Friday, July 6, 2012

6 comments Bleacher Report Shocks Us with the News Colby Lewis Isn't Making the Hall of Fame

Bleacher Report has an excessive amount of lists and slideshows. Instead of having a list of 10 players who won't make the Hall of Fame, the authors at Bleacher Report choose to make a list of 50 players who won't make the Hall of Fame. What makes it worse is this list is full of players who we already know aren't making the Hall of Fame. Why make a list telling us Colby Lewis or R.A. Dickey aren't making the Hall of Fame? We know this. Guess who else isn't making it? B.J. Surhoff, Eric Chavez, Ryan Vogelsong and thousands of other active or inactive players. It goes without saying, and yet it gets said anyway.

The Baseball Hall of Fame has made it clear that they don't want to let those under the steroid cloud in; one only has to look at Mark McGwire and Rafael Palmeiro's numbers.

The baseball Hall of Fame has made it clear they won't let these players into the Hall of Fame on their first or second ballot. To be fair, neither of these players have been on the ballot long enough to say the voters absolutely have made it clear steroid users won't at some point be in the Hall of Fame. The real test cases for whether the Hall of Fame will let steroid-connected players in are Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens.

While they may not get in, that doesn't mean those with merely good careers will.

To a certain extent it may. Players who have "lesser" numbers but no connection to steroids could get a candidacy boost because they put up "real" numbers in the Steroid Era. Players are going to make the Hall of Fame during each voting year (based on my own theory that the more limited the options on a ballot, the better some players on the ballot will look to the voters). I think to an extent if Mark McGwire doesn't in then this has to help a "clean" player's candidacy a little bit.

The following 50 players have had good careers—some with elite careers—so far, but with A-Rod as possibly the only exception, given that he's been able to play after the PED issues, these players are never going to make it into Cooperstown.

Some of these players have absolutely no shot to be in the Hall of Fame, so saying they won't be in the Hall is just common sense. Therefore they shouldn't be on the list. It isn't news Colby Lewis won't make the Hall of Fame. Why even include him on a list like this when you should also include any other player who has no shot of making the Hall of Fame?

Let's start the slideshow!

50. R.A. Dickey

When I was talking about players who have no shot and shouldn't be on the list, R.A. Dickey is included on this list. He's 37 years old and has 52 career wins and a lifetime ERA of 4.09. You only get serious consideration with an ERA that high if you are Jack Morris. Morris was a winner you know. A winner and the pitcher with the most wins during an arbitrarily chosen numbers of seasons.

49. Colby Lewis 48. Vernon Wells
Neither player should have a shot at the Hall of Fame. They shouldn't be on the list because it isn't news they won't make the Hall of Fame.

46. Bartolo Colon

He's 39 years old and has an ERA over 4.09.

Up to age 32, Bartolo Colon looked like he was on track for the Hall of Fame. He won a Cy Young Award, he was putting up great numbers and he was nearing the 150-win mark.

Colon also did not deserve to win that Cy Young Award. Johan Santana deserved it and using wins as a criteria for why he should be in the Hall of Fame doesn't completely convince me either.

44. Rafael Furcal

He has over 1,000 runs and over 1,750 hits, and his WAR of 37.8 is probably higher than you were expecting.

Well, you clearly know what I was expecting Furcal's WAR to be. Consider me shocked then to hear Furcal's WAR.

He won Rookie of the Year in 2000, but since then he has had just a string of good seasons. Perhaps WAR isn't the only stat that's needed to evaluate talent.

There may be more than one statistic required to properly evaluate a player? Say it isn't so!

43. Francisco Cordero

What about Bob Wickman? Will he make the Hall of Fame? Let's rule out every single player eligible for the Hall of Fame to make this list as long as possible. We need pageviews, you know.

42. Dan Haren

His record is only 111-91, and while his K/BB ratio is the best among active players and one of the best of all time, it takes a lot more than that.

