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First Base Coach

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Date: Dec 15, 2014
RE: Building the Hall of Fame
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tomthebomb wrote:

Very interesting.

It's noteworthy that neither Mantle or DiMaggio received a single vote.

I'm not a Yankee fan, but that fact is surprising to me.

Is there an anti-Yankee bias here ?  Which is OK with me.

Wish I would have made the cut-off to vote (my bad) to get Honus Wagner in.

I look forward to keeping up with this topic in a more timely fashion.  


I'm a Red Sox fan and left off Ted Williams (the only Red Sox player I voted for was Cy Young).  I'll vote for Williams, Mantle, and DiMaggio in the future, just not in my top 10.  Unlike many Red Sox fans, I'm not anti-Yankee.  I respect many of those players and teams a great deal.   Everyone voted for Ruth, so any anti-Yankee bias didn't extend to the Bambino.



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First Base Coach

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Anyone else surprised at who didn't get any votes? Warren Spahn? Eddie Collins? Lefty Grove? Johnny Bench? Tris Speaker?

I considered Speaker and Grove in my top 10.  I think both are generally underrated as all-time greats.  Good chance they'll be in my 2nd 10.  You could make an argument for Collins as the greatest second baseman of all-time, again generally underrated.  So I'm not too surprised those 3 were left off all the ballots.  A little surprised about Bench, but I think the only catcher to receive a vote was Gibson.  



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seajaw wrote:
glewis wrote:

I can't argue with the 6 elected, since they were all on my ballot. All on the list would likely receive my vote at some point, some just weren't in my top 10. My only waiver would be on Bonds, but I did consider him for even my top 10, so I likely will include him at some point. Others on my list were Wagner, Gehrig, Paige, and Robinson. At some point I'll make a case for each one of these in the hopes of getting them elected in the future.

Great idea Seajaw. Looking forward to the next election.


Thanks.

The big problem is obviously the menu.  There are so many players to choose from.

The six players chosen do make a solid statement, even if there are so many others who came so close.  I would imagine the next five on the list will get in in short order.

I have to go back and agree with Tom, however, that it is surprising that DiMaggio and Mantle didn't get a single vote.

Another thought: only two of the top 11 played after 1940.  Obviously, Mays and Aaron are slam-dunks.  But, we have had plenty of discussions over time about whether the Oldtimers could hold their own against the bigger-faster-stronger modern player.

Only 11 of the 90 total votes were for players whose careers began after 1960.  Two players -- Barry Bonds and Greg Maddux -- each got three of those 11 votes.

Is there a definitive statement in there somewhere that -- in 50 years of post-'50's baseball -- no one has come along that stands with those who were selected?


 I had the same thought about my ballot of the first 10.  I even made a Top 10 list of post World War II players.  I ended up putting Robinson, Mays, and Aaron on my list.  I seriously considered Mike Schmidt, Barry Bonds, Greg Maddox, Roger Clemens, and Joe Morgan.  I think Schmidt may be the greatest third baseman of all-time and Morgan is close at second, they just didn't feel right in the top 10 to me.  Same with Maddox.  I'll admit I was judgmental about Bonds and Clemens, I'll continue to give those two a great deal of thought.



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glewis wrote:

Anyone else surprised at who didn't get any votes? Warren Spahn? Eddie Collins? Lefty Grove? Johnny Bench? Tris Speaker?

I considered Speaker and Grove in my top 10.  I think both are generally underrated as all-time greats.  Good chance they'll be in my 2nd 10.  You could make an argument for Collins as the greatest second baseman of all-time, again generally underrated.  So I'm not too surprised those 3 were left off all the ballots.  A little surprised about Bench, but I think the only catcher to receive a vote was Gibson.  


It's interesting, because those five players have 10 World Series championships between them (11, if you double-count the '29 Athletics, who had both Grove and Collins).

And six other pennants in seasons that their clubs lost the Series.

Spahnie is the only one of the five with fewer than two rings.



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First Base Coach

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My case for Jackie Robinson

I thought it would make for interesting conversation if we all made a case for the players we had in our personal top 10, but didn't make SOMer 1st Class of our Hall of Fame.

I thought I would start with Jackie Robinson, the lowest vote getter of my top 10 (I was the only person who placed him on a ballot).

First, an explanation of what I considered when making my choice.  While I did look at overall numbers that was only part of my criteria.  Seajaw asked us to make a statement with our first 10, so I considered two other factors.  Did the player make a historical contribution to the game or change to course of how the game was played?  Is the player an American icon (e.g. could you walk down the street and when you asked people would know who you were talking about).

