Everyone else has, why can’t I?

My mock Hall of Fame ballot:

Bert Blyleven
Goose Gossage
Tommy John
Tim Raines
Dale Murphy
Dave Parker
Dave Concepcion

I’m a “Big Hall” guy. Basically, I ask if players with similar accomplishments (not necessarily similar statistics) are generally Hall of Famers; if that’s the case, I figure they should be in. There aren’t any hard-and-fast standards. I’ve discussed Blyleven, and Murphy (at length). Gossage is, in my opinion, the second- or third-best reliever of all time, and clearly better than any of the Hall of Fame relievers except Wilhelm.

Raines is an obvious choice to me, the second-best leadoff man of all time. Basically everyone with similar accomplishments to John is already in the Hall, and it’s hard to see keeping him out just because he was a finesse pitcher, or whatever the reason is. (He is perhaps helped in my eyes because his best period, 1977-1980, is the same time I really became aware of baseball, so I saw him pitch, well, in three World Series in four years. His career postseason record is 4-5, but with a 2.65 ERA.) I’ve decided that Parker is the best of the Rice/Dawson/Parker group, yet for some reason he’s gotten a lot less support. One at a time for these guys.

Concepcion doesn’t have “Hall of Fame stats”, maybe, but few shortstops, even Hall of Fame shortstops, do, and his stats are similar to several Hall of Fame shortstops. He was the best defensive shortstop of his time, winning five Gold Gloves. He made nine All-Star teams, five as a starter. He played on great teams, and was an integral part, allowing them to get by with Tony Perez or Pete Rose at third base. He wasn’t as good of an offensive player as Pee Wee Reese, or as Ozzie Smith in his best years, but he was as good as or better than Aparicio or other HOF shortstops. He would probably be in the Hall already if the offensive standards for shortstops hadn’t suddenly changed in the last years of his career, so he was being held to a Ripken/Yount standard.

Oh, and Joe Morgan will probably put him in via the Veterans’ Committee someday anyway.

59 thoughts on “Everyone else has, why can’t I?”

  1. Long time reader of website, 1st post.

    ‘Honestly’, why isn’t Dale Murphy in the Hall of Fame yet?

    And if the braves bring him back for a 1 year deal in 2008, will he get in the hall of fame?

  2. anyone have any thoughts on Jason Garrett (Dallas OC) becoming the head coach at the Falcons. He interviewed today and I think it may be a good fit

  3. desert,

    Well, I think it’s because his career did a great impersination of Burt Ward’s career from 1988 onward. He never got the nice, round 400 home runs. In 1998, that might have been enough to elect him.

  4. digression: DOB says Francoeur is the union rep. I had never heard that and just thought it’d be interesting to see if Glavine would still play a role.

  5. This is my response the discussion earlier:

    I feel we are competitive right now. We’re in a mediocre league that is very winnable with a slightly better than mediocre team. I also think we have a much better team than last year. We also have a fairly deep farm system that will continue to keep us competitive in the years to come. I know we haven’t made the playoffs in a couple years, but that’s no reason to pretty much guarantee that we won’t in 2009 and 2010 because we leveraged our farm system to hopefully, and not definitely, give us a better shot in the postseason. I’m all about taking chances, but Bedard doesn’t make us a lock to win the NL and the World Series. What is a lock is that we will hurt our team in the long run when we gave up 4 to 5 legitimate prospects for one pitcher. I suppose it would depend on the prospects we give up, but I don’t like the idea of giving up solid pitching prospects plus a pretty much sure-fire centerfielder for the next 5 years in the deal.

    I know that Stu will probably try to eat this up, but I don’t really care, and don’t care to argue with Stu about pretty much anything at this point. He doesn’t like to quit when it goes too far…

  6. Always wondered why Lee Smith never got any love from the voters. I mean the guy was the all time saves leader until 2006. Anyone agree/disagree?

  7. Shockingly, poor Rob seems to once again be taking personally disagreements on baseball. Once again, he does so after being the initial contrarian. Still embarrassed by your horribly ill-informed ramblings on Carlos Gomez? I noticed you never responded after both I and Carlos himself pointed out how ludicrous your remarks were.

    I have no idea why you’ve yet again chosen to single me out when multiple people disagreed with your latest opinion, but it’s getting old. You have access to my email address and should use that medium to convey any personal grievances in the future.

  8. Y’all don’t fight. It ain’t no thang.
    This is a baseball forum. We’re all entitled to our opinions, nutty or otherwise.

    Welcome aboard.

    Saw “There Will Be Blood” tonight. Recommended, but not as quite as great as “No Country for Old Men.”

  9. I saw games where 5 of Mac’s 7 played. I pick:

    I can’t support Raines and Parker. If people see McGwire’s career=Andro, I see these guys equal coacaine abuse. Can’t shake it.

