For four years, I’ve asked the same question here: Who are the 50 best baseball players not in the Hall of Fame? It’s not 50 players who need to be enshrined tomorrow or ever, necessarily, just the 50 best not enshrined. As founder and editor of this website, it’s my pleasure to present the latest answer to this question.
UPDATE, JANUARY 4, 2016: I DID A NEW VERSION OF THIS PROJECT FOR SPORTING NEWS.
To anyone who’s new, four things:
1) This project is strictly voter-driven, with 208 ballots this year. I do little to no active campaigning and invite people to set their own criteria.
2) Everyone who votes is required to vote for 50 players. Next to each player a person selects, the voter is asked to put a “Yes” or “No” designating if the player belongs in the Hall of Fame. The latter component has no effect on ranking and is meant, in part, to signify that a player can be among the 50 best not in Cooperstown while having no business holding a plaque there. That said, were it up to voters from this project, seven players would be enshrined this coming summer, all from the 2014 writers ballot. In alphabetical order, these players are: Jeff Bagwell, Craig Biggio, Tom Glavine, Greg Maddux, Mike Piazza, Tim Raines and Frank Thomas.
3) I offered a ballot of more than 500 players at the start of voting. Full voting results are posted below, in alphabetical order of last name.
That being said, voters are not restricted to the ballot. Any player who hasn’t appeared in the majors in five years is eligible for this project. A player need not have played 10 seasons or even in the majors to be eligible here. A player is eligible until he is enshrined at Cooperstown’s annual summer ceremony.
I will likely cut the ballot down next year, as it has become unwieldy and confusing. Thus far, though, my aim has been not to omit any worthy player.
UPDATE, JANUARY 4, 2016: I DID A NEW VERSION OF THIS PROJECT FOR SPORTING NEWS.
All this being said, here’s how voting came out this year:
Only eight players in history have reached base 4,000 times, scored 1,500 runs, stolen 500 bases and were worth more than 60 Wins Above Replacement lifetime.
Six of them (Rickey Henderson, Joe Morgan, Barry Bonds, Ty Cobb, Eddie Collins and Honus Wagner) are unquestionably among the top five all-time at their respective positions. Of those six, only Bonds (due to PED questions) and Collins (due to the overcrowded ballot during the Hall’s early years) are not first-ballot Hall of Famers.
The seventh is Paul Molitor, who doesn’t quite fit into the top five all-time at his position category (unless you count DH), but is a first ballot inductee nonetheless.
The eighth, of course, is Tim Raines.
You can cherry-pick an argument for virtually any candidate, but there’s no reasonable debate against this straightforward comparison of Raines to seven upper tier Hall of Fame caliber players.
Lest anyone think he was just a compiler, his career WAR/162 of 4.455 ranks ahead of 55 Hall of Fame position players, including Brooks Robinson, Robin Yount, Reggie Jackson, Eddie Murray and Ernie Banks (h/t @BRefPlayIndex).
As the voters of this project have attested by ranking him in the top ten for the fourth year in a row, and No. 1 for the second straight year, Tim Raines is clearly one of the Hall of Fame’s most glaring omissions.
2. (Tie) Craig Biggio, 185 votes out of 208 (Does he belong in the Hall of Fame? 170 yes, 11 no, 4 N/A), written by Mark Kreidler, a voting member of the Baseball Writers Association of America. Kreidler explains here why he gave Biggio a vote in the BBWAA’s 2014 Hall of Fame election:
In an era of redrawn valuations, on a Hall of Fame list that grows more vexing each year, Biggio strikes me as one of the easiest Yes votes on the ballot – and he did so in 2013, when I voted for him in his first year of eligibility. A multi-position player whose up-the-middle metrics compare favorably with HOF standards, Biggio ranks 21st in MLB history in hits and 15th in runs scored, and he delivered more doubles than any RH hitter ever. (“Team guy” addendum: He was HBP more times than any player in the modern era.) He wound up with 3,060 hits, likely extending his career a year too long to do it – but even for those who aren’t milestone-fascinated, three thousand hits is something only 27 other players have achieved. It’s not nothing. And Biggio did this while earning four Gold Gloves, playing his entire career for a single organization, making 19 straight Opening Day starts, being honored as a Roberto Clemente Award recipient for community service, and being recognized – by teammate after teammate – as the lock-down, no-questions-asked leader of a Houston franchise that enjoyed its only run of sustained excellence on his watch. He goes in.
Jeff Bagwell was the most dominant first baseman of the mid 90’s and is very worthy of the hall of fame. His numbers speak for themselves. In the 15 year period he played, he was second in RBI (1529), third in runs (1517), hits (2314), and walks (1401), and fifth in HR (449). Bagwell received MVP votes in 10 of his 15 years and won it in 1994. He’s one of only 12 players in MLB history to hit 400 HRs and steal 200 bases. While playing Bagwell was regarded as one of the smartest base runners in the league. His career stats compared to all players are equally as impressive 40th all-time in OBP, 36th in OPS+, and 63rd in career WAR. With all these things considered Jeff Bagwell should be a hall of famer.
4. Greg Maddux *New to ballot*, 183 votes out of 208 (Does he belong in the Hall of Fame? 179 yes, 1 no, 3 N/A), written by me:
Greg Maddux is the reason I will be trimming the ballot next year. I included more than 500 players on the ballot this year, making it somewhat unwieldy and indecipherable. On a clear, easy-to-read ballot, a player like Greg Maddux ought to get 100 percent of the vote. If the longtime Atlanta Braves ace, four-time Cy Young Award recipient and 355-game winner wasn’t the best pitcher of his generation or even baseball history, he isn’t far off.
In a normal world, you would not be reading anything about Barry Bonds in this space. Based purely on the whole “playing baseball” thing, Bonds missing from Cooperstown is the equivalent of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame leaving out the Beatles. They did take creativity-enhancing drugs after all…
But just in case you need to be reminded of the excellence of Barry Bonds, let’s run down the crazier parts of his resumé. 762 homers. a .298/.444/.607 career line for an OPS+ of 182, the latter number behind only Babe Ruth and Ted Williams, two sluggers whose names you should at least vaguely recall. 7 MVP awards, 8 Gold Gloves, 12 Silver Sluggers, and if there existed an award with Platinum or Diamond in the name, Bonds would probably have 10 of those too. Before performance-enhancing drugs became a concern in baseball, a half-century after their introduction into the sport, Bonds was infamous among casual fans for not playing well in the playoffs, which he eventually rectified to finish with a .936 career postseason OPS.
Bonds is one of the greatest players to ever play baseball. Not greatest in the sense that one would say “Wow, that was totally the greatest sandwich I ever ate!” but the kind of greatness that inspires generations. To write the story of 1990s/2000s baseball and not talk about the feats of Bonds is like writing a history of the Civil War and not mentioning Ulysses S. Grant. Come back here in a year’s time and again, Barry Bonds will top this list.
Writers often engage in hyperbole when discussing Hall of Fame candidates, but despite Piazza’s amazing offensive numbers as a catcher he hasn’t generated the same excitement that some all-time greats have when they reach the ballot. Some of this is a result of all of the negativity surrounding PEDs (even though Piazza has never been linked to steroids in any way whatsoever), but most of it probably is due to a misunderstanding of his value. His rWAR of 59.2 is low for a Hall of Famer, but when you compare Piazza only to other catchers, he sits right up there with all time greats like Johnny Bench, Yogi Berra, and Carlton Fisk, at least with the bat. Piazza’s 427 home runs and .308/.377/.545 slash are amazing numbers for an everyday catcher and even when you adjust for his era his career offensive WAR is on a par with Bench’s. It’s easy to make a Hall case for Piazza even with “simpler” numbers; he hit 30 home runs or more nine years out of 10 and .300 or better for 10 consecutive seasons. Piazza belongs in the Hall, and despite the current ballot logjam should eventually find his way to Cooperstown.
6. (Tie) Roger Clemens, 178 votes (Does he belong in the Hall of Fame? 139 yes, 36 no, 3 N/A), written by Michael Clair, who will be doing a charity blogathon for Doctors Without Borders this month. In lieu of donating to this project, please consider donating to Michael’s worthy cause:
There are those that say the horned minotaur is simply a creature of fiction, of myth, that there is no way a creature with the head of a bull and the body of a man could exist. Those people clearly never saw Roger Clemens pitch.
The fact that Clemens, weighing in at 205 lbs of ground chuck, spit, and vinegar, remains on this list, earning only 37.6% of the vote last year, is a shame. He has seven Cy Youngs awards, 354 victories, a 3.12 ERA. Seven times he lead the league in shutouts, another seven in ERA. Five times he lead the league in strikeouts, twice in innings. His 140.3 JAWS is third behind Walter Johnson and Cy Young. He even has his own Nintendo video game.
Clemens also had two separate peaks, his early years from 1986-1992, going 136-63 with a 2.66 ERA and his comeback with the Blue Jays, going 149-61 with a 3.22 ERA between 1997 and 2005. Just one of those is enough for a Hall of Fame career, two is simply overwhelming.
So while his performance can’t be denied, only Clemens’ use of performance enhancing drugs is keeping him out of Cooperstown. Forget that Clemens is arguably the greatest pitcher of all-time despite playing the second half of his career in a heightened offensive environment. Forget that much of his competition was also using drugs. Because Clemens was so successful, arrogant, and bull-headed, the voters have decided to trap Clemens in a labyrinth of fuzzy moral logic and out of Cooperstown.
And that’s more absurd than a creature with a bull’s head and a man’s body.
8. Alan Trammell, 177 votes out of 208 (Does he belong in the Hall of Fame? 148 yes, 22 no, 7 N/A), written by Joshua Pease:
Alan Trammell is inexorably linked with Lou Whitaker, who now rather famously failed to reach the 5 percent threshold in his only year on the Hall of Fame ballot. Thankfully, Trammell remains on the ballot, though he is now in his 13th year of eligibility and has yet to hit even 40 percent of the vote. Trammell debuted in 1977 and manned shortstop for the Tigers for the next 20 seasons, retiring in 1996. Over the course of his career, he proved to be an excellent all-around talent. He was an above average hitter (111 wRC+ and 3 Silver Sluggers), had good power for a shortstop (185 HR), was a good baserunner (236 SB), and played excellent defense (22 dWAR on Baseball Reference and 4 Gold Gloves). He was a better hitter than Ozzie Smith, as good a fielder as Cal Ripken, and a similar all-around player to Barry Larkin. The fact the Trammell was very good at everything but otherworldly at nothing may very well be what has kept Hall of Fame voters from enshrining him thus far.
I would vote for Alan Trammell if I had a Hall of Fame ballot.
The word is “frustrating.” Both the numbers and the eyes agree on that one. Tom Glavine spent most years striking out batters at a well-below average rate. His walk rate was only slightly better than average. His ground-ball rate, though only measured in the twilight of his career, was basically average. He gave up a ton of hits — almost 4,300 by the time he hung it up. Somehow, he spent a career doing average things and getting great results. You still can’t ignore the 3.54 career ERA or the 305 wins just because he was on good teams and over-performed his peripherals. At some point, you just have to believe. Remember how frustrating it was to watch him hit that outside corner with fastball and changeup, time and time again. Remember how he stretched that outside corner as far as the umpire would let him. Remember how he just didn’t give up home runs with runners on base. These things all contribute to the confounding gap between his peripherals and results, and they even inspire us to re-examine some of our assumptions about pitching. So really all that frustration is just food for inspiration.
10. Shoeless Joe Jackson, 174 votes out of 208 (Does he belong in the Hall of Fame? 143 yes, 36 no, 5 N/A), written by Christopher Kamka of Comcast SportsNet Chicago:
Shoeless Joe Jackson is a player often distorted by myth and legend, but is best appreciated by simply examining the facts.
Joe could never exist today. Perhaps this is why he remains one of the more intriguing figures in baseball history. Can you imagine a guy playing an actual game in his socks? Even in the minors? For that matter, who was the last illiterate superstar to grace the diamond?
Consider the circumstances under which his career ended. A group of players throwing a World Series because they’re underpaid? Jackson’s 1919 salary was $6,000. Calculating for inflation, that translates to roughly $80,000, while today’s league minimum is more than six times that. Forget about it.
Jackson’s last season was 1920; his age 32 season. Plenty of good baseball left. His first sniff of the live ball era. What would he have done with league production trending like this:
American League average BA/SLG for the last five seasons of Jackson’s career
AL average BA/SLG for the first five seasons after Jackson
How many more .400 seasons? In the inflated offensive era of the 1920’s, many doubles & triples would turn into homers. Would White Sox fans not have had to wait until Bill Melton in 1971 for the first 30-HR season in franchise history? It’s a compelling thought because of his limited but incredible body of work.
Jackson hit .408, .395 & .378 in his first three full seasons – but thanks to Ty Cobb, he finished second in the American League each time.
Amazingly, he put up a .356 lifetime average (3rd all-time) without a single batting title. He had a .423 OBP, good for 16th all-time. Struck out only 234 times against 519 walks.
Jackson’s career OPS+ of 170 is tied with Dan Brouthers for 7th all-time. Only Babe Ruth, Ted Williams, Barry Bonds, Lou Gehrig, Rogers Hornsby, & Mickey Mantle are better.
He compiled 2,800 plate appearances for two original American League franchises (Indians & White Sox) and still owns the highest lifetime average for each (.375 for Cleveland, .340 for Chicago).
His game was not just limited to hitting. He could also run (202 SB), and throw (183 outfield assists).
This is a player who could conceivably make a list of the top 50 players period; not just limited to those not enshrined in Cooperstown.
Shoeless Joe Jackson (along with the other seven Black Sox) and John D. Rockefeller (a stunning $29 million fine imposed in 1907 on his Standard Oil in antitrust case) were the two most notable opponents taken down by Kenesaw Mountain Landis. The Standard Oil fine was overturned long ago. Isn’t it about time to give Joe his due?
