We already have a good sense that when the Hall of Fame voting results are revealed, Curt Schilling is not going to be over the 75 percent threshold needed for enshrinement. Many think he should be in -- including myself -- and it's possible he will make it in the coming years. This vote is going to go a long way in determining if he ever does make it. 

First off, it looks like Edgar Martinez, Mike Mussina, Roy Halladay and Mariano Rivera are going to get inducted. Fred McGriff is in his 10th year, so he's also being cleared from the ballot. That's five guys coming off to ease the ballot crunch. There is one player coming on next year who is Hall-worthy and that's Derek Jeter. The next-best first timers are Bobby Abreu and Cliff Lee. 

All this is to say that if there are people who vote for 10 players and had 10 players qualifying ahead of Schilling, there will be, likely, four open spots next year.

Schilling jumped from 45 percent to 51.2 percent last year. He appears to be gaining votes this time around, too (check out Ryan Thibodaux's excellent ballot tracker). If Schilling sees similar gains and jumps up to close to 60 percent, I like his chances for eventual enshrinement. With Halladay and Mussina coming off, Schilling is easily the best pitcher remaining aside from Roger Clemens and we know the difference there. 

Now, it must be said that there are some who won't vote for Schilling because they don't like him or some things that he has said over the years. For those people, it's their right because it's their vote, but Schilling the player was absolutely a Hall of Famer. 

He led the league in wins twice, complete games four times, innings twice, strikeouts twice, WHIP twice and strikeout-to-walk rate five times. He has over 3,000 strikeouts and finished second in Cy Young voting three times. Among pitchers with at least 1,000 innings, Schilling ranks 52nd in WHIP, 29th in strikeouts-per-nine innings, fifth in K:BB, 49th in ERA+, 26th in WAR and 20th in win probability added. He's 15th in strikeouts. 

Going by the JAWS system, Schilling ranks as the 27th best starting pitcher in history, better than the average Hall of Famer and ahead of pitchers like Nolan Ryan, Tom Glavine, Jim Palmer, Carl Hubbel and Bob Feller. He's two spots ahead of Mussina, who, again, likely goes in this year and rightfully so. 

And if all of this isn't enough to convince you, Schilling is arguably the greatest postseason pitcher of all time. We don't need to rehash the "Bloody Sock Game" (though, seriously, that's a Hall of Fame moment en route to the Red Sox winning the World Series for the first time since 1918), but overall, he was nails almost every single time he was called upon in October. 

In 19 career playoff starts, Schilling was 11-2 with a 2.23 ERA, 0.97 WHIP and 120 strikeouts against 25 walks in 133 1/3 innings. He had four complete games and two shutouts. He won an NLCS MVP, a World Series MVP and three rings. Recent inductee Jack Morris is often held up as this mythical postseason monster, but his numbers aren't even in the ballpark with Schilling's (Morris was 7-4 with a 3.80 ERA, 1.24 WHIP and 64 strikeouts against 32 walks in 92 1/3 innings). 

As a player, Curt Schilling absolutely belongs in the Hall of Fame. Once the vote is revealed this year, we'll know a lot more about the prospects of that becoming a reality via the BBWAA vote.