Jackie Robinson's career numbers don't measure up to the other players on this list or other HoF 2nd basemen (although a career .311 BA  is nothing to sneeze at)for that matter.  But you have to consider he was a rookie at the age of 28.  Looking at other HoF players, it is not unusual to have some of their best years to occur in their early to mid - 20s.  Robinson missed those years because of racial bias and then World War II.  His numbers would measure up much better if he was a rookie earlier and there wasn't a war.  I think you have to factor in World War II when considering any player from this era.  Robinson during the first seven years of his career was a very dominate player.  Top 10 in votes for MVP in 1947, 49, 51 & 52 (won it in 1949), he also received votes in four other years.  He twice led MLB in WAR during that time. He was an All-Star from 1949 to 1954.  He was a key catalyst on those great Dodger teams of the 1950s.  

Robinson did this all under immense pressure to perform.  If he had failed, it could have set back integration of MLB several years.  Think of the impact that would have had on several other Hall of Fame players.  Branch Rickey wanted someone that could perform under pressure and could keep his feelings in check.  Yes, others could have been chosen.  But Rickey knew what he was doing and picked Robinson.  

The historical significance of Robinson is without question.  MLB chose to honor Robinson by retiring his jersey number with all teams and they still pay tribute today to Jackie Robinson.  He changed the course of baseball history and because of the profile of baseball, the course of American history.  Robinson's performance influenced many Americans, both black and white, and moved America towards civil rights.

As a former U.S. History teacher I can tell you two baseball names appear in any textbook I've ever seen. Babe Ruth and Jackie Robinson.  They are American icons and symbols of an era. I'm pretty certain if you walked down the street and asked people who Jackie Robinson was you would get a large number of people that knew.  I'm not sure you would get the same response for Walter Johnson.

I looked beyond career numbers when considering Robinson and considered his larger role in the history of baseball and the history of the United States.  



-- Edited by glewis on Tuesday 16th of December 2014 10:58:10 PM



-- Edited by glewis on Tuesday 16th of December 2014 11:00:46 PM

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First Base Coach

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seajaw wrote:
glewis wrote:

Anyone else surprised at who didn't get any votes? Warren Spahn? Eddie Collins? Lefty Grove? Johnny Bench? Tris Speaker?

I considered Speaker and Grove in my top 10.  I think both are generally underrated as all-time greats.  Good chance they'll be in my 2nd 10.  You could make an argument for Collins as the greatest second baseman of all-time, again generally underrated.  So I'm not too surprised those 3 were left off all the ballots.  A little surprised about Bench, but I think the only catcher to receive a vote was Gibson.  


It's interesting, because those five players have 10 World Series championships between them (11, if you double-count the '29 Athletics, who had both Grove and Collins).

And six other pennants in seasons that their clubs lost the Series.

Spahnie is the only one of the five with fewer than two rings.


They were winners and outstanding players.  They just don't resonate beyond their eras (sometimes even when during their own era they are overshadowed) for whatever reason.  They will get strong consideration for my 2nd 10.  



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glewis wrote:
seajaw wrote:
glewis wrote:

Anyone else surprised at who didn't get any votes? Warren Spahn? Eddie Collins? Lefty Grove? Johnny Bench? Tris Speaker?

I considered Speaker and Grove in my top 10.  I think both are generally underrated as all-time greats.  Good chance they'll be in my 2nd 10.  You could make an argument for Collins as the greatest second baseman of all-time, again generally underrated.  So I'm not too surprised those 3 were left off all the ballots.  A little surprised about Bench, but I think the only catcher to receive a vote was Gibson.  


It's interesting, because those five players have 10 World Series championships between them (11, if you double-count the '29 Athletics, who had both Grove and Collins).

And six other pennants in seasons that their clubs lost the Series.

Spahnie is the only one of the five with fewer than two rings.


They were winners and outstanding players.  They just don't resonate beyond their eras (sometimes even when during their own era they are overshadowed) for whatever reason.  They will get strong consideration for my 2nd 10.  


I might agree with you on Collins and maybe Grove.  Even Speaker, to an extent.

But Spahn is the winningest lefthander in the history of the game.  And Johnny Bench is...well...Johnny Bench.  And he's a thoroughly modern-era guy.  All those demands for rereleasing of the '70's sets are for guys like Johnny Bench.

Even Spahn was active in the early days of SOM.  He didn't retire until after the '65 season.



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"Seajaw asked us to make a statement with our first 10..."

Well, more precisely, we would be making a statement with our inaugural selections, those whom we deemed most worthy over 144 years of professional baseball.

That was an excellent and persuasive defense of your choice.  Without Robinson's talent and -- more importantly -- his character, an entire era of baseball would be quite different.