We tend to talk about baseball players’ Hall of Fame candidacies in terms of greatness. The greatest players are cast in bronze, while the less great need a ticket to get into the museum. Greatness seems more closely tied to talent than it is to value, which reflects both talent and opportunity.
Taken on value, Edgar Martinez is a worthy Hall of Famer. His 68.3 WAR (per baseball-reference) rank 64th among eligible position players, well above the established standard and ahead of no-doubt Hall of Famers like Ernie Banks, Willie McCovey, and Dave Winfield.
Edgar’s case, though, is far stronger when measured by talent, irrespective of opportunity. Blocked by such legends as Jim Presley and Alvin Davis, Martinez didn’t crack the Mariners’ starting lineup until age 27 despite batting above .340 over his last three years in the minors. Defensively, he was an adequate third baseman, putting up positive Total Zone rankings more often than not until being banished to designated hitter duties in 1995, when Mike Blowers was ready to start butchering the position.
The original Papi’s 147 career OPS+ ranks 37th among Hall eligibles- 29th if we consider only players whose careers began after 1900. By this measure, he was a better hitter than Harmon Killebrew, Reggie Jackson, or Alex Rodriguez. He accumulated more adjusted batting runs than Carl Yastrzemski in more than 5,000 fewer plate appearances, and more than Hall of Famers Tony Perez and Johnny Bench combined.
Martinez, it seems, is outside the Hall of Fame now because he did not play in the field for three quarters of his career. McCovey and Killebrew were hitters of similar talent who cost their teams scores of runs by playing the field, only because the rules said they had to. His employers’ decisions should not cost Edgar Martinez the bronze bust he deserves.
12. Frank Thomas *New to ballot*, 168 votes out of 208 (Does he belong in the Hall of Fame? 158 yes, 7 no, 3 N/A), written by Dan Evans, currently a scout for the Toronto Blue Jays; former general manager of the Los Angeles Dodgers and assistant GM for the Chicago White Sox:
I was part of the White Sox staff involved in drafting Frank Thomas with the 7th selection overall in the 1989 draft. We thought his unique combination of zone awareness and power would develop into an impact bat. It turned out to be consistent excellence. Thomas had a legendary batting practice session in the old Comiskey Park shortly after signing in 1989 that tipped off his elite skills to others and seemingly NEVER gave up an at-bat. I worked for the White Sox through Thomas’s first 11 seasons and made sure I saw nearly every one of his plate appearances in that span.
One of the best right-handed hitters in MLB history, Thomas was a rare combination of high batting average, elite all-fields power, remarkable consistency, and an outstanding strike zone feel. His .301/.419/.555 career triple slash is matched or bettered in all three categories by only five players in history and his career .419 OBP is the best for a right-handed hitter since World War II.
Thomas is the only player ever with seven consecutive seasons of at least a .300 batting average, 100 walks, 100 runs, 100 RBI, and at least 20 homers, and it occurred in his initial seven full years (1991-1997). He won consecutive American League MVP Awards in 1993-94, placed in the top 10 in MVP balloting seven other times, and won the 1997 AL batting title. His .729 SLG and .487 OBP marks in 1994 were levels that had not been attained by an AL hitter since Ted Williams in 1957.
Nicknamed “The Big Hurt,” Thomas played the bulk of his career with the White Sox, and also played for Oakland and Toronto over his 19-year career. His 521 career homers rank 18th all-time, and more than one-half were hit to centerfield or right-center field. His #35 was retired by the White Sox in 2010.
Throughout Thomas’ career, he was outspoken about PED use among some of his peers. After hitting his 500th career homer, he said “This means a lot to me, because I did it the right way.” He was the only active player to voluntarily interview for the 2007 Mitchell Report.
I look forward to being in Cooperstown this summer when he is inducted into the Hall of Fame.
13. Pete Rose, 166 votes out of 208 (Does he belong in the Hall of Fame? 122 yes, 41 no, 3 N/A), written by Alex Putterman, assistant sports editor for the Daily Northwestern (Northwestern University):
Maybe Pete Rose belongs in the Hall of Fame — he’s the all-time hit king, of course, and achieved that distinction through an impressive peak and famous longevity. He is arguably the iconic player of his era, and Cooperstown is about nothing if not iconic players.
Or maybe he doesn’t belong in the Hall — he committed baseball’s cardinal sin, guilty of the most explicitly inexcusable offense of the time. He deserved punishment, and there’s no reason to commute his permanent sentence.
But the semantics of this project render that debate irrelevant. We’re looking for the best players not in the Hall, and all else aside, Rose is one of them. JAWs lists him as the fifth most Hall-worthy left-fielder ever (well ahead of Tim Raines, for example). He’s eighth among eligible non-Hall of Famers in WAR on Baseball-Reference and seventh in WAR on FanGraphs and in Hall Rating on HallofStats.com. Had Roseretired before a series of sub-replacement seasons he could rank even higher. It’s not unreasonable to argue using career value stats that he’s the fourth or fifth best player outside of the Hall.
Thus Rose, like a host of others here, is likely held down in voting for this project by non-baseball factors. Unlike those drug-accused others, his transgressions did not affect how good a baseball player he was.
This doesn’t necessarily mean Pete should have a place in the Hall of Fame. It does mean he should have a place very high up on this list.
14. Larry Walker, 161 votes out of 208 (Does he belong in the Hall of Fame? 119 yes, 37 no, 5 N/A), written by Brendan Bingham:
Most players perform better at home than on the road, but Larry Walker is an unusual case. His career numbers are dominated by the extreme park effects of pre-humidor Coors Field, making it difficult to compare him to other players of his day.
Limiting the analysis to road splits and choosing career slash line as the metric, let’s get a glimpse of the Larry Walker who would have existed had he never played for the Colorado Rockies. Slash line is a vast oversimplification, but it provides a quick and easy handle on hitting performance, especially when era and career length are controlled for. Like Walker, all of the players mentioned below played from the late 80s or early 90s through at least 2005, and all had at least 4000 plate appearances on the road.
As a hitter, Walker (.278/.370/.495) was a step ahead of Steve Finley (.273/.332/.447) and Ivan Rodriquez (.285/.322/.447), but no match for Manny Ramirez (.314/.409/.580), Frank Thomas (.297/.414/.511) or Jeff Bagwell (.291/.398/.521). Walker was somewhere in between, part of a cluster that includes Bernie Williams (.299/.378/.479), Luis Gonzalez (.283/.367/.489), Rafael Palmeiro (.291/.366/.502) and Ken Griffey, Jr. (.272/.355/.505).
Thanks to Coors Field, Walker was Superman at home and Jeff Kent (.290/.353/.504) on the road.
15. Mark McGwire, 158 votes out of 208 (Does he belong in the Hall of Fame? 99 yes, 56 no, 3 N/A), written by Susan Fornoff. Fornoff was instrumental in getting female reporters access to locker rooms and wrote a book about it. She covered McGwire and the Oakland Athletics’ beat for the Sacramento Bee in the 1980s and ’90s:
In the final round of a home-run derby pool in the spring of 1987, because no other name came to mind, I chose Mark McGwire. He wasn’t supposed to be a starter for the Oakland A’s that year, but, geez, he looked powerful and had hit three homers in an 18-game major-league cameo a year earlier. It was the last round, what the heck.
Needless to say, I cleaned up in that home-run pool when McGwire hit 49 homers, drove in 118 runs and hit .289 to coast to the Rookie of the Year award. All of us who watched him marveled at his seemingly limited potential.
We also marveled at his huge arms and neck the next spring. How on earth did he grow so much in just a few months?
McGwire excelled in the steroid era. If I represented him during so many years he stayed quiet thereafter, I probably would’ve advise him to just come out and say so. Say, “I’m sorry I used steroids. But I played in the era of the steroid. I did the best I could in the conditions of the game at the time.” Three years ago, he finally came clean.
With 15 seasons of 20 homers or more — and 12 of those over 30 — plus seven seasons of 100 RBIs or more, a respectable career batting average of .263 and a pretty nifty glove at first when he was healthy and at his best, McGwire deserves to be in the Hall of Fame. Apply a steroid tariff — 20 percent, even — and he’d make it in any other baseball era.
16. Curt Schilling, 157 votes out of 208 (Does he belong in the Hall of Fame? 127 yes, 27 no, 3 N/A), written by Amanda Gill:
Curt Schilling is most well known as a member of the Boston Red Sox for the infamous “Bloody Sock.” However, there was more to Schilling’s playing career than one postseason legend. Schilling spent time with five teams during his MLB career: the Orioles, Astros, Phillies, Diamondbacks, and Red Sox and he went to the World Series with the Phillies, Diamondbacks, and Red Sox, winning World Series Championships with Arizona (2001) and Boston (2004, 2007). Across his 20 years in the big leagues, Schilling amassed numerous impressive statistics including a career record of 216-146 with a 3.46 ERA, 3116 strikeouts to 711 walks, and an 11-2 record with a 2.23 ERA in postseason play. Schilling’s true lore lies in the postseason where he accumulated accolades including a NLCS MVP award with the Phillies in 1993, and a share of a World Series MVP with Randy Johnson when the Arizona Diamondbacks won in 2001. Curt Schilling deserves to be added into the National Baseball Hall of Fame. As a six-time All-Star and a three-time World Series champion, Schilling boasts a phenomenal combination of regular season and postseason success that he deserves to be enshrined for.
Dewey never had the MVPs nor the widespread praise that outfield mates Fred Lynn or Jim Rice could lay claim to, was never the talk of Major League Baseball in his rookie season nor considered the “most feared hitter in baseball.” What Dwight Evans was however, was the 4th greatest position player in Red Sox history by Wins Above Replacement (WAR), behind only men named Williams, Yastrzemski and Boggs.
He only led the American League once in a traditional slash category (22 HRs in strike-shortened 1981), but where Evans excelled was in decidedly unsexy areas, like drawing walks and playing great defense. In fact, his 103 Fielding Runs from 1974-81 was, among outfielders, second only to Garry Maddox.
So why the lack of BBWAA support for Evans, who peaked at a tad over ten percent his second year on the ballot and fell off the following cycle? Likely for the same reason that keeps Alan Trammell from making Hall of Fame progress year after year—Evans did a host of things very well, without being truly outstanding at any particular one.
The 1960’s and 70’s had some amazing players, all time greats like Mays, Aaron, & Frank Robinson. However there was one other great basher in that period that has largely been forgotten. Perhaps it’s because he was never a graceful fielder making dazzling plays, or maybe simply because he was traveling from city to city, but with the batDick Allen was right up there with anybody. Probably the best way to evaluate a player’s hitting ability is wRC+. It factors era, league, and home ballpark to give a true measure of a hitter’s performance, with 100 being average. Dick Allen had a 155 career wRC+. From 1963-1977, the length of Dick Allen’s career, that was tied with Frank Robinson for the best mark in baseball, ahead of pantheon guys like Mays, Aaron, Clemente, and Reggie Jackson. Allen was a dynamic all around hitter, who 3 times lead the league in Slugging Percentage, and twice in On-Base Percentage. He won an MVP award in 1972, receiving 21 of a possible 24 first place votes, in what arguably wasn’t even his best season. He had a slightly higher WAR in 1964 as a rookie. Dick Allen may not have been one of the most complete players of all-time, but he was certainly one of the best hitters of all-time. Across virtually the same timeframe Willie McCovey had .374 OBP and .515 SLG% with poor defense at first, while Dick Allen had a .378 OBP and .534 SLG% with poor defense at first and third. If McCovey can make it on the first ballot then Dick Allen should make it too.
1999 was a good year for pitching. For one, Pedro Martinez was having a career year — one that lead to winning the AL Cy Young award. Everyone remembers Pedro. There’s Mariano Rivera, Bartolo Colon, David Cone, Jamie Moyer. They’re all easy to name. I know those were some of the first players I was aware of when I started following the game in 2007.
But then, there’s Mike Mussina. He kinda flew under the radar — pitching for the Orioles for more than half his career, and mostly on Orioles teams that were middlingin the AL East. That didn’t stop Mussina from throwing numbers worthy of the Hall of Fame: 3.68 ERA, 23 CGSHO, 3.58 K/BB, 0.95 HR/9, 82.8 RA9-WAR, 82.7 rWAR. He also averaged 34 games started for every 162 games his team played. Mike Mussina was a consistent pitcher, with some of the best numbers a career could have.
21. Rafael Palmeiro, 146 votes out of 208 (Does he belong in the Hall of Fame? 80 yes, 57 no, 9 N/A), written by Mike Hllywa:
Let’s say you’re a General Manager, and you have the chance to add a player to your roster who averages a slash line of .288/.371/.515 for every 162 games played. That’s good for an OPS+ of 132. Would you do it? Of course you would. Who wouldn’t want an above average hitter with an above average walk-rate and above average power? And that is the type of hitter than Rafael Palmeiro was for the balance of his career.
But none of that is ever going to matter to the BBWAA because Palmeiro got busted when a urinalysis came back positive for steroids.
Was it the Ballpark in Arlington or the short walls at Camden Yards that played perfectly to the kind of swing that Palmeiro had? Or was it the anabolic cocktails that he was taking? We will never know. But we will always know this: From Palmeiro’s rookie season on, he never posted an OPS+ below 108, and that came in the final two seasons of his career. He wasn’t the best defender despite his fabled Gold Glove season in 1999. But with a bat in his hand, Rafael Palmeiro had few equals during his 20-year baseball career. Very few equals.
