Tuesday, December 23, 2014

My 2015 HOF Ballot

Pedro should be assured of first ballot entry to Cooperstown (FoxSports)
With BBWAA Hall of Fame ballots due on Saturday, here's mine (which, sadly, won't be counted). Because voters may not vote for more than 10 candidates, I was forced to leave off many players whom I believe are Hall of Famers. Accordingly, these are the 10 most deserving candidates in my opinion (ranked from best to worst)

1. Barry Bonds
The best hitter since Ted Williams is also probably the best position player ever, or comes a close second to Babe Ruth.

2. Roger Clemens
If not the best pitcher ever, than the best pitcher of the live ball era for sure.

3. Randy Johnson
Best lefthanded pitcher ever.

4. Pedro Martinez
As dominant as Sandy Koufax and surrounded his peak with better seasons.

5. Craig Biggio
Should have been inducted each of the past two years. I say the third time's a charm for Biggio, one of the 28 members of baseball's exclusive 3,000 hit club.

6. Jeff Bagwell
The best all-around first baseman in the second half of the 20th century, he was the 1990s version of Albert Pujols.

7. Mike Piazza
The best-hitting catcher of all time.

8. Curt Schilling
Arguably the best postseason pitcher ever and has the best K/BB ratio of all-time (ignoring pre-1900 players).

9. Mike Mussina
Basically had the same career as Tom Glavine, who sailed into the hall on his first try last year.

10. John Smoltz
Won a Cy Young and made six All-Star teams as a starter, sandwiched around three dominant seasons as a closer. Like Schilling, was money in the postseason.

I feel the following are also Hall of Fame-worthy, just not as much as the 10 players on my hypothetical ballot. In fact, I could fill another whole ballot with the "rejects" (again ranked from best to worst).

1. Tim Raines
Best percentage basestealer of all-time, only player with more than 800 steals not in the Hall, best leadoff man not nam

2. Mark McGwire
Best HR/AB ratio in history, four 50-homer seasons including two with at least 65, and 583 career home runs.

3. Sammy Sosa
609 big flies, four 50-homer seasons including three with over 60 (a record).

4. Larry Walker
Three-time batting champion hit .313/.400/.565 with 383 home runs, 230 steals, and seven Gold Gloves. And he wasn't just a product of Coors Field, either.

5. Gary Sheffield
Poor man's Manny Ramirez slugged 509 home runs, stole 253 bases, and batted .292/.393/.514 (140 OPS+).

6. Edgar Martinez
DH or not, you can't deny that .312/.418/.515 (147 OPS+) batting line.

7. Alan Trammell
Basically Barry Larkin.

8. Jeff Kent
Best hitting second baseman since Rogers Hornsby and Charlie Gehringer.

9. Fred McGriff
As many home runs as Lou Gehrig and one of only 10 players with a career .886 OPS or better in at least 10,000 plate appearances.

10. Carlos Delgado
One of only six players with 10 consecutive 30-homer seasons. Had 457 home runs and 1,454 RBI in a 13-year period (1996-2008), averaging 35 and 112 per season while batting .282/.386/.552 (140 OPS+). Feels like a modern day Dick Allen or Gil Hodges to me, both of whom are Hall-worthy in my eyes.

Once again, it looks like the voters have their work cut out for them.


  1. Why not put everyone in?

  2. I'm going with Biggio, Johnson, and Pedro. The rest are meh. Piazza will take another couple years, but after that nobody screams Hall of Fame. Hall of Awesome and Hall of damn good but not Fame.

    1. Biggio stuck around in the league way too long just to collect 3000 hits. The bar needs to be raised. When Larkin gets in, just maybe Biggio deserves to be in.

    2. Not sure what you mean by this. Larkin was enshrined in 2012 on his third try. Biggio statistically dominates Larkin and should have been a first-ballot guy. He was underappreciated then and now.

  3. "8. Jeff Kent
    Best hitting second baseman since Rogers Hornsby and Charlie Gehringer."

    Joe Morgan says hi.