Blog Entry

Years 2014-16 will crowd Hall of Fame ballot

Posted on: January 9, 2012 3:03 pm
Edited on: January 9, 2012 3:23 pm

By Matt Snyder

With the 2012 Hall of Fame class set to be Barry Larkin and Ron Santo, we can now look ahead to future years -- while kicking and screaming about who should have gotten in or who didn't deserve it, of course; heaven forbid anyone just celebrate the careers of Larkin and Santo and move on. My colleague C. Trent Rosecrans has taken a look at the explosive 2013 Hall of Fame class of first-year eligibles. Just envision all the arguing and name-calling that will take place in our comments section next year at this time (remember, everyone's personal opinion is right and everyone else is an idiot with absolutely no room for discussion!). I have a headache already.

Anyway, the ballot doesn't let up anytime soon, either. Check out the first-year eligible classes for the ensuing three ballots. And remember, these guys are only joining those remaining on the ballot. It's going to get overly crowded with legitimate superstars unless a few classes have upwards of four or five inductees.

Here are the most notable guys joining the ballot before 2017, divided up by year.


Greg Maddux - Listing his numbers is a waste of time. He's as much of a lock as anyone.

Frank Thomas - It's also hard to see the Big Hurt not getting in on the first try as well. He has more than 500 home runs, two MVPs, and a ridiculous .974 career OPS (156 OPS-plus).

Hall of Fame coverage
Tom Glavine - Are 300 wins good for automatic induction? I think so. The two Cy Youngs and six top three finishes in Cy voting also help to make him a lock.

Jeff Kent - While not a very good defender, Kent was one of the best offensive second basemen in history. His 377 home runs are the most ever for a 2B while his .290/.356/.500 line is stellar from that position. Kent's WAR is very similar to Ryne Sandberg's, and Ryno got in on his third try. It might be tougher for Kent, with the crowded ballots and all. Think about it, are the voters really going to put in four first-year guys here? Very doubtful, especially considering there will be worthy guys lingering from previous ballots.

Mike Mussina - Moose went 270-153 in his career with an assortment of Gold Gloves, All-Star appearances and top six finishes in Cy Young voting. His 3.68 career ERA came in a time when it was a hitters' game, as it factors out to a 123 ERA-plus. Will his shortfall in wins (30 shy of 300) and strikeouts (187 short of 3,000) cost him? It very well might.

Luis Gonzalez - He was just a pretty good player until getting to Arizona, so he probably didn't do it long enough.

Moises Alou - He actually has better rate stats than Gonzalez, but the feeling is neither makes it.


Randy Johnson - The only question is Mariners or Diamondbacks cap on his bust. I'll lean toward D-Backs with the four Cy Youngs and World Series ring, but he pitched 1 1/2 more seasons in Seattle. But this is a discussion for a different day.

Pedro Martinez - He was the most dominant pitcher in baseball for a seven-year stretch. He won three Cy Young awards and had the best MLB ERA in five of those aforementioned seven seasons. In all, Pedro was 219-100 with a 2.93 ERA, 1.05 WHIP and over 3,000 strikeouts in a big-time hitters' era. He has to be in, probably on the first ballot.

John Smoltz - How heavily will the 213 wins and 154 saves weigh on the minds of voters? I'm guessing a good amount. He also has that Cy Young and over 3,000 strikeouts. Even if not on the first ballot, Smoltz will be enshrined.

Gary Sheffield - One of the more feared hitters of his generation, Sheffield's offensive numbers say he's worthy (509 homers, .907 career OPS, over 1,600 runs and RBI). But he was in the Mitchell Report, so -- judging from what we've seen so far from the voters in terms of the steroid-connected guys -- he's probably not going to get in.

Nomar Garciaparra - Through 2003, he was headed to Cooperstown, but things derailed after that. His career triple slash line (.313/.361/.521) is pretty damn good, but was he dominant long enough? I'll guess no.

Carlos Delgado - With tons of power in his prime, Delgado ended up with 473 homers and 1,512 RBI. His .383 on-base percentage and .929 OPS (138 OPS-plus) are very impressive, too. My guess, though, is Delgado put up those numbers in the wrong era and he falls short.