When baseball was taken from me in my youth by a confusing labor dispute my passion for the game waned and I experimented with other sports. I wandered in the football and soccer territories but was called home by Sammy Sosa and 1998. We’ve learned a lot about what was behind those home run chases. The luster is gone but I do remember Sosa in a warmer light than most. His 609 HR total and career slash line of .273/.344/.534 isn’t as impressive as it seemed 20 years ago but those numbers still speak to a player who was great at his peak, even if the numbers were augmented by playing conditions (probable) and chemicals (likely).
Sosa is a polarizing figure whose greatness is overshadowed by what went on during his career, but I feel that history will be kinder to him in the long run. It’s irresponsible to pretend that he didn’t happen and we should make peace with his place in baseball history.
Tiant is an interesting case. Although he had 229 wins, a 3.30 ERA and 2,416 strikeouts, he comes across as more of an accumulator because of his 19-year career. Make no mistake about it though, because he was a dominant pitcher.
A severe shoulder injury abbreviated his 1970 and 1971 seasons and caused him to reinvent himself in his prime, which prevented him from padding his already impressive resume.
The right hander’s record is one of contradictions. He won 20 or more games four times, led the league in ERA twice, and totaled an impressive 187 complete games and 49 shutouts. His career WAR of 66.1 is 40th all-time among pitchers according to BaseballReference.com. On the other hand, he made just three All-Star teams and never finished higher than fourth in Cy Young voting—both things Hall of Fame pundits typically hold in high regard.
Bert Blyleven (career ERA+ of 118), who was a similar accumulator and took 14 years of steadily increasing vote totals to finally get inducted, is a reason for Tiant (career ERA+ of 114) to have hope. However, since Tiant fell off the ballot in 2002, his fate rests in the hands of the Veterans Committee.
Robert Anthony Grich was a first-round draft pick of the Orioles in 1967 and played shortstop during his time in the minors before settling in at second in Baltimore in 1973 after the O’s traded away Davey Johnson.
Grich was a confident soul. Writer Phil Jackman recounted one day in 1970, Frank Robinson came by when Grich was talking about hitting and remarked: “What does a rookie like you know about hitting?” Grich replied to Robinson: “Tell you something, pal. I’ll be hitting for 10 years around here after you’re gone.”
1972 was the Grich’s first full season in the big leagues, and he compiled a 127 OPS+ (.278/.358/.415) while being named an All-Star and receiving a few down-ballot MVP votes. He quickly established himself as an excellent fielder, with good range, soft hands, a good arm, and skill turning the double play. He won four consecutive Gold Gloves from 1973-1976 and in 1973 he set an all-time major league fielding record with a .995 fielding percentage (he broke that record in 1985, with a .997). For his career he out-performed his peers in Range Factor (5.70 to 5.40 per 9 innings) and fielding percentage (.984 to .979).
He left the Orioles via free agency after 1976 and spent the next ten years with the Angels, logging a 124 OPS+, three All-Star appearances, two years with MVP votes, and a Silver Slugger award in the strike-shortened 1981 season. Despite all of his regular season success, he never played in a World Series. He himself batted a mere .182/.247/.318 in 24 post-season games.
How should we think of Bobby Grich now? Well of the top 10 second baseman in Jay Jaffe’s JAWS Hall of Fame metric, only Grich is missing from Cooperstown. His WAR, WAR7 (7 best seasons) and JAWS scores are all above the average of the enshrinees, and the WAR7 and JAWS scores are better than current “missing from the Hall” darling Lou Whitaker.
[Lofton is third from left. Photo from 1980 Senior League teammate Tony Puente.]
You don’t need me to tell you that Kenny Lofton was a six-time All-Star who won four Gold Gloves. It doesn’t take a third party to point out that the Hall of Stats has Lofton as the sixth-best center fielder in MLB history. And I hope it is obvious that Lofton’s falling off the Hall of Fame ballot in his first year of eligibility is one of the biggest mistakes the BBWAA has ever made.
But the stats don’t tell you that, for a baseball fan growing up in Cleveland, Lofton’s infectious energy came to define the great Indians teams of the 1990’s. With all due respect to fans of the many other teams he played for later in his career, those outside Northeast Ohio might not know what a joy it was to watch him flying across the dirt to steal a base or leaping into — or over — the wall to make a jaw-dropping catch.
I still look at Lofton with the same sense of childlike wonder that I did when my dad would take me to Jacobs Field as a kid. And I know I’m not alone.
26. Ted Simmons, 123 votes out of 208 (Does he belong in the Hall of Fame? 97 yes, 22 no, 4 N/A):
Former Hall of Fame senior research associate Bill Deane wrote for this project last year:
As a teenager in the mid-1970s, I’d hear people debating about who was the best catcher in baseball: Johnny Bench, Carlton Fisk, or Thurman Munson? I’d say, “What about Ted Simmons? The guy hit .332 with 100 RBI!” I’d get only puzzled looks from people who were barely aware that St. Louis had a team.
That exemplified Simmons’s problems in getting attention throughout his career: He played in media-Siberias and was overshadowed by two contemporary HOF catchers. But consider their average HR-RBI-AVG stats from 1971-80: Bench (27-93-.263), Fisk (16-57-.285), Simmons (17-90-.301). Simba was also unjustly regarded as a poor defensive catcher; I tackle this legend at length in my book, Baseball Myths. (Editor’s note: Page 375 of The New Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract notes: ‘Bill Deane has studied the records at great length, and demonstrated that Simmons threw out an above-average percentage of opposing base stealers in his prime seasons.’)
Ted Simmons retired as the all-time leader in hits and doubles among catchers, and ranked second in RBI behind only Yogi Berra. Only Ivan Rodriguez has surpassed him in those categories since. Yet, Simmons was dropped from the BBWAA HOF ballot after one try, then waited 16 years to be snubbed by the Veterans’ Committee. His next try is this December.
Simmons was one of the ten best all-around catchers in baseball history. He deserves serious consideration for Cooperstown.
Usually, the list of players who aren’t in the Hall of Fame is filled with those who excelled, but cannot be called the best at anything. (Leaving the tiresome steroids arguments aside, that is.) Or if they managed to reach the absolute peak at some part of baseball, it’s a remarkably narrow one, and mitigated by other failings in their game. Lenny Harris and pinch-hitting, or Pat Tabler and bases-loaded situations come to mind.
But Keith Hernandez is the finest defensive first baseman I’ve ever seen, and I suspect will ever see. He came along just before defensive metrics allowed the baseball world to more completely factor this incredibly aspect of his game into total value, so it became almost a trivialized fact you’d find about him on the back of a Topps card: “Keith enjoys fishing, hunting, and playing first base as well as anyone, ever.”
Those lucky enough to have seen baseball when Vic Power or Gil Hodges or, when he was on the level, Hal Chase played it might disagree. But I’ve seen many first basemen since Hernandez-no one comes close.
We have no advanced defensive metrics from Hernandez’s time, though. So we are left with this fact, along with an offensive game that isn’t a blight upon his overall record, like Power’s or a man on the other side of the high brick wall to entry, Bill Mazeroski.
He was an astonishingly graceful hitter, with an offensive game notable for its breadth. Hernandez won an MVP in 1979, a year he hit .344 with 48 doubles, both league-leading marks. A year later, his .408 on-base percentage led the league as well. He recorded nine double-digit home run seasons, hitting 15 at age 23, 18 at age 33. He had a pair of top-ten NL finishes in triples. He walked 100 times one season, led the league in walks another season, and his team won the World Series both times.
I find OPS+ a terrific catch-all offensive stat. Hernandez, for his career, is at 128, a bit below Orlando Cepeda’s 133, a bit ahead of Tony Perez’s 122.
Both Perez and Cepeda, of course, are Hall of Famers. And nobody ever mistook them for Keith Hernandez in the field. There is that, the profound way Hernandez’s fielding could alter a game. It’s the kind of thing that should get a guy enshrined in Cooperstown.
“You look at two aspects of my career,” Tommy John said after being named the inaugural member of The Hall of Very Good™ two years ago. “You look at 26 years and you figure you’ve got to be doing something to be around for 26 years. You look at the wins, the complete games, innings pitched…and you couple that with coming back from Tommy John surgery, I think that my name should be up there with anybody.”
Pretty much sums it up, right?
The pride of Terre Haute, Indiana is probably known for two things…longevity and that surgery. Truth is, you don’t have one without the other.
We can sit here and talk about John’s 288 wins and how, when he retired in May 1989, they placed him 21st all-time and how Bobby Mathews was, at the time, only one Hall-eligible not in the Hall of Fame.
But it always comes back to that surgery, doesn’t it?
You know the story. It’s July 1974 and the 31-year-old was shelved with a pretty impressive career ERA of 2.97 and after putting up back-to-back seasons where he led the National League in winning percentage. 639 days later, the lefty would re-emerge on the mound for the Los Angeles Dodgers with a new arm. He’d go on and throw 2544 innings post-surgery and collect 164 wins along the way. Sure, the ERA was a little higher than before…but John’s overall control was better.
It sounds cliché, but John had two careers that a number of pitchers would be envious of and when you add them up, you find that he belongs among those enshrined in Cooperstown.
29. Dale Murphy, 114 votes out of 208 (Does he belong in the Hall of Fame? 46 yes, 65 no, 3 N/A):
Murphy’s son Chadwick wrote for this project last year:
Of course I’m a little biased, but I think there’s no doubt that my dad was one of the top 5 or so players of the 1980s (eerily similar to Gil Hodges in the 50s, in fact.) No matter which side of the peak vs. longevity debate you come down on, you can always find exceptions who are already in the Hall of Fame. Even with his late-career decline, my dad was 19th on the all-time home run list (just behind Duke Snider, I believe) when he retired.
The other important consideration (which I discuss at some length here) is all the intangibles he brought to the game: the way he inspired a generation of baseball fans, especially in the South; his long streak of consecutive games for a set of Braves teams that were, for the most part, truly awful; and, most importantly (in my opinion), the integrity he brought to the way he played the game. He’s a walking advertisement, in fact, for the very cliche but undoubtedly true notion that it’s not what you achieve that matters most but how you achieve it. So it’s not just that my dad was “a nice guy.”
True, being a model citizen off-the-field shouldn’t be totally relevant to HOF decisions, but these days the more pertinent character issue, I believe, is whether or not you cut corners for personal gain and by doing so compromised the integrity of the game. Not only did my dad make the correct decisions– for himself and for the game– but he also managed to put up impressive numbers in the process. If such a well-rounded career is not worthy of the top 50, not to mention the HOF, then we might do well to re-evaluate a few things.
30. Fred McGriff, 113 votes out of 208 (Does he belong in the Hall of Fame? 56 yes, 55 no, 2 N/A), written by Neil Paine of fivethirtyeight.com:
McGriff’s acquisition by the Braves in the summer of 1993 has always stood out as one of my favorite “you-can’t-make-this-stuff-up” stories from baseball history. On the evening of McGriff’s Atlanta debut, a freak press-box fire delayed Atlanta’s game by 2 hours; he went on to homer in the Braves’ win later that night, touching off a stretch run in which the Crime Dog hit .310/.392/.612 and Atlanta won 51 of the 68 games he played, overcoming a 10-game deficit in July to pass the Giants for the NL West crown on the last day of the regular season.
At the time, McGriff seemed to have a good chance at the Hall of Fame, with 262 career HR and a 153 OPS+ through age 30. But from 1995 onward, McGriff — while still good — was not the hitter he once was (with the exception of vintage late-career seasons in 1999 & 2001), even as contemporaries like Barry Bonds and Mark McGwire continued to hit like superstars.
Then again, this has come to be a point in McGriff’s favor in recent years, as McGriff’s name has remained clean while many of peers who outpaced him in their 30s were implicated in doping scandals. In the end, McGriff’s legacy will be as a key cog on the dynasty Braves of the 90s and one of the best clean power hitters of his era… There are worse marks to leave on the game.
31. (Tie) Jack Morris, 109 votes out of 208 (Does he belong in the Hall of Fame? 51 yes, 54 no, 4 N/A), written by Alex Putterman, assistant sports editor for the Daily Northwestern (Northwestern University):
Much (much, much) has been written about Jack Morris’s statistical inadequacy as compared to Hall of Fame precedents. The debate about the former Tigers ace’s Hall qualifications has essentially overwhelmed all other conversation about his career.
Truth is, Morris compares unfavorably to most pitching inductees of the last 40 years and to numerous non-Hall of Fame pitchers as well — using both stats conceived a century ago and formulas created yesterday. By the numbers, Morris’s lack of worthiness should be near-unanimous.
Last year more than two thirds of BBWAA voters granted the righthander a Hall vote.
Morris has finished in the top 40 of this project three of its four years.
Knowledgeable and reasonable baseball people insist he belongs in Cooperstown.
I’m too young to have experienced Morris’s career in real time. All I have to evaluate him are those underwhelming statistics. That and the opinions of my elders.
So, as I figure, the best argument for Morris’s inclusion on this list and in the Hall is that a lot of people think he should be on this list and in the Hall.
31. (Tie) Jeff Kent *New to ballot*, 109 votes out of 208 (Does he belong in the Hall of Fame? 74 yes, 31 no, 4 N/A), written by Kyla Wall-Polin:
Jeff Kent might be the textbook borderline Hall of Fame candidate. 60 WAR is a number that’s often thrown around as the dividing line between the great and the really really good, and no matter how you calculate it, Kent falls just a little short, with roughly 56 WAR. Kent was an adequate defensive second baseman at best, and he is – apparently this matters to the voters – kind of a jerk, as well as the world’s worst truck detailer.
Great, got that out of the way. Kent is also one of the best hitting second basemen in the history of the game. That slightly less than 60 WAR? Good for the 17th best among all 2Bs. His 351 career home runs stands as the record at his position, and with a career slash line of .290/.356/.500, a wOBA of .367 and a wRC+ of 123, he was no three true outcomes slugger. Kent received MVP votes in seven seasons, winning in 2000. Hitting cleanup after Barry Bonds during his peak years, Kent was half of one of the nastiest one-two punches in baseball’s recent history, and like his teammate, he deserves to be honored in the Hall of Fame.