(Falls out of his chair in shock) It takes more than a great K/BB ratio?

The fact that he's not even an ace (taking a backseat to Jered Weaver) says he's not an elite pitcher, so there's no reason to put him in the Hall.

I can quickly think of two other pitchers that weren't aces and took a backseat to a teammate. Tom Glavine and John Smoltz. They took a backseat to Greg Maddux, so I guess there is no reason to elect either of them into the Hall of Fame either.

41. Francisco Rodriguez Francisco Rodriguez has 292 saves at age 30 and, honestly, should be on his way to the Hall of Fame.

As long as you overvalue saves and include that statistic as the only pertinent statistic to determine a relief pitcher's Hall of Fame candidacy then this statement would be true.

A 2.58 ERA and amazing strikeout numbers make him look like a candidate on the surface.

So what's the issue?

The issue is that, for whatever reason, he's not a closer at the moment. He's behind John Axford in Milwaukee and, as a result, is starting to unravel.

So because he isn't a closer right now and he isn't getting saves, this means he isn't as good of a pitcher as he used to be? Rodriguez isn't entitled to one bad year I guess. Bartolo Colon had an ERA over 5.00 when he was 31, but because he pitched well at 32 years old he was projected to be bound for the Hall of Fame (according to the author). Francisco Rodriguez has had one bad year at 30 years old, he will never bounce back and now his Hall of Fame candidacy is shot.

I agree with the conclusion Rodriguez shouldn't be in the Hall of Fame, but the path we get there doesn't make sense to me.

If he can get a great free-agent deal and become an elite reliever again, he has a chance to work off this list.

Being an elite setup guy is just not good enough. You have to get those saves to be worth anything as a relief pitcher. Saves are the only statistic that make a relief pitcher a quality player. Good job obeying conventional thinking.

40. C.J. Wilson

He's 31 years old and has 51 career wins, has been a full-time starter for three years and wasn't anything but a very good relief pitcher for two years before that. No shit he isn't making the Hall of Fame.

38. Nick Swisher 37. Ted Lilly
(Shakes head sadly)

35. Aramis Ramirez

He has nearly 1,900 hits and 343 home runs in his career, and the lack of strikeouts is big for me—but he's never been elite, merely great at his peak and good otherwise. Besides, he's only 33, yet it seems like he's slowed down already; Hall of Famers need staying power.

Ramirez is actually 34 years old and he is playing better this year than he did when he was 32 years old. He's slowing down, but he had a great 2011 after a terrible 2010. So maybe he will have some more staying power.

34. Chris Carpenter

Chris Carpenter is one of those players who follows a pattern you'll see a lot of in the list.

The pattern being players who were put on this list and had no shot of making the Hall of Fame anyway, so there was no point in even making a list saying these players wouldn't make the Hall of Fame? Adam Wainwright isn't going to make the Hall of Fame either. Neither is Adam Kennedy. Let's add them to this list.

32. Josh Beckett Josh Beckett, when he's on, is one of the best pitchers in the game. If he were to have a six- or eight-year span where he pitched like he did last year or in 2007, then we would be a Hall of Fame pitcher.

If you took the best season John Burkett ever had and then he pitched like that for 10 straight seasons, he would be in the Hall of Fame! Mark it down.

31. Curtis Granderson Curtis Granderson seemingly came out of nowhere to have a dominant year last season,

He was 10th in MVP voting in 2007 and an All-Star in 2009. Maybe "out of nowhere" translates to "Detroit."

28. Carlos Lee

But what about Morgan Ensberg? Will he be in the Hall of Fame? I'm assuming so since he isn't on this list.

27. Carlos Zambrano

Wouldn't it just have been easier to name every player in the majors and say whether he will make the Hall of Fame? Think of the pageviews!