    Murph, well…I’ll just say I’ll celebrate the day he makes it. Might be awhile.

    Tommy John: You could make a case…but you have to make a case. Does longevity equal greatness? Even with his great peaks and valleys, I’d rather have David Cone.

    Yet, Blyleven makes it, finally, if longevity must be considered. I don’t know what stock you put in “black ink” or “grey ink” tests, but they indicate that Bly was one of baseball’s best for 15-20 years. Although never “the” best. “Wins” are still the final word on a starting pitcher’s career and I think his abilty to get them for that length of time deserves great credit.

    Goose rocked! Whitey Herzog said Goose was the key to the Yankee winners of that era. Whitey believed if Goose had pitched for his KC teams, they’d have won it all. Whitey believed it so strongly that he credits getting Sutter as the key to the ’82 Cardinals. He traded away Rollie Fingers to get him, but always wanted Goose. That’s my argument for Goose.

    Concepcion: I grew up in southeastern Indiana in the ’70s so I’d be biased. But even I knew that Davey wasn’t one of the Big Four (if don’t get Tony Perez’s contribution, I can only say you had to be there.)
    But listen to the generation of Latin ballplayers that came after Concepcion and hear what an iconic figure he was to them. Count the number of big leaguers that took the uniform number 13. To see him playing every day-on that damned Astroturf-it meant the world to them. That was greatness to them and I’ll take their word for it.

  10. Kevin – Raines admitted his cocaine use very early in his career and actively worked to help others with drug problems from then on. Are you saying no transgression can ever be forgiven? Are you so sure Concepcion NEVER took a greenie? There sure were a lot in baseball then. Should Mays and Stargell, who never came clean in their careers, be ejected?

  11. Jason Garrett sounds like another Jim Mora Jr. I want a seasoned veteran to try and right the Falcon’s ship. Also, I think Dallas right now would be good no matter who is the OC, so it’s tough to fairly judge Garrett. I’d like to see Dan Reeves back, personally.

  12. spike;
    You’re right, of course. Forgiveness is one of the most treasured human virtues. I won’t throw stones anymore.

    But I will always wonder about players that use destructive, illegal substances. They are human and subject to pressures I’ll never understand. I’m a big fan of both Marion Jones and Martina Hingis. I don’t know what to think now.

    When “Rock” Raines came wrecked to play a ballgame, what did that say to his team mates? Did they get his best? Did the guy in the stands get what he paid for?

    I can’t impose my morality on other people. Good thing, too. I’d hate it if they did it to me.

    Maybe I’m just overreacting to a year when the word “tainted” found its way onto the sports page every day.

  13. Ububba, I saw TWBB last night, and I agree that it wasn’t as good as No Country For Old Men. Jonny Greenwood’s score was a major distraction. Good movie, I guess, but I didn’t enjoy it as much as I’d hoped.

  14. ububba,

    There’s no fight. I was attempting to move anything approaching that away from this site. I know no one here is interested in petty bickering about the personal issues of a poster or two. Sorry if I offended your sensibilities.

  15. Check your Facebook, Stu.

    As for my lack of response to Carlos Gomez’ post: I still think he’s a hack. I didn’t read the posts he had made until way after the fact, so I didn’t bother posting. I was hoping to avoid having to reiterate my opinion of him, but Stu has basically called me out. I guess it doesn’t always pay to be silent…

  16. No way McFadden makes it to #3, I’m almost sure Miami will take him it at #1, especially with Parcells trying to build his style of defense. If I had my choice of Dallas coaches to take, I’d like to have Saparono, he’s on older, more veteran type of guy than Garrett.

  17. I actually think Trammell should be in the Hall, but I was balancing my ballot and picked only one shortstop. Concepcion was the best shortstop in his league for a time. Trammell never was, because of Ripken and Yount. This may be unfair. A week or so ago I defended Richie Ashburn, who was never the best centerfielder in his league because of Mays and Snider.

  18. Interesting thoughts on the SS’s Mac.

    I had always felt that Concepcion was more worthy than Trammell but didn’t know why. At his prime, he was the best the Braves faced. And when American League teams were on the Saturday Game of the Week or when Sports Illustrated came out, it was aabout Yount, then about Ripken. Trammell was a second fiddle.

    On Big Hall / Small Hall, I thought Rob Neyer had some good thoughts a few days ago. One of his tests was “is he better than half of the players at that position already in.”

    Blyleven, Gossage, and Raines meet that. If you restrict to centerfielders (and not the more generic “outfielders”), Murphy may make it. I am not so sure about any of the others.