Graig Nettles was one of the greatest power-hitting third basemen in history (his 390 home runs rank 5th among players who spent most of their career at the position), but was overshadowed because he played in the same era as Mike Schmidt, the greatest power-hitting third baseman ever.
Nettles was also one of the greatest defensive third basemen in history (he’s among the top ten in fielding runs for third basemen at Baseball Reference and FanGraphs), but was overshadowed because he played in the same era as Brooks Robinson, the greatest defensive third baseman ever.
The hot corner is the most underrepresented position in Cooperstown, there are only 13 third basemen enshrined. Nettles’ 68 WAR beat the average of those 13 players’ totals, and are the most by any eligible third baseman not already inducted. Nettlesnever received more than 8.3% of the BBWAA Hall of Fame vote, and fell off the ballot after just four years. That’s a shame, because he’s now largely overlooked or unknown to modern fans, and he deserves much better.
Joe Torre was elected into the Hall Of Fame last month and will be enshrined this summer primarily for his managerial accomplishments (2,236 wins and four World Series titles being among them.) Some baseball pundits would argue that Torre had a pretty strong case for going into the Hall of Fame merely for what he did as a player.
In 18 years of playing time in a strong pitcher’s era (1960-1977), Torre batted .297/.365/.452/.817, with a .364 wOBA, 129 wRC+ and he amassed a 57.4 WAR. Torre was also a nine-time All-Star and won the NL MVP award in 1971. That year, Torre led the National League with a .363 batting average, and he clubbed 230 hits while driving in 137 runs.
Torre’s WAR total places him 7th all-time for catchers on Baseball Reference’s list which puts him ahead of Hall of Famers Bill Dickey and Mickey Cochrane but the problem with Joe Torre according to the Hall of Stats is that even though he played the most behind the dish, that position only accounts for 41% of his playing time – he also played 36% of the time at first base and 26% of the time third base. And while it could be argued that Torre did a nice job at all three positions, players like that seem to be viewed differently than players who are known for one position for most of their career and it could be why Torre has been overlooked as a player.
35. Minnie Minoso, 100 votes out of 208 (Does he belong in the Hall of Fame? 76 yes, 20 no, 4 N/A):
Former Hall of Fame research librarian Gabriel Schechter wrote for this project last year:
A dynamic player who combined power and speed at a time when it was rare, Saturnino “Minnie” Minoso starred for the Chicago White Sox for the bulk of his lengthy career. The Cuban-born left fielder was the AL Rookie of the Year in 1951, batted .300 in eight All-Star Games, and won three Gold Glove awards. Consistent production was his hallmark. In the 11-year period from 1951-1961, he hit over .300 eight times, scored 90+ runs nine times, topped 100 RBI four times, and was always in double figures in home runs and stolen bases. He also led the AL in getting hit by pitches ten times and in stolen bases and triples three times each, a testament to the speed that electrified the league. The “Go! Go!” chant of White Sox fans early in his career became the mantra of the 1959 AL champs, and even though he had been traded to the Indians two seasons earlier, he remained so popular in Chicago that Chisox owner Bill Veeck gave him a World Series ring.
If he were friendlier and the winner of a memorable Game 7, Kevin Brown might have remained on the ballot long enough for voters to recognize his superiority to Jack Morris. Alas, Brown was neither and must settle for being one of the game’s dominant pitchers from 1992 to 2001, ranking fifth in ERA+ and bWAR among pitchers that decade (behind only Greg Maddux, Pedro Martinez, Randy Johnson, and Roger Clemens). The rest of his career was spent being merely very good, like Morris.
Brown led his league in ERA twice and wins once, and consistently ranked among the top ten in multiple pitching categories. He probably should have won the NL Cy Young Award in 1996 and 1998. Heck, he led MLB in bWAR and fWAR in ’98, and that includes position players.
Maybe if he had hugged babies instead of smashing toilets, things would be different. Even so, it’s hard to understand a process that elects Catfish Hunter in three tries and dismisses Brown without a thought. One ranks 109th in career bWAR and 46th in ERA+, the other ranks 460th and 535th. You can guess which is which and why Brown didn’t receive more serious consideration.
Hug babies. Don’t smash toilets. Don’t have a career that coincides with those of Maddux, Martinez, Johnson, and Clemens.
Jim Kaat’s Hall of Fame credentials are a lot like a couple of other 200-plus game winners who also didn’t make Cooperstown in Luis Tiant and Tommy John. Tiant didn’t quite have the same number of innings or appearances as the other two did, but still hung around to win nearly 230 games in 1000-plus innings fewer than the other two.
Each had their phenomenal peaks. Four times Tiant won 20 games, and his 1.60 ERA in 258.1 innings paced the American League in 1968. John won 20 games three times, but won 10 or more games in 17 seasons as part of a testament to his longevity (26 years). It’s almost a shame John is likely known more for the surgery that bears his name than his on efforts on the field.
Kaat also won 20 games three times, and is one of just three Twins pitchers to throw 300 innings in a season (1966). Kaat had double-digit win totals in 15 seasons, and despite never leading the league in ERA, or really in anything other than hits allowed, hit by pitch, and wild pitches, he still has one of the best fWARs (69.8) of all non-Hall pitchers. That WAR actually ranks him 31st all-time.
38. Gil Hodges, 93 votes out of 208 (Does he belong in the Hall of Fame? 59 yes, 32 no, 2 N/A), written by Nick Diunte of Examiner.com:
Hodges is the leading vote-getter in BBWAA elections for the Hall of Fame that has yet to be elected. He finished third in the Hall of Fame balloting of 1976. Ten of the next 11 players behind him in votes were eventually elected to the Hall of Fame. Why is he not there?
By the time he played his last game, his 370 home runs set the record for right-handed hitters in the National League. He played Gold Glove caliber defense at first base, long before the award was created, and as a manager, he guided the Miracle Mets to the 1969 World Series Championship.
Sadly, his promising managerial career was cut short after he suffered a fatal heart attack during spring training in 1972. With this year’s election of Joe Torre, who compares very favorably as a player and a manager, it is further evidence that it is time to put Gil Hodges in the Hall of Fame.
If nicknames were a voting criteria, Don Mattingly would be a first ballot Hall of Famer. Despite its simplicity, “Donnie Baseball” says more about Mattingly than any one statistic. A tireless worker, the Evansville native played the game the right way, and, as Captain of the Yankees, he imparted his baseball wisdom to countless others. In addition, the proliferation of #23 on the backs of the generation that followed was a testament to the admiration and respect he garnered from young fans around the country, not just in New York.
Mattingly’s greatness as a player isn’t simply defined by intangibles. With nine gold gloves, he is also one of the most decorated defensive first basemen in history. Oh yeah, he could also flat out hit. From 1984 to 1989, Mattingly’s 160 home runs, 684 RBIs, and .902 OPS all ranked at or near the top of the major league lead. In the midst of that run, he won an MVP and batting title, was named to six All Star teams, and, in a 1986 New York Times poll, was voted the best player in baseball by his peers.
Don Mattingly was never the same after the 1989 season. Hampered by a chronic back injury, his final six seasons were a relative struggle. Still, he was the Captain…a rare bright spot during one of the darkest periods in Yankees’ history. And, even though he’ll probably never make the Hall of Fame, Donnie Baseball will always be the epitome of a ballplayer, not to mention one the greatest to ever play the game.
The cover story in the March 1965 issue of Dell Sports magazine touted third basemen Ken Boyer and Brooks Robinson as “Hottest Ever at the Hot Corner” in a preview of the upcoming season. Boyer was the 1964 National League MVP and a key contributor to the St. Louis Cardinals World Series championship that year. The next spring, he and Robinson were described as “two of the best third basemen in baseball history. Possibly the best ever,” in the Dell Sports article by Dave Anderson. Robinson, of course, was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1983 and had a career line of .267/.322/.401 with 268 home runs, 1357 RBI and 80.2 WAR in a career that was eight years longer than Boyer’s 15 seasons. His big league debut was delayed two years due to service in the Army, and Boyer compiled a line of .287/.349/.462 with 282 home runs, 1141 RBI and 54.8 WAR while winning five Gold Gloves and being named an All-Star seven times. The Cardinals retired his number – a distinction typically bestowed by the team to Hall of Famers – in 1984, two years after his untimely death from cancer at age 51.
The curveball was the first thing you noticed. In his second appearance with the Mets in 1987, David Cone entered a tense game with the bases loaded and froze Jack Clark with that jaw-dropping curve. Many more victims would follow in the years to come.
When Cone arrived in Queens from the Royals in 1987, he was a nervous, baby-faced 24-year-old, already in his seventh professional season; he had recovered slowly from a knee injury that cost him the 1983 season after a breakout 16-3, 2.08 ERA campaign in A ball and likely kept him from being a part of the young Royals staff that won the 1985 World Series.
Despite years of missed opportunities, bad timing, injuries and controversies, the career Cone actually had was pretty fantastic. His best year, a 16-5 Cy Young campaign with the Royals, was cut short by the 1994 strike. As a rookie, he had his pinky crushed by a pitch while bunting; the next year he went 20-3 with a 2.22 ERA, but shot his mouth off and got shelled in the NLCS. The Mets never recaptured 1986, but Cone got a ring after a midseason trade to Toronto in 1992 and three more with the Yankees, the first after missing two-thirds of the 1996 season with a shoulder aneurysm.
In my role as chair of SABR’s Nineteenth Century Overlooked Legend Committee, my charge is to identify and campaign for candidates from over a century ago who have been denied entry to the Hall of Fame for a variety of reasons. In my other role as creator of the Hall of Stats, my obsession is identifying and campaigning for candidates who produced statistically at a Hall of Fame level but remain on the outside.
These two sets of candidates have very little overlap, but there are a pair of shortstops who played in the nineteenth century with overwhelming statistical cases—Jack Glasscock (who remains terribly underrated and didn’t make this list) and Bill Dahlen (who came two votes shy of the Hall of Fame in 2013 and has a strong chance of induction via the Pre-Integration ballot in 2016).
A century before there was Alan Trammell, there was Bill Dahlen. Both players are the most easily overlooked type of candidate—the one who was good at everything but didn’t dominate in one way. Like Trammell, Dahlen was a long-time shortstop who played the position so well that he was never removed from it. Dahlen’s 2,133 games at short rank 11th all time (Trammell had six more). The new-dangled defensive numbers (Total Zone runs, specifically) say Dahlen was an exceptional fielder. That’s backed up by Dahlen’s eight top three finishes in fielding percentage and ten top three finishes in range factor.
While Dahlen hit only .272, he paired his 2,461 hits with 1,064 walks, raising his OBP to .358. This leads to an OPS+ of 110, above average for all players but certainly for a shortstop.
Combining Dahlen’s longevity, well-above average offense, spectacular defense, and great baserunning (he stole 548 bases) makes him one of the very best eligible players outside of the Hall. And you’ll notice that the voters who know about him overwhelmingly support him.
It’s one of baseball’s great historical coincidences: Two of the game’s all-time underrated players, both of them active in the 1970s and ’80s, shared the last name Evans and the same first initial. One almost wonders if Major League Baseball secretly decreed that Dwight and Darrell could never play on the same team. Because it just would have been too confusing for everyone involved.
A lot of smart people think that Dwight Evans, and not Jim Rice, was the 1980s Red Sox outfielder who belongs in the Hall of Fame. And you know what? Some of those same people think that Darrell Evans has been sadly neglected by Hall of Fame voters.
Neglected? “Ignored” is more like it. In Evans’ first and only appearance on the BBWAA’s ballot, he received EIGHT votes. He received eight votes despite finishing his career with approximately 60 Wins Above Replacement, which at the time (1995) placed Evans 12th all-time among major leaguers who spent at least half their career at third base.
Of course, the voters at the time didn’t have Wins Above Replacement. And even if they had, it wouldn’t have made much difference. Evans finished his career with a .248 batting average. That was more than balanced by his .361 on-base percentage, but voters at the time — and still today! — care very little about on-base percentage. Evans did hit 414 home runs when that meant something … but he drove in 100 runs just once in his whole career.
So it’s not surprising that DWIGHT Evans got only eight votes. It’s actually quite understandable. But that doesn’t make it right.
During the spring training of 1979, Pirates right fielder Dave Parker announced that he had his sights set on his third straight batting title. “When the leaves turn brown,” The Cobra famously prophesied, “Dave Parker will have the batting crown.” It seemed a highly plausible prediction; likewise, one could have easily rhymed at the time that, when Parker’s career finally wound down, he would surely have his ticket punched to Cooperstown. But things didn’t quite play out like that…
If The Natural had been penned by George Clinton, Roy Hobbs would have turned out something like Dave Parker — a mountain of a man and true five-tool player with a lethal bat, a cannon arm and enough funky bravado and star quality to light up a Soul Train set all by his lonesome. One of the most thrilling players (and feared hitters) of the mid/late 70s, Parker had the goods to be one of the all-time greats, and he most likely would have been a shoo-in for the Hall if he hadn’t been derailed for a while in the early 80s by injuries, drugs and other distractions.
But if his star never again burned as brightly as it did circa ’75-‘79, The Cobra still managed to finish his 19-year career in 1991 with 2,712 career hits, a .290 batting average, a 1978 NL MVP trophy, two NL batting titles, one NL RBI title, three Gold Glove awards, three Silver Sluggers, two World Series rings, and a highlight reel to rival Shaft in both overall length and sheer badassery. (Editor’s note: On this website, badassery is and will always be a word.)
