2023 Hall of Fame ballot

Ale Xander

doesn't like to back it in
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Oct 31, 2013
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My gut says that McCormick was likely the greatest source of info for Shank and other Boston media members and this irrational hate of Manny stems from that.
 

John Marzano Olympic Hero

has fancy plans, and pants to match
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Apr 12, 2001
22,493
I'm not even sure why Hohler has a vote anymore. And I'm really surprised that Speier didn't vote for Manny. Especially since he voted for Sheffield AND Pettitte, I don't get the logic there.

Also doesn't Bob Ryan still have a vote? I know he's not technically a full-time Globey anymore, but he still has stuff in the Sunday edition.

Edit:
My gut says that McCormick was likely the greatest source of info for Shank and other Boston media members and this irrational hate of Manny stems from that.
I agree with this too. It happened 16 years ago, Manny apologized and there are still people (Shaughnessy) who act as if Manny pushed the Pope into on-coming traffic.
 

Yelling At Clouds

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Jul 19, 2005
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I'm not even sure why Hohler has a vote anymore. And I'm really surprised that Speier didn't vote for Manny. Especially since he voted for Sheffield AND Pettitte, I don't get the logic there.
Not going to speak for Speier, but I think some voters make a distinction between using PEDs before the formal policy of testing and suspensions was in place and after. Manny was suspended for PED use; the other two weren’t. If he voted for A-Rod but not Manny, that would’ve been inscrutable logic. Not saying I agree with it, just that it isn’t some unheard of position.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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My gut says that McCormick was likely the greatest source of info for Shank and other Boston media members and this irrational hate of Manny stems from that.
IIRC, Shank was pretty irrationally down on Manny long before the McCormick incident (which happened in his final season with the club).
 

Marciano490

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Are we dancing around this, or is Dan not a racist with a history of saying crappy things about black/Latin players?
 

John Marzano Olympic Hero

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Not going to speak for Speier, but I think some voters make a distinction between using PEDs before the formal policy of testing and suspensions was in place and after. Manny was suspended for PED use; the other two weren’t. If he voted for A-Rod but not Manny, that would’ve been inscrutable logic. Not saying I agree with it, just that it isn’t some unheard of position.
I guess. But Manny was suspended when he was on his back nine. Which is a lame excuse but, the dude was the best RHH I ever saw and I can’t believe he’s getting blackballed because of something that happened when he was with the Rays.

Are we dancing around this, or is Dan not a racist with a history of saying crappy things about black/Latin players?
I am not going to die on this hill because Shaughnessy has said a lot of shitty things about PoC. But he’s said a lot of shitty things about white people too. He’s a crotchety old shithead who wishes it was perpetually 1966.

But I’m not a PoC and if someone feels differently I’m not going to argue. The reason why he sucks so much is because he could have been an all-time great but he’s got really lazy and was so busy at yelling at clouds that he wasted his potential. And part of that was the utter contempt he had for anyone he covered born post 1970.
 

brandonchristensen

Loves Aaron Judge
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The hall of fame is so stupid now. Manny 100% should be in. A-Rod too.

This finger wagging thing is ridiculous and ruining the Hall’s importance to the newer history of baseball.
 

EvilEmpire

paying for his sins
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I think PEDs, violence in the clubhouse against an old guy, and hitting his wife are all collectively a good reason to keep Manny out of the Hall.

Not sure it is just the PEDs thing.
 

AB in DC

OG Football Writing
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Not going to speak for Speier, but I think some voters make a distinction between using PEDs before the formal policy of testing and suspensions was in place and after. Manny was suspended for PED use; the other two weren’t. If he voted for A-Rod but not Manny, that would’ve been inscrutable logic. Not saying I agree with it, just that it isn’t some unheard of position.
And yet Speier (plus Abraham) still votes for Beltran, who's also a known cheater.
 

Comfortably Lomb

Koko the Monkey
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It's stupid that Clemens, Bonds, Arod, Manny, Sheffield, Wagner, etc. aren't in the Hall of Fame. I don't even understand the point of this exercise anymore. Tourism, I guess, for the middle of nowhere in New York. It's certainly not about awesome baseball players.
 

brandonchristensen

Loves Aaron Judge
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Feb 4, 2012
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It's stupid that Clemens, Bonds, Arod, Manny, Sheffield, Wagner, etc. aren't in the Hall of Fame. I don't even understand the point of this exercise anymore. Tourism, I guess, for the middle of nowhere in New York. It's certainly not about awesome baseball players.
It’s a morality parade for the writers.
 

