Blog Entry

Could someone explain the Baseball H.O.F. voting?

Posted on: July 26, 2010 9:29 am
First off let me say that this is in no way a slam on the voting in of Andre Dawson.   I think he deserves it. He belongs.  My question is, "Why does it take the Hall of Fame voters 9 tries to vote a player in?"
I just don't get it.  What has changed since the first 8 times he was eligible?  He hasn't added to any of his career totals.  Hasn't hit another homer, stole another base, robbed someone of a home run.  So why are his numbers worthy this year when they weren't the first 8 times?
I understand with not voting someone in on their first year of eligibility.  A first ballot Hall of Famer should be an honour reserved for the elite of the elite.  But if they aren't worthy after that second year, then why would they be worthy later?  They are either Hall worthy or they aren't.
Like I said off the start my purpose isn't to debate whether Dawson belongs or not, but rather why it took 9 tries to get him there.
Oh, and one last question, why can't a player choose the team that he represents in the Hall?  I read that Dawson wanted to go in as a Cub, but the Hall is making him go in as an Expo.  Why is that?

Category: MLB

Since: Jul 19, 2010
Posted on: July 28, 2010 5:53 pm

Hall of Fame

I like the fact that the baseball Hall of Fame is the hardest to get in to of the major professional sports. I think this is one of the reasons people get so passionate about it.

My biggest knock on the voting right now is the silly unspoken rule about no one being a unanimous choice. As an example anyone who didn't vote for Rickey Henderson for the Hall of Fame should lose their right to vote. The same could be said for people who didn't vote for Cal Ripken Jr. and Tony Gwynn in 2007.

If someone is a no doubt hall of famer you should vote for them. The example that Babe Ruth didn't get all the votes is absurd. All that means is there was some idiot back then who didn't vote for the greates player ever. Why be like that idiot?

Since: Dec 11, 2007
Posted on: July 28, 2010 4:42 pm

Could someone explain the Baseball H.O.F. voting?

The Baseball HOF is a joke until Santo gets in

Since: Jul 10, 2007
Posted on: July 28, 2010 1:36 pm

Could someone explain the Baseball H.O.F. voting?

A HOF player is like Porn.........You know it when you see it.......Dawson, Rice, Blyleven, KAAT, Cepeda, MAZ........I don't see it.

Since: Mar 7, 2009
Posted on: July 28, 2010 1:17 am

Could someone explain the Baseball H.O.F. voting?

Great explanation, as well with the examples...
Follow up question would be...
How does one get the voting "right"?, how long does their voting ability last?, and when will the majority of the current voters get "turned over" to a new generation of thinkers?

Since: Jul 22, 2010
Posted on: July 27, 2010 11:38 pm

Could someone explain the Baseball H.O.F. voting?

 No tears for cheaters!  It's time to face the music boys!  I am not talking about Dawson, by the way. lol

Since: Feb 24, 2007
Posted on: July 27, 2010 3:40 pm

Could someone explain the Baseball H.O.F. voting?

It's really very simple. X number of voters get X number of votes each. Not everyone uses their entire allocation of votes if they do not feel there enough hall worthy candidates. A particular percentage must be obtained for induction. Players stats do not change, but circumstances on who is available to vote for do.

Without looking it up I think there are about 900 voters and they get 10 votes each and 65% is needed to get in. it might be a higher %.

Anyway, the reason some guys don't get in earlier is very simple. Of the 900 voters, 585 did not put them on for various reasons and here are the most likely. Of course over all of it is there are probably 3-4 guys each year that the majority of voters vote for so really there are only about 5-6 open spots on their ballot.

