So when I saw that fellow blogger (yes, I hate that word...but we are what we are) Jake Rake mentioned The Hall in his latest post I had to check it out.
Let me start by saying once again...I am a HUGE supporter of Harold Baines being enshrined in Cooperstown. I've made my case and can't figure out how the BBWAA can't seem to give him more than 5.9% of the vote.
After three years on the ballot and considering Edgar Martinez will get all the DH-friendly votes, I'm wagering 2010 will be the last for him.
Nearly identical? Not hardly.
Here's another "fun fact" for ya, outside of Molitor, there have only been three players selected in the top ten of their respective draft classes that have been enshrined...Reggie Jackson (drafted second overall in 1966), Robin Yount and Dave Winfield (selected with the third and fourth picks in the 1973).
And while we're talking "fun facts", also selected in that same draft...Hall of Famer Ozzie Smith (more on him later), two-time World Champion manager Terry Francona, could-be Hall of Famer (depending on who you ask) Tim Raines and former NBA Executive of the Year Danny Ainge.
Add to that Winfield's twelve straight All-Star Games and seven Gold Gloves and I think you know why he garnered close to 85% of the vote in 2001.
Ernie Banks: The first half of his career was epic, with a line of .290/.353/.552 as a shortstop in a low-offense era; however, after becoming a full-time first baseman in 1961, he managed to hit just .260/.310/.454, making him a league-average bat at what is supposed to be a high-offense position for more than half of his career.
Oh no...more OPS+ arguments! C'mon...all three of these guys were middle infielders, not known for their stick AND voted in thanks to the Veterans Committee. Yes, the same Veterans Committee that can't seem to get their act together when considering the resumes of Luis Tiant, Jim Kaat and Dick Allen.
Bruce Sutter: Being an elite closer isn’t enough if you only play for 12 seasons. Off the top of my head, the only relievers I’m taking are Mariano Rivera, Goose Gossage, Trevor Hoffman, and Dennis Eckersley.
I can (and have) made comments against the inclusion of Bruce Sutter. Honestly, I'd put in Dan Quisenberry before Sutter...and I'm not even sure I could do that without being high on NyQuil. That being said, how could anyone conveniently leave Rollie Fingers and Lee Smith out of their closers equation?
Rivera, Goose, Hoffman and Eck...wow. The standards are pretty tough for Jake's Hall of Fame I guess. Given he's only got four relievers (only two are Hall-worthy) in his Hall and players like Winfield, Banks, Molitor and Pete Rose (read this gem) paying for their admission like normal folks...I have to wonder who DOES smell like a Hall of Famer to this guy?