Lee Arthur Smith was born in Louisiana in 1957 and pitched eighteen years in the Major Leagues for eight different teams. Smith was drafted out of high school by the Cubs in the second round of the 1975 draft. After toiling in the minors for four seasons, the Cubs converted him to the bullpen and except for six Major League starts, he remained there for the rest of his career.
Smith led the league four times in Saves and Games Finished and retired as the all-time leader in both categories. Trevor Hoffman and Mariano Rivera eclipsed those totals and Smith now stands third all time.
Perhaps Smith’s best season was 1991 with the Cardinals when he led the league with 47 Saves and finished third in NL Cy Young Award voting.
Smith’s career view suffers in hindsight from Hoffman and Rivera who followed him and from his two losses in four post season appearances. But he was a top closer in the game during his era.
OPS+ is an odd stat. It adds two things that aren’t based upon the same thing and then compares them to an average. Everyone who understands the stat fully recognizes that it undervalues On-Base Percentage and over values slugging. Guys like Willie Randolph take the biggest hit with OPS+. OPS+ saysRandolph’s just 4% better than the average hitter who played during the course of his career. That’s not a true picture. He was 8 times in the top 10 in Walks, leading the league once, and six times in the top 10 in OBP. Randolph’s .373 OBP came in an era with a league OBP of .325. Meanwhile he hit only 54 HR in over 8000 ABs, leading to a 41 point lower than league average SLG. But, OBP is worth almost half as much more than SLG, so Randolph was likely 10% more valuable as a hitter than his league and that’s without factoring in his solid baserunning. Randolph was also an outstanding defender. His 19.4 dWAR ranks him sixth all-time at 2B. Meanwhile his WAR is 11th among 2B nestled nicely between HOFers Ryne Sandberg, Roberto Alomar, Craig Biggio,* and Jackie Robinson.
Bobby Bonds never had the numbers to warrant his waltzing into Cooperstown and his claim to fame today is more for his ties to the ballplayer who did put up the best numbers in baseball history and likely won’t waltz into the Hall either. The father of Barry Bonds, however, was more than a sperm donor who created the game’s most controversial PED-fueled slugger, he was a notable ballplayer in his own right and number 47 on BBP&P’s 50 Greatest Players Not in the Hall of Fame.
Bonds was a gifted athlete who became one of the game’s great lead-off hitters and capitalized on his power and speed to become baseball’s first 30/30 player, hitting that mark five times. But Bonds’ lifetime batting average of .268 was far from Hall-worthy and aside from an All-Star Game MVP in 1973 his trophy case was devoid of all the major awards and milestones that his son compiled.
Still, Bonds was the San Francisco Giants star player at the peak of his career and he hit 332 home runs, stole 461 bases and once hit 35 homers batting leadoff setting a MLB record at the time. But Bonds was always unfairly compared to Willie Mays and was dogged by talk that he’d never quite reached his full potential. He once told the LA Times, “They said I was supposed to be the next Willie Mays.” He wasn’t. Bonds could never fill those shoes and thus remains on the outskirts of Baseball’s Hall of Fame.
48. (Tie) Dave Stieb, 71 votes out of 208 (Does he belong in the Hall of Fame? 32 yes, 35 no, 4 N/A), written by Dave England, who wrote a fine piece for this site on an endangered ballpark:
Whenever I got double baseball cards of my favorite and best players, they would go into the spokes of my bicycle tires. Dave Stieb was one of those.
In the 1980’s, the bulk of his career, he was the best starting pitcher. From 1980-1990 Stieb lead all pitchers with 50.8 WAR and was a balance of durability and quality. He was also third in wins (158), tied for first with 29 shutouts in an high offensive era and led all starting pitchers with an ERA + of 128 during that time. After a decade of excellence the cherry on top was a 1990 no-hitter after coming close twice in consecutive starts in 1988 and a near perfect game in 1989.
Stieb amassed 57 WAR for his career, ranking him 67th all-time among pitchers. If he had started his pitching a decade later with this day and age of sabermetrics being viewed and accepted by a wider audience you have to think he’d get a better and longer look then falling off the ballot after one year.
But there’s also nothing wrong with being a very good pitcher at the highest level for a very long time. And Dave Stieb was clearly that.
Depth at the catching position was quite strong across the game in the 1970s – led most prominently be a trio of Hall of Fame catchers in Johnny Bench, Carlton Fisk, and Gary Carter. Work Ted Simmons and Gene Tenance into the mix and we’re now looking at five of the Top 15 leaders in career bWAR at the position, all playing in the same decade.
Not to be forgotten, the New York Yankees were also the benefactors of yet another star-caliber backstop who remains unique in his own right beyond his contributions on the field. Munson spent 11 years in New York, playing nine full seasons. Across 5,905 career plate appearances the right-hander batted .292/.346/.410 with 229 doubles, 113 HR, and a 116 OPS+. Munson played in seven All Star Games, won three Gold Gloves, was named AL Rookie of the Year in 1970, and three times finished in the Top 10 in MVP voting (including winning the award in 1976).
Voting resulted in a three-way tie for this 50th spot between three players of baseball’s recent past: Bret Saberhagen, Steve Garvey, and Orel Hershiser.
As for head-to-head anecdotal evidence, Steve Garvey never faced Bret Saberhagen. Orel Hershiser limited Garvey to one walk, a single, and a double in twenty-four plate appearances, striking him out seven times.
Garvey’s best story comes from Win Expectancy metrics:
- Saberhagen 27.0
- Garvey 24.8
- Hershiser 14.8
- Garvey 33.93
- Saberhagen 25.50
- Hershiser 11.54
Does it mean anything if WAR does not align with Win Shares?
- Bret Saberhagen 59 (4.6 per 200 IP)
- Orel Hershiser 49 (3.1 per 200 IP)
- Steve Garvey 38 (2.6 per 650 PA)
Career Win Shares
- Garvey 279 (19.2 per 650 PA)
- Hershiser 210 (13.4 per 200 IP)
- Saberhagen 193 (15.1 per 200 IP)
Notice that Saberhagen outperformed Hershiser in Win Shares as a rate state. His 3.64 K/BB dwarfed Hershiser’s 2.00. Saberhagen also had a better ERA- (80) to Hershiser (89). In fact, Saberhagen’s 80 ERA- is tied with Curt Schilling and better than many Hall of Famers including Juan Marichal, Bob Feller, and Steve Carlton.
Either way, Saberhagen > Hershiser > Garvey or Saberhagen > Garvey > Hershiser
UPDATE, JANUARY 4, 2016: I DID A NEW VERSION OF THIS PROJECT FOR SPORTING NEWS.
Vote totals for every player outside the Top 50
[A] Jim Abbott *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N), Ted Abernathy 1 (DHB: 1N), Babe Adams 10 (DHB: 7Y, 2N, 1NA), Doc Adams *Write-In* 2 (DHB: 2Y), Joe Adcock 5 (DHB: 2Y, 3N), Dale Alexander 1 (DHB: 1Y), Newt Allen 1 (DHB: 1Y), Bob Allison *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N), Sandy Alomar 5 (DHB: 2Y, 3N), Felipe Alou 5 (DHB: 1Y, 3N, 1NA), Matty Alou 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1N), Moises Alou 20 (DHB: 1Y, 19N), Dr. James Andrews *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1NA), Kevin Appier 23 (DHB: 11Y, 10N, 2NA), Buzz Arlett 2 (DHB: 1Y, 0N, 1NA)
[B] Harold Baines 47 (DHB: 19Y, 26N, 2NA), Dusty Baker 5 (DHB: 2Y, 3N), Sal Bando 51 (DHB: 25Y, 23N, 3NA), Ross Barnes 20 (DHB: 19Y, 1N), Johnny Bassler *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N), Hank Bauer 3 (DHB: 3Y), Don Baylor 13 (DHB: 3Y, 10N), John Beckwith 6 (DHB: 4Y, 2N), Mark Belanger 6 (DHB: 3Y, 3N), Buddy Bell 67 (DHB: 33Y, 29N, 5NA), George Bell 1 (DHB: 1N), Albert Belle 55 (DHB: 20Y, 34N, 1NA), Carlos Beltran *Not yet eligible* 3 (DHB: 2N, 1NA), Adrian Beltre *Not yet eligible* 3 (DHB: 2Y, 0N, 1NA), Armando Benitez 1 (DHB: 1N), Charlie Bennett 9 (DHB: 9Y), Wally Berger 5 (DHB: 2Y, 3N), Lance Berkman *Not yet eligible* 1 (DHB: 1N), Akira Bessho *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1Y), Joe Black 1 (DHB: 1Y), Vida Blue 26 (DHB: 12Y, 12N, 2NA), Bert Blyleven *In HOF* 1 (DHB: 1Y), Tommy Bond 13 (DHB: 11Y, 2N), Bobby Bonilla 1 (DHB: 1N), Bob Boone 13 (DHB: 5Y, 8N), Lyman Bostock 1 (DHB: 1N), Larry Bowa 6 (DHB: 2Y, 4N), Harry Brecheen *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N), Tommy Bridges 8 (DHB: 4Y, 3N, 1NA), Pete Browning 24 (DHB: 23Y, 1NA), Bill Buckner 18 (DHB: 7Y, 10 N, 1NA), Charlie Buffington 7 (DHB: 5Y, 2N), Lew Burdette 11 (DHB: 5Y, 6N), Smokey Burgess *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N), Ellis Burks 2 (DHB: 2N), George H Burns 1 (DHB: 1Y), George J. Burns 1 (DHB: 1Y), Brett Butler 7 (DHB: 3Y, 4N)
[C] Al Cabrera 1 (DHB: 1Y), Miguel Cabrera *Not yet eligible* 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1N), Johnny Callison *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N), Dolph Camilli 1 (DHB: 1Y), Bert Campaneris 14 (DHB: 4Y, 9N, 1NA), Robinson Cano *Not yet eligible* 1 (DHB: 1N), Jose Canseco 23 (DHB: 4Y, 16N, 3NA), Ollie Carnegie 1 (DHB: 1Y), Cris Carpenter *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N), Joe Carter 22 (DHB: 7Y, 14N, 1NA), Bob Caruthers 28 (DHB: 24Y, 3N, 1NA), Sean Casey 2 (DHB: 2N), Norm Cash 15 (DHB: 5Y, 10N), Vinny Castilla 1 (DHB: 1NA), Phil Cavarretta 1 (DHB: 1N), Cesar Cedeno 14 (DHB: 1Y, 13N), Orlando Cepeda *In HOF* 1 (DHB: 1Y), Ron Cey 16 (DHB: 6Y, 9N, 1NA), Ben Chapman 1 (DHB: 1N), Hal Chase 7 (DHB: 4Y, 3N), Cupid Childs 9 (DHB: 7Y, 2N), Eddie Cicotte 51 (DHB: 29Y, 21N, 1NA), Jack Clark 11 (DHB: 3Y, 8N), Will Clark 60 (DHB: 14Y, 44N, 2NA), Royce Clayton 1 (DHB: 1N), Harlond Clift 3 (DHB: 1Y, 2N), Rocky Colavito 22 (DHB: 9Y, 13N), Vince Coleman 7 (DHB: 1Y, 5N, 1NA), Dave Concepcion 46 (DHB: 10Y, 32N, 4NA), Tony Conigliaro 3 (DHB: 3N), Jeff Conine 3 (DHB: 1Y, 2N), Jack Coombs 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1N), Cecil Cooper 11 (DHB: 9N, 2NA), Mort Cooper *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N), W Cooper 1 (DHB: 1N), Walker Cooper 1 (DHB: 1N), Wilbur Cooper 4 (DHB: 2Y, 1N, 1NA), Gavy Cravath 12 (DHB: 7Y, 5N), Jim Creighton 9 (DHB: 8Y, 1N), Lave Cross 3 (DHB: 2Y, 1N), Jose Cruz 3 (DHB: 2N, 1NA), Jose Cruz Sr 5 (DHB: 2Y, 3N), Mike Cuellar 7 (DHB: 4Y, 3N)
