Another BBWAA Hall of Fame Update

December 23, 2016
I admit it….I’m a bit of a Hall of Fame voting junkie.  I’m fascinated with the voting…..the history, the discussion, the evaluation of candidates, who’s in, who’s out, who’s been voted in by who, exploring ways to make it better….I love it all. 
 
I think it’s somewhat akin to political junkies who really get into the election cycle like the one we just went through…reviewing the candidates, debating the issues, strategies for getting elected, projecting who’s going to win.  I’m not sure which is more "hotly" debated within the context of its inner circle…the Baseball Hall of Fame, or national elections.  Sure, the presidential election is more far reaching and touches many more people, and is ultimately more important, but you want to stir up a good debate among baseball aficionados?  Try bringing up the Hall of Fame.
 
To someone like me, the Hall of Fame tracker, dutifully maintained by Ryan Thibodaux, is a delight, a treasure trove to dive into and wallow for a while to see what kind of trends are emerging and to get some sense of how different players are faring.  I thank him for this wonderful tool, as it provided most of the information for this article. 
 
For those of you unfamiliar with it, the Hall of Fame tracker is essentially a published spreadsheet that tracks "public" ballots (that is, ballots that actual Hall of Fame voters have voluntarily released either through their columns, Twitter, or other means).  Among many other details, it also collects by voter:
 
·         who they voted for
·         if they changed any of their selections from the prior year
·         links to the voter’s ballot (if they actually posted it)
·         plus much, much more
 
About a week ago, I posted a brief article where I took a quick glance to see how things were tracking early on.  At that time there were 39 known ballots that had been revealed.  As I write this, it is now up to 89, which represents roughly 20% of the estimated eventual ballots that will be turned in by this year’s voting body (last year 440 ballots were submitted, and the tracker is estimating 435 this year).
 
A couple of quick notes/definitions:

  • To save real estate, the tracker only lists 19 of the 34 players on the ballot, so the vote totals for players like Casey Blake, Matt Stairs, Freddy Sanchez, and Melvin Mora are not listed, as they are expected to generate very few votes.

  • A "Public" vote indicates that a voter voluntarily made his or her ballot known to the public, either through Twitter, a post, an article, or an email.

  • Some public votes are categorized as "anonymous", meaning that a ballot has been made submitted to the tracker’s organizer, but we don’t know the identity of the voter.

  • A "Private vote" (also referred to as a "non-public vote") indicates that a voter submitted his BBWAA and it will count in the final, announced totals, but the voter did not make his ballot selections known.  "Private" vote totals are not known yet for 2017, of course, but the total # of private votes from prior years can be calculated by subtracting the public and anonymous vote totals from the final, announced totals.

  • Private ballots, historically speaking, tend to be less inclusive than public votes.  In 2016, public ballots averaged 8.23 names per ballot, while private ballots averaged 7.28.  In 2015, the figure were 8.73 for public ballots, and 7.95 for private ballots. 

  •  Public ballots, as a % of the total vote, are trending up:
    • In 2014, there were 571 ballots submitted, with 302 (52.9%) of them being public

    • In 2015, there were 549 ballots submitted, with 331 (60.3%) of them being public

    • In 2016, there were 440 ballots submitted, with 310 (70.5%) of them being public

  • You may also have noticed that the total number of ballots submitted declined quite a bit last year, as the voter eligibility requirements were tightened up (voters have to be active BBWAA members or have held active status in the past 10 years).  Therefore, many prior voters have had their privileges removed.
 
Let’s level set by looking at where the list of returning candidates ended up after last year’s voting.  The list is sorted by the % of the total actual vote they received last year, but also shows the public vs. private split.  Players highlighted in yellow received a higher % of the vote among private voters vs. public voters, which implies that the public votes collected in the tracker might actually underestimate their final totals. 
 
As you can see, most players receive higher % totals among public voters vs. private voters, but a few (Hoffman, Smith, Wagner, McGriff) actually received greater support among private voters.  The fact that 3 of those 4 are closers is an interesting takeaway, although it could just be coincidence.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Player
 
 
 
 
 
2016 Actual Final %
 
 
 
 
 
 
2016 Public & Anonymous %
 
 
 
 
 
 
2016 Private %
 
 
 
