Hall of Fame 2019 Elections

Two Hall of Fame elections are on tap for next year, the annual Baseball Writers of America selection, and a ballot called “Today’s Game Era” for recent players passed over by the BBWAA. There are a wealth of worthy candidates on the BBWAA ballot so, as in the last few elections, there could be several honorees. Or, with so many candidates, the voters’ selections may diverge, limiting the number of successful candidates (if any).

This post is for discussion of the two ballots, and provides an opportunity for you to weigh in and make your best case for your favorites. If you like, you could also offer your predictions on how the voting might go and why you think that way. More after the jump.

Here are the 2019 Hall of Fame ballots.

To provide a basis of comparison, these players and others with similar careers are listed on Hall of Stats according to their Hall of Stats rating.

Here are the career stats for players on the two ballots.

BBWAA Position Players

Rk Player WAR WAA oWAR dWAR OPS+ From To Age G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO SB BA OBP SLG OPS Pos Tm
1 Barry Bonds 162.8 123.9 143.7 7.6 182 1986 2007 21-42 2986 12606 9847 2227 2935 601 77 762 1996 2558 1539 514 .298 .444 .607 1.051 *78H/D9 PIT-SFG
2 Larry Walker 72.7 48.3 62.8 2.0 141 1989 2005 22-38 1988 8030 6907 1355 2160 471 62 383 1311 913 1231 230 .313 .400 .565 .965 *9H/387D45 MON-COL-STL
3 Scott Rolen 70.2 44.1 52.8 21.2 122 1996 2012 21-37 2038 8518 7398 1211 2077 517 43 316 1287 899 1410 118 .281 .364 .490 .855 *5/H PHI-STL-TOR-CIN
4 Manny Ramirez 69.4 35.7 81.8 -21.7 154 1993 2011 21-39 2302 9774 8244 1544 2574 547 20 555 1831 1329 1813 38 .312 .411 .585 .996 79D/H CLE-BOS-LAD-CHW-TBR
5 Edgar Martinez 68.4 38.6 66.9 -9.0 147 1987 2004 24-41 2055 8674 7213 1219 2247 514 15 309 1261 1283 1202 49 .312 .418 .515 .933 *D5/H3 SEA
6 Andruw Jones 62.8 36.0 39.9 24.5 111 1996 2012 19-35 2196 8664 7599 1204 1933 383 36 434 1289 891 1748 152 .254 .337 .486 .823 *89H7D/3 ATL-LAD-TEX-CHW-NYY
7 Todd Helton 61.2 32.8 54.5 -5.5 133 1997 2013 23-39 2247 9453 7962 1401 2519 592 37 369 1406 1335 1175 37 .316 .414 .539 .953 *3/H79D COL
8 Gary Sheffield 60.5 26.0 80.8 -27.7 140 1988 2009 19-40 2576 10947 9217 1636 2689 467 27 509 1676 1475 1171 253 .292 .393 .514 .907 975D/6H3 MIL-SDP-FLA-LAD-ATL-NYY-DET-NYM
9 Sammy Sosa 58.6 28.2 50.3 -0.3 128 1989 2007 20-38 2354 9896 8813 1475 2408 379 45 609 1667 929 2306 234 .273 .344 .534 .878 *98D/H7 TEX-CHW-CHC-BAL
10 Jeff Kent 55.4 26.6 60.1 -0.1 123 1992 2008 24-40 2298 9537 8498 1320 2461 560 47 377 1518 801 1522 94 .290 .356 .500 .855 *453/HD6 TOR-NYM-CLE-SFG-HOU-LAD
11 Fred McGriff 52.6 19.9 56.2 -17.3 134 1986 2004 22-40 2460 10174 8757 1349 2490 441 24 493 1550 1305 1882 72 .284 .377 .509 .886 *3D/H TOR-SDP-ATL-CHC-LAD-TBD
12 Lance Berkman 52.1 28.4 54.1 -11.0 144 1999 2013 23-37 1879 7814 6491 1146 1905 422 30 366 1234 1201 1300 86 .293 .406 .537 .943 3798D/H HOU-NYY-STL-TEX
13 Miguel Tejada 47.3 16.0 51.9 6.9 108 1997 2013 23-39 2171 9205 8434 1230 2407 468 23 307 1302 553 1079 85 .285 .336 .456 .791 *65/4HD3 OAK-BAL-HOU-SDP-SFG-KCR
14 Omar Vizquel 45.6 5.3 32.9 29.5 82 1989 2012 22-45 2968 12013 10586 1445 2877 456 77 80 951 1028 1087 404 .272 .336 .352 .688 *65H/4D379 SEA-CLE-SFG-TEX-CHW-TOR
15 Placido Polanco 41.5 16.8 27.8 18.7 95 1998 2013 22-37 1927 7887 7214 1009 2142 348 32 104 723 429 538 81 .297 .343 .397 .740 *456H/7D3 STL-PHI-DET-MIA
16 Kevin Youkilis 32.6 17.1 28.7 1.9 123 2004 2013 25-34 1061 4436 3749 653 1053 254 18 150 618 539 828 26 .281 .382 .478 .861 *35/H7D94 CHW-BOS-NYY
17 Vernon Wells 28.5 3.2 31.5 -0.6 104 1999 2013 20-34 1731 7212 6642 930 1794 379 34 270 958 472 956 109 .270 .319 .459 .778 *87/D9H345 TOR-LAA-NYY
18 Travis Hafner 24.8 7.8 25.2 -9.8 134 2002 2013 25-36 1183 4782 4058 619 1107 250 13 213 731 598 976 11 .273 .376 .498 .874 *D/H3 TEX-CLE-NYY
19 Jason Bay 24.6 8.2 27.6 -7.7 121 2003 2013 24-34 1278 5258 4505 737 1200 240 30 222 754 636 1216 95 .266 .360 .481 .841 *7/8H9D SDP-PIT-BOS-NYM-SEA
20 Michael Young 24.6 -4.7 40.2 -10.5 104 2000 2013 23-36 1970 8612 7918 1137 2375 441 60 185 1030 575 1235 90 .300 .346 .441 .787 654D3/H TEX-PHI-LAD
21 Juan Pierre 17.1 -7.8 19.0 -2.0 84 2000 2013 22-35 1994 8280 7525 1075 2217 255 94 18 517 464 479 614 .295 .343 .361 .704 *87H/D COL-FLA-CHC-LAD-CHW-PHI-MIA
22 Rick Ankiel 5.3 -0.9 5.0 0.6 92 1999 2013 19-33 651 2115 1921 260 462 101 10 76 251 162 555 21 .240 .302 .422 .724 *8/H917 STL-KCR-ATL-WSN-NYM-HOU
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 12/4/2018.

