January 08, 2008

Goose cooks up HOF induction, but Rice is not on the menu this year.:
Only one player was chosen for the class of 2008, "Goose" Gossage.

posted by grum@work to baseball at 10:24 PM - 29 comments

 Player Votes Percentage Gossage, Rich   466 85.8% Rice, Jim   392 72.2% Dawson, Andre   358 65.9% Blyleven, Bert   336 61.9% Smith, Lee   235 43.3% Morris, Jack   233 42.9% John, Tommy   158 29.1% Raines, Tim   132 24.3% McGwire, Mark   128 23.6% Trammell, Alan    99 18.2% Concepcion, Dave   88 16.2% Mattingly, Don    86 15.8% Parker, Dave    82 15.1% Murphy, Dale    75 13.8% Baines, Harold    28 5.2% Beck, Rod     2 0.4% Fryman, Travis     2 0.4% Nen, Robb     2 0.4% Dunston, Shawon     1 0.2% Finley, Chuck     1 0.2% Justice, David     1 0.2% Knoblauch, Chuck    1 0.2% Stottlemyre, Todd   1 0.2% Anderson, Brady     0 0.0% Rijo, Jose     0 0.0%

posted by grum@work at 10:28 PM on January 08

Interesting notes from the votes: Jose Rijo received 0 votes this time (his 2nd "first" year on the ballot). When he retired the first time and appeared on the ballot, he received 1 vote. Mark McGwire received the EXACT same number of votes as last year. Some people (including myself) were expecting an increase, but the release of the Mitchell Report right before the votes were cast probably didn't help things for his case. Jim Rice has one more year of eligibility left. After that, if he's still not in the HOF, he'll need the Veterans Committee to get him in. Bert Blyleven continues his slow trek to the HOF. His first year on the ballot, he only garnered 17.5% of the vote. He dipped all the way down to 14.1% in year 2. He's now within striking distance, and with Gossage gone and no other fantastic pitching candidates in the next couple of years, he might actually make it. In my mind, the greatest example of stupid voting is not that Fryman got TWO votes, but that Raines only got 24.3% his first year on the ballot. In the mind of many people who are quite literate in the sport and it's history, he should have been a slam dunk selection. He's been referred to as the greatest lead-off hitter in National League history and possibly the greatest (or 2nd greatest) base stealer of all time (1st in SB%, 5th in SB). My only hope is that he is on the same path that Blyleven started on, and that the power of the "stat heads" can convince the BBWAA what a terrible mistake they've made in leaving him out.

posted by grum@work at 10:46 PM on January 08

It does seem like there's a groundswell of Tim Raines support among younger/ more stat-minded sportswriters, so hopefully Raines makes it, though I doubt he'll see much of a bump next year, having to run against Rickey.

posted by yerfatma at 11:03 PM on January 08

i agree about rains. he was an outstanding player, and a class act. he did his job quietly, but better than almost anyone else in the game at that time. i also think alan trammel, and don mattingly should have been slam dunks. how quickly the sportswriters forget what great players they were.

posted by elijahin at 04:33 AM on January 09

Great for Gossage. Fantastic competitor and person, and I was lucky enough to get to meet him last year. He really helped solidify the role of the nasty-type closer to major league baseball, and was a lights-out pitcher for some good teams. As for Rice, I've come to support him more and more in the past couple of years, especially when I listen to support for players up for enshrinement who were not as well-rounded players as he was. And Tim Raines, as a leadoff man, was superb. Fans of any team dream of having a "Rock" solid man such as him at the top of their batting order.

posted by dyams at 07:22 AM on January 09

There's a Tim Raines/"bump" joke I'm not going to look too hard for. He was a good guy, and an Expo besides, so I hope he gets in. I'm very glad to see Blyleven's number getting closer, even though I think of him as a no-brainer. Far as I care, those top four all deserve inclusion.

posted by chicobangs at 09:38 AM on January 09

I've always been a Tim Raines fan. I used to enjoy watching him play. Poor, poor Mark McGwire. My freakin' heart breaks.

