Friday, January 16, 2009

The Hall of Pretty Good

Historically, the MLB Hall of Fame has been much better than the other major sports in keeping the elite in, and the mere good out. They still are, that doesn't change with this year's most recent elections, nor did it change in the past couple years when they inducted Goose Gossage and Bruce Sutter, respectively.

That's not to say they weren't good players.

The same goes for one of this year's inductees - who everyone pretty much knew would finally get in this year, his 15th and final year on the ballot - Jim Rice. Now, how his stats actually improved over the past 12 months in order for him to gain induction, I'll never know. But apparently, what was it, 14 additional voters said "Eh, good enough!" The whole thing is asinine. Jim Rice was a fine player, a great hitter for several years there, a threat in the middle of that Boston lineup. But one of the elite to ever play the game? Surely you jest. I mean, where's Joe Carter if you're going to just put in good hitting outfielders? And why has Dale Murphy been plodding around the 10-15% plateau ever since he's been on the ballot? I'm not saying he deserves to be in, but where's the love? Here, check the stats if you don't believe me:

Jim Rice:
Dale Murphy:

For his career, Rice batted .298 (.352 OBP) with 382 home runs, 1451 RBIs, and 2452 hits. Nothing to sneeze at. He also had 1 MVP and zero Gold Glove Awards.

Murphy batted .265 (.346 OBP) with 398 home runs, 1266 RBIs, and 2111 hits. Rice's numbers do look slighly better here (slightly), but Dale also had 2 MVPs to Rice's one, and topped it off with 5 Gold Gloves. Not to mention he played for the shitty, shitty Braves during the 80s so that has to account for a big chunk of those RBIs.

For my money, there were two guys more deserving of going into the Hall over Rice - and no, one of them isn't Dale Murphy. The first is The Hawk, the bane of my youth during his time with Cubs, Andre Dawson.

Dawson will get in, if history is any judge, but it's a crime he hasn't been inducted sooner. Dawson's numbers look like this: .279 batting average, .323 OBP, 438 home runs, 1591 RBIs, 2774 hits, 1 MVP, a Rookie of the Year Award, and 8 Gold Gloves. And I'm not going back to check the numbers but I know that motherfucker stole more than a few bases as well and he had a GUN in RF.

The other guy who should have gone in long ago is Bert Blyleven. How this guy has floated under the radar this long is just a travesty. His numbers just speak for themselves:

287 Wins
242 Complete Games. 242!
60 Shutouts
3.31 ERA
3701 Ks - which is 5th all time

Poor guy. You'd think if he'd have hung around for a couple more crappy seasons just to get #300 he'd be a shoo-in.

Onto the other half of my rant. Whoever didn't fucking vote for Rickey Henderson needs to be stripped of their voting priveleges. He was on, like, 94.7% of the ballot. Over 5% of the writers said, nope, he just wasn't good enough. Give me a fucking break. And while I'm on the subject, what's the deal with this 15 year bullshit? A player does not get any better after he's retired. Sorry. He just doesn't. Generally they get worse as people eclipse their records (Sorry, Lee Smith). You're either a first ballot Hall of Famer or you're not fucking good enough. End of story. Not to mention the whole self-promoting and begging for votes is just embarassing. Goose was practically crying in interviews the year Sutter got in and he didn't. It's pathetic.

And two people voted for Jay Bell! Jay Fucking Bell! And someone wanted to see a bronze bust of JESSE OROSCO! Someone tell these writers that you don't have to vote for 10 guys. Vote for none if you don't think any are deserving, but don't be ridiculous. I would like to track down the guys who voted for Jay Bell and Jesse Orosco and have them explain to me, in great detail, why in God's name either is deserving of the greatest honor a baseball player can achieve. Then I would like to punch them in the neck.

That's enough for this week. Glad to be on board!


  1. Also more deserving than Jim Rice is Tim Raines, who appears to have been hurt by Rickey's presence on the ballot this year. I don't feel like transcribing Rock's stats while eating my cereal, but for those who don't know why I'm claiming he's a Hall of Famer, take a gander at

    As for Rickey, there is one and only one reason not to vote for him: if, as a Hall of Fame voter, you wish to vote for more players than the maximum allowed (which, I believe, is ten) and do not vote for Rickey because you KNOW he's going to make the Hall but you DON'T know whether, say, Mark Grace will manage to stay on the ballot (he didn't, by the way). But I'd rate this scenario as extremely unlikely.

    Finally, I would love to see a bronze bust of Jesse Orosco (and Jay Bell, at that). Just not in the Hall of Fame.

    Perhaps I should commission an Orosco bust for Caleb's birthday...

  2. Also:

  3. Supposedly some writers do blank balloting to prevent unanimous selections. So technically they weren't selecting people above Rickey Henderson.

    P.S. Universally expected to be the greatest induction speech in history.

  4. Yes. And not just the greatest Baseball Hall of Fame induction speech. The greatest. Induction. Speech. Ever.

  5. The blank balloting is stupid too. Willie Mays didn't deserve 100% of the vote? Hank Aaron? Ted Williams? Shit what if 30% of the voters left put in a blank ballot for the same reason?

    "Rickey Henderson very proud of Rickey Henderson"