BBWAA Pitchers

Rk Player WAR WAA BB9 SO9 SO/W H9 WHIP From To Age G GS CG SHO GF W L W-L% SV IP BB SO ERA FIP ERA+ BAbip HR Tm
1 Roger Clemens 139.0 94.3 2.89 8.55 2.96 7.66 1.173 1984 2007 21-44 709 707 118 46 0 354 184 .658 0 4916.2 1580 4672 3.12 3.09 143 .286 363 BOS-TOR-NYY-HOU
2 Mike Mussina 82.9 48.9 1.98 7.11 3.58 8.74 1.192 1991 2008 22-39 537 536 57 23 0 270 153 .638 0 3562.2 785 2813 3.68 3.57 123 .295 376 BAL-NYY
3 Curt Schilling 80.6 54.0 1.96 8.60 4.38 8.27 1.137 1988 2007 21-40 569 436 83 20 81 216 146 .597 22 3261.0 711 3116 3.46 3.23 127 .297 347 BAL-HOU-PHI-ARI-BOS
4 Roy Halladay 65.5 40.5 1.94 6.93 3.58 8.66 1.178 1998 2013 21-36 416 390 67 20 6 203 105 .659 1 2749.1 592 2117 3.38 3.39 131 .294 236 TOR-PHI
5 Andy Pettitte 60.7 29.9 2.80 6.64 2.37 9.36 1.351 1995 2013 23-41 531 521 26 4 3 256 153 .626 0 3316.0 1031 2448 3.85 3.74 117 .312 288 HOU-NYY
6 Mariano Rivera 56.3 32.5 2.01 8.22 4.10 7.00 1.000 1995 2013 25-43 1115 10 0 0 952 82 60 .577 652 1283.2 286 1173 2.21 2.76 205 .265 71 NYY
7 Roy Oswalt 50.0 32.4 2.08 7.42 3.56 8.81 1.211 2001 2013 23-35 365 341 20 8 7 163 102 .615 0 2245.1 520 1852 3.36 3.37 127 .306 197 PHI-HOU-TEX-COL
8 Freddy Garcia 34.6 12.9 2.81 6.44 2.29 8.92 1.303 1999 2013 22-36 376 357 12 4 13 156 108 .591 0 2264.0 708 1621 4.15 4.30 107 .286 285 SEA-CHW-PHI-DET-NYY-ATL-BAL
9 Derek Lowe 33.2 9.0 2.68 5.80 2.17 9.30 1.330 1997 2013 24-40 681 377 10 4 168 176 157 .529 86 2671.1 794 1722 4.03 3.83 109 .301 217 SEA-BOS-LAD-ATL-NYY-CLE-TEX
10 Ted Lilly 29.2 11.9 3.00 7.63 2.54 8.29 1.255 1999 2013 23-37 356 331 5 3 5 130 113 .535 0 1982.2 661 1681 4.14 4.41 106 .273 293 MON-NYY-OAK-TOR-CHC-LAD
11 Billy Wagner 27.8 16.5 2.99 11.92 3.99 5.99 0.998 1995 2010 23-38 853 0 0 0 703 47 40 .540 422 903.0 300 1196 2.31 2.73 187 .265 82 HOU-PHI-NYM-BOS-ATL
12 Jon Garland 22.5 2.7 3.02 4.84 1.60 9.45 1.387 2000 2013 20-33 365 342 11 6 9 136 125 .521 1 2151.1 723 1156 4.37 4.69 103 .289 263 CHW-LAA-LAD-ARI-SDP-COL
13 Darren Oliver 21.2 3.6 3.38 5.91 1.75 9.57 1.439 1993 2013 22-42 766 229 11 4 121 118 98 .546 7 1915.2 720 1259 4.51 4.53 104 .305 216 TEX-STL-BOS-COL-HOU-FLA-NYM-LAA-TOR
14 Rick Ankiel 3.6 1.7 4.83 10.00 2.07 7.36 1.355 1999 2004 19-24 51 41 0 0 1 13 10 .565 1 242.0 130 269 3.90 4.38 119 .284 32 STL
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 12/4/2018.

Today’s Game Era Position Players

Rk Player WAR WAA oWAR dWAR OPS+ From To Age G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO SB BA OBP SLG OPS Pos Tm
1 Will Clark 56.5 29.1 55.6 -10.1 137 1986 2000 22-36 1976 8283 7173 1186 2176 440 47 284 1205 937 1190 67 .303 .384 .497 .880 *3/HD SFG-TEX-STL-BAL
2 Albert Belle 40.1 17.2 46.2 -12.3 144 1989 2000 22-33 1539 6676 5853 974 1726 389 21 381 1239 683 961 88 .295 .369 .564 .933 *79D/H CLE-CHW-BAL
3 Harold Baines 38.7 1.8 40.7 -19.5 121 1980 2001 21-42 2830 11092 9908 1299 2866 488 49 384 1628 1062 1441 34 .289 .356 .465 .820 *D9H/87 TEX-OAK-BAL-CLE-CHW
4 Joe Carter 19.6 -10.8 28.2 -15.7 105 1983 1998 23-38 2189 9154 8422 1170 2184 432 53 396 1445 527 1387 90 .259 .306 .464 .771 7983D/H45 CHC-CLE-SDP-TOR-SFG-BAL
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 12/4/2018.