posted by budman13 at 09:46 AM on January 09

Sad that Trammell can't seem to garner more support. I thought this article from the New York Sun on Trammell (and Raines) was pretty good. Of those not voted in, I'm most in favor of Blyleven, Raines, McGwire and Trammell, probably in that order. I think Rice will get in next year, along with Rickey. I suspect Blyleven will be in by 2011 or so and Raines by 2015. Trammell will never make it with the voters, but maybe with the Veterans Committee. I also think McGwire will make it in with the voters eventually, but the trends at this point certainly don't look promising.

posted by holden at 09:51 AM on January 09

Only Chicobangs mentioned Andre Dawson as a HOF choice. I am surprised that no one else did. Dawson certainly deserves to get into the Hall ahead of players like McQuire. In my view, playing the game clean is important. I would like to see Jack Morris and Dave Concepcion make it also. Jim Rice certainly deserve to make it, again, he is an example of a player that played the game clean and retired when his natural physical skills were eroded by age.

posted by Cave_Man at 11:50 AM on January 09

Perhaps, but if we're getting all-inclusive with the criteria, it should be noted that Concepcion is the only player from the Reds of the Mid-70's not in the Hall (except for whassisface), so it's possible the big red machine has just worn everyone down at this point. And Morris, for all his playoff heroics and mid-80's dominance, did next to nothing to ingratiate himself to the reporters now holding ballots. I love that Chuck Knoblauch got 1 vote. I'm guessing his mom is a sportswriter somewhere.

posted by chicobangs at 12:05 PM on January 09

I don't pay much attention to the HOF on any given year - could somebody explain to me why a player's eligibility expires after a certain number of years?

posted by Joey Michaels at 12:57 PM on January 09

could somebody explain to me why a player's eligibility expires after a certain number of years? The following is from Wikipedia: Five years after retirement, any player with 10 years of major league experience who passes a screening committee (which removes from consideration players of clearly lesser qualification) is eligible to be elected by BBWAA members with 10 years' membership or more. From a final ballot typically including 2540 candidates, each writer may vote for up to 10 players; until the late 1950s, voters were advised to cast votes for the maximum 10 candidates. Any player named on 75% or more of all ballots cast is elected. A player who is named on fewer than 5% of ballots is dropped from future elections. In some instances, the screening committee had restored their names to later ballots, but in the mid-1990s, dropped players were made permanently ineligible for Hall of Fame consideration, even by the Veterans Committee. A 2001 change in the election procedures restored the eligibility of these dropped players; while their names will not appear on future BBWAA ballots, they may be considered by the Veterans Committee.

posted by dyams at 01:43 PM on January 09

im baffled. i totally agree with you guys on rains, trammell, blyleven, and rice. i would even vote for dawson (even though i am a cards fan. ill forgive him for being a cub) but i dont get why there is no outcry of support for don mattlingly. he was a perenial gold glover, and all-star, and he was frankly the only part of the yankees worth watching during the 80's and early 90's. is it possible that the only reason he isnt getting in is the fact that his team was bad during the time he was there? if so i would suggest that we all take a look at the list of names we are advocating and try and remember how good those teams were. again, im not saying any of these guys shouldnt be in, but i think its borderline offensive that mattingly isnt yet.

posted by elijahin at 01:55 PM on January 09

Don Mattingly gets into the Hall of Fame, I quit.

posted by justgary at 02:23 PM on January 09

Mattingly was great for a short period of time. He didn't have a really good season after 1989. Considering that he wasn't a full-timer until 1984, that's just not a long enough streak of dominance for the HoF.

posted by cl at 02:48 PM on January 09

Yeah, four good years don't get you into the Hall. They shouldn't anyway, no matter what your name is, or who you played for. Rice, Blyleven, Rock Raines, The Hawk, they all deserve to get in before Mattingly. Do not allow over-the-top hyperbole to occupy too much space in your conciousness.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 03:11 PM on January 09

With grummy 100% on this one. Raines should have been a dunk. Rice and Blyleven should too be inshrined. Long overdue. Not 100% on the Hawk, mind you. And I'm ok with McGwire playing poster child for the sins of the many for a couple years - but he should most assuredly be enshrined. It'd be an interesting speech (or, well, not).

