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July 23, 2010

The Hall of Fame Class of 2015 (so far)

Looking ahead to the Hall of Fame Class of 2015 is tricky...and the reasons are simple.

There are some guys who are definitely retired like Randy Johnson and Nomar Garciaparra. There are guys like John Smoltz who don't look to be coming back. And, of course, there are those who seem to be up in the air as to whether or not they want to play or not a la Pedro Martinez.

Add to that those pesky few who are out there and just not signed (Carlos Delgado and Gary Sheffield)...and 2015 looks murky at best.


Randy Johnson.
With the uncertainties out there of who is officially retired and who isn't..."The Big Unit" announced he was done following last year. With five Cy Young Awards, a no-hitter and a perfect game...Johnson is pretty much as safe a lock to end up in Cooperstown as anyone who ever toed the rubber. Add in 303 wins, 4875 strikeouts, a World Series ring and ten All-Star appearances and'll be interesting to see what knuckleheads don't believe he is worthy of going in on the first ballot.

Pedro Martinez.
Martinez recently announced that he won't be playing at all this season. Of course, he didn't rule out 2011. Memo to Pedro...pack up your .687 winning percentage, sub-3.00 ERA, three Cy Young Awards and status as a Boston legend and reserve a hotel in Cooperstown for July 2015. There is nothing more for Martinez to prove and at this point...all he can do is ruin his reputation.

John Smoltz is a tricky one. At first glance, he doesn't look like he has the numbers to make it to the Hall of Fame. That said, when you look deeper...he's a pretty special player. In 2002 he became only the second pitcher (Hall of Famer Dennis Eckersley is the other) to have had both a 20-win season and a 50-save season. The 1996 National League Cy Young award winner is also the only pitcher in major league history to top both 200 wins and 150 saves. Oh yeah, he also is just the 16th pitcher to surpass 3000 Ks for his career.

It is amazing to me how polarizing Gary Sheffield is. Me? I love the dude...and what's not to like? A career .292 batting average, 509 home runs and close to 2700 hits...the man is a hitting machine and performed at just about every stop during his 22-year career.

OUT (in random order).

Nomar Garciaparra.
Alright, reality check time. One of my favorite players of all-time is Nomar Garciaparra, so would think that I would automatically pencil him in for a 2015 enshrinement. Unfortunately, his career numbers just aren't good enough. He started his career alongside Alex Rodriguez and Derek Jeter and, arguably, overshadowed them at first. However, injuries plagued the Whittier, California native, whereas the other two are legends.

Troy Percival.
It's pretty safe to say that I have a soft spot for closers. Just days ago, I said that John Franco is a Hall of Famer and took massive heat for it. For years, I've been trumpeting the efforts of Lee Smith. That said, I can't get behind Percival. His 358 saves (good for eighth all-time) is spectacular, but the dude never led the league and can't really hold a candle to some of his contemporaries.

2005 American League Cy Young Bartolo Colon, Brian Giles, Eddie Guardado, Paul Byrd, Tom Gordon, Jason Schmidt, Darin Erstad, David Weathers, Rich Aurilia, Russ Ortiz, Mark Loretta, Tony Clark, Cliff Floyd and Julian Tavarez.


Carlos Delgado.
There are plenty of rumors out there surrounding Carlos Delgado. Ask him and he'll tell you that he is coming back. Check out his Wikipedia page and he's already been signed by the New York Yankees. Ask me and I will tell you that if he hangs it up now, he's on the bubble when it comes to the Hall of Fame. Sitting 27 home runs shy of 500 for his career, Delgado is not that far from becoming the first player enshrined as a Blue Jay.
There are some more players that haven't played this season that I could have included (Joe Nathan, Jason Isringhausen, Jermaine Dye, Alan Embree and Ron Villone) but as of now...their careers don't appear to be over.

So there you have it...your breakdown of the Hall of Fame Class of 2015 (so far). Be sure to check out this week's re-hashes.

Monday: 2011
Tuesday: 2012
Wednesday: 2013
Thursday: 2014

BallHype: hype it up!


Rusty r. Shackleford said...

What's not to like about sheffield? How about the fact that he cheated? Funny how he seems to get a free pass on the whole balco thing.

Anonymous said...

Well, there is no other evidence that Sheffield has cheated, but the rare and weird mitchell report, which has named tons of major players, not only Sheffield, so what? Is that a clear evidence? Well, let me tell you that players like A-fraud, Manny Ramirez, Andy Pettite have also cheated as well, and take into consideration that Jeter almost at his 40 years of age, had one of his best seasons ever, mmmmmm.....that will give you something to think about