Today’s Game Era Pitchers

Rk Player WAR WAA BB9 SO9 SO/W H9 WHIP From To Age G GS CG SHO GF W L W-L% SV IP BB SO ERA FIP ERA+ BAbip HR Tm
1 Orel Hershiser 51.6 24.9 2.90 5.79 2.00 8.45 1.261 1983 2000 24-41 510 466 68 25 19 204 150 .576 5 3130.1 1007 2014 3.48 3.69 112 .280 235 LAD-CLE-SFG-NYM
2 Lee Smith 29.4 13.8 3.39 8.73 2.57 7.91 1.256 1980 1997 22-39 1022 6 0 0 802 71 92 .436 478 1289.1 486 1251 3.03 2.93 132 .299 89 CHC-BOS-STL-NYY-BAL-CAL-CIN-MON
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 12/4/2018.

 

And, some stats for the others on the Today’s Game Era ballot.

Today’s Game Era Managers

Rk Mgr Yrs
From To W L W-L% G>.500 G Wpost Lpost W-L%post BestFin WrstFin AvRk Plyof App WSwon PennWon ASG
1 Lou Piniella 23 1986 2010 1835 1713 .517 122 3548 23 27 .460 1 5 2.8 7 1 1 1
2 Davey Johnson 17 1984 2013 1372 1071 .562 301 2445 25 26 .490 1 5 1.9 6 1 1 1
3 Charlie Manuel 12 2000 2013 1000 826 .548 174 1826 29 22 .569 1 4 1.7 6 1 2 2
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 12/4/2018.

Today’s Game Era Builders

George Steinbrenner

  • 38 seasons as Yankees’ owner (1973-2010)
  • .565 W-L%
  • 20 post-season appearances
  • 16 division titles
  • 11 pennants
  • 7 World Series wins

So, who would get your vote? If you’d like to cast a mock ballot for the BBWAA vote, select up to 10 players from the BBWAA ballot (no minimum and no write-ins).

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97 Comments on "Hall of Fame 2019 Elections"

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Anthony
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BBWAA: Bonds, Clemens, Halladay, Jones, Martinez, Mussina, Rivera, Rolen, Schilling, Walker.
BBWAA, past 10, if I had room: Helton, Ramirez, Sheffield
Today’s Game: Nobody

Mike L
Guest

Thanks so much Doug. Now time for the deep dive.

Mike L
Guest

Just to clock in with my starting point–while I haven’t decided how to vote on the entire ballot, I’m going to stay with the same position on steroid-users. I’m not ready to vote for them. I understand and respect the arguments on the other side, I just don’t agree with them yet.

Dr. Doom
Guest
To add to the discussion, I just can’t understand about the Today’s Game ballot. I won’t be voting for those players. Hershiser is borderline at best, and Smith is a favorite of the voters. I wouldn’t be sad to see them get in, but they don’t strike me as the most deserving outside the Hall. I also won’t be voting for Steinbrenner. As far as I’m concerned, he should’ve probably been banned from baseball in the ’80s. I don’t really have a “problem” with him getting elected (as I imagine he will be), but I personally wouldn’t give him a… Read more »
Doug
Guest
I’m with you on not getting the Today’s Game ballot. Surely there were better options than Carter and Baines (Baines is a holdover from this ballot in 2017, along with Belle, Clark, Hershiser, Piniella and Johnson). I was struck by the discrepancies between WAR and WAA for Baines and Carter. Sure enough, they both are exceptional. Largest WAR/WAA Gap with WAA less than 5% of WAR 36.9 – Harold Baines 34.1 – Jimmy Dykes 33.6 – Paul Konerko 32.2 – Bill Buckner 32.0 – Garret Anderson Most WAR with WAA less than 5% of WAR 38.7 (1.8) – Harold Baines… Read more »
no statistician but
Guest
The Today’s Game business has me baffled. The one candidate I think might be Hall worthy of the six isolated here is Belle, on the grounds that he had some monster years and a health problem that cut his career short, but few would agree with me. People who inspect the others without the aid of rose-colored glasses see a first baseman whose career peaked early and was adequate to good thereafter; a pair of fan favorites, one a DH over half the time, the other with a much disputed reputation for clutch hitting, but not much else to offer.… Read more »
no statistician but
Guest

Oops. Guess all the nonsense about ‘today’s game’ started last year, and the Veterans Committee as such is no more. Progress—what a concept.

no statistician but
Guest

In last year’s voting:

Omar Vizquel (45.6 WAR in 2968 games; JAWS ranking 42nd at SS) was on 37% of the ballots.
Scott Rolen (70.2 WAR in 2038 games; Jaws ranking 10th at 3B) was on 10.2%.
Larry Walker(72.7 WAR in 1988 games; Jaws ranking 10th in RF) was on 34.1%.

Some how—don’t know why exactly—when I first saw these figures a remark by Thomas Jefferson sprang into my head: “Indeed I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just.”

Doug
Guest
In Vizquel’s defense (a mild defense, at best), he is one of just 11 shortstops with career marks of 25 oWAR and 25 dWAR, though Vizquel clears those bars only modestly and over a much longer career than many of the others. For the record, seven of the eleven are HOFers, including Rabbit Maranville, with very similar PA, WAR, oWAR and dWAR to Vizquel (actually, very similar numbers right down the line). But, the HOFers in that group do not include Maranville’s contemporary, Art Fletcher, who put up almost identical WAR, oWAR and dWAR in a career half as long… Read more »
Mike L
Guest

I might get into trouble here, but an HOF that can have Bill Mazeroski (36.5 WAR) can have Omar, although I wouldn’t be eager for either. JAWS has him 51st among shortstops.

CursedClevelander
Guest

If Omar had won the 1997 WS with a home run (couldn’t be a walk-off though, since it was in Florida) I’d be knocking on doors as we speak to get him HoF votes.

Dr. Doom
Guest

… and you’d have to use “BlessedClevelander” as your handle, one presumes. 🙂

no statistician but
Guest
Doug and Mike L: My aim wasn’t to question Vizquel’s credentials for the Hall so much as it was to point out the bizarre thinking of those who are given what in sports terms amounts to being a sacred trust. Too many of the writers, even in this presumably new day of awareness of advanced stats, are not reading the commentary, not paying attention to the import of WAR, JAWs, Hall of Stats, and other measures of career performance, but relying on prejudices and slushy thinking to fill in their ballots. It will be interesting to see how Helton fairs… Read more »
Mike L
Guest

NSB, Chipper is an HOF just on his bat. .303/.401/.529 with a 141 OPS+. He’s 25th lifetime in Offensive WAR. I kind of agree on Rolen–I wonder if he doesn’t suffer just a bit from Schilling’s Disease (writers don’t like him?)

