(If I Only Had A) 2008 Hall of Fame Ballot

I like to write about baseball. A lot of us web geeks are baseball geeks, y’know. Last year, I wrote a post about what my Hall of Fame ballot would look like—if I had one. I decided to follow that up since baseball history and the Baseball Hall of Fame are a couple things I’m quite passionate about.

This year’s ballot is seen as a weaker one (no Ripken/Gwynn slam dunks this time around) that will give some holdovers a chance of getting in. Before getting into those holdovers, I want to cover the players on the ballot for the first time. I’ll start with the players who do not get my “vote” first.

New Candidates: The “No” List

New Candidates: The Lone “Yes”

Here is where some may disagree with me. I believe the Hall shouldn’t be as hard to get into as some. Why? Well, it hasn’t been in the past. We have a lot of players in there that have already lessened the honor of getting in. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a huge honor. But I don’t think it should just be Babe Ruth and Ted Williams in there. I believe the Hall should welcome guys like Jim Kaat (283 wins and 16 Gold Gloves) and Bill Freehan (11-time All Star, 5 Gold Golves, excellent hitting catcher).

So, since the list is longer, I give you my “Yes votes” for returning candidates first:

Returning Candidates: The “Yes” List

Returning Candidates: The “No” List

So, there it is—my Hall of Fame ballot. If you’re going to make me rank the my choices in order, I’ll offer:

  1. Blyleven
  2. McGwire
  3. Raines
  4. Gossage
  5. Rice
  6. Smith
  7. John
  8. Dawson
  9. Morris
  10. Trammell

Yeah, that’s how much I like Blyleven. Of course, my favorite pitcher ever is Nolan Ryan and the two were actually quite similar. McGwire… since he made the ballot, I rate him on playing career alone. Then Raines, Gossage, Rice, and Smith round out my slam dunks.

So, tell me. Who is on your ballot?


  1. On December 26th, 2007 at 1:52 pm Bill Gros said:

    An amazing Bert Blyleven statistic that I wouldn’t wish upon any major league pitcher:
    From his 1970 rookie season through 1977 I’ve accumulated his quality starts that I’ve defined as: 6innings, 2earned runs or less; 7,8,9innings, 3earned runs or less; and 9innings+ 4 earned runs or less in which he garnered a no decision or a loss only……

    The totals are:
    82 games
    658 innings
    583 hits
    185 runs
    160 earned runs
    184 base on balls
    540 strikeouts
    2.19 ERA
    His record: 0 wins and 52 LOSSES. I repeat 0 wins and 52 losses with a 2.19 ERA

    1970 0-3 1.90 9 games
    1971 0-6 2.09 9 games
    1972 0-9 2.35 13 games
    1973 0-8 2.55 9 games
    1974 0-8 1.80 10 games
    1975 0-6 2.00 10 games
    1976 0-7 2.29 15 games
    1977 0-5 2.45 7 games

    I understand that pitchers put up great games and get snakebit on occasion, but this accounted for almost 1 of every 3 starts, 82 of 279 to be exact or 29%. Show me a Hall of Famer that had to go through this year by year. Fortunately once Blyleven ended up in Pittsburgh and later some good Minnesota teams, this trend eased to what I would consider normal levels (I had researched this in the past but don’t have the numbers on hand)

    Imagine 1974, your 17-9 in 27 games, and in the other 10, all of which are essentially quality starts, you post a 1.80ERA and go 0-8. You end up 17-17. If you don’t know the facts, and your voting for the Cy Young award, and you see 17-17. Do you cast a 1st, 2nd, or 3rd place vote? Probably not. This is what Blyleven faced in yesteryear, and the same writers, who I contend do not know the facts, are what Blyleven faces every year in the HOF vote.

    Go ahead, plug in a different year, or harken back to Baseball-reference and neutralize the stats, do it for every one of Blyleven’s contemporaries. The numbers don’t change much, but for Bert Blyleven, they do. The example given above is my attempt to show why. Teams that didn’t score runs and booted the ball around like it was a soccer match.

  2. On December 27th, 2007 at 12:10 am Adam Darowski said:

    Bill, great analysis. I’d venture to say Nolan Ryan faced a lot of the same problems that Blyleven did.

    This man really needs to get in. Like Santo, this is really getting ridiculous.