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 03:27 PM on January 09

Yeah, four good years don't get you into the Hall. But isn't that basically how Koufax got in?

posted by LionIndex at 05:29 PM on January 09

Just a dumb question from an Antipodean: Is there a Baseball Writers' Hall of Fame? And if there is, do the players get a vote?

posted by owlhouse at 05:38 PM on January 09

But isn't that basically how Koufax got in? Koufax' years weren't just good, they were un-freaking-believable. From 1962 - 1966 (incl.), his ERA was 1.986; he had 27 complete games two years in a row;11 shutouts in 1963; he also ended up with over 300 strikeouts in a season three times, including 387 Ks in 1963. Those aren't just "good" seasons.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 05:38 PM on January 09

Yeah, four good years don't get you into the Hall. But isn't that basically how Koufax got in? Actually, he had 6 above average seasons (1961-1966), and the last 5 would be Cy Young winning-level. He also benefits from not having a "tail" to his statistical career. If he pitched 5 more years of progressively worsening results, it would have removed his "retired at the top of his game" mystique. To find an equivalent (or better) run as a pitcher, you need to look at Greg Maddux (1992-1998) or Pedro Martinez (1997-2003).

posted by grum@work at 06:22 PM on January 09

But isn't that basically how Koufax got in? posted by LionIndex at 5:29 PM CST on January 9 I don't know if any of you had the opportunity to see Koufax pitch. Well I have, and I'd seen some of the great pitchers in baseball-Spahn, Ford, Feller, Gibson, Seaver and Jenkins. None of them was Koufax match. To watch Koufax pitch was like watching a conductor with the London Philharmonic. Casey Stengel said of Koufax " Forget all pitchers before him, what your watching is the best pitcher that every played this game". Watching Koufax pitch was a treat no matter who you rooted for, and even if your team got beat , you thanked the baseball gods that you could witness such perfection on the mound. He was honored when he was elected to the HOF, my opinion, the hall should be honored to have him as a member.

posted by Nakeman at 10:33 PM on January 09

Spahn, Ford, Feller? My God. How old are you? Are you one of those immortals walking among us? I will take your word on Koufax, you seem to know what you are writing about. Cave_man spell police, did I spell everything right?

posted by Cave_Man at 11:00 PM on January 09

Cave_Man if you can find old tapes of Koufax pitching, you will be in awe. Ernie Banks, one of the Cubs greatest players, saw Koufax leaving the mound at Wrigley Field and commentated "It's like being in the ballpark with Jesus". Hiding under the covers with my transistor radio, listening to Harry Cary and Jack Buck broadcasting the Cards and the Dodgers games I would listen to the admiration in their voices for Koufax. Men like Koufax, Gibson, Musiel made you so proud to be a baseball fan, and you couldn't wait, for the next summer morning, to go and try and copy your heroes. God, what a wonderful time it was. And my hope it will be again

posted by Nakeman at 11:27 PM on January 09

Ernie Banks, one of the Cubs greatest players, saw Koufax leaving the mound at Wrigley Field and commentated "It's like being in the ballpark with Jesus". There's a joke about great Jewish athletes in there (something about Koufax being the best hurler since David, something something) that I don't know if I can make properly at this hour of the morning.

posted by chicobangs at 09:52 AM on January 10

Always thought of David as more of a closer. HoFer either way.

posted by yerfatma at 10:41 AM on January 10

David could really sling it, but he could only beat the Giants.

posted by dyams at 10:49 AM on January 10

Zing!

posted by The_Black_Hand at 04:44 AM on January 11

Great for the Goose! He deserved it!

posted by BoriQa at 10:39 AM on January 13

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