Paul E
Guest
FWIW, Rolen was a Hall of Fame talent whose injuries killed his offense. He injured his back running the bases/sliding into 3b early in his career as a Phillie. Later, he got ran over in the baseline fielding a ground ball (St. Louis, in the playoffs?) and then ran into Hee-seop Choy as the first baseman was attempting to catch an errant throw. He had shoulder problems and then more shoulder issues….he even altered his swing in Toronto and Cincinnati to avoid aggravating the condition. If healthy, Rolen might have been a first ballot Hall of Famer. I don’t think… Read more »
CursedClevelander
Guest
Rolen has to overcome a lot of things – I do think for whatever reason there was some level of personal dislike for him. He was an elite fielder who may not have the reputation among the writers for being an elite fielder, which is odd since he won 8 Gold Gloves, but you don’t get the sense that people think of him as a Robinson or Nettles type 3B. He had an elite bat for the position but played in the middle of an era where offense exploded, and since the voters aren’t particularly apt when it comes to… Read more »
no statistician but
Guest

A mea culpa and a comment: it’s ‘how Helton fares’—the curse of the automatic fingers and the common homonym.

Also, I’m not questioning Jones’s admission, just the disparity between 97.2 and 10.2 in terms of how Rolen was perceived by the mass of voters.

Doug
Guest

“Turkey shoot with the turkeys the shooters.”. Nice.

CursedClevelander
Guest

Man, how things change – when I first started talking baseball online (mostly the ESPN message boards but a few other places as well, early 00’s) I was an adamant Vizquel superfan, and argued that he was a likely (and deserving) Hall of Famer. Now, if I did a ballot, I don’t think he’d make my Top 20. I still love him, though.

mosc
Guest

My ten:
Bonds, Clemens, Mussina, Martinez, Schilling, Halladay, Pettitte, Rivera, Rolen, blank

Today’s Game:
No Cone or Whitaker? I don’t get to vote for Wes Ferrell or Simmons? Stupid baseball eras thingies.
NONE OF YOU! I’m a Yankees fan and that list is emphatically excluding one George Steinbrenner. Like Gerald Ford excluded him from federal prosecution.

Paul E
Guest

mosc:
Is that Larvell Blank(s)?

Doug
Guest

According to his BR Bullpen article (which looks like a project that was started, but not finished) Steinbrenner plead guilty to making illegal political contributions two weeks after Ford assumed office. Wikipedia says that he was pardoned by Reagan 14½ years later.

mosc
Guest

My understanding is Ford’s pardons were limited but the justice department’s position not to prosecute was established and Reagan just followed through and made it official when it re-occurred as an issue.

no statistician but
Guest

Goldschmidt to the Cards, anyone? Just a desire to get value before free agency?

oneblankspace
Guest
Carson Kelly has a chance to play when Molina is still healthy. Goldschmidt is one of two players with 200 HR and 100 SB counting stats since 2011, and one of 11 counting since 2008. The list of the 9 most recent 30-SB seasons by a first baseman (70%): Goldschmidt, Bagwell, Bagwell, Gregg Jeffries, Gerald Perry, Cesar Cedeño, Driessen, Carew, Sisler. The Cardinals have a bit of a habit of acquiring players on the last year of their contract and extending them… Edmonds, Rolen, Matt Holliday were mentioned in Derrick Goold’s article at stltoday.com; Mark McGwire was not mentioned there,… Read more »
Dr. Doom
Guest
I’m going to throw a ballot out here. I’m not sure if vote changes are allowed (let me know, Doug!), because I’m just really unsure. But I’m going with this: Today’s Game: (Blank) BBWAA: 1. Barry Bonds 2. Roger Clemens 3. Curt Schilling 4. Larry Walker 5. Mike Mussina 6. Edgar Martinez 7. Scott Rolen 8. Roy Halladay 9. Andruw Jones And the last spot is tough. I know a lot of people think of Mariano as “automatic.” I understand that. I don’t mean to sell the man short. But there is that part of me that says, “If the… Read more »
Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
This ballot came at a bad time for me, so I’m not able to do as much work on it as I’d like. I’m not sure what Doug is thinking of for a deadline or whether we can change votes in light of discussions here and in the non-HHS world, but I’d be happy to think of the votes I’m casting now as an opening gambit. I’m a small Hall guy — always have been. My ballot is going to have less than ten names on it. And forget about the “Today’s Game” (ugh!) ballot — my only vote there… Read more »
oneblankspace
Guest

When Cal Ripken Jr. took a day off in the late 1990s, Albert Belle moved into first place on the active consecutive games played streak list. Will Clark hit a homer off Nolan Ryan in his first career at-bat. Harold Baines was mentioned in the 2000 Republican Primary presidential debates by former Rangers owner George W. Bush, who traded Sosa for him.