  19. Baseball Hall of Fame Member Batting Register by Position – Baseball-Reference.com

    Obviously, Concepcion is behind Wagner, Cronin, Appling, Boudreau, Banks, Vaughn, Yount, and Ripken. Behind Davis, too, and I’ve already stated that I’d put him behind Smith and Reese. That’s eleven of 22 HOF shortstops. (Hornsby wasn’t really a shortstop, of course. He wasn’t really even a second baseman.) So if he’s better than everyone else, he meets the standard, but I don’t know that he was. But I think half is too high of a standard and it should be more like a third or two-fifths.

  20. i’ll always think of concepcion as a lower case barry larkin but i remember how much skip carey hated seeing him come up late in a game. or maybe he just hated him. that was before i had cable and skip was a hoot on the radio with the lineup the reds had. #13,,,,,,,,,,,i guess i’m one of the people who really dont get the tony perez thing. i know he was a good player but for a average-to-bad defensive player,i’d bet hes the only guy in the hall that scores a zero on the black-ink test. or, maybe because i’m a life-long braves fan, i just hated the whole bunch of them.

  21. Trammell never was, because of Ripken and Yount. This may be unfair.

    Ya think? Not only is Trammel better than Concepcon, I can construct a pretty good argument that he is as good as Rip and Yount. Better defense than either, comparable offensive rate stats, less durable than either. I don’t see where just because somebody thought of one as better thasn the other at the time makes it so – or you’d have to like Jeter over A rod.

  22. Barrycuda, I should point out that Chipper currently scores at zero in the Black Ink Test.

    Trammell was a terrific player, and I do think he should be in the Hall. He wasn’t close to the hitter Ripken was (seriously, how you can say a guy with 185 homers is comparable to a guy with 431 is beyond me) and not quite as good of a defensive player.

  23. barrycuda;
    I was a bit flip in my remark on Tony Perez; I can tell you if the “Big Four” were a bowling team; Doggie would’ve been the anchor!

    As the Big Red Machine grew, Doggie was their RBI guy and clubhouse standard. Morgan tried to lay out of a game during the ’74 race due to a bout with the flu (cough: hangover)against Koosman. He found a sleeping bag rolled out in front of his locker with a big bottle of aspirin, prescribed for “koosmanitis.” He knew who’d put it there,

    In the game films about the ’75 WS, when the Reds were down 3 runs in Game 7, Sparky says, “Don’t worry, Perez is gonna hit a home run and get us back in it.”
    And he did!

  24. First of all, I said offensive RATE stats. Second, I do think Ripken is better, my point was how can you rank Concepcion ahead of Trammell, third, Camden Yards is a pretty good homer park, fourth, ripken got to finish his career in a ver high offense era in general, and HR’s in particular, and fifth, Trammell was most certainly a better defender over the length of his career than Ripken, who had seriously outgrown the job by ’94.

    No big deal, just sayin’

  25. mac………i would think chipper has some major work left to do if he is going to be a no-brainer HOFer like some people assumed perez was . black ink or not. but, if he retired after one or two more ordinary chipper seasons, his numbers would be much better than TP. really, i wasnt trying to be objective, i just cant resist taking a little shot whenever i spot a reds fan lurking nearby……..its all in fun

  26. Also, when Chipper came along, there weren’t really many big hitting third baseman, and there aren’t really that many true 3B in the HoF are there?

    He led the way for a whole crop of third baseman who can mash.

  27. You do know that Ripken spent the first half of his career playing in Memorial Stadium, while Trammell’s whole career was in Tiger Stadium? Memorial was a tough place to hit (and Camden is not really a great home run park) while Tiger was a very good home run park. Ripken slugged .447, Trammell .415. Over that many ABs, that’s a pretty huge difference.

  28. Trammell: 97 HR home/88 away
    Ripken: 214 HR home/217 away

    Trammell: .292 .362 .423 home
    .279 .341 .408 away
    Ripken: .267 .336 .435 home
    .283 .344 .459 away

  29. Chipper doesn’t need to accomplish anything else to make the HOF. Even if his offensive decline begins immediately, another 400 games of decent production will put him over 2500 hits, 1500 runs, 1500 RBI, and 450 HR. With the extra cache he gets for being a postseason mainstay, he’ll get in without a throw.

  30. Of course, I say he doesn’t need to accomplish anything else…..and then list a bunch of possible accomplishments. Argue with that logic.

    I should say he doesn’t need to have any additional HOF-caliber seasons in order to eventually make it.

  31. You do know that Ripken spent the first half of his career playing in Memorial Stadium, while Trammell’s whole career was in Tiger Stadium?

    Yes I do. My family and I spent the 60’s and 70’s watching baseball at Memorial. That’s why 3 is in re Camden, and 4 is in re his later career context. Apparently, you skipped 2 where I said Ripken was better and the whole point was about Concepcion. Also, I thought I was clear from the beginning that I was talking about RATE stats. For all of his slugging, Rip is still only 112 to 110 OPS+ ahead all invested in slg as you point out, and if we give OBP it’s proper 1.4 adjustment, he actually trails Trammell.

