots that list Morris but not Mussina will be fun, though. Mussina will be denied entry, I guess, because he didn't inspire his batters as well as Morris did in the postseason, and that makes up for a spectacular regular season shortfall when both often pitched on winning teams.

Nuance - which is welcomed - can make the cases closer, I think, but can anyone vote for Morris and not Mussina?

   68. Ray (RDP) Posted: January 10, 2013 at 10:56 PM (#4344717)
I don't know why people think Maddux is getting in next year when Morris hasn't gotten in. Consider:

Opening Day Starts: Morris 14, Maddux 9

10-inning Game 7 shutout WS performances: Morris 1, Maddux 0

Number of times leading the '80s in wins: Morris 1, Maddux 0

Number of mustaches: Morris 1, Maddux 0

Number of times referred to as a workhorse: Morris 2,443,134, Maddux 0

Number of times beating out Dan Petry, Juan Berenguer, Walt Terrell, and Frank Tanana for the Opening Day Start: Morris 14, Maddux 0
   69. JJ1986 Posted: January 10, 2013 at 11:03 PM (#4344720)
Number of mustaches: Morris 1, Maddux 0

I think Maddux gets at lest .25 mustaches for this.
   70. bobm Posted: January 10, 2013 at 11:41 PM (#4344735)
Why do we assume all anti-stat support for Morris only began after he cleared 50% (i.e. when stat guys started disavowing his election)? The mid-late 2000s ballots when guys like Sutter and Rice were getting elected and Morris was starting to pull big numbers were an orgy of "the fear" and "beyond the stats" and "old school numbers" sentiment, and was right in the peak of the stats-anti stats war in all the baseball media. Remember the uproar from old school guys in 2008-10 when pitchers started winning Cy Youngs with Win totals in the mid-teens? That's right when Morris started getting his big bumps and "pitching to the score" and "most wins in the 80s" took center stage.


ISTM that the rise of Morris in the MSM / anti value-stats movement are also a backlash by proxy against the decline in traditional media's stranglehold on sports analysis. There must be plenty of Morris supporters who hate the internet and its resulting democratization of news dissemination and sports analysis, bloggers like Chass aside. The attention drawn by Repoz and the Gizmo and BBTF epitomize the good (for the thinking fan) and the bad (for the impotent has-been sclerotic writer of cliches).
   71. Repoz Posted: January 11, 2013 at 12:00 AM (#4344742)
Ben Lindbergh and Sam Miller brought up an interesting point on their podcast today. They realized that they couldn't recall ever reading a voter explaining why he switched from voting "no" on Jack Morris to voting "yes."

I've told this before but a few years ago Hal Bodley and Murray Chass were on the YES Network for a HOF roundtable thingee...Bodley said he was only going to vote for one player (I think it was Rickey...gotta check my records). A vein-throbing Murray Chass started severely browbeating-up Bodley into voting for Jack Morris (Bodley had NEVER voted for Morris before this). An overwhelmed/scared Bodley then promised Chass he would add Morris top his ballot.

Bodly has now voted for Jack Morris every election since...and has the ####### ball-less balls to question why Morris hasn't been voted in previously.

Hal Bodley: Morris' body of work worthy of Hall inclusion

" That said, it boggles my mind how they've dropped the ball so dramatically when it comes to Jack Morris.

Morris should have been elected years ago. Hopefully, this injustice will be corrected when results of the 2012 balloting are announced Monday.

That he has not received more support in previous years is a mystery to many voting members of the Baseball Writers' Association of America."

The mind ####### reels.
   72. bobm Posted: January 11, 2013 at 12:41 AM (#4344760)
[71] I cannot find the video but was it this appearance?

http://www.bronxbanterblog.com/2008/12/05/good-as-gold/

I caught the YES Hot Stove show last night.  The panel featured veteran newspaper men Hal Bodley, Murray Chass and Jack Curry.  It has become all too easy to call out Chass which is a shame because he was so good for so long.  So I won’t pile on but he really didn’t come off well.  He monopolized the conversation and what he said…oy.  Bodley was fine if somewhat bland and Curry was good as usual. And our pal Steve Goldman distinguished himself in an oddly-conceived segment as the “Interweb Expert.”
   73. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: January 11, 2013 at 12:48 AM (#4344766)
I don't know why people think Maddux is getting in next year when Morris hasn't gotten in. Consider:

Opening Day Starts: Morris 14, Maddux 9

10-inning Game 7 shutout WS performances: Morris 1, Maddux 0

Number of times leading the '80s in wins: Morris 1, Maddux 0

Number of mustaches: Morris 1, Maddux 0

Number of times referred to as a workhorse: Morris 2,443,134, Maddux 0

Number of times beating out Dan Petry, Juan Berenguer, Walt Terrell, and Frank Tanana for the Opening Day Start: Morris 14, Maddux 0


But did Jack Morris ever piss on Larry Herndon in the shower? There are still many unanswered questions. Wait a year.
   74. Repoz Posted: January 11, 2013 at 05:35 AM (#4344818)
I cannot find the video but was it this appearance?