25. Adam Dunn

I have a feeling Dunn is going to be the Sabermetric Jack Morris. Fans of traditional statistics will hate him, while Sabermetricians will want to vote for him. His comparable players through the age of 31 are:

Reggie Jackson
Harmon Killebrew
Rocky Colavito
Jose Canseco
Jim Thome
Troy Glaus
Ralph Kiner
Dale Murphy
Sammy Sosa
Boog Powell

Three of those players are in the Hall of Fame. Thome will probably make the Hall of Fame. Sosa and Canseco would probably have a good chance at the Hall of Fame if they weren't linked to steroids (Sosa may still make it...who knows?). So five or six of the comparable players to Adam Dunn at the age of 31 are in the Hall of Fame or would have a good shot of being elected into the Hall of Fame if they were clear of steroids allegations. Dunn is clear of these allegations. I think Adam Dunn makes it as long as he doesn't repeat his 2011 season over the next five years.

The author of this article only uses 500 home runs as the reason Dunn won't make it. Apparently home runs are the only measure that matters.

18. Paul Konerko

Well, between his first peak and recent surge he had a few average seasons, and while 2,100 hits and over 400 home runs are very nice numbers, it's going to take three or four career years to get people talking,

Orlando Cepeda played first base from 1958 to 1974. He had 7927 at-bats, 2351 hits, 379 home runs, 1365 RBIs, and hit .297/.350/.499 with one MVP award and seven All-Star teams.

Paul Konerko has played first base from 1997-2012. He has 7414 at-bats, 2105 hits, 409 home runs, 1300 RBIs and has hit .284/.360/.503 with zero MVP awards and five All-Star teams (with a probable sixth this year).

Why does Konerko have to hit like he has for three or four more years to get people talking? Please understand I am not trying to use the lowest common denominator approach to letting a player into the Hall of Fame (using a player who clearly doesn't deserve it...ahem, Jim Rice and Phil Rizzuto as the basis for why another player should make it). I think it is generally agreed Cepeda deserved the Hall of Fame honor and Konerko has similar numbers to him. He should have a pretty good candidacy in my mind.

16. Jason Giambi That being said, he has the steroid mark on him, and outside of his dominant peak, he was not that great a player. Certainly a guy hitting over 400 home runs could have done better than an average around .280.

This is a stupid and unintelligent comment. Willie McCovey hit 521 home runs and only had a .270 career average and Willie Stargell hit .282 with 475 home runs. There are even people not named "Willie" who are in the Hall of Fame, hit a ton of home runs and had an average around .280. Why would his .280 batting average matter if the rest his body of work says he deserves to make the Hall of Fame?

15. Carlos Gonzalez

He's 26 years old. Maybe it's best to give him more than five years in the majors before deciding if his Hall of Fame candidacy has merit or not.

14. Scott Rolen He had a very nice career, and while third basemen are underrepresented, I would pick Adrian Beltre before Rolen.

Of course you would also write a column about baseball players who won't make the Hall of Fame and include 25 very obvious choices that don't even merit a mention. So there's that.

13. Tim Hudson However, even with 185 wins, he doesn't have the hardware. Only two All-Star appearances and three top-four Cy Young finishes are not going to get people talking.

What the fuck is up with this "get people talking" standard that is required to make the Hall of Fame? Is this some bullshit Bill Simmons-like theory where if a player doesn't have people talking about seeing him play then he isn't worthy of the Hall of Fame? Yes, I wouldn't put Hudson in the Hall of Fame, but not because people don't "talk" about him, but because he doesn't deserve the honor based on his playing accomplishments.

12. Michael Young On the surface, Michael Young has numbers that at least merit Hall discussion. He's hitting .302 in his career with over 1,000 runs, over 2,100 hits and seven All-Star appearances. That being said, he's never really been discussed as an elite talent, and the best he's done in MVP voting is eighth.


11. Todd Helton

Anyone who's a power hitter in Colorado is going to have a much larger mountain to climb for the Hall of Fame, since one's stats are inflated there. Take Todd Helton, who has a .321 average, 254 home runs and nearly 2,500 hits.