Hub Kid
Guest
What are the rules for the Today’s Game Ballot? Maximum 10 votes? How the heck did they pick Hershiser over Cone and Saberhagen? And all of those veteran managers with decent W-L records but few pennants (5 division titles for Johnson, 6 each for Manuel & Piniella)? And I don’t get the thinking behind the whole thing, either (the 2016 changes to the Committees Formerly Known as Veterans). I guess the Hall is trying to systematically cut down on the anti-recency bias by frequently holding this Veterans-style election for recent players and cramming the well-represented eras together all at once… Read more »
Mike L
Guest
OK, I really dislike Today’s Game picks–these are all guys in the public view who were very good, but just not top-tier. Not getting my vote. Especially since none of them are better than some of the folks I’m excluding from the main scrum As to the players (and, echoing other here on the hopes of possibly amending on further review) I clearly have a smaller ballot than many others (partially because of the steroids thing). Rivera–I understand the “failed starter” arguments against any relief pitcher, but in this case they fall short. Rivera is (currently) the best reliever of… Read more »
no statistician but
Guest
I’m going to take a plunge into the murky waters of basic math mixed well with Larry Walker’s Colorado years. Almost exactly 40 % of Walker’s plate appearances were made for teams other than the Rockies—Montreal for 5 seasons early and St. Louis for 1 1/3 late. If we ignore his August call up in 1989, then during those six plus years he accumulated 24.6 WAR. Let’s suppose that for the 60 % of his plate appearances in the middle of his career, he had remained on the plain of his early and late production in terms of WAR. Hmm… Read more »
Paul E
Guest
NSB, From a previous post: Perhaps the secret to the Colorado sluggers’ success can be found in the underlying results of playing in a cow patch at 5,200 feet? BABIP Home / Away, Larry Walker 1995 – 2003 (The Wonder Years) 1995 .324 / .266 1996 .409 / .135 1997 .382 / .346 (with 29 road HR’s) 1998 .435 / .326 1999 .422 / .294 2000 .358 / .298 2001 .421 / .320 2002 .354 / .353 2003 .378 / .256 Yes, one could argue that Walker hit well on the road for many of these years, however, what creates… Read more »
no statistician but
Guest
Paul E: The point is that isn’t any argumentation going on. Those who downplay Walker’s achievement will reject not just my eccentric look at the figures, but those of the results of any analysis of what was going on—WAR, JAWS, your figures on BABIP, whatever—simply because of the Coors effect. Intransigent support of an untenable position and unwillingness to consider the facts seriously is not an arguable stance. I welcome someone who holds a low opinion of Walker to take issue with the specifics of my suppositions or the conclusions that are there to be drawn from Walker’s WAR ranking,… Read more »
Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
Paul, I’m going to repeat in short an argument I made in long last year. Walker’s Coors numbers show that he performed way better there than elsewhere, although he was generally good everywhere. But the “Coors effect” applies to all players equally. The thing about Walker was the outsize boost he got from his home field — there was the Coors effect and the “Walker-at-Coors effect”: the latter was not Coors’ doing; it was Walker’s. A player is supposed to have a home field advantage: he plays half his games at home. A player who, over time, could not figure… Read more »
Doug
Guest

Well said, epm.

no statistician but
Guest
OK, I think I’m ready. Like others I don’t have a full ballot. I’m going to list my choices by my estimation of their worthiness as players to be in the Hall, although I think they all definitely belong. A factor that I include in my evaluation of players generally, and especially in situations like this one, is remarkableness. Doing a remarkable thing and doing it over multiple times or doing it to excess deserves recognition. Thus Tony Gwynn gets high marks from me—higher than his WAR indicates—because he won so many batting titles so dominantly over a span of… Read more »
Doug
Guest
Re: Pettite’s WHIP. The difference between those you’ve listed is 1 to 2 baserunners per 9 innings, less, obviously, per start. That extra baserunner or two adds up over the course of a long career, leading to differences in WHIP that look significant. But, not sure that it is hugely significant in the context of individual games, which, of course, is what really matters. Re: Halladay. Something else that stands out is his 0.77 HR/9, ridiculously low for someone who played most of his career in the Toronto bandbox. Thirty-three pitchers recorded 2000 IP over the seasons Doc was active;… Read more »
Shazbot
Guest

I always thought of Doc as rather dinger-prone, actually, but not because he gave up lots of homers. Because he was better at everything else.

Richard Chester
Guest

I’m just voting for the BBWAA ten.
Martinez, Rivera, Halladay, Sheffield, Walker, Mussina, Helton, Berkman, Kent, Pettitte.

Dr. Doom
Guest

WHAAAAAA????????

I’m shocked, honestly. I was sure only Steinbrenner had a real shot.

Hub Kid
Guest

Dr. Doom – thank you for the the link and the news. That was a Monday morning shock. What a weird voting result – I can understand Smith, although I thought the closer standard was going up… Baines, however, where did those votes come from? Not a bad player, and a good career, but wow, I’m struggling to find any marquee numbers, new statistics or old. .820 OPS? 2866 hits-488 doubles-49 triples-384 home runs?

Richard Chester
Guest

Baines holds an unusual record. He had 113 RBI in 1985 and next reached the 100+ plateau in 1999 with 103 RBI. That 14 year gap between 100+ RBI seasons is the record. The 1994 season was strike shortened but even with a full season he would have been short of 100 RBI.

alz9794
Guest
I could see Lee Smith having a shot as he did reach 50% on the BBWAA ballot. Plus there really isn’t an established standard for relievers. It’s only Eckersley, Wilhelm, Gossage, Sutter, Hoffman, and Fingers (Rivera should join soon). Smith is in the middle of that group according to JAWS, and some of those “relievers” between Gossage (#4) and Smith (#16) built up a good amount of WAR as starters (Greg Swindell, Bobby Shantz, Kerry Wood). John Hiller or Ellis Kinder might be better choices between Gossage and Smith, but Smith is the next “big save number” guy after Gossage… Read more »
no statistician but
Guest

alz9794

Shrewd remarks on Baines especially. Re your closing comment: it should be the voters who have their credentials torn to shreds.

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest

Mindful of that closing remark by alz9794, I’m not going to post what I had planned to post. I actually saw the news of the ballot late last night, and decided to cool down before posting my opinion because I wanted to appear thoughtful rather of immature (aiming for an appearance that would deceive). alz’s point is such a humane way to respond that I feel obliged to shelve my opinion unposted.

mosc
Guest

I’m glad Steinbrenner’s not getting much support. Dave Winfield should get to vote every time he comes up.

Mike L
Guest

To follow on to some of the recent comments, while I wouldn’t have voted for Smith at least I can see the justification for it. But Baines? Without knocking the player, who had a long and solid career, this kind of a vote is exactly why the old Veterans Committee selections were so often held in such low esteem.

