MLB hall of fame president Jeff Idelson( Don McPeak-USA Today Sports)
Yes, this is another Hall of Fame Ballot. By this time, I’m sure that everyone is sick of seeing these as we look forward to the results being released Wednesday afternoon. Regardless though, I felt the need to publish my own ballot.
Please try to contain your excitement as I go through who I think should be inducted into Cooperstown for 2014. I don’t think that we will agree here on all counts, and that is alright. There is nothing that qualifies me any more than anyone else to complete a ballot. Well aside from watching and following baseball while being able to think objectively and considering all of the available evidence. This is something that, unfortunately, I’m not sure we can say for every actual voter.
At this point, the qualifications and resumes of the candidates are well known, so I didn’t see the need to make this a statistical opus and bog you down with numbers that you already know.
Feel free to sound off in the comments section with your feedback.
Let’s just get the first two names out of the way as they should be obvious to any readers of Climbing Tal’s Hill; Craig Biggio and Jeff Bagwell. This is an Astros-centric website, but that shouldn’t change the fact that both Biggio and Bagwell deserve a trip to upstate New York in late July.
Greg Maddux was one of the best pitcher’s of his generation, and we are not even including his defensive prowess. Tom Glavine is another slam dunk option in my opinion as the two Braves aces get enshrined together along with their manager, Bobby Cox, who was already elected at the Winter Meetings.
Next we include two of the greatest hitters of their generation; Frank Thomas and Mike Piazza. This puts us at six inductees. To me these are the no-brainers and the choices that required very little analysis. Having watched these players, you just know they are of a special ilk that deserves to be immortalized.
In his last year of eligibility, I think Jack Morris deserves to get elected. I have thought this for a number of years, as he was among the top pitchers of the 1980’s and into the early 1990’s as well. If there was a big game, Morris was the guy you wanted on the mound. He pitched deep into games, and took the ball every fifth day without issue. The only problem with this, is that his statistical body of work is not as good as it could have been if he were not such a workhorse.
Now we get into the steroid allegation portion of the ballot with Roger Clemens and Barry Bonds. I have both of them marked down bringing the tally up to nine. While we have a pretty good idea as to what went on, there never has been any substantiated, and both were Hall of Famers prior to the rumors beginning to swirl. I am not here to serve as a judge and jury, just to comment on what happened on the field of play while considering the evidence I have.
There are multiple directions I could have gone here, but my last spot goes to Jeff Kent. I don’t think Kent gets in this year, and there is the fear that he suffers the same fate as Kenny Lofton last year and fails to even receive the 5% of the votes needed to remain on the ballot. For any position, Kent was a top power hitter, not to mention the fact that he was a second baseman.
If I had the space, I likely would have included Curt Schilling and Mike Mussina. Others that at least warranted more consideration were Tim Raines, Alan Trammell, Edgar Martinez, Larry Walker, and Fred McGriff. Now I’m not saying that any of those would have gotten my vote, but quite frankly I didn’t even have the space to consider them.
When voting for the Hall of Fame, it should be about nothing other than simply judging the players up for election. It should be an objective process without any other motivations. The problem, is that it has become about so many other things, which has turned the voting process into a joke and mockery at times. Now this doesn’t apply to every voter, but as usual, the minority ruins it for the majority.