Eric1984

my real name is Ben
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Jun 14, 2001
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Just saw this. The "no doubt about it" top-tier players if they retired today all have WAR between 69 and 82. And they're all players who in a just world would be unanimous. So how the hell are Whitaker (75 WAR) and Grich (71 WAR) still on the outside and likely to be looking in forever? I know WAR is not the only measure of greatness (black ink, hardware, etc.) but that's what the article is focusing on and the list of WAR leaders tracks with the list of greatest players.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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Just saw this. The "no doubt about it" top-tier players if they retired today all have WAR between 69 and 82. And they're all players who in a just world would be unanimous. So how the hell are Whitaker (75 WAR) and Grich (71 WAR) still on the outside and likely to be looking in forever? I know WAR is not the only measure of greatness (black ink, hardware, etc.) but that's what the article is focusing on and the list of WAR leaders tracks with the list of greatest players.
I think a lot of it is how we evaluate players has changed a lot in the past few decades. A guy like Grich only hit .266 in his career with not a ton of power, so his great D and OBP was kind of overlooked - after all, a baseball card or TV screen only had room for average, homers, and rbi back then.

Also seems like certain positions are criminally overlooked; too few 2b/3b for sure. That Trammell is in and Whitaker hasn’t come close is pretty baffling for sure.
 

InstaFace

The Ultimate One
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It’s a morality parade for the writers.
Many of whom benefitted from and quietly ignored or encouraged the era they are so thoroughly blackballing from the Hall.
An important observation, BC and LD. There's a good rant to be had about this.

The writers benefitted from the increased attention put on post-strike baseball, from the McGwire-Sosa HR chase of 1998 through till the backlash after 2004. Have they gone back and given a portion of their salaries from then to youth sports or pediatric medical research or something? Have they apologized for hyping it? Published a bunch of mea-culpa articles?the

The owners benefitted from the surging franchise values and revenues they got from that attention. The TV interest, the ballpark attendance. Are they upset by this? They ignored it for as long as they could, then took half-measures. Are they tossing millions towards medical research or care for the players damaged by the frenzy, the arms race? Paying penance in any way?

The players, especially the union, knew that more revenue = more payroll = more dollars for their FAs and thus union dues, too. Made on the backs of a couple of stars (and probably some not-stars we'll never hear about) destroying their bodies so they could play more consistently or play better. Are they going out of their way to take care of the players that steroids hurt rather than helped? Are they saying "we got something out of the whole thing too"?

The fans, too, all got something out of a more exciting, HR-driven game. Players are out there breaking bats over their heads when frustrated. League ERA went up to over 5 in 1999. Were we complaining? Are we apologetic? Are we going out of our way to show concern for the HS kids who might be tempted to use steroids as a result of the professional example?

The kids (and the pro users themselves) are only part of the concern, the other part was competitive integrity, the arms race relative to team performance. When Barry Bonds more or less singlehandedly won the 2002 NL pennant, who was robbed? Are they giving that title back? Penalizing Giambi's teams (and how did the 2003 Yankees do, anyway)? Retroactively awarding players batting titles and HR titles and re-voting the MVPs?

The answer to all of these, of course, is no. There is no collective feeling of guilt. There are no regrets worth mentioning, because if there were, we'd see the slightest shred of evidence about it. The only way the steroid era matters in the present day is the Hall of Fame voting for those who were a part of it. Whatever has happened to PEDs in the years since, whatever impact it has had on the players who felt obligated to take it to keep up with the joneses (and cansecos) or kids trying to make it in the game, nobody is spending any fan attention, media attention, ownership or league dollars. Not a dime.

No, the only place that it's worth addressing the matter, it seems, is in keeping the era's best players out of the Hall of Fame. The rest of us who encouraged (or were happy to have) the players taking drugs, or who benefitted from it financially, we're unscathed, we had no part in it, right? Bullshit. It's hypocrisy all the way down. That's what bothers me so most about the HOF sanctimony, and I appreciate you two putting a fine point on it here. An enjoyable, if flawed and even reckless, era of baseball happened. And those title flags fly forever, those businesses and owners made millions, and the only people paying the price are the greatest household-name players of the times, who simply want the honor their on-field accomplishments would normally yield. Some of them have to take fertility drugs as hormone replacement therapy now, or have shrunken balls, or roid-rage issues, or depression, shame and loneliness after being made a public spectacle and object of derision. But that's not enough! We demand more pounds of flesh! We must invalidate the worth of their on-field accomplishments, and the joy they brought their fans in the moment. All must be ground to dust, forever. There must never be any joy in mudville.