Dr. Doom
Guest
I agree, Mike; there’s no need to knock the player, but this is not a very impressive selection*. I can actually see a Hall of Fame with room for Harold Baines. I don’t really have a problem with the selection, in and of itself. It’s perfectly okay for the Hall to be Baines-sized. In some ways, it might be a better place if it were so. The problem isn’t Baines getting in; it’s the more-qualified players who are still out that make it a problem. Harold Baines had 11092 PA and a 121 OPS+; Dwight Evans had 10569 PA and… Read more »
Doug
Guest

There used to be a question of whether a DH, even these best DH, belonged in the Hall. Now we have Baines. Presumably Edgar is a lock – but don’t bet on it.

Mike L
Guest

It’s possible the writers will take a different course…maybe more possible if they somehow resent the choice of Baines.

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
Actually, Doug, if I were a betting man I’d be laying down a pile on Edgar. According to the Hall of Fame Tracker website, Martinez has received votes on 32 of the initial 32 ballots. That’s not too large a sample size (about 7.5% of the anticipated total), but I think it’s large enough to indicate that Edgar is a lock this year. Of the 32 ballots, six did not list him last year, and, of course, they’ve all changed their minds as his eligibility runs down. Interestingly, there is a similar shift towards McGriff, but it’s unlikely to get… Read more »
Mike L
Guest

Not to harp, but how do you take Baines and leave out McGriff?

Voomo Zanzibar
Guest

Smith was the all-time Saves leader for 13 years.

Here is his place in WAR among relievers:

56.3 … Rivera
50.1 … Wilhelm (who had 7.6 WAR in his year as a mostly-starter)
41.9 … Gossage (2.9 in his one year)

31.2 … Hiller (43 spot starts, and similar IP to Smith, but half the Games)
29.4 … LEE SMITH
28.7 … Lindy McDaniel (850 more innings than Smith)
28.1 … Hoffman
27.8 … Wagner
27.2 … Stu Miller (93 starts)
26.3 … Nathan
26.2 … Tekulve

mosc
Guest

Smith is an historically dominant reliever. The bar for HOF reliever to many is pretty high which is debatably reasonable but I don’t think anybody really downplays Lee Smith’s career. The outrage is about Baines.

CursedClevelander
Guest
Through no fault of his own, Baines becomes the most recent example of shortsighted cronyism among the many iterations of the VC. He just barely made it, and two of his voters were his first owner (Reinsdorf) and his first manager (LaRussa). Without being unkind to Baines, who seems to be a lovely person and who to my knowledge was not at all actively campaigning for a HoF spot, I don’t think that kind of back-patting favoritism can be condemned strongly enough. It’s entirely reminiscent of Frankie Frisch’s reign of terror and it blemishes the Hall’s standards and reputation. I… Read more »
Paul E
Guest
Just a general question here. Is it acceptable or “uncouth” for a retired ballplayer on the ballot to actually talk up his candidacy? And, I believe Earl Averill spoke in contemptuous tones in his induction speech somewhere along the order of, “What took you dopes so long to realize the merits of my career”? But I have heard several players actually express their disappointment in recent years including Bert Blyleven (who should have been a no-brainer) who took the full 15 years to get in (I believe). I’m a small hall believer, anti-steroids regardless of prior established performance. Funny, but… Read more »
Dr. Doom
Guest
Billy Wagner (whom you voted for) and Roy Halladay (whom you didn’t) both played 16 major league seasons. Halladay had an ERA+ of 131. This means that, while he allowed 1034 ER in his career, an average pitcher would’ve allowed 31% more, or 1355 total runs. In other words, he saved his teams 321 runs above an average pitcher. Wagner had an ERA+ of 187. This means that, while he allowed 232 ER in his career, an average pitcher would’ve allowed 87% more, or 434 total runs. In other words, he saved his teams 202 runs above an average pitcher.… Read more »
Dr. Doom
Guest
FWIW, I actually did the reliever math a second ago, because I couldn’t help myself. If you treat Wagner’s runs with the “reliever penalty” of 17 percent, you still figure the “average” runs off his true runs total (232), which still leaves you with 434 total runs. But you subtract 232*1.17 (factoring in the reliever penalty), which gives you 271 runs. 434-271 gives you 163 runs… almost exactly HALF of Halladay’s total. As for leverage, rWAR estimates Wagner’s innings as having 65% more leverage than a normal inning, which can get you to a score of Halladay-321, Wagner-269. Now, if… Read more »
Paul E
Guest
Doom, Apples versus oranges….. I compare Wagner to relievers; Halladay to starters. As far as evaluating relievers, I thought Wagner during the course of his career only Rivera was better. Just WAR alone indicates he was the equal of Hoffman with fewer innings Halladay? I’d go with Maddux, Schilling, Johnson, and Smoltz (off the top of my head) as either his superior or equal during the course of his career. Is Halladay a first ballot Hall of Famer? I guess we’ll find out. He would have been if he didn’t get hurt but, apparently, due to his insistence in completing… Read more »
Dr. Doom
Guest
I mean, I get that you thought about it in that way. But runs are runs are runs. You’re not electing by position, you’re electing people to the Hall of Fame. So don’t you want the best players, regardless of position? Wagner did not help his teams win as much as Halladay did. That’s why Lenny Harris doesn’t get into the Hall of Fame as a pinch hitter – it doesn’t matter if you do a job well if you’re not actually all that useful in helping your team win. It’s also odd to me that you picked Maddux and… Read more »
Paul E
Guest
Doom: “John Smoltz (whom you “smartly name”, and who IS a pretty interesting comp)” Are you implying I was stupid to name the other guys? It’s a Small Hall for me and how many of those guys surrounding Halladay were first ballot HoF’ers? It’s a vote – Cook County IL or Pascagoula MS – everybody gets one. I don’t believe there are 10 Hall of Famers in this exercise, either, and it’s not necessary to fill the entire ballot out. And, as things have gone in the past, 10 guys ain’t getting in this year either. If you want to… Read more »
CursedClevelander
Guest

Doesn’t bode well for Andruw Jones, since two of those three didn’t make the Hall. – in fact, neither even made it to a 2nd ballot. At least Jones has them beat on that measure.

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest

Early returns indicate that Andruw may once again be battling to keep his head above the 5% threshold. (Or should it be foot?)