    Ripken had a much greater offensive footprint than Tram, no question, but Alan was no slouch. Why don’t you check out the PF’s for Tiger stadium in re Memorial?

  32. Look at the percentage splits. Trammell’s OBP advantage is all in home games; on the road, Ripken has a three-point advantage.

    I only have access to year-by-year park factors.

  33. I love you man…I just wanted you to discuss Concepcion v. Trammell on your mythical ballot. I concede.

  34. Like I said, I limited myself to one shortstop, and decided to go with the one who was the best shortstop of his time. It’s an arguable point.

    And, as I said, Morgan’s probably going to get Concepcion in just like he did Perez.

  35. If I could vote for just one guy it would be Trammell. It’s been stunning out overlooked he’s been – even here it looks like. Concepcion? Not even in the same class.

    Concep 9640 PAs of 88 OPS+
    Tramm 9375 PAs of 110 OPS+

    It would take a lot of defense to overcome that and Trammell won four Gold Gloves so it’s not like he was bad defensively. Penalizing Tram because his career happens to overlap with Ripken is pretty silly.

  36. Nobody cares but my ballot this year would look like this:

    Alan Trammell
    Tim Raines
    Lou Whitaker

    but then I’m a small Hall guy.

  37. I would probably pick Whitaker over his teammate, but it’s close. They both should be in.

    The Braves have signed Matt DeSalvo to a minor-league deal. I don’t know why. He’d been non-tendered by the Yankees and seems to be a favorite of your average Yankees fan types.

  38. If you take away 2006 it’s not as bad. Of course, you can’t, and regardless of how you look at it control is a problem. I wonder how long until we see him in Atlanta. Yikes.

  39. If there is any justice in this world, ol Dale Murphy will be in Cooperstown. So will Jim Rice. And there would be a bona fide 8 team playoff in college freakin’ football.

    Now give me a big slice of apple pie and God bless America. Especially considering the field of vagrants that are running to lead it.

  40. Mac, if you believe in a Big Hall, why let similar guys in one at a time? (I mean, especially since you don’t have a vote and we all know that Parker and Trammell won’t be voted in by the BBWAA no matter how deserving.) Why not say that they’re all good enough and put them all on your ballot? After all, you have 7 names up there, and adding Trammell, Rice and Dawson brings it up to the max of 10.

  41. Could, I guess. I mean, it’s not real. I could vote for Mark Lemke if I wanted. I get nervous voting for ten people, like I’m just filling in blanks.

  42. Happy 2008, y’all. How ’bout them Dawgs!

    It’s too bad Georgia can’t play the winner of Monday’s game. Maybe someday Tiger224’s eight team playoff will happen, but I’d bet it’s too sensible to ever get done.

    Are there any Braves’ rumors out there?

    I’m also a Big Hall guy and would include Murph, Rice, Dawson, Parker, Raines, Trammell, Concepcion, John, Blyleven, and Gossage on my completely full ballot.

    May 2008 be your best year yet but the worst year of your life to come.

    Go Braves (and go Andruw)!

  43. Counting quickly in my head, we have about 84 days left until opening day (plus or minus a few days).

  44. I guess I’m a bit of a “small-Hall” guy. My knee-jerk HoF thumbs-ups go to Rice, Raines & Gossage—for the same reasons expressed by many.

    On Concepcion & Trammell, I’ve always leaned toward them as HoFers, but could never quite go there. I’m always ready to be convinced, and Mac & others have done a good job there.

    I agree that Chipper should be a no-brainer in the HoF, but I have no idea how Steroid Era guys (“clean” or otherwise) will be evaluated.

    There were a couple times in TWBB when I thought Greenwood’s score was spot-on & many others when I wondered if Greenwood was at all aware of the film he was scoring. I’m a big Radiohead fan, but, yeah, I gotta say it didn’t always fit.

    And Stu,
    No sweat, my man. I’m really tough to offend anyway.

  45. Only in the baseball union would you have a player rep who is a “Bush fan” as Frenchy said when they went to the WH. Not trying to be political but I doubt you would see a member of the UAW make such a statement.

    I always liked Concepcion (or, since the Big Red Machine always destroyed the Braves, I should say thought he was a very good player) but he did play his entire career on artificial turf while Ripken and Trammell played on grass. It’s a lot harder fielding ground balls on real grass where you get lots of bad hops. On the other hand, it’s more difficult to cover a lot of ground on turf. But I always thought of Concepcion as a great shortstop.

  46. I think if a UAW rep stated that he was a “Bush fan,” he might mysteriously disappear.

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