Blog Entry

Barry Larkin elected into Hall of Fame

Posted on: January 9, 2012 2:59 pm
Edited on: January 10, 2012 12:16 pm

By Matt Snyder

Barry Larkin will join Ron Santo in the 2012 Baseball Hall of Fame induction class. The announcement was made by the Baseball Writers Association of America on Monday afternoon.

Larkin was the only man from the 27-player ballot who received the necessary 75 percent of the vote. Larkin got 86.4 percent of the vote (495 of 573). Votes can be cast by writers who have been members of the BBWAA for at least 10 years.

Complete breakdown of the 2012 Hall of Fame voting

Larkin, 47, played his entire 19-season career for the Cincinnati Reds. The 12-time All-Star shortstop hit .295 with an .815 OPS in his career. He added 1,329 runs, 2,340 hits, 441 doubles, 198 home runs and 379 stolen bases. Larkin won the 1995 NL MVP while also adding nine Silver Sluggers, three Gold Gloves and was the starting shortstop for the 1990 World Series champion Reds.

Hall of Fame coverage
Looking at Wins Above Replacement by, Larkin trails only the following shortstops (counting years as a shorstop only): Honus Wagner, George Davis, Cal Ripken, Arky Vaughan, Bill Dahlen, Derek Jeter and Luke Appling. All but Dahlen and Jeter are in the Hall of Fame and Jeter is headed to Cooperstown five years after his retirement. Also, in Bill James' Historical Baseball Abstract, which was updated in 1999, James ranked Larkin as the sixth best shortstop of all-time.

Larkin also netted two off-field accolades, as he won the 1993 Roberto Clemente Award (given to a player that "best exemplifies the game of baseball, sportsmanship, community involvement and the individual's contribution to his team") and the 1994 Lou Gehrig Award (given to a player that exhibits character and integrity both on and off the field).

"I never really thought about it as a player," Larkin told insider Jon Heyman Sunday. "I never thought about it until I saw some support was there. I had thought it was unattainable. My whole approach was, 'How I can better the team?' I remember guys telling me early, 'You're never going to make money hitting behind runners.' They really wanted me to be selfish. I think what they were saying is that I should turn on the ball. It's definitely something I could appreciate later. But the years I had success were the years I had great players around me."

This time around marked Larkin's third chance on the ballot. He received 51.6 percent of the vote in 2010 and 62.1 percent last year, so the trajectory -- in addition to a pretty weak first-year class -- made Larkin's induction this year likely. Still, it wasn't a sure thing by any stretch. The jump all the way to 86 percent was surprisingly large.

"The Cincinnati Reds organization and our entire city are thrilled with Barry's election to the National Baseball Hall of Fame," Reds president Bob Castellini said in a statement. "His extraordinary talent has earned him a permanent place in Cooperstown alongside Reds greats Sparky Anderson, Johnny Bench, Warren Giles, Ernie Lombardi, Bill McKechnie, Bid McPhee, Joe Morgan, Tony Perez, Eppa Rixey and Edd Roush. Throughout his entire life both on and off the field, Barry has represented himself and our city with the class and professionalism consistent with the ideals of the Reds, Major League Baseball and the Hall of Fame in Cooperstown. He continues to be one of our game's greatest ambassadors. We are very proud that his accomplishments have been validated at the highest level by the Baseball Writers' Association of America. We look forward to the induction ceremonies in July."

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Since: Dec 28, 2011
Posted on: January 10, 2012 12:30 pm

Barry Larkin elected into Hall of Fame

Barry Larkin elected into Hall of Fame

over the past decade or so its not exclusive???  who has gotten in recently that shouldn't be in???  it took bert blyleven 15 years to get in.  there have been many years with only one inductee--unlike football and basketball where you always have 4 or 5.  if anything the baseball hall is not inclusive enough

I like the fact that it is hard to get into the hall of fame.  It should be an exclusive club and just cause the NFL send 4 to 5 every year does not mean baseball should.  The Hall is the best of the best in their era.  SOme deserving people will be left out and some who get in should not be.  THat is part of the democratice process.

I think it will be interesting when the PED era starts to come on the ballot.  I would like to see what the criteria will be and who will and will not make it.