[D] Al Dark 4 (DHB: 3Y, 0N, 1NA), Ron Darling *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N), Jake Daubert 2 (DHB: 2N), Chili Davis 2 (DHB: 2N), Eric Davis 13 (DHB: 2Y, 10N, 1NA), Tommy Davis 1 (DHB: 1N), Willie Davis 22 (DHB: 9Y, 12N, 1NA), Carlos Delgado *Not yet eligible* 1 (DHB: 1Y), Bingo DeMoss 1 (DHB: 1Y), Paul Derringer 4 (DHB: 2Y, 2N), Jim Devlin 1 (DHB: 1N), Rob Dibble 1 (DHB: 1N), Dom DiMaggio 23 (DHB: 9Y, 12N, 2NA), Larry Doby *In HOF* 1 (DHB: 1Y), Bobby Doerr *In HOF* 1 (DHB: 1N), John Donaldson 4 (DHB: 3Y, 1N), Mike Donlin 1 (DHB: 1N), Patsy Donovan 1 (DHB: 1Y), Brian Downing 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1N), Larry Doyle 5 (DHB: 4Y, 1NA), Hugh Duffy *In HOF* 1 (DHB: 1Y), Fred Dunlap 2 (DHB: 2Y), Ray Durham 3 (DHB: 3N)
[E] Luke Easter 4 (DHB: 3Y, 1NA), Ox Eckhardt *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1Y), Jim Edmonds *Not yet eligible* 1 (DHB: 1N), Mark Eichhorn 2 (DHB: 2N), Bob Elliott 5 (DHB: 3Y, 2N), Woody English *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1Y), Del Ennis 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1N), Carl Erskine 4 (DHB: 1Y, 3N)
[F] Roy Face 9 (DHB: 6Y, 3N), Donald Fehr *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1NA), Tony Fernandez 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1N), Wes Ferrell 61 (DHB: 40Y, 17N, 4NA), Cecil Fielder 8 (DHB: 7N, 1NA), Charlie Finley *I mistakenly left Finley on the ballot from a previous year– only players should be eligible* 9 (DHB: 7Y, 2N), Chuck Finley 17 (DHB: 5Y, 10N, 2NA), Steve Finley 5 (DHB: 5N), Freddie Fitzsimmons 1 (DHB: 1Y), Curt Flood 37 (DHB: 26Y, 9N, 2NA), Chuck Foster 1 (DHB: 1Y), George Foster 15 (DHB: 3Y, 9N, 3NA), Jack Fournier 2 (DHB: 2Y), Bud Fowler 4 (DHB: 4Y), John Franco 12 (DHB: 7Y, 5N), Julio Franco 13 (DHB: 4Y, 9N), Bill Freehan 39 (DHB: 20Y, 17N, 2NA), Jim Fregosi 2 (DHB: 2N), Carl Furillo 8 (DHB: 2Y, 5N, 1NA)
[G] Gary Gaetti *Write-In* 2 (DHB: 2N), Eric Gagne 7 (DHB: 2Y, 5N), Andres Galarraga 21 (DHB: 4Y, 14N, 3NA), Antonio Maria Garcia *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1Y), Nomar Garciaparra *Not yet eligible* 1 (DHB: 1N), Ned Garver 1 (DHB: 1N), Steve Garvey 69 (DHB: 31Y, 34N, 4NA), Kirk Gibson 27 (DHB: 6Y, 18N, 3NA), Jack Glasscock 50 (DHB: 43Y, 5N, 2NA), Kid Gleason 3 (DHB: 2Y, 1N), Gervasio Gonzalez *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N), Juan Gonzalez 31 (DHB: 4Y, 25N, 2NA), Luis Gonzalez 15 (DHB: 2Y, 11N, 2NA), Dwight Gooden 62 (DHB: 23Y, 37N, 2NA), George Gore 2 (DHB: 2Y), Curt Gowdy *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1Y), Mark Grace 15 (DHB: 1Y, 13N, 1NA), Shawn Green 2 (DHB: 2N), Mike Greenwell 2 (DHB: 2N), Ken Griffey (Not sure Jr or Sr) 1 (DHB: 1Y), Ken Griffey Jr *Not yet eligible* 4 (DHB: 3Y, 1NA), Ken Griffey Sr 8 (DHB: 1Y, 6N, 1NA), Mike Griffin 1 (DHB: 1N), Clark Griffith *In HOF* 1 (DHB: 1Y), Ray Grimes *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N), Charlie Grimm 1 (DHB: 1N), Marquis Grissom 1 (DHB: 1N), Dick Groat 7 (DHB: 2Y, 5N), Heinie Groh 8 (DHB: 4Y, 4N), Jerry Grote 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1N), Pedro Guerrero 5 (DHB: 3Y, 1N, 1NA), Vlad Guerrero *Not yet eligible* 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1N), Ron Guidry 62 (DHB: 27Y, 33N, 2NA), Ozzie Guillen 5 (DHB: 2Y, 2N, 1NA)
[H] Stan Hack 24 (DHB: 17Y, 7N), Roy Halladay *Not yet eligible* 4 (DHB: 2Y, 1N, 1NA), Mel Harder 10 (DHB: 6Y, 4N), Bubbles Hargrave *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N), Isao Harimoto 4 (DHB: 4Y), Toby Harrah 3 (DHB: 1Y, 2N), Joe Harris *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N), Topsy Hartsel *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N), Shigetoshi Hasegawa *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N), Jeff Heath *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N), Guy Hecker 1 (DHB: 1N), Tom Henke 3 (DHB: 1Y, 2N), Tommy Henrich 6 (DHB: 3Y, 3N), Babe Herman 9 (DHB: 3Y, 6N), Orel Hershiser 69 (DHB: 24Y, 44N, 1NA), Teddy Higuera *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N), John Hiller 3 (DHB: 3Y), Paul Hines 13 (DHB: 12Y, 1N), Larry Hisle 1 (DHB: 1Y), Johnny Hodapp *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N), Trevor Hoffman *Not yet eligible* 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1NA), Willie Horton 1 (DHB: 1N), Elston Howard 9 (DHB: 3Y, 5N, 1NA), Frank Howard 21 (DHB: 8Y, 12N, 1NA), Dummy Hoy 8 (DHB: 7Y, 1N)
[J] Bo Jackson 16 (DHB: 4Y, 11N, 1NA), Jackie Jensen *Write-In* 2 (DHB: 2N), Derek Jeter *Not yet eligible* 5 (DHB: 4Y, 1NA), Sam Jethroe 1 (DHB: 1N), Dr Frank Jobe *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1Y), Home Run Johnson 8 (DHB: 6Y, 2N), Howard Johnson *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N), Indian Bob Johnson 19 (DHB: 8Y, 9N, 2NA), Randy Johnson *Not yet eligible* 6 (DHB: 5Y, 1NA), Smead Jolley 3 (DHB: 1Y, 2N), Andruw Jones *Not yet eligible* 3 (DHB: 1N, 2NA), Charley Jones 2 (DHB: 2Y), Chipper Jones *Not yet eligible* 4 (DHB: 3Y, 1NA), Doug Jones 1 (DHB: 1N), Fielder Jones 1 (DHB: 1Y), Jacque Jones 1 (DHB: 1N), Sad Sam Jones 1 (DHB: 1NA), Todd Jones 1 (DHB: 1N), Wally Joyner 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1N), Joe Judge 1 (DHB: 1N), David Justice 12 (DHB: 4Y, 8N)
[K] Masaichi Kaneda 5 (DHB: 4Y, 1NA), Tomoaki Kanemoto *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1Y), Benny Kauff 3 (DHB: 1Y, 2N), Tetsuharu Kawakami 1 (DHB: 1Y), Charlie Keller 10 (DHB: 5Y, 5N), Ken Keltner 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1N), Jason Kendall *Not yet eligible* 1 (DHB: 1N), Terry Kennedy 1 (DHB: 1N), Jimmy Key 5 (DHB: 5N), Silver King 5 (DHB: 3Y, 2N), Dave Kingman 3 (DHB: 2N, 1NA), Ted Kluszewski 12 (DHB: 5Y, 6N, 1NA), Ray Knight 1 (DHB: 1Y), Chuck Knoblauch 3 (DHB: 2N, 1NA), Ed Konetchy 1 (DHB: 1Y), Jerry Koosman 14 (DHB: 4Y, 9N, 1NA), Harvey Kuenn 6 (DHB: 4Y, 1N, 1NA)
[L] Bill Lange *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N), Mark Langston 4 (DHB: 1Y, 3N), Don Larsen 5 (DHB: 2Y, 3N), Law 1 (DHB: 1NA), Vern Law 1 (DHB: 1N), Tommy Leach 7 (DHB: 5Y, 2N), Bill Lee 3 (DHB: 3N), Sam Leever 3 (DHB: 2Y, 1N), Al Leiter 5 (DHB: 2Y, 2N, 1NA), Chet Lemon 8 (DHB: 3Y, 5N), Duffy Lewis 1 (DHB: 1Y), Jose Lima 2 (DHB: 2N), Tim Lincecum *Not yet eligible* 1 (DHB: 1N), Paul Lo Duca 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1N), Mickey Lolich 25 (DHB: 9Y, 14N, 2NA), Herman Long 1 (DHB: 1N), Eddie Lopat *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1Y), Davey Lopes 9 (DHB: 1Y, 8N), Javy Lopez 1 (DHB: 1NA), Dick Lundy 7 (DHB: 7Y), Dolf Luque 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1N), Greg Luzinski 3 (DHB: 1Y, 2N), Sparky Lyle 8 (DHB: 2Y, 4N, 2NA), Fred Lynn 38 (DHB: 9Y, 26N, 3NA)
[M] Garry Maddox 5 (DHB: 3Y, 2N), Bill Madlock 13 (DHB: 4Y, 8N, 1NA), Sherry Magee 54 (DHB: 33Y, 14N, 4NA), Sal Maglie 3 (DHB: 2Y, 1N), Firpo Marberry 2 (DHB: 2Y), Oliver Marcelle 2 (DHB: 2Y), Marty Marion 8 (DHB: 6Y, 2N), Roger Maris 54 (DHB: 24Y, 28N, 2NA), Mike Marshall 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1N), Mike G Marshall 2 (DHB: 2Y), Billy Martin *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N), Pepper Martin 5 (DHB: 3Y, 1N, 1NA), Dennis Martinez 21 (DHB: 4Y, 15N, 2NA), Pedro Martinez *Not yet eligible* 6 (DHB: 5Y, 1NA), Tino Martinez 2 (DHB: 2N), Bobby Mathews 9 (DHB: 7Y, 2N), Jon Matlack *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N), Carl Mays 14 (DHB: 13Y, 1N), Dick McBride 1 (DHB: 1Y), Frank McCormick 1 (DHB: 1N), Jim McCormick 22 (DHB: 18Y, 3N, 1NA), Lindy McDaniel 1 (DHB: 1Y), Gil McDougald 3 (DHB: 3N), Sam McDowell 6 (DHB: 1Y, 5N), Willie McGee 5 (DHB: 2Y, 2N, 1NA), Tug McGraw 6 (DHB: 3Y, 3N), Stuffy McInnis 1 (DHB: 1Y), Ed McKean 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1N), Denny McLain 10 (DHB: 3Y, 7N), Dave McNally 5 (DHB: 1Y, 3N, 1NA), Bid McPhee *In HOF* 1 (DHB: 1NA), Hal McRae 4 (DHB: 3Y, 1N), Cal McVey 5 (DHB: 5Y), Bob Meusel 6 (DHB: 4Y, 2N), Levi Meyerle 2 (DHB: 2Y), Clyde Milan 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1N), Hack Miller *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N), Marvin Miller *Write In* 2 (DHB: 2Y), Kevin Mitchell 4 (DHB: 1Y, 3N), Jeff Montgomery 1 (DHB: 1N), Yadier Molina *Not yet eligible* 1 (DHB: 1NA), Dobie Moore 2 (DHB: 2Y), Carlos Moran 1 (DHB: 1Y), Eddie Morgan 1 (DHB: 1N), Manny Mota 2 (DHB: 2Y), Jamie Moyer *Not yet eligible* 1 (DHB: 1N), Tony Mullane 25 (DHB: 20Y, 4N, 1NA), George Mullin 1 (DHB: 1Y), Bobby Murcer 4 (DHB: 1Y, 3N), Jim Mutrie 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1N), Buddy Myer 2 (DHB: 2Y)
[N] Shigeo Nagashima *Write-In* 2 (DHB: 2Y), Robb Nen 1 (DHB: 1N), Phil Nevin 1 (DHB: 1Y), Don Newcombe 24 (DHB: 14Y, 8N, 2NA), Bill Nicholson 2 (DHB: 2N), Joe Niekro 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1N), Hideo Nomo 5 (DHB: 1Y, 3N, 1NA), Katsuya Nomura *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1Y)
[O] Lefty O’Doul 14 (DHB: 9Y, 5N), Buck O’Neil 57 (DHB: 49Y, 6N, 2NA), Paul O’Neill 11 (DHB: 2Y, 8N, 1NA), Tip O’Neill 6 (DHB: 5Y, 1N), Hiromitsu Ochiai *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1Y), Sadaharu Oh 56 (DHB: 49Y, 4N, 3NA), John Olerud 37 (DHB: 6Y, 30N, 1NA), Tony Oliva 68 (DHB: 34Y, 32N, 2NA), Al Oliver 33 (DHB: 15Y, 16N, 2NA), Alejandro Oms 7 (DHB: 6Y, 1NA), Jesse Orosco 4 (DHB: 3Y, 1N), Dave Orr 1 (DHB: 1Y), Amos Otis 4 (DHB: 2Y, 2N)
[P] Joe Page 1 (DHB: 1N), Mitchell Page *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N), Milt Pappas 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1N), Wes Parker *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N), Mel Parnell 1 (DHB: 1N), Lance Parrish 7 (DHB: 3Y, 4N), Camilo Pascual 4 (DHB: 1Y, 2N, 1NA), Dickey Pearce 8 (DHB: 8Y), Jim Perry 5 (DHB: 2Y, 3N), Johnny Pesky *Write-In* 2 (DHB: 2Y), Rico Petrocelli 2 (DHB: 2N), Andy Pettitte *Not yet eligible* 2 (DHB: 2N), Deacon Phillippe 6 (DHB: 3Y, 2N, 1NA), Tony Phillips 2 (DHB: 2N), Billy Pierce 29 (DHB: 19Y, 9N, 1NA), Lip Pike 4 (DHB: 2Y, 2N), Lou Piniella 1 (DHB: 1Y), Vada Pinson 38 (DHB: 15Y, 21N, 2NA), Spottswood Poles 8 (DHB: 7Y, 1N), Darrell Porter 2 (DHB: 2N), Boog Powell 7 (DHB: 2Y, 5N), Vic Power 1 (DHB: 1Y), Del Pratt 1 (DHB: 1Y), Albert Pujols *Not yet eligible* 4 (DHB: 3Y, 1NA)
[Q] Jack Quinn 9 (DHB: 3Y, 5N, 1NA), Dan Quisenberry 48 (DHB: 28Y, 18N, 2NA)