1. Not enough people think they are hall worthy period, now or ever.
2. The voter has other older players that they are trying to get in that are running out of eligibility.
3. The voter in most cases is a homer and has never covered a team othe than their home team/paper.
4. The player had the misfortune of being in an era where his hall worthy stat is overshadowed by others of his time, and then years later when the game changes, like now, all of a sudden his stats look better. This is flawed reasoning as he should be compared against his peers, not those 15 years later.
5. Each year there are a number of new players addded to the ballot, which means a bunch of guys stealing votes from you simply because their accomplishments ae still fresh in everyones mind.
6. And of course there are a few guys that the writers are trying to teach a lesson by not putting them in first ballot even though they have the numbers, etc. Another dumb reason.
7. The dumbest reason for not voting for a guy the first time around is because they don't want anyone to be unanimous because Babe Ruth wasn't unanimous. But at lest those guys are usually so good they get in first ballot at least anyway. I mean who would say that either Tony Gwynn or Cal Ripken are not true to the core first ballot HOF'ers, and there was nobody else in that class to steal votes. yet not unanimous. ANyone not voting for them should have had their vote taken away, period. I am sure there were others, but those two come to mind.

In Blylevins case he got passed over early on because there were so many players whose stats jumped out at you. He played in a golden age of baseball and there was a lot of all-time talent in the league. This goes for Dawson as well. Mostly hitters, but some of the pitchers were phenominal. It took a few years just to get them all in because again only so many can make the required %. After his class finally got in you had a whole new bunch of sluggers (possible steroid sluggers) and his accomplishments were fading from recent memory. Add to that he played in a small market and you have what you have. He only gets a lot of press now, because his statistics have stood the test of time, The game has come around to where his stats are great compared to todays retiring pitchers (pitching against steroid hitters) and he is now running out of eligibility. I remember watching him pitch and he was not overpowering or particularly feared. He was steady, dependable, and usually gave his team a chance to win.

Personally there are at least 30 players in the HOF that Blylevin should beat and I would also say that Jack Morris should be there too.

Since: Sep 6, 2006
Posted on: July 27, 2010 1:54 pm

Could someone explain the Baseball H.O.F. voting?

Local writer Jim Hawkins rights very interesting articles on the Hall voting. The impression I get reading him is that the voting process is very political. Writers and other voters from one area are expected to quietly lobby voters from other areas of the country on the potential inductee's behalf. Some players have so much support that they are shoe-ins to get in on the first few ballots. Others, the coalition of support takes more time to build (i.e. Dawson, Goose Gossage). And it's not entirely about the stats. Players on very good teams or who are household names nationally will often get the benefit of the doubt. Smaller market teams tend to have disproportionately fewer HoF'ers, because first those players tend to have fewer hometown votes at the start, and secondly because they are much less into the national conciousness, so their stats and contributions must be greater to reach that critical mass of support.

Since: Sep 25, 2006
Posted on: July 27, 2010 12:33 pm

Could someone explain the Baseball H.O.F. voting?

Basically you have a certain pool of guys every year that are eligible, and the top guys from that pool get selected.  The voting seems to be entirely relative, so it's just a matter of getting a relatively weaker class for guys like Andre Dawson.  Yeah, he didn't get any better from last year, but they always vote for a few people, so this time he was the relative best of the best.  If that makes sense..

Since: Jul 12, 2009
Posted on: July 27, 2010 12:11 pm

Could someone explain the Baseball H.O.F. voting?

I'll take your last question. The reason why the BBHOF selects the team is because there was a "conspiracy" some years ago concering Wade Boggs. Apparently when Boggs signed with the then Devil Rays, it was rumored that Boggs had received compensation and other possible benefits from the organization to have the Devil Rays hat on his plaque. In 2001, BBHOF took action and decided that they would make that choice.

As far as Hawk finally being inducted, he's being "judged" (stats and other intangibles) on a yearly basis against those that are also still under consideration for entry. It's almost like a slinding scale year in, year out. Just my take on that.

Since: Jul 27, 2010
Posted on: July 27, 2010 1:45 am

Could someone explain the Baseball H.O.F. voting?

Everything you said about their stats not changing is correct.  The most likely explanation is that the perception of those accomplishments in the eyes of the voters has changed.  Dawson is my sports hero (yes, I am extremely biased) and I've always believed he belongs in the Hall.  However, he would have had no shot were it not for the fallout from the Steroids Era.  What he did on the field looks so much more impressive now when placed next to the tainted stats of Big Mac, Bonds, JuanGon, etc.  The saddest part about that mess is that they were all likely Hall worthy without the roids.

As for your last question, it's a good one.  I was a little annoyed to see the powers that be deny him the Cubs hat, but going in as an Expo beats not going in at all.

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