Yeah, that was it.

I think Goldman wasn't in the room with them and would cut to him for factual stuff.

Chass no like.
   75. Rants Mulliniks Posted: January 11, 2013 at 08:44 AM (#4344857)
Nuance - which is welcomed - can make the cases closer, I think, but can anyone vote for Morris and not Mussina?


No, but only because Mussina went 20-9 in his last season rather than 19-10.
   76. What's the realistic upside, RMc? Posted: January 11, 2013 at 08:45 AM (#4344859)
(Kenny) Rogers a "poor man's (Jack) Morris."

Ladies and gentlemen, the last two starting pitchers to win a World Series game for Detroit.
   77. BDC Posted: January 11, 2013 at 10:03 AM (#4344894)
- Morris has the Game 7 magic
- Morris went 7-4 and Mussina went 7-8


Mussina was obviously a better pitcher than Morris, but that one factor, however small a factor, does tip to Morris. Unlucky or whatever, Mussina spent eight years with the New York Yankees and won no rings. They won the World Series the year before he got there and the year after he left. Just a glitch in the cosmic order of things, but it happened …
   78. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: January 11, 2013 at 11:17 AM (#4344965)
So if Morris does eventually get in, either next year or at some later date via a VC, is he going to invite Lonnie Smith to introduce him?
   79. My name is Votto, and I love to get blotto Posted: January 11, 2013 at 11:35 AM (#4344977)
#78: Knoblauch and Gene Larkin.

   80. JJ1986 Posted: January 11, 2013 at 11:57 AM (#4344992)
So if Morris does eventually get in, either next year or at some later date via a VC, is he going to invite Lonnie Smith to introduce him?


Drew Coble
   81. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: January 11, 2013 at 12:19 PM (#4345015)
   82. Bitter Mouse Posted: January 11, 2013 at 12:49 PM (#4345043)
Ray, 68 is wonderful. Thanks for the laugh.

This whole discussion almost makes me not like Morris. And then I remember 1991. Game seven was magical. The whole series was. Jack Morris will always have a spot in my sports heart. I don't want him in the HoF, but if that is the price I pay for Game seven then it is a small price.
   83. JRVJ Posted: January 11, 2013 at 01:35 PM (#4345086)
82, not saying this is you, but I really get the feeling that some anti-Morris-for-the-HoF types cross the line so as to dislike Morris the person (or at least don't try to differentiate the HoF candidacy of Morris from Mr. Morris, who may be a douche, a regular dude or the salt of the Earth).
   84. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: January 11, 2013 at 01:40 PM (#4345091)
I've found myself feeling that way sometimes and I was always a fan of Morris, heck I even liked Jim Rice (never feared him though).
   85. Nasty Nate Posted: January 11, 2013 at 01:46 PM (#4345098)
82, not saying this is you, but I really get the feeling that some anti-Morris-for-the-HoF types cross the line so as to dislike Morris the person (or at least don't try to differentiate the HoF candidacy of Morris from Mr. Morris, who may be a douche, a regular dude or the salt of the Earth).


Another drawback to the pervading obsession with the HOF as a baseball topic.
   86. Bitter Mouse Posted: January 11, 2013 at 01:46 PM (#4345099)
JRVJ, yes, but I also see some reaction against the messengers. The pro-Morris types (posters and writers) are not the most popular here and tend to provoke reactions that likely spill over onto poor Mr. Morris.

