This post is for voting and discussion in the 134th round of balloting for the Circle of Greats (COG). This is the second of two rounds of balloting adding to the list of candidates eligible to receive your votes those players born in 1975. Rules and lists are after the jump.
The new group of 1975-born players, in order to join the eligible list, must, as usual, have played at least 10 seasons in the major leagues or generated at least 20 Wins Above Replacement (“WAR”, as calculated by baseball-reference.com, and for this purpose meaning 20 total WAR for everyday players and 20 pitching WAR for pitchers). This second group of 1975-born candidates, comprising those with K-Z surnames, joins the eligible holdovers from previous rounds to comprise the full list of players eligible to appear on your ballots.
In addition to voting for COG election among players on the main ballot, there will be also be voting for elevation to the main ballot among players on the secondary ballot. For the main ballot election, voters must select three and only three eligible players, with the one player appearing on the most ballots cast in the round inducted into the Circle of Greats. For the secondary ballot election, voters may select up to three eligible players, with the one player appearing on the most ballots cast elevated to the main ballot for the next COG election round. In the case of ties, a runoff election round will be held for COG election, while a tie-breaking process will be followed to determine the secondary ballot winner.
Players who fail to win either ballot but appear on half or more of the ballots that are cast win four added future rounds of ballot eligibility. Players who appear on 25% or more of the ballots cast, but less than 50%, earn two added future rounds of ballot eligibility. One additional round of eligibility is earned by any player who appears on at least 10% of the ballots cast or, for the main ballot only, any player finishing in the top 9 (including ties) in ballot appearances. Holdover candidates on the main ballot who exhaust their eligibility will drop to the secondary ballot for the next COG election round, as will first time main ballot candidates who attract one or more votes but do not earn additional main ballot eligibility. Secondary ballot candidates who exhaust their eligibility will drop from that ballot, but will become eligible for possible reinstatement in a future Redemption round election.
All voting for this round closes at 11:59 PM EST Thursday, February 20th, while changes to previously cast ballots are allowed until 11:59 PM EST Tuesday, February 18th.
If you’d like to follow the vote tally, and/or check to make sure I’ve recorded your vote correctly, you can see my ballot-counting spreadsheet for this round here: COG 1975 Part 2 Vote Tally. I’ll be updating the spreadsheet periodically with the latest votes. Initially, there is a row in the spreadsheet for every voter who has cast a ballot in any of the past rounds, but new voters are entirely welcome — new voters will be added to the spreadsheet as their ballots are submitted. Also in the spreadsheet is a column for each of the holdover candidates; additional player columns from the new born-in-1975 group will be added to the spreadsheet as votes are cast for them.
Choose your three players, for both the main and secondary ballots, from the lists below of eligible players. The current holdovers are listed in order of the number of future rounds (including this one) through which they are assured eligibility, and alphabetically when the future eligibility number is the same. The 1975 birth-year players are listed below in order of the number of seasons each played in the majors, and alphabetically among players with the same number of seasons played.
|MAIN BALLOT||ELIGIBILITY||SECONDARY BALLOT||ELIGIBILITY|
|Dick Allen||8 rounds||Willie Randolph||11 rounds|
|Bill Dahlen||8 rounds||Todd Helton||10 rounds|
|Luis Tiant||7 rounds||Stan Coveleski||4 rounds|
|Bobby Wallace||3 rounds||Minnie Minoso||4 rounds|
|Ted Lyons||2 rounds||Bobby Abreu||3 rounds|
|Graig Nettles||2 rounds||Monte Irvin||3 rounds|
|Ted Simmons||2 rounds||Ken Boyer||2 rounds|
|Don Sutton||2 rounds||Don Drysdale||this round ONLY|
|Richie Ashburn||this round ONLY||Tim Hudson||this round ONLY|
|Andre Dawson||this round ONLY||Andy Pettitte||this round ONLY|
|Vladimir Guerrero||this round ONLY||Reggie Smith||this round ONLY|
|Rick Reuschel||this round ONLY||Billy Williams||this round ONLY|
|Gary Sheffield||this round ONLY|
Everyday Players (born in 1975, ten or more seasons played in the major leagues or at least 20 WAR, K-Z surname):
Pitchers (born in 1975, ten or more seasons played in the major leagues or at least 20 WAR, K-Z surname):
As is our custom with first time candidates, here is a factoid and related quiz question on each of the new players on the ballot.
