2019 Baseball Hall of Fame Class

Discussion in 'Baseball' started by Don Wassall, Jan 24, 2019.

  1. Don Wassall

    Don Wassall Administrator Staff Member

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    Mariano Rivera became the first player voted in with 100% of the votes, but that was primarily because of the gradual fading away of the unwritten rule followed by some curmudgeon writers of never voting for a player his first year of eligibility.

    Mike Mussina, Roy Halladay and Edgar Martinez all made it as well, borderline players for Cooperstown, not all-time greats. Mussina went 270-153, which is impressive, and Halladay had a number of dominant years but only won 203 games.

    Harold Baines and Lee Smith were picked by the "Today's Game Era Committee," whatever the hell that is, the successor to the Veterans Committee I guess, which should have been abolished 40 years ago. Baines' one noteworthy achievement was to play a long time, 22 seasons, other than that he was never an elite player. A terrible fielder he was mostly a DH, never hit as many as 30 homers in a season, averaged about 80 RBIs a year to go with a .289 career batting average. No way he should have been selected. Dale Murphy was a much better all-around player, a five tool all-star and was twice was the NL's MVP, but he'll likely never get serious consideration by the "re-do" committee.

    Roger Clemens is up to 59.5% and Barry Bonds received 59.1%, but both are running out of eligibility. But no worries, Bonds will undoubtedly get in some day via the "Today's Game Era Committee" but I suspect Clemens never will, nor Mark McGwire. And Pete Rose will soon be 78; he'll die still being banned from the game.
     
  2. white is right

    white is right Hall of Famer

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    I was too lazy to start a thread on this motley crew of "all time greats".

    Yes the two veterans committee guys smack of cronyism, the best line about Baines being elected was he didn't lower the bar he smashed the bar. I mean can you deny anybody now that was a borderline guy with Baines in? Bill Buckner, Rusty Staub's relatives, Al Oliver, Dwight Evans and others all could complain for not being under consideration with Baines election. From what I ready Larussa brow beat some committee members and Harold was elected. Lee Smith was talked about here as decent and a compiler but nothing spectacular, he might have been the 3rd or 4th best closer in the NL in his prime years but Smith like Baines was well liked by committee members.

    As for the other guys aside from Rivera all could have waited longer than they did to get in, in Martinez's case that would be to the new Veterans committee but he obviously is too good for that with good old Harold in....

    I have no clue if Clemens, Bonds or any other player tainted by the steroid scarlet letter will get in, but I do know Joe Morgan will voice his opinion against it as long as he is breathing.
     
  3. knightedsoldier5000

    knightedsoldier5000 Mentor

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    Thank you Don, for mentioning Dale Murphy. His numbers look weak when compared to the steroid era, but he was the most solid power hitter of his era and played on some truly horrible teams. He should be in the HOF.

    I'm personally not a fan of any reliever getting in, at least modern day relievers that pitch 1 inning in the 9th with a 4 run lead to get a "save". The save statistic is the biggest crock.

    Harold Baines' election is an absolute abomination. Just more destruction to the game of baseball by the "genius" Tony LaRussa.
     
  4. Don Wassall

    Don Wassall Administrator Staff Member

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    Pete Rose will never make the Hall of Fame, but Ted Simmons somehow has. Just read that Simmons is the first player who garnered less than five percent of the vote in his first year of eligibility, thus dropping off the Hall of Fame ballot in subsequent years, yet made the Hall thanks to the Veterans Committee or whatever it's called now. Repeat, less than five percent of his peers thought Simmons was worthy of Cooperstown, yet he will be inducted this year or whenever the plandemic allows.

    Great example of how bureaucracies and "committees" never go away, just continue forever trying to justify their existence. The Veterans Committee should have been abolished once it fulfilled its mission of inducting players from the late 19th century and early 20th century who had been overlooked when the Hall of Fame at Cooperstown began in 1939. But no, it will induct unworthy players into the Hall forever, continuing to cheapen those who made it on their merits as judged by their peers.
     
  5. sport historian

    sport historian Master

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    Dale Murphy's HOF chances were killed by his huge drop-off in production after 1987.

    Barry Bonds will get in eventually, on being HOF caliber prior to tanking up on steroids. Roger Clemens , if he does, will have to wait a long time after Bonds. Maybe Clemens will make it on the theory "Well, Bonds is in, why not Clemens?" Mark McGwire? Probably never.

    Pete Rose? He'll be long dead if it happens.

    Steve Garvey was a candidate again this time and failed again. The Bill James-Sabermetrics crowd has long opposed Garvey on the grounds he drew few walks resulting in a low On Base Percentage, hit into a lot of double plays, etc. My own opinion is Steve Garvey should be in the HOF.

    They don't come out and say it, but Garvey's personal issues and a so-called "phony image" is held against him. However, Garvey has been married to the same woman for 30 years now, so he has redeemed himself it could be argued.

    Lee Smith made the HOF this time. Now, who was it who hit a game-winning walk-off home run against Smith in the 1984 NLCS?
     
  6. Freethinker

    Freethinker Hall of Famer

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    I’d consider myself a pretty big baseball fan and someone who knows the majority of great players from yesteryear. I’ve never heard of Ted Simmons. Ridiculous.

    Also, thanks for sharing the history of how the Veterans Committee came about as I did not know its original mission statement. It’s as useless as NATO at this point but similarly entrenched.
     
  7. white is right

    white is right Hall of Famer

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    Ted Simmons was better than a less than 5 percent first year drop on the ballot type player. He is "rated" 10th on the all time list by Bill James, his knock for not getting elected or being dropped was defensively he was weak and offensively his stats were too marginal to make up for defensive liabilities for a hall of fame catcher.