Ken Griffey Jr. - Easy choice.

Trevor Hoffman - The Hall voters haven't been kind to closers, but Hoffman saved 601 games, obliterating the previous record (held by Lee Smith) until Mariano Rivera passed him last season. I bet Hoffman gets in with relative ease. If not the first try, certainly the second or third.

Billy Wagner - See the above comment about Hall voters' treatment of closers. Wagner was definitely dominant, but I feel like only Rivera and Hoffman get in from this generation of closers.

Andy Pettitte - If you only look at the regular season stats, Pettitte has a case as a very good pitcher who wasn't a Hall of Famer. He went 240-138 with a 3.88 ERA, 1.36 WHIP and 2,251 strikeouts. He garnered Cy Young votes in five different seasons but never won the award. However, will 75 percent of the voters consider the postseason and cast a vote for Pettitte? It's possible. He was 19-10 with a 3.83 ERA in the postseason, in a whopping 263 innings. He has five rings and went to the World Series three other times (once with the Astros, remember). He will not be getting into the Hall on his first handful of tries, but maybe after a decade or so on the ballot Pettitte makes it. Then again, he also was named in the Mitchell Report.

Jim Edmonds - The four-time All-Star won eight Gold Gloves and hit 393 homers. He hit .284/.376/.527 and racked up 67.9 WAR according to Still, with less than 2,000 hits, less than 400 home runs and less than 1,300 runs or RBI, I'd bet he doesn't have a real shot of making it.

So there you have it. Without considering the guys who were already on the ballot from previous years and then factoring in the huge class of 2013, we have three years with what I think will yield nine Hall of Famers. Maybe 10 if Pettitte gets enough support. Now, keep in mind I'm not a voter nor was I saying above who I would personally want to see in the Hall. I'm merely trying to guess how the voting body will react to the players above, based upon how they've treated players in the recent past.

Simply put, the ballot is going to be very, very crowded in a few years.

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Since: Dec 24, 2011
Posted on: January 11, 2012 10:02 am

Years 2014-16 will crowd Hall of Fame ballot

Dudes, it doesn't matter if you hate Bonds or if even the thought of him makes you want to vomit (I sort of fit in this category myself) but look at his stats before the drugs. A shoe-in HoFer. Does what he did later in his career take that away? Maybe but he is and will continue to be one of the most famous players of all-time. I am really on the fence with this one. Man, I saw the dude get intentionally walked with the bases loaded!  Admittedly, I would let players do and take what they want for as much as I hate to say this, watching Bonds play was incredibly fun. 

Since: Oct 24, 2006
Posted on: January 10, 2012 1:05 pm

Years 2014-16 will crowd Hall of Fame ballot

and for 2013......

And I know i will get a lot of Flack for this, but if Bonds' does not get in, the Hall is a Joke and I am not a Bonds fan,

Since: Oct 24, 2006
Posted on: January 10, 2012 1:03 pm

Years 2014-16 will crowd Hall of Fame ballot

From the list above, there is Griffey, Maddux and Pedro, then there is the rest....

Enshrine, them.   And let the others buy tickets to get in.....

Since: Nov 25, 2010
Posted on: January 10, 2012 10:06 am

Years 2014-16 will crowd Hall of Fame ballot

I'm not liking Bearish1 year is Dale Murphy's last year of eligibility.  With him you don't have to look up and compare.  The cases everybody makes for other candidates apply to him.  He's a HoF'er that isn't in the Hall.  But even though I said you don't have to look up and compare, since it's not players and managers or even other Hall of Famers voting, you DO need to look them up - for almost everyone.