[R] Ted Radcliffe 6 (DHB: 2Y, 2N, 2NA), Brad Radke 2 (DHB: 2N), Manny Ramirez *Not yet eligible* 6 (DHB: 2Y, 2N, 2NA), Joe Randa 1 (DHB: 1N), Vic Raschi *Write-In* 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1N), Al Reach 1 (DHB: 1Y), Jeff Reardon 1 (DHB: 1Y), Dick Redding 5 (DHB: 4Y, 1NA), Mike Remlinger 1 (DHB: 1N), Ed Reulbach 4 (DHB: 2Y, 2NA), Rick Reuschel 65 (DHB: 39Y, 21N, 5NA), Allie Reynolds 15 (DHB: 12Y, 3N), J.R. Richard 8 (DHB: 4Y, 4N), Hardy Richardson 2 (DHB: 2Y), Dave Righetti 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1N), Mariano Rivera *Not yet eligible* 4 (DHB: 3Y, 1NA), Don Robinson 1 (DHB: 1N), Alex Rodriguez *Not yet eligible* 4 (DHB: 2Y, 1N, 1NA), Ivan Rodriguez *Not yet eligible* 6 (DHB: 5Y, 1NA), Kenny Rogers 8 (DHB: 7N, 1NA), Scott Rolen** 3 (DHB: 2Y, 1NA), Red Rolfe 1 (DHB: 1Y), Charlie Root 3 (DHB: 1Y, 2N), Al Rosen 11 (DHB: 5Y, 6N), Schoolboy Rowe 3 (DHB: 2Y, 1N), Nap Rucker 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1N), Pete Runnels 3 (DHB: 2Y, 1N), Bill Russell *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N), Jimmy Ryan 6 (DHB: 6Y)
[S] Johnny Sain 12 (DHB: 8Y, 3N, 1NA), Tim Salmon 1 (DHB: 1N), Manny Sanguillen 3 (DHB: 1Y, 2N), Ron Santo *In HOF* 2 (DHB: 2Y), George Scales 1 (DHB: 1N), Wally Schang 9 (DHB: 8Y, 1N), Herb Score 4 (DHB: 4N), George Scott 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1N), Mike Scott 1 (DHB: 1N), Aaron Sele 2 (DHB: 0Y, 2N), Richie Sexson 3 (DHB: 2N, 1NA), Cy Seymour 1 (DHB: 1N), Bobby Shantz 1 (DHB: 1Y), Bob Shawkey 1 (DHB: 1Y), Jimmy Sheckard 5 (DHB: 4Y, 1N), Gary Sheffield *Not yet eligible* 3 (DHB: 1Y, 1N, 1NA), Urban Shocker 24 (DHB: 15Y, 9N), Ruben Sierra 1 (DHB: 1N), Roy Sievers 3 (DHB: 1Y, 2N), Ken Singleton 4 (DHB: 2Y, 2N), Roy Smalley 1 (DHB: 1NA), Charlie Smith 1 (DHB: 1Y), Chino Smith 1 (DHB: 1N), Germany Smith 1 (DHB: 1N), Hilton Smith *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1Y), Reggie Smith 66 (DHB: 30Y, 31N, 5NA), John Smoltz *Not yet eligible* 7 (DHB: 5Y, 1N, 1NA), J.T. Snow 3 (DHB: 3N), Victor Starffin 3 (DHB: 3Y), Joe Start 8 (DHB: 8Y), Jigger Statz *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1Y), Rusty Staub 27 (DHB: 12Y, 14N, 1NA), George Steinbrenner 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1NA), Vern Stephens 18 (DHB: 10Y, 8N), Riggs Stephenson 3 (DHB: 1Y, 2N), Dave Stewart *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1Y), Shannon Stewart 1 (DHB: 1N), Jack Stivetts 1 (DHB: 1Y), Don Stokes *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N), George Stone 1 (DHB: 1N), Steve Stone 1 (DHB: 1N), Mel Stottlemyre *Write-In*2 (DHB: 1N, 1NA), Harry Stovey 20 (DHB: 18Y, 1N, 1NA), Darryl Strawberry 28 (DHB: 7Y, 19N, 2NA), Ezra Sutton 2 (DHB: 2Y), Ichiro Suzuki *Not yet eligible* 2 (DHB: 2Y)
[T] Frank Tanana 14 (DHB: 2Y, 12N), Jesse Tannehill 2 (DHB: 2Y), Candy Jim Taylor *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1Y), Kent Tekulve 4 (DHB: 1Y, 3N), Gene Tenace 17 (DHB: 11Y, 6N), Frank Thomas (62 Mets) 1 (DHB: 1N), Roy Thomas 1 (DHB: 1Y), Jim Thome *Not yet eligible* 4 (DHB: 3Y, 1NA), Robby Thompson 1 (DHB: 1N), Bobby Thomson 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1N), Andre Thornton 1 (DHB: 1N), Luis Tiant Sr. 1 (DHB: 1Y), Mike Timlin 1 (DHB: 1N), Cecil Travis 5 (DHB: 2Y, 3N), Hal Trosky 3 (DHB: 3N), Quincy Trouppe 2 (DHB: 2Y), Dizzy Trout 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1N), Virgil Trucks *Write-In*1 (DHB: 1N), John Tudor *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N)
[U] George Uhle 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1NA), Jose Uribe 1 (DHB: 1N), Chase Utley *Not yet eligible* 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1N)
[V] Ellis Valentine *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N), Fernando Valenzuela 18 (DHB: 6Y, 11N, 1NA), George Van Haltren 13 (DHB: 10Y, 3N), Johnny Vander Meer 2 (DHB: 2Y), Hippo Vaughn 5 (DHB: 5Y), Mo Vaughn 3 (DHB: 1Y, 2N), Bobby Veach 7 (DHB: 4Y, 3N), Bob Veale *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1N), Robin Ventura 20 (DHB: 5Y, 15N), Justin Verlander *Not yet eligible* 1 (DHB: 1N), Mickey Vernon 12 (DHB: 7Y, 5N), Frank Viola 4 (DHB: 4N)
[W] Billy Wagner *Not yet eligible* 1 (DHB: 1Y), Tim Wakefield *Not yet eligible* 1 (DHB: 1N), Fleet Walker 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1N), Todd Walker 1 (DHB: 1N), Bobby Wallace *In HOF* 1 (DHB: 1NA), Bucky Walters 13 (DHB: 6Y, 6N, 1NA), Daryle Ward 1 (DHB: 1N), Lon Warneke 3 (DHB: 1Y, 2N), Buck Weaver 5 (DHB: 5Y), Bob Welch *Write-In* 2 (DHB: 2N), David Wells 10 (DHB: 2Y, 8N), Vic Wertz 1 (DHB: 1N), John Wetteland 1 (DHB: 1Y), Gus Weyhing 3 (DHB: 1Y, 2N), Bill White 5 (DHB: 1Y, 4N), Deacon White *In HOF* 7 (DHB: 7Y (Note: I accidentally left White on the ballot this year. He was enshrined last summer.)), Frank White 7 (DHB: 2Y, 5N), Roy White 5 (DHB: 3Y, 2N), Will White 2 (DHB: 2Y), Bernie Williams 42 (DHB: 14Y, 26N, 2NA), Cy Williams 2 (DHB: 1Y, 1N), Ken Williams 4 (DHB: 2Y, 2N), Matt Williams 5 (DHB: 1Y, 4N), Woody Williams 1 (DHB: 1N), Ned Williamson 2 (DHB: 2Y), Vic Willis *In HOF* 1 (DHB: 1Y), Maury Wills 28 (DHB: 8Y, 18N, 2NA), Willie Wilson 6 (DHB: 2Y, 3N, 1NA), Nip Winters 1 (DHB: 1N), Tony Womack 1 (DHB: 1N), Smoky Joe Wood 26 (DHB: 16Y, 10N), Wilbur Wood 7 (DHB: 4Y, 3N), Tim Worrell 1 (DHB: 1N), Jim Wynn 42 (DHB: 22Y, 17N, 3NA)
[Y] Koji Yamamoto *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1Y), Kazuhiro Yamauchi *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1Y), Rudy York 3 (DHB: 1Y, 2N), Tom York *Write-In* 1 (DHB: 1Y), Eddie Yost 3 (DHB: 1Y, 2N), Dmitri Young 1 (DHB: 1N), Eric Young 1 (DHB: 1N)
Appeared on the ballot, received no votes: Edgardo Alfonzo, Bobby Avila, Dick Bartell, William Bell Sr., Bret Boone, Ken Boswell, Jeromy Burnitz, Jeff Burroughs, Jeff Cirillo, Roy Cullenbine, Jim Davenport, Kelly Downs, Damion Easley, Morgan Ensberg, Scott Erickson, Shawn Estes, Carl Everett, Ferris Fain, Jeff Fassero, Art Fletcher, Keith Foulke, Dave Foutz, Bob Friend, Scott Garrelts, Jim Gentile, Hank Gowdy, Danny Graves, Don Gullett, Rick Helling, Roberto Hernandez, Tommy Holmes, Ken Holtzman, Bob Horner, Pete Hughes, Kei Igawa, Larry Jackson, Sam Jackson, Geoff Jenkins, Charley Jones, Davy Jones, Eddie Joost, Brian Jordan, Bill Joyce, Darryl Kile, Ellis Kinder, Ryan Klesko, Johnny Kling, Mike LaCoss, Carney Lansford, Arlie Latham, Matt Lawton, Jon Lieber, Bob Locker, Elliot Maddox, Candy Maldonado, Mike Matheny, Sadie McMahon, Kent Mercker, Jose Mesa, Irish Meusel, Bill Monroe, Wally Moon, Matt Morris, Wally Moses, Bill Mueller, Mark Mulder, Terry Mulholland, Randy Myers, Jeff Nelson, Trot Nixon, Larry Parrish, William Perry, Bruce Petway, Johnny Podres, Jack Powell, Ernest Riles, Felix Rodriguez, Joe Rudi, Reggie Sanders, Elmer E. Smith, Mike Stanton, Dixie Walker, Rondell White, Todd Worrell
|Every player who has finished in the Top 50 at least one year of this project|
|First||Last||Year 4 finish||Year 3 finish||Year 2 finish||Year 1 finish|
|Roberto||Alomar||In Hall of Fame||In Hall of Fame||In Hall of Fame||2nd (Tie)|
|Jeff||Bagwell||2nd (Tie)||3rd||3rd||5th (Tie)|
|Harold||Baines||Not in Top 50||Not in Top 50||45th (Tie)||Not in Top 50|
|Albert||Belle||Not in Top 50||49th (Tie)||31st||31st (Tie)|
|Craig||Biggio||2nd (Tie)||2nd||Not yet eligible||Not yet eligible|
|Bert||Blyleven||In Hall of Fame||In Hall of Fame||In Hall of Fame||1st|
|Barry||Bonds||5th||8th (Tie)||Not yet eligible||Not yet eligible|
|Bobby||Bonds||47th||41st (Tie)||22nd (Tie)||Not in Top 50|
|Ken||Boyer||40th (Tie)||37th||27th (Tie)||35th|
|Kevin||Brown||36th||35th (Tie)||35th||38th (Tie)|
|Bob||Caruthers||Not in Top 50||Not in Top 50||45th (Tie)||Not in Top 50|
|Will||Clark||Not in Top 50||34th||14th (Tie)||17th (Tie)|
|Roger||Clemens||6th (Tie)||6th (Tie)||Not yet eligible||Not yet eligible|
|Dave||Concepcion||Not in Top 50||Not in Top 50||45th (Tie)||49th (Tie)|
|David||Cone||40th (Tie)||28th (Tie)||32nd (Tie)||49th (Tie)|
|Bill||Dahlen||42nd||26th (Tie)||32nd (Tie)||40th (Tie)|
|Darrell||Evans||43rd||28th (Tie)||32nd (Tie)||40th (Tie)|
|Wes||Ferrell||Not in Top 50||39th||45th||Not in Top 50|
|Bill||Freehan||Not in Top 50||Not in Top 50||Not in Top 50||48th|
|Steve||Garvey||Not in Top 50||Not in Top 50||41st (Tie)||34th|
|Tom||Glavine||9th||Not yet eligible||Not yet eligible||Not yet eligible|
|Bobby||Grich||24th (Tie)||19th (Tie)||18th||22nd (Tie)|
|Ron||Guidry||Not in Top 50||Not in Top 50||41st (Tie)||31st (Tie)|
|Keith||Hernandez||27th (Tie)||23rd||16th||22nd (Tie)|
|Orel||Hershiser||Not in Top 50||Not in Top 50||41st (Tie)||43rd|
|Shoeless Joe||Jackson||10th||4th||1st||5th (Tie)|
|Tommy||John||27th (Tie)||25th||26th||25th (Tie)|
|Jim||Kaat||37th||32nd||27th (Tie)||28th (Tie)|
|Jeff||Kent||31st (Tie)||Not yet eligible||Not yet eligible||Not yet eligible|
|Barry||Larkin||In Hall of Fame||In Hall of Fame||2nd||8th|
|Kenny||Lofton||24th (Tie)||24th||Not yet eligible||Not yet eligible|
|Greg||Maddux||4th||Not yet eligible||Not yet eligible||Not yet eligible|
|Roger||Maris||Not in Top 50||Not in Top 50||45th (Tie)||40th (Tie)|
|Fred||McGriff||30th||26th (Tie)||22nd (Tie)||16th|
|Mark||McGwire||15th||16th||14th (Tie)||20th (Tie)|
|Jack||Morris||31st (Tie)||38th||Not in Top 50||36th (Tie)|
|Thurman||Munson||48th (Tie)||46th||37th (Tie)||47th|
|Dale||Murphy||29th||35th (Tie)||27th (Tie)||17th (Tie)|
|Mike||Mussina||19th||Not yet eligible||Not yet eligible||Not yet eligible|
|Graig||Nettles||33rd||31st||40th (Tie)||44th (Tie)|
|Buck||O’Neil||Not in Top 50||Not in Top 50||Not in Top 50||44th (Tie)|
|John||Olerud||Not in Top 50||Not in Top 50||45th (Tie)||Not in Top 50|
|Tony||Oliva||Not in Top 50||Not in Top 50||30th||25th (Tie)|
|Rafael||Palmeiro||21st||13th (Tie)||10th||28th (Tie)|
|Dave||Parker||44th||49th (Tie)||36th||28th (Tie)|
|Mike||Piazza||6th (Tie)||11th||Not yet eligible||Not yet eligible|
|Dan||Quisenberry||Not in Top 50||Not in Top 50||Not in Top 50||38th (Tie)|
|Willie||Randolph||45th (Tie)||45th||Not in Top 50||Not in Top 50|
|Rick||Reuschel||Not in Top 50||47th (Tie)||Not in Top 50||Not in Top 50|
|Pete||Rose||13th||6th (Tie)||6th (Tie)||10th|
|Bret||Saberhagen||50th||40th||Not in Top 50||Not in Top 50|
|Ron||Santo||In Hall of Fame||In Hall of Fame||6th (Tie)||2nd (Tie)|
|Curt||Schilling||16th||15th||Not yet eligible||Not yet eligible|
|Lee||Smith||45th (Tie)||Not in Top 50||Not in Top 50||36th (Tie)|
|Reggie||Smith||Not in Top 50||43rd||43rd (Tie)||Not in Top 50|
|Sammy||Sosa||22nd||21st (Tie)||Not yet eligible||Not yet eligible|
|Dave||Stieb||48th (Tie)||44th||Not in Top 50||Not in Top 50|
|Frank||Thomas||12th||Not yet eligible||Not yet eligible||Not yet eligible|
|Luis||Tiant||23rd||17th||19th (Tie)||17th (Tie)|
|Joe||Torre||34th||19th (Tie)||11th||20th (Tie)|
|Bernie||Williams||Not in Top 50||Not in Top 50||37th (Tie)||Not in Top 50|
|Jim||Wynn||Not in Top 50||47th (Tie)||37th (Tie)||44th (Tie)|
[To learn more about why rankings have fluctuated so much in the four years this project has run, please visit this post at Adam Darowski’s website, The Hall of Stats.]