It is hard to say someone is not worthy of HoF without occasionally forgetting (not mentioning) that they are fine ball players in any event.
   87. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: January 11, 2013 at 01:58 PM (#4345108)
I really get the feeling that some anti-Morris-for-the-HoF types cross the line so as to dislike Morris the person (or at least don't try to differentiate the HoF candidacy of Morris from Mr. Morris, who may be a douche, a regular dude or the salt of the Earth)


In fairness to those you consider line-crossers, Morris certainly comes off as a douche whenever he's quoted about the HOF.
   88. Ray (RDP) Posted: January 11, 2013 at 03:06 PM (#4345170)

Mussina was obviously a better pitcher than Morris, but that one factor, however small a factor, does tip to Morris. Unlucky or whatever, Mussina spent eight years with the New York Yankees and won no rings. They won the World Series the year before he got there and the year after he left. Just a glitch in the cosmic order of things, but it happened …


I think something similar happened with Donnie Baseball.
   89. Ray (RDP) Posted: January 11, 2013 at 03:08 PM (#4345175)
82, not saying this is you, but I really get the feeling that some anti-Morris-for-the-HoF types cross the line so as to dislike Morris the person (or at least don't try to differentiate the HoF candidacy of Morris from Mr. Morris, who may be a douche, a regular dude or the salt of the Earth).


I don't dislike Morris the person - indeed I've never met him - and I don't have a sense that what he's said publicly about this issue has been annoying. I don't have a wide sense of what he's said, but at most he's been guilty of believing his press clippings. Big whoop.

Now I do think Gossage is a douche.
   90. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: January 11, 2013 at 03:22 PM (#4345186)
Ladies and gentlemen, the last two starting pitchers to win a World Series game for Detroit.

Petry started Game 5 in 1984 (can't remember whether he was the winner, don't think he was). It was in Game 4 that Morris made the Padres look like Little Leaguers.

   91. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: January 11, 2013 at 11:08 PM (#4345428)
In an HoM thread a few days ago, I called Rogers a "poor man's Morris." There are a lot of similarities, including that both have actual W-L records that are much better than their neutralized RA+ based records, and by about the same amount. But Morris does have a career length and durability advantage over Rogers, and should rank ahead of him.


A lot of that, though, can be attributed to Rogers pitching out of the pen until his age 28 season.

"That he has not received more support in previous years is a mystery to many voting members of the Baseball Writers' Association of America."

The mind ####### reels."

That Morris had not received more support in previous years must have been especially and utterly baffling to the supermajority of BBWAA voters who had decided not to vote for Morris.

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

BBTF Partner

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
Backlasher
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogThe 2015 HOF Ballot Collecting Gizmo!
(182 - 9:52am, Dec 22)
Last: alilisd

NewsblogOT: Politics - December 2014: Baseball & Politics Collide in New Thriller
(5244 - 9:52am, Dec 22)
Last: Rickey! trades in sheep and threats

NewsblogThe Yankees’ plan in case A-Rod can’t play at all
(27 - 9:48am, Dec 22)
Last: You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR)

NewsblogYankees will pay for education of children of NYPD cop Ramos - NY Daily News
(7 - 9:45am, Dec 22)
Last: Arbitol Dijaler

NewsblogThe Jeff Jacobs HOF Ballot: Keep The Voting Serious And Fair
(57 - 9:44am, Dec 22)
Last: zonk

NewsblogOT: Soccer December 2014
(347 - 9:25am, Dec 22)
Last: Shooty Is Disappointed With His Midstream Urine

Hall of Merit2015 Hall of Merit Ballot
(99 - 9:21am, Dec 22)
Last: Moeball

NewsblogMarty Noble's HOF Ballot
(46 - 9:17am, Dec 22)
Last: HGM

NewsblogThe right — and wrong — way for Mets to get Tulowitzki | New York Post
(17 - 9:12am, Dec 22)
Last: Arbitol Dijaler

NewsblogOT: Monthly NBA Thread - December 2014
(778 - 8:59am, Dec 22)
Last: PASTE Thinks This Trout Kid Might Be OK (Zeth)

NewsblogOT: NFL/NHL thread
(9277 - 8:55am, Dec 22)
Last: PASTE Thinks This Trout Kid Might Be OK (Zeth)

NewsblogRuben Amaro Jr. says it would be best if Phillies move on from Ryan Howard
(48 - 8:44am, Dec 22)
Last: Fernigal McGunnigle has become a merry hat

NewsblogMurray Chass On Baseball » THE PIONEER AND THE GAME TODAY
(30 - 8:19am, Dec 22)
Last: villageidiom

NewsblogA Salute to Sy Berger, From a Card-Carrying Fan - NYTimes.com
(5 - 3:26am, Dec 22)
Last: vortex of dissipation

NewsblogDetermining Hall vote is no easy task | New York Post
(29 - 11:40pm, Dec 21)
Last: SoSHially Unacceptable

Page rendered in 0.8184 seconds
48 querie(s) executed