Of the 60 Hall of Fame outfielders, Dale Murphy ranks 32nd in games played, 16th in Home Runs, 31st in RBI's, 59th in batting average (yes, he's ahead of Reggie Jackson, who also struck out more than Murph), tied for 4th in MVP awards, 20th in All-Star selections, 1st in Silver Sluggers, 1st in Gold Gloves and one of 4 to win the Lou Gehrig Award and one of 6 to win the Roberto Clemente Award. He's a member of the 30/30 club (back when it wasn't commonplace), he DOMINATED the 80's both offensively AND defensively. He had a consecutive games played streak that ranks 13th All-Time, was intentionally walked 159 times (leading the league with 29 one season) and, in playing for a woeful team, he had stats that were probably diminished by at least 10% due to no protection in the batting order. His career average would probably have been around .290 had he played for a stronger team. But why does it seem to be all about batting average? Lack of spectacular years? If you're going to throw that out there, kick half the members of the HoF out. Seriously. Any argument people make against Murphy should also be applied to everyone else that's in the Hall or going to be elected. They aren't, for some reason. He played at a time when you didn't have a plethora of .350 hitters or 50 home run hitters. He was arguably the BEST player of the 1980's. Period. That deserves enshrinement.

So is it really all about career batting average with him?  He compares with current Hall of Famers in EVERY category.  When Nolan Ryan calls a guy one of the toughest he's ever faced, he's probably pretty good.  When Hank Aaron says somebody is the best player in the NL, maybe in the major leagues, he's probably pretty good.  When major league pitchers, coaches, managers, other players consistently say what a force he was both offensively and defensively that might tend to mean a little more.  Hall of Famers talk about how great he was.  That says something.  Too bad the writers haven't been listening.  Did they just "forget" about how good he was because he just went out and did his job day after day.  Greatness was routine for him, maybe that's part of the problem.

Since: Jun 3, 2010
Posted on: January 9, 2012 9:00 pm

Years 2014-16 will crowd Hall of Fame ballot

On the

Since: Aug 16, 2008
Posted on: January 9, 2012 8:22 pm

Years 2014-16 will crowd Hall of Fame ballot

Wheres Sammy Sosa?? lmao

Since: Jan 2, 2010
Posted on: January 9, 2012 8:10 pm

Years 2014-16 will crowd Hall of Fame ballot

There's 25 really good players, but biggio and Piazza go in. About ten of them will be eliminated next year. This is great. almost all of the great base hitters will be wiped out by 2016. The next four year is all first ballot Hall of Famers. The rest.... well there's a veteran's committee....

Since: Feb 7, 2007
Posted on: January 9, 2012 5:56 pm

Years 2014-16 will crowd Hall of Fame ballot

Personally, if you have to look up stats to justify a players induction i would lean towards leaving them out. The chances are you not sure and you want the stats to prove it.

True inductees, you hear their name and you know...

Griffey/Jnr, Maddux, The Big Unit.

Since: Aug 17, 2006
Posted on: January 9, 2012 5:17 pm

Years 2014-16 will crowd Hall of Fame ballot

Good article.  Made me go to the Google machine to find the answers to a couple of questions I had. 

Turns out that 1999 was the last time that more than two players were voted in by the writers.  It also marks the last time that a pure starting pitcher was voted in on his first ballot.

I think it's pretty impressive that in an era that was dominated by hitters, there were this amount of great pitchers.  This isn't exactly going out on a limb, but I personally think that Johnson, Pedro, Maddux, Glavine, Smoltz should all go in.  Maybe Mussina too.  It's pretty unheard of to see that many pitchers get the nod that close together, but I don't know if that's a product of the way the voters handle it, or the fact there was a dry spell for great pitchers.

Since: Jun 25, 2010
Posted on: January 9, 2012 4:56 pm

Years 2014-16 will crowd Hall of Fame ballot

It would be nice to see the voters go a whole year without inducting anyone. If Larkin or Biggio came up for their initial year in 2014 or 2015 they'd be well down the list of potential inductees. I think Larkin was a close call, as is Biggio, who was a central cog on an Astros team that had other stars, but never went anywhere. When you compare names like Maddux and Thomas and Griffey and Johnson (along with some of the PED users) you can see the disparity between a true HOFer and the guys that need to have their WAR examined and compared to prior HOFers to see how close they come to being worthy. Hopefully, next year, no one gets in.

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