Fundamentally, I don't have any particular love for the players concerned, Manny aside. Clemens was before my time as a fan, A-Rod and Sheffield and Pettitte always enemies of my team. I won't shed any tears for Sammy Sosa maxing out at 18% BBWAA vote. I've visited the Hall once, and doubt I'll find myself back there. But for whatever reason, hypocrisy just grinds my gears. And the loudest, most entitled hypocritical whining has been coming from all these old-head baseball writers who steadfastly refuse to vote for anyone who even resembled a PED user. And yet they hearken back to the old days of 1970s baseball, when everyone involved was taking amphetamines so regularly that there were bowls of greenies just sitting out in the locker rooms. These guys suck, and we need to keep saying they suck at all opportunities, until maybe, beyond all hope, some of them find within themselves some shame.
 

Eric1984

my real name is Ben
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Jun 14, 2001
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I think a lot of it is how we evaluate players has changed a lot in the past few decades. A guy like Grich only hit .266 in his career with not a ton of power, so his great D and OBP was kind of overlooked - after all, a baseball card or TV screen only had room for average, homers, and rbi back then.

Also seems like certain positions are criminally overlooked; too few 2b/3b for sure. That Trammell is in and Whitaker hasn’t come close is pretty baffling for sure.
Trammell and Whitaker are my two favorite players of all time -- my childhood idols. I felt very vindicated when Trammell got in though it still drives me nuts that the writers never recognized him. But Whitaker is arguably more deserving. What seems to hold him back is he never had that one signature monster year like Trammell's 1987 (where he got screwed out of the MVP in favor of George Bell). And Trammell also had the World Series MVP award in 1984. Whitaker was consistently excellent -- arguably more consistently excellent than Trammell or Ryne Sandberg, for that matter, but the big season matters. Also, I hate to bring this up but it's an important part of the picture. Whitaker was very soft-spoken and religious and didn't speak much to the media. The Detroit baseball writers took his soft-spokenness as "aloofness" or "standoffishness." Meanwhile, his incredible fundamental gifts made what he was doing look easy, but the assholes in the Detroit media like our own version of Shank, Joe Falls, always described him as "nonchalant" and suggested he was loafing. These perceptions from the hometown jackasses had to have spread to their cronies i the press box from other markets. There was more than a little bit of low-key racism in how the Detroit press covered Whitaker versus Trammell (not to take anything at all away from Trammell -- that wasn't his fault). And the Tigers organization never promoted their black stars like Whitaker and Lemon the way they promoted guys like Trammell, Gibson and Parrish. I have to think this has more than a little to do with it. Still, it doesn't explain his treatment by the veteran's committee. Those guys played with him and knew what he could do.
 
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Heating up in the bullpen

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Jay Jaffe over at FanGraphs has posted a retrospective on HOF candidate and former Red Sox Bronson Arroyo. I always liked his style. I love this quote that Jaffe pulls up from 2013:
"A willingness to improvise helped. “Maybe I’ve never thrown a fricking sidearm changeup, but you know what, I can’t get this m———– out, so I’m going to throw him a sidearm changeup and get him out,” Arroyo told Sports Illustrated’s Ben Reiter in 2013. “To be honest with you, there ain’t many people who have ever played this game who are going to keep up with me mentally, picking hitters apart with the s— that I have.”
He probably won't get any votes, but he had a solid career. I'd love to have a couple of beers with him and talk baseball.
https://blogs.fangraphs.com/jaws-and-the-2023-hall-of-fame-ballot-bronson-arroyo/
 

Sad Sam Jones

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I went to school in a little D3 college town, pop. under 15,000. They have a small concert venue that every once in a while gets an Americana band I like, but is mostly either acts I haven't heard about in 25 years or haven't heard of at all. It took me by surprise when I saw an announcement that Arroyo is playing there next month. I knew he had a music career, but I hadn't heard about that in years either. I'm not familiar with his music nor care to be, but I thought it was funny he uses a photo of him pitching on his promo posters.
 

InstaFace

The Ultimate One
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Sep 27, 2016
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So the announcement is tomorrow. Looking at the Tracker, with 46% of the ballots in, Helton (79.6%) and Rolen (79.0%) are above the election line, needing ~71% of other ballots to get elected. The 2022 public-private differential for each of them was -13.4% and -35.5% (!) respectively. So Helton has a prayer this year, but Rolen will almost certainly have to wait till next year. That's while noting that 46% is maybe a little low as a fraction of total pre-announcement ballots (a bunch of voters, like 25% or so, reveal their ballots post-announcement). The last 3 years, by comparison, had pre-announcement rates of 50%, 47% and 54% respectively.