1. Aaron Somers, 3rd year voter, director of recruiting at FanSided, senior editor at Call to the Pen
2. Aaron Whitehead, 2nd year voter
3. Adam Darowski, 3rd year voter, SABR member, chair of the SABR Nineteenth Century Overlooked Legends Committee, creator of the Hall of Stats
4. Adam Hardy
5. Adam Penale
6. Akil Lindsey
7. Alan Manship, 2nd year voter
8. Albert Lang, 2nd year voter, former SABR member, writes h2h Corner and The Fantasy Fix
9. Alex Putterman 3rd year voter, journalism student, assistant sports editor for the Daily Northwestern (Northwestern University)
10. Alfred Scott, 2nd year voter
11. “ali maship”
12. Alvy Singer, 2nd year voter
13. Andre Lower, 2nd year voter, SABR member, author of three books, including Auditioning for Cooperstown: Rating Baseball’s Stars for the Hall of Fame; writes Baseball By Positions .com
14. Andrew Ball, SABR member, writes for Beyond the Box Score and Fake Teams
15. Andrew Martin, 3rd year voter, writes Baseball Historian
16. Andrew Nadig
18. Bart Silberman, 3rd year voter, MLB licensee since 1996, specializing in Cooperstown Collection vintage design
19. Ben Henry, writes The Baseball Card Blog
20. Bill Bumgarner
21. Bill Rubinstein, 2nd year voter, SABR member
22. Bob Finn, 2nd year voter
23. Bob Rittner, 2nd year voter
24. Bob Sawyer, 3rd year voter, SABR member, co-founder of SABR’s Games and Simulations committee
25. Bob Sohm, 2nd year voter
26. Bobby Aguilera, 3rd year voter, writes Baseball Reality Tour
27. Brad Howerter
28. Brendan Bingham, 4th year voter, SABR member, contributor to this website, authored chapter for Bridging Two Dynasties: The 1947 New York Yankees
29. Brendon Salatino
31. Brian Gramman
32. Brian Metrick, 2nd year voter
33. Bryan O’Connor, 2nd year voter
34. Bryan Walker
35. Buddy Stricker
36. Carl Punty
37. Charles Beatley, 3rd year voter, wrote Andre Dawson for the Hall of Fame
38. Charles Reinhard
39. Chip Buck, 3rd year voter, contributes to Firebrand of the American League
40. Chris Bacon
41. Chris Fluit
42. Christian Ruzich, founder of The Cub Reporter
43. Christine Coleman, writes Aaron Miles Fastball
44. Christopher Kamka, SABR member, researcher and producer for Comcast SportsNet Chicago; contributed to a soon-to-be-published group book on Old Comiskey Park
45. Chuck Modehringer
46. Collin Whitchurch
47. Craig Cornell, 4th year voter
48. Dalton Mack, 2nd year voter, SABR member, writes for High Heat Stats
49. Dan Evans, 2nd year voter, SABR member, professional scout with Toronto Blue Jays, former general manager of the Los Angeles Dodgers
50. Dan McCloskey, 4th year voter, SABR member, writes Left Field, contributes to High Heat Stats
51. Dan O’Connor, 3rd year voter
52. Daniel Shoptaw, 2nd year voter, founder and president of Baseball Bloggers Alliance, writes C70 At The Bat
53. Danny Fain, “I believe I have the world’s largest Craig Biggio baseball card collection (over 4000 different with all the variations, misprints, errors, etc.)”
54. Dave Cohen
55. Dave England, 2nd year voter, SABR member, writes juniusworth.tumblr.com
56. David Klopfenstein, Japanese baseball enthusiast
57. David Lawrence Reed, SABR member, occasional contributor to John Thorn’s Our Game blog
58. David Lick, 2nd year voter, writes Not Mad Sports
59. Dean Godfrey
60. Dean Sullivan, 2nd year voter
62. Don Fairchild
63. Domenic Lanza, 2nd year voter
64. Doug Bisson
65. Drew Barr, 2nd year voter, voter for the Hall of Merit at BaseballThinkFactory.org
66. Drew Phillips
67. Ed White, 3rd year voter, former news reporter, sportswriter, editor, and TV news manager; currently self-employed as freelance writer and editor (recently edited two books); athletic scout for national collegiate athletic scouting association
68. Ed Woznicki
69. Eric Casey, executive producer for “the Art Of” local television show for Channel 15, Rochester, New York; 2004 Billboard World Song Contest Winner for music production with R&B singer Charley Janel
70. Eric Chalek, 2nd year voter, writes The Hall of Miller and Eric
71. Eugene Freedman, 3rd year voter, writes for Baseball Prospectus
73. Gabriel Egger, 2nd year voter
74. Gabriel Schechter, 3rd year voter, SABR member, author, researcher at the Hall of Fame library from 2002-2010; current freelance writer, researcher, and editor; writes Charles April.
75. Galen Andrews
76. Gary Bateman, 2nd year voter
77. Gary Passamonte
79. George Haloulakos, 2nd year voter, contributor to this website, financial book author, contributor to Galaxy Nostalgia Network
81. Graham Hudson
82. Gregg Weiss, 3rd year voter
84. Jacob Thompson, 2nd year voter
85. Jake Rashbaum, junior at the University of Toledo
86. James Newburg
87. James Nicolls
88. James Smyth, former minor league baseball play-by-play broadcaster, has a website
89. Jason Hunt, 4th year voter, writes Fake Teams
90. Jason Lukehart, 2nd year voter, managing editor of Let’s Go Tribe, also writes at Ground Ball With Eyes
91. Jeff Larick, 2nd year voter, past SABR member
92. Jena Yamada, 3rd year voter
93. Jenny Mirabella
94. Jesse Achtenberg
95. Jesse Collings, sports editor for The Beacon (Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts) newspaper
96. Jim Bernstein
97. Jim Gross
98. Joe Mello, 2nd year voter
99. Joe Serrato, 2nd year voter
100. Joe Williams, 4th year voter, SABR member, former chair of SABR’s 19th Century Overlooked Legends Project (and current member of committee), contributor toSeamheads.com and has attended the last 27 induction ceremonies at Cooperstown
101. Joel Hammerman, 2nd year voter
102. Joey Bartz, 2nd year voter, SABR member, former freelance sportswriter for the Mississippi Press, PhD candidate
104. John Hussey
105. John Quemere, 2nd year voter
106. John Robertson, 3rd year voter, SABR member, author
107. John Sharp, 3rd year voter, writes John’s Big League Baseball Blog
108. John Sours, 2nd year voter
109. John Swol, 2nd year voter, SABR member, writes Twins Trivia, authored a book of the same name
110. John Tuberty, 2nd year voter, writes Tubbs Baseball Blog
111. John Znamirowski
112. Jonathan Stilwell, 2nd year voter, SABR member
113. Jonathan Wagner, 3rd year voter
114. Joseph Jordan
116. Kazuto Yamazaki, 2nd year voter, writes for Paranoid Fan
117. Ken Poulin
118. Ken S
119. Kevin Johnson, 3rd year voter, SABR member, creator of Seamheads Ballparks Database; received SABR Baseball Research Award in 2012; appeared on Bob Costas special, “Behind the Seams: The Ballpark Factor”
120. Kevin Mattson, 2nd year voter
121. Kevin Porter, 3rd year voter
122. Kristopher Kennedy
123. Larry Cookson, 2nd year voter
124. Lawrence Azrin, 2nd year voter, former SABR member, writes at High Heat Stats; seventh-most comments all-time on HHS and proud of it
125. Lee Domingue, 3rd year voter
126. Loren Flynn
127. Louis Smith, 3rd year voter
129. Mark DeLodovico, SABR member
130. Mark Hausherr
131. Mark Taylor, writes Mark My Words
132. Matthew Aschaffenburg, 3rd year voter
133. Matthew Cornwell
134. Mauricio Rubio of Baseball Prospectus and Cubs Den
135. Michael Clair, 3rd year voter, SABR member, doing an upcoming charity blogathon for Doctors Without Borders (DONATE)
136. Michael Cook, 3rd year voter, past SABR intern, wrote at Pinstripe Alley
137. Michael Martin, 3rd year voter
138. Michael S
139. Michael Terilli, 2nd year voter
140. Michael Thomas
141. Mike Gross
142. Mike Huey
143. Mike Lackey
144. Mike Livingston, SABR member, publishes annual magazine for local Strat-O-Matic league
145. Mike Lortz, Tampa-based baseball writer, contributor to The Bus Leagues Experience Vol I, II, III
146. Mike S
147. Mike Schneider
148. Mike Walczak, 2nd year voter, “My kids call me the ‘Rain Man’ of baseball stats”
149. Mike Warwick
150. Mitch Lutzke, SABR member, author of The Life and Times of Kimber M. Snyder, A Soldier in the 78th Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry; working on a history book of Williamston, Michigan, which will feature at least one chapter on baseball in 1895
151. Myles McDonnell
152. Nate Horwitz, 2nd year voter
154. Nick Diunte, 2nd year voter, SABR member
155. Pat Corless, 2nd year voter
156. Patrick, active member of Royals Review and other sites
157. Patrick Mackin, 3rd year voter
158. Paul Lanning, 2nd year voter
159. Paul Perilli, freelance writer, last won a home run derby contest at age 10
160. Paul Martin
161. Paul McCord, 2nd year voter
162. Pete Livengood, 2nd year voter
163. Peter Nash, 2nd year voter, author, writes HaulsofShame.com; wrote, produced and co-directed the Emmy-nominated documentary, Rooters: Birth of Red Sox Nation; former member of the Def Jam rap group 3rd Bass (here’s a fun Deadspin post about it)
164. Phil Dellio, 2nd year voter, has his own website
165. Ralph Peluso, SABR member, Yahoo News contributor, writing a fictional book on baseball
166. Ray Anselmo
167. Ricardo Lugo
168. Rich Dubroff, Orioles Insider, CSNBaltimore.com
169. Rich Lipinski, 2nd year voter
170. Rich Moser, SABR member, writing a book on the Hall of Fame
171. Richard Solensky
172. Robert Ewing, 2nd year voter
173. Robert Ulmschneider
174. Ross Carey, 2nd year voter, SABR member, hosts Replacement Level Podcast
175. Ruben Lipszyc, 2nd year voter, contributor to the Canadian Baseball Network
177. Ryan Jameson
178. Ryan McCrystal, 3rd year voter, writes for It’s Pronounced Lajaway
179. Ryan Redimarker
180. Scott Lindholm, web columnist for 670 The Score in Chicago, writes at Beyond the Box Score
181. Sam Atwood
182. Scott Candage
183. Scott Crawford, writes Scott Crawford on Cards
184. Scott Jackson
185. Scott Stewart
186. Scott Taylor
187. Shawn Anderson, writes The Hall of Very Good
188. Shawn Weaver, 2nd year voter, has written Cincinnati Reds Blog since 2002
189. Stefano Micolitti, 2nd year voter
190. Steve Holtje
191. Steven Nichols
192. Steven Sheehan, 2nd year voter
194. Swifty Washington
195. Ted Mulvey, 2nd year voter
196. Theo Gerome, 2nd year voter
198. Tim Deale, SABR member, writing nonfiction baseball book
199. Tom Crittenden, 2nd year voter
200. Tom Thrash, 3rd year voter, has seen games at 43 MLB ballparks
201. Tom Thress, SABR member, creator Baseball Player Won-Loss Records
202. Tom Tunison, working on a non-fiction baseball book
203. Triston Aprill, 2nd year voter
204. Victor Dadras, 4th year voter, SABR member
205. Vincent Sparagano
206. Vinnie, 4th year voter
207. William Schuth, SABR member, writes Walking Point
208. Wayne Horiuchi, 4th year voter, avid sports card collector who has one of the most extensive game-used/autograph Hall of Fame collections in America
UPDATE, JANUARY 4, 2016: I DID A NEW VERSION OF THIS PROJECT FOR SPORTING NEWS.