    Picture something similar to a poor mans Piazza....
     
  8. Don Wassall

    Don Wassall Administrator Staff Member

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    But he wasn't.

    That's what we're supposed to pretend now, but when less than 1/20 of the writers who covered his career found him Hall worthy, it is what it is, a nice career over a long period of time, but not a Hall of Famer. Why forty years later is he all of a sudden a Hall of Famer? Why even have a yearly vote for players when it doesn't even matter later on when someone like Simmons who was decisively lacking the needed qualifications gets in anyway?
     
  9. white is right

    white is right Hall of Famer

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    I in no way think he is a legitimate hall of fame candidate, he might not be even as worthy as Harold Baines and that saying something. But I do remember him and found it strange that he was dropped after the first year.

    I don't know if there was blow back from the media about having a crusty personality, but similar to Baines why bother to drop any very good player from being elected if he can get in.

    PS, I think he was helped by sabermetrics as Bill James and younger voters love these advanced statistics, granted the new veterans committee is mostly friends of players like this and Larussa aside I don't even know if a Joe Morgan type even know more than a few new advanced stats.
     
  10. Don Wassall

    Don Wassall Administrator Staff Member

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    I know some of the advanced stats make Ted Simmons' career look better in retrospect, but who better to judge than his contemporaries? The Veterans Committee should have been disbanded back in 1972, the year Sleepy Joe Biden was first elected to the U.S. Senate.
     
  11. Leonardfan

    Leonardfan Hall of Famer

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    Same here. Always had a great appreciation for baseball - it was my sport growing up and I always enjoyed/revered the history of the players from history. I don't want to come off as jaded or negative but just like every other sports hall of fame the MLB has been watered down over the years by allowing a lot of unknowns in. Dominant hall of fame players are rare which was the point of these Hall of Fames at first - but now it is becoming more and more of a stat geeks analysis of a player - essentially the criteria have changed. Not to get on a tangent but modern baseball is tainted by juiced balls and juiced players - once more of these modern players come up for hall of fame candidacy I hope it is something that is taken into account. At least Ted Simmons played during a pre-steroid/pre- juiced ball era.
     
  12. booth

    booth Mentor

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    Leonardfan, I share your appreciation for baseball it was my favorite sport as a kid growing up. I also know that the HOF has been diluted with the addition of marginal players at best. My suggestion would be not to have a HOF class every year but every 5 years or more if necessary. They don't have enough GREAT players to have a class every year. They weren't great players but my two favorite players were Bobby Richardson and Jimmy Piersall.
     
  13. sport historian

    sport historian Master

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    Did you ever see the 1957 movie, "Fear Strikes Out?" It was based on Jimmy Piersall's book about his psychological problems. Tony Perkins, of all people, played Piersall.
     
  14. booth

    booth Mentor

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    Yes, I have sport historian, thank you for reminding me of it. He certainly had a troubled life and almost lost his career in baseball because of it. My two favorite moments watching Piersall playing was when he hit his 100th home run and ran around the bases backward and chasing a fan who ran out in centerfield and kicking him in the butt. I thought that was the funniest thing I had ever seen.
     
  15. sport historian

    sport historian Master

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    I remember a Sport magazine article about fans attacking players in 1961. The incident with Piersall was described. Two (early DWF types) ran out of the Yankee Stadium stands and tried to attack Piersall, who decked one and kicked the other one.
     
  16. Flint

    Flint Mentor Staff Member

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    The HOF has long become the Hall of Pretty Good Players. The current “veterans committee” is divided into 3 groups each with an “era” from which they can pick. That setup is ripe for abuse as guys get to vote in their buddies.

    Al Kaline made sure someone from the 1984 Tigers got in one of the last times (Jack Morris, Alan Trammell) and I suspect that happened with Simmons and Baines.

    I’m not a supporter of Simmons but at least he was a good hitter at a traditionally non hitting position, catcher. Baines was a light hitting outfielder for goodness sake.

    Let’s face it when the all time hits leader, the all time HR leader, and the best pitcher of his generation are not in the Hall you got problems.
     
  17. sport historian

    sport historian Master

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    All or nearly all HOF members won't forgive Pete Rose, his Reds teammate Johnny Bench in particular. They don't want Rose in the HOF.

    The cardinal rule of baseball since 1919 has been NO GAMBLING. It's on the wall of every clubhouse.

    For a manager, betting on games is especially egregious. Suppose Rose had money on Tuesday's game but not on Wednesday's. That might cause him to not use a pitcher on Sunday so he'd be fresher on Tuesday. Or he might use a pitcher (or position player) on Tuesday he wouldn't have without having a bet down. This affects a game's outcome. It means Rose is trying harder to win on Tuesday than he will be on Wednesday, making for a dishonest game.

    This is why the HOF members are against Pete Rose being in the Hall.
     
  18. Carolina Speed

    Carolina Speed Master

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    SH/Booth. I have seen Fear Strikes Out many times. Fun Fact. The lady that played Piersall's wife Mary, Norma Moore lives in NC. Her daughter was my girlfriend in high school. She went to NC State and ended up marrying a former TE on the football team. They have a son that played at Furman.
    I remember watching that movie with her in HS. It was cool seeing her mother act on TV.
    Ms. Moore, who is married and has a different last name now, also helped plan my wedding.
     
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2020
  19. booth

    booth Mentor

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    CS that is a great story. It's good that you got to meet and become friends with Mrs. Moore. I know you will always cherish those memories.
     

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