The only 2 contenders to do better on private ballots than public last year were Vizquel (+19.5%, finished at 23.9%), and A-Rod (+10.1%, finished at 34.3%). But perhaps with a higher fraction of private ballots

Jeff Kent (50.8%) appears to be toast on his final ballot. Of the ballot rookies, Carlos Beltran at 55% is the only strong new entrant, and K-Rod at 8.8% might be the only other debutant to even make it to a 2nd ballot.

172 public ballots + 9 anonymous (45.7%)

Helton (5th) 79.6%
Rolen (6th) 79.0%
Wagner (8th) 73.5%
A. Jones (6th) 68.0%
Sheffield (9th) 63.0%
Beltran (1st) 55.2%
Kent (10th) 50.8%
A-Rod (2nd) 39.8%
Manny (7th) 37.0%
Abreu (4th) 18.8%
Pettitte (5th) 17.1%

Votes per pre-announcement ballot (total ballots cast, in parens):

2023: 6.29 (396 est.)
2022: 7.73 (394)
2021: 6.49 (401)
2020: 7.33 (397)
2019: 8.63 (425)
2018: 8.84 (422)
2017: 8.54 (442)
2016: 8.30 (440)
2015: 8.91 (549)
2014: 8.61 (571)

So after the big old-head purge of 2015-2016 voters, people got the message and elected a steady series of players from 2016-2019: 2, 3, 4 and 4. That cleared the "logjam" we had. But then total votes fell off the table, more than a full vote per ballot, and they elected 2, 0, and 1 the last 3 years. And this year, given those pre-announcement average-vote numbers, I think we're pretty clearly headed for another 0-inductee year. I expect both Helton and Rolen to fall short.
 

The_Powa_of_Seiji_Ozawa

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Jay Jaffe over at FanGraphs has posted a retrospective on HOF candidate and former Red Sox Bronson Arroyo. I always liked his style. I love this quote that Jaffe pulls up from 2013:
"A willingness to improvise helped. “Maybe I’ve never thrown a fricking sidearm changeup, but you know what, I can’t get this m———– out, so I’m going to throw him a sidearm changeup and get him out,” Arroyo told Sports Illustrated’s Ben Reiter in 2013. “To be honest with you, there ain’t many people who have ever played this game who are going to keep up with me mentally, picking hitters apart with the s— that I have.”
He probably won't get any votes, but he had a solid career. I'd love to have a couple of beers with him and talk baseball.
https://blogs.fangraphs.com/jaws-and-the-2023-hall-of-fame-ballot-bronson-arroyo/
Brandon Arroyo is one of my all time favorite Sox players.
 

E5 Yaz

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Does Wagner have a history of gaining in the private ballots?
 

Yaz4Ever

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It's stupid that Clemens, Bonds, Arod, Manny, Sheffield, Wagner, etc. aren't in the Hall of Fame. I don't even understand the point of this exercise anymore. Tourism, I guess, for the middle of nowhere in New York. It's certainly not about awesome baseball players.
It’s a morality parade for the writers.
and Charlie Hustle.

As much as I dislike Bonds and ARod, they're no doubt Hall of Famers. Bonds, especially. He was a first-ballot guy before he ever started, allegedly, juicing.
 

InstaFace

The Ultimate One
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Does Wagner have a history of gaining in the private ballots?
Pretty close to even, actually. But there's been a difference between pre-announcement and post-announcement #s; he's gotten a bump from the latter, before taking a hit on the private (never-revealed) ballots.

Listing the years as Pre-Announcement Revealed %, Post-Announcement Revealed %, and Private (never revealed) % -> Final %

2022: 51.7%, 56.9%, 39.7% -> 51.0%
2021: 47.3%, 46.1%, 44.1% -> 46.4%
2020: 35.5%, 28.9%, 23.8% -> 31.7%
2019: 17.2%, 19.2%, 10.3% -> 16.7%

That's a lot less of a hit than most of the others.
 

jon abbey

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Yeah, looks like someone jumped to change it, official announcement coming soon.
 

BaseballJones

ivanvamp
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Oct 1, 2015
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What do you all think of Pettitte as a HOFer?

The case for:
- 256 wins, which is an awful lot
- almost always a good pitcher
- five times top 6 in CYA voting
- 3x all-star
- 5x WS champ
- career postseason numbers: 19-11 (19 wins is a TON), 3.81 era

The case against:
- never was considered the best pitcher in the league
- overall numbers are good, but not great
- mostly a compiler, so his main attribute was good health

I don't personally think he belongs in the HOF.
 