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Nitrous Oxide wrote:
glewis wrote:

...I would also waiver on Clemens. I haven't reconciled the whole steroid era in my own mind at this point.


tomthebomb wrote:

I think that most members here are historians, so we might be a bit more respectful of the founding father greats of the game.


This is not directed at you gentlemen. I'm certainly not going to be kind to the players of the past. We are starting with a clean sheet of paper so I put everybody on the same playing field

I did not originally cast a vote as I knew I would go down this road. I have a lot of issues with the HOF and have tried to stay away from this kind of stuff for a long time. Seajaw came to to me and asked if I would participate. If you don't like my post blame him. biggrin

This is an open ended free flow rant. Steroid evoke emotions. When looking at this topic it begs many other thoughts beyond steroids. Not the first baseball scandal...not the last.

 

Can anybody tell me that Ty Cobb or any other player didn't use what he believed to be performance enhancing aids?

Can anybody tell me that players used greenies for health and not a perceived performance advantage?

Has any HOFer ever scuffed or put a foreign substance on a baseball?

Has any HOFer ever corked a bat?

Can any player from before 1947 really be equally judged against players who players after baseball integrated?

Can players who dominated in the Negro Leagues be judged on equal footing with their MLB peers?

Did Pete Rose off the field problems really mean the all time hits leader and mutli time WS champion did not play at a HOF level?

Why did Hank Aaron continue to perform at all star levels until he reached 40? Was it Fulton County or something else?

How many games did Roger Clemens or Barry Bonds miss for PED suspensions? (hint-zero)

Baseball players were seen as all American hero until Ball Four came out. The press ignored obvious flaws in these men. Babe Ruth, naked, gets chased through a train by a woman with a knife...no press coverage. Mantle and Company were not model citizens. Ty Cobb was a first rate jerk by all accounts. I've read the latest Ted Williams book and I'm convinced he would have done anything to be a better hitter.

If players are to be judged against their peers and that player plays during that era why is that held against them if they were not suspended?

If a player dominated in this era where steroid use was rampant then weren't they really on a level playing field with their peers? 

Baseball and its hypocrisy. Barry Bonds...7 MVPs. Roger Clemens...7 Cy Young awards. The same people who voted them to those awards then turned their back on them during HOF voting. What a load of crap! Build them up then tear them down. Those people should be stripped of their voting rights. Baseball created this mess. The Clemens trial was witch hunt and he was found not guilty on all 6 counts!

The last time I checked the record book Barry Bonds has the single season and all time Homerun records. Roger Clemens has 354 wins and 4,672 strikeouts. I can't pretend those numbers don't exist nor can baseball remove them.

Let me be clear...this rant has much more to do with modern news coverage and scrutiny. To single out a generation as the only corrupt group in the history of baseball defies logic. I can't image the media coverage of some of yesterday's sports stars if they were under the microscope of today.

To look at baseball as somehow innocent is not an accurate portrayal of the past.

This is the SOMers Hall of Fame...we get to decide..not the media..not the talking heads. I would ask anybody to ask the tough questions when looking at who should be in. Everybody has their own opinions and biases, but so do the real voters and veterans committee.

For the record I voted Roger Clemens and I'm prepared to defend my choice...and I think he is a jerk. I also voted for Satchel Paige and Josh Gibson.

 

 


I did ask...

You are right about the emotions, when it comes to the steroid debate.  Yes, many players used them, despite the fact they were banned.

More importantly, they are against the law.  This is a federal offense we are talking about.  Stuff the DEA comes after you for doing.

To me, that's a huge difference from scuffing a ball (used to be legal) or corking a bat (players cheat on the size of their gloves, too, if they can get away with it).  If you get caught scuffing/corking, you get tossed out of the game and face a suspension.

However, there are no urine cups waiting for players on the field.

No, we don't know if Cobb, or even Ruth, used anything.  But there were no such rules in place in those days.

When knowledge of steroids and their possible use in Major League Baseball was first suspected, it was made clear that they were banned.

My problem is with the lack of enforcement during the '90's and early 2000's.  Baseball turned a blind eye.

What were honest players to do?  Cheat, like everyone else?  Is that the answer?  Sure, there are perhaps dozens (maybe more) ballplayers who never got caught.  Maybe a guy who hit .215 on ground balls and pop-ups kept hitting .215, but those pop-ups carried to the outfield.  We don't always know.

But, when we have proof, do we allow those players to reap the rewards of their cheating by letting them earn baseball's highest honor?  I would say no more than we let one bank robber get away just because we can't catch them all.

