The National Baseball Hall of Fame will welcome a few more members into its ranks today. With the announcement set for a few hours from now, here is my analysis of this year’s crop of candidates.
With half of the ballots being made public at this point, Rivera is still at 100% of the ballot, giving him a chance to become the first unanimous selection in MLB history. But MLB writers are notoriously fickle and I’m sure there’ll be somebody who decides to be “that guy” by withholding their vote from Rivera for some reason. But he’s a slam dunk to gain entry in his first year of eligibility.
And it looks like Edgar Martinez will also get the call in his 10th and final year of eligibility. As the voting electorate gets younger, it also becomes less traditional and more open to sabermetrics. Whereas the “old guard” seemed determined to bar the door to Martinez — who spent the bulk of his career at DH. But the DH is here to stay and it’s time for Martinez to be enshrined. Heck, if Harold Baines is a Hall of Famer, then Edgar Martinez is — and then some.
If I had a HOF vote, I’d vote for Mike Mussina. I don’t know if he gets in this year, but I think he should. The arguments have been made before: spent his entire career in the church softball league that is (was) the American League East, yet he was an upper echelon pitcher throughout. And with the Hall of Fame’s new floor — meaning, now that Jack Morris is a Hall of Famer — it’ll be inexcusable for Mussina not to get in.
I’m more torn on Roy Halladay than most voters seem to be. I never thought of him as a Hall of Famer and after looking at the numbers, I’m not overwhelmed. Check out Tim Hudson’s career numbers for a comparison. I never thought Hudson was Hall-worthy either, although both were very good pitchers at their peak. And if you vote for Halladay, why aren’t you voting for Andy Pettitte? This could get messy.
The Separate Category Guys
Bonds. Clemens. Manny Ramirez. Gary Sheffield. I don’t think any of these guys get in on this ballot, but it’ll happen soon. Once Clemens and Bonds go in, there is no argument for excluding Manny, Sheffield…even Sammy Sosa if he is still eligible by then.
Today’s announcement is sure to spark much debate and discussion. Can’t wait to see who gets the call.