JM3

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Dec 14, 2019
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What do you all think of Pettitte as a HOFer?

The case for:
- 256 wins, which is an awful lot
- almost always a good pitcher
- five times top 6 in CYA voting
- 3x all-star
- 5x WS champ
- career postseason numbers: 19-11 (19 wins is a TON), 3.81 era

The case against:
- never was considered the best pitcher in the league
- overall numbers are good, but not great
- mostly a compiler, so his main attribute was good health

I don't personally think he belongs in the HOF.
If he didn't have the steroid stuff I'd say probably, as is I'd say naw (based on precedent, not my personal opinion on whether players from that era should be in the HOF).
 

LogansDad

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I absolutely love that Bronson Arroyo got a vote. If I had a ballot he would have 100% been on it. One of the most entertaining people I have ever watched play the game.
 

worm0082

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I’m really surprised how low Vizquel is doing. Almost 3000 games played and almost 3000 hits. 24 years I know he’s a compiler, and he’s had some off field issues since he retired, but he should be in.
 

jsinger121

@jsinger121
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Jul 25, 2005
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I’m really surprised how low Vizquel is doing. Almost 3000 games played and 3000 hits. 24 years I know he’s a compiler, and he’s had some off field issues since he retired, but he should be in.
2877 hits isn’t 3000.
 

Ale Xander

doesn't like to back it in
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Jeff Kent getting more votes than Arod, and Sheffield getting more votes than Manny, is preposterous.
 

CarolinaBeerGuy

Don't know him from Adam
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I’m good with Rolen getting in. Excellent defender and a solid hitter with good power. It’s a shame he was often injured because his counting stats would have left little doubt about his Hall credentials.
 

CaptainLaddie

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I'm totally fine with Rolen being in.

The bigger question is: what hat does he wear?

Philly: 844 games, 282/373/504 OPS+ of 126. 150 homers. ROY, 3.5 Gold Gloves, 1 ASG appearance
St Louis: 661 games, 286/370/510 OPS+ of 127, 111 HR, 4th in MVP, 3.5 Gold Gloves, 4 ASG appearances

His best year came in STL in 2004. Without an injury marred 2005, his counting stats are closer.

It's *probably* Philly. But I could see it being STL.
 

simplicio

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Whoever voted for Napoli is a hero. They're deeply wrong of course, but they're still a hero.
 

Sad Sam Jones

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Omar's early support wasn't overwhelming, but he was on a steady incline that had nearly always ultimately resulted in getting elected, but the clubhouse behavior that came to light was pretty reprehensible and completely destroyed his Hall of Fame support. He was a favorite of mine for a long time — I still have his jersey in the back of a closet — but I'm fine with him not getting in anymore. Granted, it's been a couple of decades since I could get worked up over Hall of Fame voting.
 

Philip Jeff Frye

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I’m good with Rolen getting in. Excellent defender and a solid hitter with good power. It’s a shame he was often injured because his counting stats would have left little doubt about his Hall credentials.
He seems to be to be Nomar with the back half of a career. Same age, both came up in 1996. Both were boy wonders who were going to be saviors to long suffering fan bases, but neither ever managed to deliver that despite great personal performances. Nomar got hurt, then moved to Chicago and did very little in his remaining, injury prone years. Rolen moved on to St. Louis and then Toronto and Cincinnati, won a World Series, won more Gold Gloves and was productive player until he was 35, although injuries reduced his playing time, if not his performance, a bit. If Nomar had done something similar after age 30, he'd probably be getting in too.
 

MyDaughterLovesTomGordon

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How common is it for a Hall of Famer not to have led the league in basically any statistical category (he was first in, like, assists by a 3rd basemen a couple times)?
 

E5 Yaz

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It's a good thing for Rolen that he got in this year, because next year his numbers would pale in comparison to another third baseman who'll be on the ballot for the first time
 

Yelling At Clouds

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It's a good thing for Rolen that he got in this year, because next year his numbers would pale in comparison to another third baseman who'll be on the ballot for the first time
Yeah, there’s a chance of a pretty big class next year, relatively speaking. Beltre is first ballot, Mauer has a shot at first ballot, Helton is on the doorstep, Wagner could make it. (There was also some talk that voters were punishing Beltran by denying him “first-ballot” status and will vote for him in the future, but I’m not sure that big of a leap is plausible.)

Also, I’m on record as saying that I think A-Rod will eventually make it in, and that prediction is not looking too good right now!
 

Marciano490

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What’s the argument for Sheffield over Arod or Manny? Was he a great defender, because he was a lesser hitter and at least equally roided up.