- Alex Rodriguez is the only player with a career including 1000 games at both shortstop and third base. Which two players, like Rodriguez, recorded 1000+ shortstop games, all of them before their age 30 seasons? (Robin Yount, Joe Sewell)
- David Ortiz is the all-time leader in DH games with over 2000 in a career split between the Twins and Red Sox. Which other two players recorded 200 DH games for the Twins and for another franchise? (Paul Molitor, Chili Davis)
- Mark Kotsay played over 400 games for the Marlins, Padres and Athletics? Which other player played 400 games for two of those franchises? (Gene Tenace)
- Scott Rolen‘s 156 games played in 1997 led the Phillies, and all NL rookies. Who was the last Phillie rookie to do the same, while also compiling more walks than whiffs? (Dave Bancroft, 1915)
- Jeff Suppan’s 4.70 career ERA is the highest, by more than 0.25 runs, of any pitcher with 2500 IP. Which contemporary of Suppan has the highest career ERA of any pitcher with 3000 IP? (Livan Hernandez)
- Placido Polanco posted career highs in 2007 with a .341 BA and 200 hits. Before Polanco, who was the last second baseman to match or surpass those totals and not win a batting title? (Charlie Gehringer, 1936)
- Jose Molina posted two seasons catching 95+ games but recording fewer than 300 PA. Who is the only player with more such seasons? (J.C. Martin)
- Derrek Lee’s 331 career home runs are tied for the fewest among first basemen with 1000 runs, 1000 RBI and fewer than 2000 hits. Which player is Lee tied with? (Hank Greenberg)
- Marco Scutaro’s .500 BA in the 2012 NLCS is the highest by a second baseman in an LCS series (min. 20 PA). Which three players matched Scutaro’s BA playing second base in a World Series? (Joe Gordon 1941, Billy Martin 1953, Phil Garner 1979)
- Julio Lugo is one of 12 shortstops since 1901 with multiple seasons of 30 doubles and 30 stolen bases. Lugo posted those seasons for the D-Rays and Red Sox. Who is the only shortstop to post such seasons for three franchises? (Jose Reyes)
- Gabe Kapler is the only outfielder to play 300 games for the Rangers and Red Sox. Which player compiled a career including 300 games for the Rangers, Red Sox and Yankees? (Mike Stanley)
- Chad Moeller compiled -3.6 WAR over 1539 PA, the worst career ratio among catchers with 500 game careers. Which active player currently has the second worst WAR per PA ratio for such catchers? (Drew Butera)
- Rodrigo Lopez posted seasons leading each league in losses. Which other three pitchers did the same? (Tom Candiotti, Jerry Koosman, Emil John “Dutch” Leonard)
- B.J. Ryan recorded a 4.38 ERA in over 200 IP through age 27, but improved by 1.73 runs to a 2.65 ERA in more than 300 IP for the rest of his career. Which two pitchers recorded larger ERA improvements among relievers with 200+ IP in both of those career “halves”?
(Jeremy Affeldt, Joe Beimel)
- Damaso Marte posted 6 consecutive seasons (2002-07) with 60 relief appearances and 120 ERA+, tied for the longest streak of such seasons by pitchers aged 32 or younger. Which pitcher shares that record with Marte? (Keith Foulke)
- Daryle Ward and his father, Gary, both hit for the cycle. Which other father/son duo did the same? (Craig/Cavan Biggio)
- Eric Milton is one of four pitchers with 1.5 HR/9 in a 1500 IP career. Which teammate of Milton’s has the highest HR/9 in a 2000 IP career?
- Jaret Wright is the youngest pitcher to start two World Series games in his rookie season. Who is the only pitcher younger than Wright to start game 7 of a World Series? (Bret Saberhagen, 1985)
- Fernando Tatis stole 20 bases in 1999 while reaching triple digits in R, RBI and SO. Who was the first player to post such a season? (Bobby Bonds, 1971)
- Esteban Yan’s 4.76 career ERA as a reliever is the highest among expansion era pitchers with 500 relief IP. Which pre-expansion pitcher has the only higher career ERA in 500+ relief IP? (Dick Coffman)
- Scot Shields is one of 8 retired relief pitchers to compile a 500 IP career playing for only one franchise. Who is the only pre-expansion pitcher in that group? (Ace Adams)
- Mike Lamb is the only player with 300 games played for the Astros and Rangers. Lamb is one of 6 players to make his LCS debut with a PH home run in the 9th inning or later. Which player in that group had a walk-off shot for that LCS debut homer? (John Lowenstein, 1979 ALCS)
- Javier Valentin is the second Puerto Rican-born player (after Benito Santiago) to catch for the Reds. Which HoFer hails from the same home town as Valentin? (Ivan Rodriguez)
- Hiroki Kuroda pitched 600+ innings in both leagues in a career of less than 1400 IP. Which pitcher did the same and compiled fewer career IP than Kuroda? (Chris Young)