All those awards they earned were earned in the moment, before suspicions were given voice.  To turn a blind eye when the evidence is finally revealed doesn't cut it, for me.

I have said I think Barry Bonds would have been a Hall of Famer anyway.  I'm less certain of Clemens, because there is an obvious point that his career was going into decline.  And I don't know if there was enough.

In his first nine seasons, he was completely dominant (152-72, 2.80, three Cys, etc.)  However, Clemens experienced a sharp dropoff, from 1993-'96 (40-39, 3.77).
 
Then, he finds the Fountain of Youth, goes 41-13 over the next two seasons, winning back-to-back Cys.

It wasn't until the end of his career that the allegations became widespread, and the Mitchell Report was completed.  Even then, we might not have known, had the report not been made public.  It wasn't supposed to be released originally.

But now we know about many of those guys.

Getting back to Clemens, is there enough there for him to make the Hall, if his career isn't somehow revitalized in 1997?  Would he have been great enough long enough?

At that point in his career, he 192-111, 3.06.  Is that enough?  Possibly.  Koufax made the Hall on five seasons of elite pitching.

Then again, Koufax was cheating, too, with that higher-than-regulation mound at Dodger Stadium.  His ERA at Dodger Stadium was 1.37.  His home/road ERA splits in each of the five seasons his home was Dodger Stadium were 1.75/3.53, 1.38/2.31, 0.85/2.93, 1.38/2.72, and 1.52/1.96.

Three times, that road ERA was more than a run-and-a-half higher.

Let's look at one of Sandy's contemporaries, Juan Marichal.  How much a difference was there in Juan's career home/road ERA splits?  0.29.  2.74H/3.03R.  However, his ERA at Dodger Stadium was 2.36.

Even that constitutes a level (in a manner of speaking) playing field, in that all pitchers got to use the same mound.  Then again, it's possible that some pitchers who didn't play as often there might have been thrown by the difference.

As far as greenies are concerned, I don't like them, either.  But pep pills are another category altogether, possibly more akin to cocaine than steroids  And, the last I heard, Dave Parker and the other Cocaine Cowboys weren't banned from Hall consideration.

Tim Raines is still being considered.



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First Base Coach

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seajaw wrote:
glewis wrote:
seajaw wrote:
glewis wrote:

Anyone else surprised at who didn't get any votes? Warren Spahn? Eddie Collins? Lefty Grove? Johnny Bench? Tris Speaker?

I considered Speaker and Grove in my top 10.  I think both are generally underrated as all-time greats.  Good chance they'll be in my 2nd 10.  You could make an argument for Collins as the greatest second baseman of all-time, again generally underrated.  So I'm not too surprised those 3 were left off all the ballots.  A little surprised about Bench, but I think the only catcher to receive a vote was Gibson.  


It's interesting, because those five players have 10 World Series championships between them (11, if you double-count the '29 Athletics, who had both Grove and Collins).

And six other pennants in seasons that their clubs lost the Series.

Spahnie is the only one of the five with fewer than two rings.


They were winners and outstanding players.  They just don't resonate beyond their eras (sometimes even when during their own era they are overshadowed) for whatever reason.  They will get strong consideration for my 2nd 10.  


I might agree with you on Collins and maybe Grove.  Even Speaker, to an extent.

But Spahn is the winningest lefthander in the history of the game.  And Johnny Bench is...well...Johnny Bench.  And he's a thoroughly modern-era guy.  All those demands for rereleasing of the '70's sets are for guys like Johnny Bench.

Even Spahn was active in the early days of SOM.  He didn't retire until after the '65 season.


Agreed.  I'm not sure about why Spahn didn't get any support.  My only conclusion about Bench was that there is not much support for catchers in general at this point, with only Gibson getting a vote.



-- Edited by glewis on Tuesday 16th of December 2014 05:28:45 AM

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Paul Molitor was a Cocaine Cowboy that is in the HOF . He is also a major league manager

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Luxury Box Season Ticket Holder

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seajaw wrote:
tomthebomb wrote:

 

 


I did ask...

You are right about the emotions, when it comes to the steroid debate.  Yes, many players used them, despite the fact they were banned.

More importantly, they are against the law.  This is a federal offense we are talking about.  Stuff the DEA comes after you for doing.

To me, that's a huge difference from scuffing a ball (used to be legal) or corking a bat (players cheat on the size of their gloves, too, if they can get away with it).  If you get caught scuffing/corking, you get tossed out of the game and face a suspension.

However, there are no urine cups waiting for players on the field.

No, we don't know if Cobb, or even Ruth, used anything.  But there were no such rules in place in those days.

