January 5, 2011

Looking Ahead to the Class of 2012

Every few years, the Hall of Fame takes a breather so guys like Bruce Sutter (2006) and Goose Gossage (2008), Jim Rice (2009) and Andre Dawson (2010) can take their place among the immortals.

Now, after 14 years on the ballot, Bert Blyleven has successfully joined that list.

A year from now, we're going to be faced with a ballot that is void of any first ballot candidates.  So, after getting 62.1% of the vote this year, Barry Larkin...start preparing your speech for 2012! 

Here are the rest of the cats that make up the 2012 first ballot...it'll be interesting to see who (if any) stick around for 2013.

IN.

None.

OUT (in random order).


Javy Lopez.
A while back I would’ve made the argument that Lopez was on his way to something. Then, well…I am not sure what happened to the guy. He ended his career with a respectable .287 batting average and 260 home runs.




Ruben Sierra.
20 years ago, Sierra was, along with Jose Canseco, Mark McGwire and Pete Incaviglia, THE future of baseball and you would have been hard pressed to find anyone to agree with you. Now, after 306 home runs and 1322 RBI…he’s an interesting footnote to an era that has long since passed.

Vinny Castilla.
Was Castilla a very good third baseman or another one of those who was helped by the much ballyhooed Coors Effect? Both?!? Any way you slice it, his 320 home runs and near perfect hair doesn’t get him through the doors of Cooperstown without paying first.

1993 American League Rookie of the Year Tim Salmon, Brad Radke, Edgardo Alfonzo, Scott Erickson, Jeff Fassero, Joe Randa, Jeromy Burnitz, Eric Young, Brian Jordan, Bill Mueller, Matt Lawton, Jose Hernandez, Phil Nevin, Alex S. Gonzalez, Pedro Astacio, Carl "the Bible never says anything about dinosaurs" Everett, David Bell, Rick Helling, Jose Vizcaino, Terry Mulholland, Jeff Nelson, Danny Graves and Dustin Hermanson.

ON THE BUBBLE.

Bernie Williams.

So, I’ll be honest…I throw Bernie on this list to please some of the Yankees fans that I know bump around the HOVG. Here’s the thing with Williams…if it’s not likely that the Yankees will retire his number, it isn’t likely the Hall will welcome him. Sure, his .297 career batting average (eight straight seasons of .300 or more), 2336 hits and 22 post season home runs are things of recent Yankee legend…they are nothing but a blip on the radar of what gets mentioned alongside the names of those in Cooperstown.


1 comment:

YankeeDougie86 said...

As a Yankee fan, I appreciate the Bernie mention but I do believe he deserves some fair debate anyway. Also, where do hear the Yanks won't retire Williams #51? He still hasn't officially retired, and I fully believe the process will begin when his baseball career officially ends.