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
I think one of the differences between Paul and Doom is that Paul may be distinguishing a “first-ballot HoFer” from the hoi polloi. I don’t take that into consideration, and I suspect Doom doesn’t either. But if I did, I wouldn’t vote for Halladay this year either (I did vote for him on my own criteria). I think people who see “first-ballot” status as meaningful more or less equate it with “inner-circle HoFer,” and while it’s really unclear what the standard signifies, since small-hall and big-hall fans have very different inner circles, Doc’s not an inner-circle guy to me (like… Read more »
Dr. Doom
Guest
@Paul E 1. No, I wasn’t saying you were stupid. I mean, I don’t think it’s too hard to figure out that Roy Halladay was not Pedro. And I said Smoltz was a smart comp because he is: they had remarkably similar careers and awards balloting. It was just a particularly pertinent comp. Sorry for saying that, I guess. 2. As to the question, “how many of those guys surrounding Halladay were first ballot HoF’ers?” is easy to answer: the three guys directly below him: Glavine, Smoltz, and Ryan. 3. “It’s a vote . . . everybody gets one.” Agreed.… Read more »
Paul E
Guest
Doom, No problem, no one “feels bad”. My intention in filling out this ballot was the same as for the MVP , Cy Young, and Manager of the Year awards that this group did. I didn’t vote for Yelich and Betts because I’m a fan and admirer of either guy. I just thought they would be voted MVP and the order I voted was the way I suspected the voting would go. And that brings me to, basically, whom do I think will be elected on THIS ballot THIS year. Halladay was a Hall of Fame talent. His career, like… Read more »
Paul E
Guest

One of the better games I witnessed. While I’m sitting in decent seats on the 1B line, Biggio goes yard off Wagner in the top of the 9th and Astros beat the Phillies 2-1 (it happens). I somewhat presciently remarked to a friend sitting next to me, “They’ll miss the playoffs by one game”. They did:

https://www.baseball-reference.com/boxes/PHI/PHI200509060.shtml

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest

Ok. This is depressing.

When I do the math, I labor for hours, constantly spotting and correcting errors in my assumptions and formulas, and doing everything twice after I can’t find anything more to change. Then I post my math, and within a few hours, Doom swoops in and points out my fifth-grade errors.

It’s ok, I’m used to it. And it’s not just math and not just Doom.

But when Doom begins a post, “I actually did the reliever math a second ago,” I feel that my suffering has reached the point of cosmic injustice!

Mike L
Guest
Bob, I’ve been thinking about Doom’s math for several hours in my blundering way and it seems to me we should like at what level of starting pitching would compare to Wagner’s. Rounding slightly, Wagner “saved” 200 runs per 900 IP. Halladay through a bit more than 2700 IP. So, we should look at what ERA+ would a starting pitcher compiling 2700 IP need to have to equal Wagner’s 200 saved runs. Let’s assume a baseline league ERA of 4:00, or 1200 ER per 2700 IP. To save 200 Runs, that would mean an ERA+ of 120. Each 300 additional… Read more »
Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
Mike (and Doom, and Paul): I think the incompatibility in the roles of starter and reliever are so great that comparison of runs saved is not going to tell us much. That is, we can calculate the comparison (if we’ve got math skills), but the information it provides is not useful to making either quality or quantity comparisons. (In other words, I think Paul’s apples/oranges approach is more appropriate than Doom’s “runs are runs.”) Based on Doom’s comments, I assume the Tango reliever “penalty” of 17% (which I also assume covers more than closers) is based on the idea that… Read more »
Mike L
Guest

Bob, that’s a superb bit of analysis and advocacy.
I wonder if we could throw out to the group a very basic question that might have been implicit in my “ERA+120” question. There’s no doubt in my mind that, if i had been given the choice of Greg Maddux or Mariano, with perfect foresight, I would have taken Maddux. But what’s the value of an elite closer as compared to a quality starting pitcher? Is an elite closer worth an ace, a good #2, #3?

Dr. Doom
Guest
Mike L and Bob, 1. (Bob) Re: 17% – I believe that was derived by looking at “swing” guys – those who both start and relieve – and checking their relative ERA in those contexts – actually a pretty clever way of doing it, I think, because those are guys who CAN start at the ML-level, and sometimes DO, but often don’t. So, if I’m recalling correctly, that’s how the study was done. 2. (Bob) Re: “leverage” – Bob, I recalled you being a fan of WPA, no? That’s a leverage-based stat. I think the argument here is not that… Read more »
CursedClevelander
Guest
Doom, fantastic analysis through all of this, though as our in-house Tribe fan I have to make one factual correction – Lee was never behind Colon in the rotation because Lee and Colon were traded for each other. I’m pro-Wagner for the Hall, though I’m not sure he’d make my ballot because it’s so crowded. Of course I’m also pro-Halladay. Obviously there’s going to be a disconnect between starter and reliever value purely on an IP basis. Lee accumulated that 42.7 WAR in 2,150 or so innings, Wagner accumulated his 27.8 in 900 innings. Wagner absolutely excelled in his role… Read more »
Mike L
Guest

Cursed, Jansen, Chapman, Kimbrel, all around 500 IP. born all within a few months of each other, all will play at age 31 in 2019. You wonder how they will sustain their levels of performance. 400 more IP is 400 appearances, between 6-7 seasons without serious injury, taking them to age 37/38. in a weird way, it does make the performance of Wagner seem more impressive. To say nothing of Rivera,

Paul E
Guest

Doom,
Re “apples/oranges”, is it safe to say if we directly compare Mariano Rivera (GOAT ?) to Halladay, Glavine, Blyleven, or even Don Sutton (as opposed to relief pitchers), no reliever would ever get in based on the “runs” analysis? That is to say, without differentiating these relievers from starters, they have, apparently, less value than #5 in the most rotations. And, doesn’t WAR differentiate them or ‘leverage/value’ the late innings as significantly more important to ‘winning’? You know, like Lenny Harris (PH) versus Edgar Martinez (DH) ?