When knowledge of steroids and their possible use in Major League Baseball was first suspected, it was made clear that they were banned.

My problem is with the lack of enforcement during the '90's and early 2000's.  Baseball turned a blind eye.

What were honest players to do?  Cheat, like everyone else?  Is that the answer?  Sure, there are perhaps dozens (maybe more) ballplayers who never got caught.  Maybe a guy who hit .215 on ground balls and pop-ups kept hitting .215, but those pop-ups carried to the outfield.  We don't always know.

But, when we have proof, do we allow those players to reap the rewards of their cheating by letting them earn baseball's highest honor?  I would say no more than we let one bank robber get away just because we can't catch them all.

All those awards they earned were earned in the moment, before suspicions were given voice.  To turn a blind eye when the evidence is finally revealed doesn't cut it, for me.

I have said I think Barry Bonds would have been a Hall of Famer anyway.  I'm less certain of Clemens, because there is an obvious point that his career was going into decline.  And I don't know if there was enough.

In his first nine seasons, he was completely dominant (152-72, 2.80, three Cys, etc.)  However, Clemens experienced a sharp dropoff, from 1993-'96 (40-39, 3.77).
 
Then, he finds the Fountain of Youth, goes 41-13 over the next two seasons, winning back-to-back Cys.

It wasn't until the end of his career that the allegations became widespread, and the Mitchell Report was completed.  Even then, we might not have known, had the report not been made public.  It wasn't supposed to be released originally.

But now we know about many of those guys.

Getting back to Clemens, is there enough there for him to make the Hall, if his career isn't somehow revitalized in 1997?  Would he have been great enough long enough?

At that point in his career, he 192-111, 3.06.  Is that enough?  Possibly.  Koufax made the Hall on five seasons of elite pitching.

Then again, Koufax was cheating, too, with that higher-than-regulation mound at Dodger Stadium.  His ERA at Dodger Stadium was 1.37.  His home/road ERA splits in each of the five seasons his home was Dodger Stadium were 1.75/3.53, 1.38/2.31, 0.85/2.93, 1.38/2.72, and 1.52/1.96.

Three times, that road ERA was more than a run-and-a-half higher.

Let's look at one of Sandy's contemporaries, Juan Marichal.  How much a difference was there in Juan's career home/road ERA splits?  0.29.  2.74H/3.03R.  However, his ERA at Dodger Stadium was 2.36.

Even that constitutes a level (in a manner of speaking) playing field, in that all pitchers got to use the same mound.  Then again, it's possible that some pitchers who didn't play as often there might have been thrown by the difference.

As far as greenies are concerned, I don't like them, either.  But pep pills are another category altogether, possibly more akin to cocaine than steroids  And, the last I heard, Dave Parker and the other Cocaine Cowboys weren't banned from Hall consideration.

Tim Raines is still being considered.


 

 

I enjoy reading and having these type of discussions - so I'll throw my hat in the ring.  Obviously the PED and HOF issues have generated a lot of varying opinions -- so take no offense on my thoughts as well --- just continuing the conversation.

I like the way NO laid out the questions... lots to ponder.  I must say, I agree with some of those statements or points made.  

But I tend to see it Seajaw's way on the PED issues.  The major issue for me with the Peds is the illegality of it in the MLB.

When you remove the PEDS from the equation, I know both Bonds and Clemens have Hall worthy numbers and careers.  However, to me that's the cost for those guys who used or likely used in the steroids era.  They can have the record books, the awards, and the big money contracts since it was not enforced and many players were doing it.  However, the cost was the Hall (IMhO).  

Other players I am not so keen on leaving out.  To me, Pete Rose deserves to be in.  I believe his penalty has served its purpose as a statement against gambling corruption - I think he should be in now, and he will get my vote on this thread at the appropriate time.

On the other stuff, I think some of those guys - Tris Speaker, Collins, Spahn, will likely pick up votes on here shortly.  Its more of a menu issue as someone already pointed out.  HoF'ers for sure, but first class top ten - its a debate (as we see on here) as there are still others I would vote in first, such as Gehrig and Williams before those three.  Tris will likely make my second set of ten though.

Also, this may be a more sentimental view, but I think Brett was the better 3b over Schmidt career-wise.  (I'm sure lots disagree with that though).  I'd also take Morgan over Collins at 2b as well - but perhaps I need to rethink that one.  I doubt there will be enough room in the next 10 for me to consider either of those 3b or 2b guys at this point anyway (again, menu issue).

I'll likely give Satchel Paige some serious thought in my next ten as well.

 

Just my two cents!  Lots for everyone to read and disagree with me! aww

 

I am glad Seajaw started this thread.  Its interesting to see how the votes go, and spurs on fun discussions.  Thanks for coming up with the idea!