Or Helton has 354 home runs in his career. You know, either 254 or 354. I'm sure an editor wouldn't need to correct this mistake.

a career Rockie without an MVP win isn't going to make it in.

Because that MVP award will make the voters completely ignore the so-called "Coors Effect?" What type of logic is? The author writes about the "Coors Effect" related to why Helton should not make the Hall of Fame and then says this opinion could change if Helton won an MVP. One year of being the MVP suddenly negates the "Coors Effect?"
10. Tim Lincecum

He's 28 years old and has had one bad year in the majors. Let's give him some more time.

9. Matt Holliday His other numbers are very nice, but having to play behind Albert Pujols didn't help much. Now that Holliday's taken over, he's second fiddle again—this time to Carlos Beltran.

So the only way to make the baseball Hall of Fame is to play on a team with no other stars that may overshadow you on that team. No one told Eddie Mathews or Yogi Berra this apparently.

8. Omar Vizquel

I don't want him to make it, but I think Vizquel will squeeze through and make the Hall of Fame. I tend to agree with some of the author's reasoning, but I think Vizquel makes it.

5. Sammy Sosa 4. Mark McGwire 3. Rafael Palmeiro These guys probably aren't getting in any time soon. I think Sosa or McGwire could possibly get in on their 10th or 11th tries as voters start to warm up to the idea of considering PED users for the Hall of Fame. I could be wrong. These are the same voting idiots who hold suspicions of PED use against guys like Jeff Bagwell and want to elect Jack Morris into the Hall of Fame.

2. Manny Ramirez 1. Alex Rodriguez

I think these two players will get in the Hall of Fame as well. These two put up great statistics, but not quite the video game numbers that McGwire and Sosa put up. I think the idea they were naturally great hitters without steroids (which I am not McGwire/Sosa are considered in the same way) gets them into the Hall of Fame.

Look for my post tomorrow, "1,001 MLB Players Who Won't be the Best Player in the History of Baseball." This will be followed by post the next day of "10,000 MLB Players Who Aren't as Good at Basketball as LeBron James."


jacktotherack said...

Oof that is awful. Those first 25 or so guys listed are just hilarious. Ted Fucking Lilly? Has he ever been more than a #3 starter for any team he's ever played for?

Bengoodfella said...

Jack, I'm not sure he has been more than a #3 starter with any team. This article is everything I don't like about Bleacher Report...the overly long lists and the obviousness.

Freddy Garcia also isn't making the Hall of Fame. He should be on this list too, no?

Koleslaw said...

Sorry for leaving comments on articles you wrote weeks ago. I just got home from my two month stint in Vegas and I'm playing catchup on my blog reading after having limited Internet time for so long.

A few of the articles you write about I don't actually read, I just read your synopsis at the beginning and maybe the first couple quoted lines because I can get the gist of the article pretty quickly. This is a prime example of one of those cases.

Fifty baseball players who won't make the HoF? Are you fucking kidding me? I bet I could show my girlfriend and say "hey baby, write an article called '50 players who won't make the HoF'" and she could have it written in a couple hours.

There's a new criterion for poor sports journalism for you to use as a basis: If Koleslaw's not-as-interested-in-sports-as-he-is girlfriend could write this same article, then it probably fucking sucks.

Koleslaw said...

As a side note, how much more interesting would this article be if it has players like Pete Rose, Shoeless Joe and Barry Bonds on it?

Bengoodfella said...

Koleslaw, it's no problem. Blogger makes it easy to check when new comments have come in on posts. I write a lot so I don't blame anyone if they even skim what I write. Sometimes you don't need to read everything I write to get the point of what is written.

There are thousands of obvious examples of players who won't make the Hall of Fame, which is why this was so pointless.

It would have been more interesting if Bonds was on the list for sure.

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