Dr. Doom
Guest
@ CC & Paul CC – DUH. Ugh. How could I forget the Cliff Lee thing?! I was figuring there was a year or two of overlap just by looking at the seasons Lee played for Cleveland. That was foolish of me. Had I just looked at the “transactions” section, I would’ve been straightened out. Whoops! Paul – I don’t that’s quite true. Even in a straight “runs” analysis, I think some come out quite well. To show my work, here are Mariano, Gossage, and Wilhelm (I’m going to do the reliever conversions, but I’m not going to account for… Read more »
Paul E
Guest

Doom,
So of all the relievers (“in all the gin joints, in all the world”) , who, by this calculation is HoF worthy? Am I correct to think it would be merely Mariano, Wilhelm, and Wagner as shoo-ins? Because, honestly, I thought Sutter, Smith, and Gossage were pretty good relievers by the eye test. Hoffman was pretty effective as well. Is it possible that there is some sort of elevated K/9 bias in the sabermetric tea leaves?

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
Doom, I’ll just reply to your points to me. 1) If the 17% figure was derived as you suggest, it is, contrary to my suggestion, based on data, not assumptions — and it is indeed a clever strategy (one might expect that from Tango). The questions the method gives rise to, however, are whether the database is sufficiently robust to draw so definitive a conclusion, and whether the conclusion applies to HoF quality pitchers (in both roles), whose stats are on the tail of the curve, a place where swingmen are rarely found. 2) Your memory is good, as always:… Read more »
Dr. Doom
Guest
1) Indeed, it may be different at the tails of the curve, but you get into sample-size issues there that make it all but impossible to derive the “right” number. For now, I’ll happily use 17% and assume it’s close enough, and figure the question of whether it’s helping or hurting HOF-quality arms is a 50-50 proposition. 2) That’s a fair-enough distinction, though I think we can all acknowledge that the reasons to neglect LI and the reasons to include it are both strong. I think, as with most things, it’s probably best to take both approaches into consideration. Honestly,… Read more »
CursedClevelander
Guest

I think I short-changed Nathan’s HoF resume because I forgot how good his stint in Texas was. Looking at his numbers again, I think Wagner is a tier above him, but Nathan has a strong case if he’s compared to Hoffman, Gossage and Smith and certainly when compared to Sutter and Fingers.

Paul E
Guest
DOOM: You state, in the above, “These numbers, by the way, present a case that Joe Nathan and Craig Kimbrel are (already, in the case of Kimbrel) above the standard for HOF relievers, if we’re to take Trevor Hoffman as the standard.” I thought we were comparing potential Hall of Fame relievers to starters – not Trevor Hoffman? Maybe I’m failing to see all these ‘conversions’ to “runs”, but the ‘conversions’ were made of a necessity to compare the relievers to starters, no? So, ultimately, since, with the exception of Rivera no one is really ‘great’ when compared to starters,… Read more »
Dr. Doom
Guest
Paul E Re: Hoffman as the standard – I only meant if we’re judging relievers separately from starters, and if we consider Hoffman to be the baseline (which seems to me the person you’d pick, again, if you were to pick one and use such criteria). I’m not suggesting that’s a good idea; just that we then have to much more seriously consider Kimbrel as already HOF-worthy, as well as Joe Nathan. I’m not really sure that’s a standard I want to go to, but we have to consider that when we start thinking of “reliever” as a position, rather… Read more »
Paul E
Guest

Doom,
I think for Aaron you’re using his career RC divided by his AIR (877/.95=914) from baseball-reference. If not, it ‘works’ that way without the aggravation of OPS+ calculation…..
I’m OK with relievers in the Hall, regardless of their ‘inferiority’ to starters. It’s the steroid guys and the DH’s that I (me, that’s me typing) have an issue with. But, I understand by the logic of your calculations you do not believe many of them to be “hall worthy”.

Paul E
Guest

Well, that’s wrong : ” I think for Aaron you’re using his career RC divided by his AIR (877/.95=914).” No, that would equal 923 , Paul

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
Doom, You’ve got three good replies to my three responses to your three points. I’m only going to disagree with your conclusion on one, and it’s not much of a disagreement. Apples to Tomatoes: You’re right that there’s only a single HoF ballot and it includes position players, DHs, starters, and relievers. In filling out the ballot, you may have to decide whether to choose between a starter and a reliever, just as you may have to decide between a reliever and a position player. I don’t think the right way to handle either is to compare their stats to… Read more »
Bob Eno (epm)
Guest

How many times today have I typed OPS+ instead of ERA+? Luckily I have many other things to feel more embarrassed about.

no statistician but
Guest
Bob: I’d further your remarks a little to include two other points: 1) Since, let’s say, Eckersley’s career transformation from failing starter to 9th-inning genius, the only relief pitchers who have gained a shot at Fame—as in HOF—are “closers,” because they have the big stat, SAVES, to validate their importance. The guys who used to be called “middle relievers,” but who are now used equally strategically with “closers,” get scant attention. A hold, somehow, especially since a fair amount of the holding is done to keep a team that is behind within range of pulling out a win, doesn’t carry… Read more »
Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
nsb, These are good points. In replying to Doom I particularly noted that you’d raised the first. In the case of the second, I agree that you’ve spotted the appropriate paradox to think about. On the other hand, I don’t think guys like McDaniel and Face were anything like the quality of Wagner or Kimbrel. I think the general quality of relievers as pitchers is an order of magnitude greater than anything before the ’70s: they’re taken seriously now, and paid like it. (As I said in replying to Doom, Hoyt & Eck are unique and not comparable to other… Read more »
Mike L
Guest

That’s a really interesting argument, Doom. I’d love to see a chart with that type of a comparison.

CursedClevelander
Guest

Not sure I’d say uncouth – perhaps a bit unseemly? On the one hand, there’s the opinion that there’s nothing wrong with self-promotion – if you don’t promote yourself, who will? But waging an active campaign to influence the writers seems, if nothing else, a little desperate – don’t you want to be awarded purely on the merits, and not because your browbeat enough people to vote for you?

But it’s not against the rules. And there are certainly some organic (and some less than organic) fan campaigns to get certain people into the Hall.

no statistician but
Guest

The first player I remember lobbying for Hall inclusion was Enos Slaughter, and while there may have been or may be others, I’m vague as to who they are. Oh, right. Donald Trump.

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