Best ,

-kb

 



-- Edited by kblues on Tuesday 16th of December 2014 08:57:09 AM

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kblues wrote:
seajaw wrote:
tomthebomb wrote:

 

 


I did ask...

You are right about the emotions, when it comes to the steroid debate.  Yes, many players used them, despite the fact they were banned.

More importantly, they are against the law.  This is a federal offense we are talking about.  Stuff the DEA comes after you for doing.

To me, that's a huge difference from scuffing a ball (used to be legal) or corking a bat (players cheat on the size of their gloves, too, if they can get away with it).  If you get caught scuffing/corking, you get tossed out of the game and face a suspension.

However, there are no urine cups waiting for players on the field.

No, we don't know if Cobb, or even Ruth, used anything.  But there were no such rules in place in those days.

When knowledge of steroids and their possible use in Major League Baseball was first suspected, it was made clear that they were banned.

My problem is with the lack of enforcement during the '90's and early 2000's.  Baseball turned a blind eye.

What were honest players to do?  Cheat, like everyone else?  Is that the answer?  Sure, there are perhaps dozens (maybe more) ballplayers who never got caught.  Maybe a guy who hit .215 on ground balls and pop-ups kept hitting .215, but those pop-ups carried to the outfield.  We don't always know.

But, when we have proof, do we allow those players to reap the rewards of their cheating by letting them earn baseball's highest honor?  I would say no more than we let one bank robber get away just because we can't catch them all.

All those awards they earned were earned in the moment, before suspicions were given voice.  To turn a blind eye when the evidence is finally revealed doesn't cut it, for me.

I have said I think Barry Bonds would have been a Hall of Famer anyway.  I'm less certain of Clemens, because there is an obvious point that his career was going into decline.  And I don't know if there was enough.

In his first nine seasons, he was completely dominant (152-72, 2.80, three Cys, etc.)  However, Clemens experienced a sharp dropoff, from 1993-'96 (40-39, 3.77).
 
Then, he finds the Fountain of Youth, goes 41-13 over the next two seasons, winning back-to-back Cys.

It wasn't until the end of his career that the allegations became widespread, and the Mitchell Report was completed.  Even then, we might not have known, had the report not been made public.  It wasn't supposed to be released originally.

But now we know about many of those guys.

Getting back to Clemens, is there enough there for him to make the Hall, if his career isn't somehow revitalized in 1997?  Would he have been great enough long enough?

At that point in his career, he 192-111, 3.06.  Is that enough?  Possibly.  Koufax made the Hall on five seasons of elite pitching.

Then again, Koufax was cheating, too, with that higher-than-regulation mound at Dodger Stadium.  His ERA at Dodger Stadium was 1.37.  His home/road ERA splits in each of the five seasons his home was Dodger Stadium were 1.75/3.53, 1.38/2.31, 0.85/2.93, 1.38/2.72, and 1.52/1.96.

Three times, that road ERA was more than a run-and-a-half higher.

Let's look at one of Sandy's contemporaries, Juan Marichal.  How much a difference was there in Juan's career home/road ERA splits?  0.29.  2.74H/3.03R.  However, his ERA at Dodger Stadium was 2.36.

Even that constitutes a level (in a manner of speaking) playing field, in that all pitchers got to use the same mound.  Then again, it's possible that some pitchers who didn't play as often there might have been thrown by the difference.

As far as greenies are concerned, I don't like them, either.  But pep pills are another category altogether, possibly more akin to cocaine than steroids  And, the last I heard, Dave Parker and the other Cocaine Cowboys weren't banned from Hall consideration.

Tim Raines is still being considered.


 

 

I enjoy reading and having these type of discussions - so I'll throw my hat in the ring.  Obviously the PED and HOF issues have generated a lot of varying opinions -- so take no offense on my thoughts as well --- just continuing the conversation.

I like the way NO laid out the questions... lots to ponder.  I must say, I agree with some of those statements or points made.  

But I tend to see it Seajaw's way on the PED issues.  The major issue for me with the Peds is the illegality of it in the MLB.

When you remove the PEDS from the equation, I know both Bonds and Clemens have Hall worthy numbers and careers.  However, to me that's the cost for those guys who used or likely used in the steroids era.  They can have the record books, the awards, and the big money contracts since it was not enforced and many players were doing it.  However, the cost was the Hall (IMhO).  

Other players I am not so keen on leaving out.  To me, Pete Rose deserves to be in.  I believe his penalty has served its purpose as a statement against gambling corruption - I think he should be in now, and he will get my vote on this thread at the appropriate time.