Since: Apr 26, 2007
Posted on: January 10, 2012 12:18 pm

Barry Larkin elected into Hall of Fame

Well said BlueZoo. I have questioned the HOF for years. In fact, I quit donating to that corrupt corporation. Why did it take this long for Ron Santo to be in. Two reasons...he passed on last year and he wasn't a favorite of the writers back in the day. The lame excuse was "they" could not justify having 4 guys from the same team in HOF. The HOF can allow a drunk and womanizer (Babe Ruth), a radical racist and nut case (Ty Cobb), a proven womanizer (Wade Boggs), a cheating spitballer (Gaylord Perry) and a possible steroid user (see Canseco' comments about it), but not Pete Rose (he did not bet against his team unlike the 1919 Black Sox). Willie Mays and Mickey Mantle were only suspended when they were affliated with an Atlantic City casino. By the way, didn't Mike Schmidt admit to using "speeders" back in the day. Saying that amphetamines and barbituates were like M & M's in bowl in the clubhouse. "Walk by and grab and handful". The HOF is corrupt and political. We always see the final % of votes, but never the breakdown of votes per writer. Tell the HOF committe doesn't have an influence. Why was Joe Morgan so against Ryne Sandberg on being in the HOF?

Since: Apr 26, 2007
Posted on: January 10, 2012 12:08 pm

Barry Larkin elected into Hall of Fame

'Bout time for Barry. Class act and team player. Too bad it cannot be said for another Barry out there.

Since: Jan 2, 2007
Posted on: January 10, 2012 12:07 pm

Barry Larkin elected into Hall of Fame

Larkin was a good player,  HOF?   close but I'll buy it. BUT,  that opens the question.
WHERE IS STEVE GARVEY?   look at their numbers.  Garvey beats Larkin in almost every category. Including 
Hits, Homeruns, RBI's, and MVP's ( 5 of them---  League MVP, 2 NLCS MVP's, and 2 Allstar MVP's)  
Get the hell out of here!  Garvey was a very good overall first baseman while Larkin was one of the two or three best shortstops in a generation.  You cannot compare their stats in any way, shape, or form -- just like you don't compare catchers to outfielders and question why one gets in over another.

Garvey was excellent at fielding his position but he wasn't anything special as a hitter -- good, yes, but nowhere near Hall of Fame quality for 1B.

Since: Oct 28, 2009
Posted on: January 10, 2012 11:46 am

Barry Larkin elected into Hall of Fame

Yeh, congrats to Larkin, he deserves it. It's got to be a lot of pressure to be the one and only inductee this year, good luck with that speech!

Since: Oct 25, 2011
Posted on: January 10, 2012 10:36 am

Barry Larkin elected into Hall of Fame

Grats to Larkin... standup guy.  One of the reasons I still watch baseball to this date is people of the same character as Larkin that play this game.  Keep all the steriod mongers out.

Since: Mar 13, 2008
Posted on: January 10, 2012 10:11 am

Barry Larkin elected into Hall of Fame

Deserved.  The type of player that is rare in these days of meat auctions.  Ripken and Larkin playing all their years with the same team reminds one of when you grew up with a hometown team and hometown heroes.

Since: Sep 22, 2006
Posted on: January 10, 2012 10:08 am

Barry Larkin elected into Hall of Fame

You mention Bert Blyleven and he is a perfect example. If it takes 15 years to get in why are you in? What changed in those 15 years? Yes there are exceptions of guys who shouldve been in like Jim Rice. Then take the Veterans Committee out of the mix because that is adding another level of borderline guys. Look at players like Andre Dawson, Molitor, Puckett and Sutton all great players but are the all time greats? Sutton in fact was never even the best pitcher on his team. The Hall needs to use a new standard that perhaps takes into acount players, veterans, management and writers who all get a 25% say on voting.

Since: Feb 8, 2008
Posted on: January 10, 2012 10:07 am

Barry Larkin elected into Hall of Fame

Congrads to Larkin who clearly belongs in the HOF.  That said, the HOF as it is configured today is a joke.  You were supposed to get there based on your stats, not on anything else.  One name - Pete Rose - tells me all I need to know about how much I should respect the HOF.  Ty Cobb is in the HOF and the man was a literally raging racist who actually assaulted a fan in the stands who was in a wheelchair and had no arms, and Cobb stabbed another.  He got in endless fights which had to be broken up and actually choked a groundskeeper's wife at Tiger Stadium because she intervened in a fight he was having with her husband.  Yet, there he is in the HOF!

Since: Oct 16, 2011
Posted on: January 10, 2012 9:53 am

Barry Larkin elected into Hall of Fame

Some people lose perspective over time, and there is a whole generation of fans (and writers) that don't really remember what stats looked like without PED bias.
Well said Redsfan1507!

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