Hall of Fame wrap-up

Jeff idelson 2

Baseball Hall of Fame’s Jeff Idelson made the big announcement on the MLB Network.

All my close observation of Ryan Thibodaux’s Hall of Fame Tracker have gone for naught. With the MLB Network announcing the final vote, Edgar Martinez has missed election to the Hall of Fame again.  Am, I disappointed? Yes, but it could be so much worse.  Here’s the relevant vote by the numbers

Chipper Jones                            97.2%

Vladimir Guerrero                   92.9%

Jim Thome                                  89.8%

Trevor Hoffman                        79.9%

Edgar Martinez                         70.4%

I could belabor to death the injustice of this vote and how Edgar belongs in the Hall, but honestly 297 of 422 voters agree with me. I’m confident the 20 additional votes #11 needs for election will appear and Martinez will earn his plaque.

Reason for optimism

  1. Look where we’ve come from. This is Edgar’s vote percentages since 2014-2014 25.2%; 2015 27.0%; 2016 43.4%; 2017 58.6%; 2018 70.4%.  The arc of baseball justice has taken its sweet time, but the finish line is a mere 20 votes away. Edgar was 73 away last year.
  2. Tim Raines finished the voting with 69.2% of the vote in 2016.  He changed 37 minds and captured all 15 new voters in 2017 to enter the Hall with 88.2% of the vote. That was without curmudgeon Murray Chass.  Edgar owns Chass.
  3. With four more inductees, the ballot continues along the path since 2014 with a fair number of inductees that winnows down a crowded ballot.  Four for 2018, three in 2017, two in 2016 and four in 2015. With Mariano Rivera and a fairly modest supporting cast in 2019.  Edgar will be the strongest holdover and less likely claimed as the 11th best player on the ballot.  The time is right for a Mo and Edgar coronation in 365 days.
  4. The megaphone for Edgar’s election simply gets louder. Jay Jaffe of SI.com, Ryan Spaeder of Sportingnews.com, and Joe Posnanski of MLB.com all wrote compelling articles about Edgar’s candidacy and were joined by many others.  Most importantly, they were joined by distinguished writers Tracey Ringolsby and Murray Chass who cast their first votes for Edgar.

This year’s hall vote

  1. I really thought Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens would make significant gains in the vote.  I’ve become far more of fence-sitter on these two.  But the needle on their candidacy barely moved. Clemens went from 54.1% to 57.3%  Bonds climbed from 53.8% to 56.4%.  The battle-lines between the PED softies and hardliners remain very clearly drawn.
  2. In the too little too late department, Larry Walker was the biggest vote gainer after Vladimir Guerrero.  Unfortunately, as the Expos/Rockies outfield great enters his next to last year of eligibility, he’ll begin with only 34.1%.  Things also look bad for Fred McGriff, who is seriously under-appreciated.
  3. Omar Vizquel, in his first year of eligibility, garnered 37% of the vote and ranked number 10 among all candidates. Not bad for a defense-first guy.  It will be interesting to see what happens next year.
  4. Former Mariner Jamie Moyer attracted 10 votes, for 2.4% of the vote.  He’ll fall off the ballot this year, but it matched the votes for Johan Santana.  Jamie was always in it for the long game.

IBWAA Hall vote

The internet baseball writers went crazy in 2018.  Full disclosure:  I am a member.

IBWAA chose the following players for election to their Hall of Fame:

Chipper Jones

Jim Thome

Roger Clemons

Barry Bonds

Mike Mussina

Trevor Hoffman

First group to select known PED users to their Hall.  Huge class. Just to be clear, Edgar Martinez and Vladimir Guerrero are already in the IBWAA Hall of Fame and did not appear on this ballot.

With all this behind us, it’s time to get ready for some baseball. Go M’s. Edgar for Hall of Fame 2019.

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