On the other stuff, I think some of those guys - Tris Speaker, Collins, Spahn, will likely pick up votes on here shortly.  Its more of a menu issue as someone already pointed out.  HoF'ers for sure, but first class top ten - its a debate (as we see on here) as there are still others I would vote in first, such as Gehrig and Williams before those three.  Tris will likely make my second set of ten though.

Also, this may be a more sentimental view, but I think Brett was the better 3b over Schmidt career-wise.  (I'm sure lots disagree with that though).  I'd also take Morgan over Collins at 2b as well - but perhaps I need to rethink that one.  I doubt there will be enough room in the next 10 for me to consider either of those 3b or 2b guys at this point anyway (again, menu issue).

I'll likely give Satchel Paige some serious thought in my next ten as well.

 

Just my two cents!  Lots for everyone to read and disagree with me! aww

 

I am glad Seajaw started this thread.  Its interesting to see how the votes go, and spurs on fun discussions.  Thanks for coming up with the idea!

Best ,

-kb

 



-- Edited by kblues on Tuesday 16th of December 2014 08:57:09 AM


Thanks.  I know I'm having fun with it, so far.

Brett/Schmidt...George was always the more consistent hitter, but Schmidt had the obvious power edge.  Schmidt was the better defensive third baseman, though Brett made himself a very good third sacker during the course of his career.

I think part of the problem for third baseman and the Hall comes from how their contributions are "read."  Somehow, third basemen are supposed to be cornerstone power hitters in a lineup.  One of the Big Boys, like first basemen and corner outfielders.

Brett was a great hitter, just not a home run hitter, per se (though he did do plenty of extra-base slugging).  He was actually perfect for Royals Stadium.

I'm not a believer -- especially in this day and age -- that the power has to come from certain positions.  If you had an Ernie Banks, or Rico Petrocelli, or Cal Ripken Jr. at short, you could live with less power at the hot corner.

What about the offense/defense tradeoff?  If you are a Gold Glove-caliber third baseman, how much more do you need to do?  I would think that the elite defenders do not necessarily have to have the Schmidt/Eddie Mathews-type power numbers to be Hall-worthy.  How will the writers view Adrian Beltre?

Defense and the Hall have had their share of differences over the years.  There are plenty of one-dimensional slugging "rocks" in the Hall, but few great defenders who did not also hit at a high level for the position they played.

I feel a true test there will be in how long it takes Omar Vizquel -- arguably the best defending shortstop ever, bar none -- to get in.  Yes, Ozzie was a Wizard who hit a bit more.  But Omar did everything defensively that Smith did, and he did it on the natural stuff, not the carpet.

The Morgan-Collins debate may be little more than trying to figure out the players' contributions based on the norms of the era.  No one should care if Collins didn't hit as many home runs, because that wasn't how the game was played in his era.

How great an impact did Collins make, within the context of baseball during his career, versus Morgan's impact in his years as a player?  Was Joe better defensively, given that he had a better glove and played most of the best years of his career on a carpet, handling a near-pristine baseball?

What about Collins, with his tiny mitt, handling that cut/spat-upon mushy ball on those old infields, with spike-sharpened Ty Cobb barrelling in?  That's why I've suggested elsewhere that the Hall be tailored more to eras, rather than cross-era comparisons, which are better-suited for barrooms and SOM sites.

I have a real problem with Rose, with the way he flouted one of the signature rules of baseball.  He did it willfully, not out of fear of not being able to support his family (like Eddie Cicotte claimed, perhaps rightfully so, given the way he was treated by Charles Comiskey).  But because he wanted to, and he felt he was somehow immune to baseball's rules.

He lied when caught, wrote tell-alls after which he was accused of still hiding much of the truth.  In my opinion, he has never come completely clean.  It's almost like he's trying to figure out just how much he has to reveal to get away with it.

No one doubts the qualifications he brings to the table as a player.  But, the gambling...

Is it absolutely conclusive that he never bet as a player?

It's said he never bet against his club.  But, is there absolute proof that he never made a move as a manager, based on his bet that day?  Did he ever manage to win that day, by making moves that might not have been in the best long-term interests of his players' health?

If gambling losses made enough of an impact on his financial security, what if he were asked to not use a certain player -- feign a "manager's decision" day off for someone like Eric Davis?  Maybe he wouldn't bet on the game himself, but the chance he could make such a move still compromises the integrity of the game.

Who do we trust to tell us the truth?  Rose, who has already lied so many times?

The moral high ground is pretty muddy.  After all, there are plenty of other Hall members who reportedly conspired with fixers.  And some players who were booted out of baseball, like Hal Chase, who would have been a lock for the Hall.

Again, rules were enacted.  Landis made a huge "statement" about cleaning up the game.  The era of players consorting with gamblers ended (for all we know).  Now, here's Charlie Hustle.

How iron-clad are those rules?



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First Base Coach

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Date: Dec 16, 2014
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My case for Satchel Paige

Satchel Paige is the second of the four players I had placed in my first 10 ballot, but did not get enough votes to be part of the inaugural SOMers Hall of Fame class.

As I was compiling my first 10 I decided I should include players from the Negro League.  The players in the Negro League were every bit the equal of those in the Major Leagues.  Black ball players were some of the most dominate players in Major League history after the color barrier was broken by Jackie Robinson in 1947, the election of Mays and Aaron to the SOM inaugural class verifies this.  It goes to reason that black ball players prior to 1947 were also some of the greatest ball players of all-time and should be considered among the first 10.  

So now the question becomes who to place in the first 10.  Satchel Paige, Josh Gibson, Oscar Charleston, Cool Papa Bell, Bullet Joe Rogan, Mule Suttles, Buck Leonard, and Pop Lloyd all jumped to mind.  Off to do some research and thinking.  These were all great players, the equal or superior of many white Hall of Famers.  I had a difficult time narrowing down the best hitter of all-time, but settled on Josh Gibson and Oscar Charleston.  For pitchers I decided on Satchel Paige, Joe Rogan, and Smokey Joe Williams.  In the end I didn't feel Charleston and Gibson were the superior of some of the other hitters on my list (although on further reflection I would have included Gibson and left off Gehrig, maybe I was influenced by the Gehrig bio I'm currently reading).  I also felt the position of pitcher is the most important on the field (I ended up including 3 pitchers in my top 10 and considered several more), so a pitcher it would be, but whom? There are many that would argue that Rogan and Williams were better pitchers than Paige.  The difficulty of the comparing Negro League players is the statistical numbers aren't there, so you're often relying on anecdotal evidence.  

In the end I settled on Satchel Paige, was Satchel the greatest pitcher in Negro League history?  Maybe not, but he may have been.  Maybe that opinion was a result of his showmanship. Satchel's showmanship brought him fame, but his fame brought attention to the Negro League and all of the other great players.  Satchel also had the the fortune of great timing, among the great pitchers of the Negro League he was able to pitch in the Major League.  Paige, even though he was in his forties, fared very well in the majors.  In his rookie year, at age 41, he finished with a 6-1 record and 2.48 ERA.  He was an all-star in 1952 and 1953.  He won 12 games and saved 10 more in 1952 at the age of 45.  In 1965 he started a game for Kansas City pitching 3 innings and allowing only 1 hit and no runs, he was 58!  I can only imagine how he would have fared in his prime.

I will continue to include Negro League players in my choices, continuing to vote for Paige and continuing to consider other Negro League players.



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Umpire

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Date: Dec 16, 2014
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seajaw wrote:
More importantly, they [steroids] are against the law.  This is a federal offense we are talking about.  Stuff the DEA comes after you for doing.

But, when we have proof, do we allow those players to reap the rewards of their cheating by letting them earn baseball's highest honor?  I


I would just like to point out that there has been no proof of Barry Bonds or Roger Clemens ever took steroids. Is there a ton of warranted speculation? Oh yeah.

Barry Bonds was found guilty of obstruction of justice relating to whether he took steroid by evading answering questions. He was never convicted of possessing or using steroids. This casts a long shadow on Bonds because he has not passed all the challenges.

Roger Clemens was found not guilty on 6 counts (two counts of perjury, three counts of making false statements and one count of obstructing Congress)

http://espn.go.com/mlb/story/_/id/8068819/roger-clemens-found-not-guilty-all-six-counts-perjury-trial

Since Roger Clemens was found not guilty in a court of law and never suspended by MLB then he passed all the official challenges concerning steroids. The only trial left is the court of public opinions. I believe we live in a country where innocent until proven guilty is the standard. Roger Clemens has not been found guilty of anything. Speculation and suspicion are not the standards by which a man should be judged especially after he had his day in court.

I have a much harder time justifying Pete Rose, Shoeless Joe, and Barry Bonds than I do Roger Clemens. The other 3 were all disciplined in some manner (yet I still believe all 3 are HOFers). Roger Clemens is a man in official good standing with MLB and the legal system.

I cannot condemn a man who fought for his reputation and won. I have no reason to not vote him in as the greatest pitcher of his era and one of the elites of all time.

 

I respect the dissenting opinions and this thread has been excellent. There are some really well though out comments here.

 

 



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