2016 Private % vs Public % (in pct points)
Jeff Bagwell
71.6%
75.8%
61.5%
-14.3
Tim Raines
69.8%
74.2%
59.2%
-15.0
Trevor Hoffman
67.3%
66.5%
69.2%
+2.7
Curt Schilling
52.3%
58.7%
36.9%
-21.8
Roger Clemens
45.2%
45.8%
43.8%
-2.0
Barry Bonds
44.3%
45.5%
41.5%
-4.0
Edgar Martinez
43.4%
47.1%
34.6%
-12.5
Mike Mussina
43.0%
48.4%
30.0%
-18.4
Lee Smith
34.1%
31.6%
40.0%
+8.4
Fred McGriff
20.9%
19.4%
24.6%
+5.2
Jeff Kent
16.6%
18.1%
13.1%
-5.0
Larry Walker
15.5%
15.8%
14.6%
-1.2
Gary Sheffield
11.6%
12.9%
8.5%
-4.4
Billy Wagner
10.5%
9.4%
13.1%
+3.7
Sammy Sosa
7.0%
7.1%
6.9%
-0.2
 
 
OK.  That’s the past.  Let’s look at 2017:
 
Current (12/22/16) 2017 Public and Anonymous Results (89 ballots)
Player
# Votes
% of Vote
Jeff Bagwell
81
91.0%
Tim Raines
80
89.9%
Ivan Rodriguez
75
84.3%
Trevor Hoffman
67
75.3%
Vladimir Guerrero
65
73.0%
Barry Bonds
64
71.9%
Roger Clemens
64
71.9%
Edgar Martinez
59
66.3%
Mike Mussina
54
60.7%
Curt Schilling
45
50.6%
Manny Ramirez
30
33.7%
Lee Smith
30
33.7%
Larry Walker
20
22.5%
Sammy Sosa
12
13.5%
Jeff Kent
11
12.4%
Fred McGriff
11
12.4%
Gary Sheffield
11
12.4%
Billy Wagner
9
10.1%
Jorge Posada
6
6.7%
 
Now, even though 75% is the threshold that a candidate must receive in order to be elected, this doesn’t necessarily imply that all is rosy for the top 4.  Remember that, generally speaking, "public" ballots tend to include more names per ballot than private ones do.  So, quite often (though not in all cases), players’ final voting percentages tend to be lower than what the tracker reveals at this point in time.
 
At this point, the tracker indicates that the average public ballot contains 8.94 selections per ballot.  That is quite high, and will almost certainly come down when all ballots are counted.
 
For perspective, here are the totals by year over the past decade for all votes (not just the public ones):
 
Year
Average Selections per Ballot
2016
7.95
2015
8.42
2014
8.39
2013
6.60
2012
5.10
2011
5.98
2010
5.67
2009
5.38
2008
5.35
2007
6.58
 
As you can see, we experienced a big jump in 2014 as the ballots started to get very crowded with qualified candidates.  After no candidates were elected by the writers in 2013, we have seen 9 candidates get elected over the past 3 years.  The average number of selections per ballot declined somewhat in 2016, but still remains relatively high compared to the previous norms.
 
It’s also interesting to note the distribution of 2017 public ballots collected to date by number of players selected.  More than three-fourths of the ballots published have selected 9 or more players, with almost 61% of voters using up all 10 slots (implying also that some voters would have used more than 10 if permitted):
 
Number on Ballot
Count
% of Total
10-Player Ballots
54
60.7%
9-Player Ballots
15
16.9%
8-Player Ballots
4
4.5%
7-Player Ballots
6
6.7%
6-Player Ballots
3
3.4%
5-Player Ballots
4
4.5%
4-Player Ballots
1
1.1%
3-Player Ballots
1
1.1%
2-Player Ballots
1
1.1%
1-Player Ballots
0
0.0%
Blank Ballots
0
0.0%
 
The "2-player ballot" only selected Vlad Guerrero and Trevor Hoffman. 
 
The "3-player ballot" only selected Jeff Bagwell, Tim Raines, and Trevor Hoffman (and also dropped off Jeff Kent from his prior year’s ballot).
 
 
Change in Public % (Current 2017 vs. 2016 Final)
This compares "public" votes only, and examines the change in percentage points between last year’s final public % of total and how the candidate is doing so far this year, sorted in descending order by the players with the largest change.
 
Player
2017 % of Vote (Public & Anonymous) Through 12/22
2016 Final % of Vote (Public & Anonymous) Only
Change in Public & Anonymous Vote (pct pts)
Barry Bonds
71.9%
45.5%
+26.4
Roger Clemens
71.9%
45.8%
+26.1
Edgar Martinez
66.3%
47.1%
+19.2
Tim Raines
89.9%
74.2%
+15.7
Jeff Bagwell
91.0%
75.8%
+15.2
Mike Mussina
60.7%
48.4%
+12.3
Trevor Hoffman
75.3%
66.5%
+8.8
Larry Walker
22.5%
15.8%
+6.7
Sammy Sosa
13.5%
7.1%
+6.4
Lee Smith
33.7%
31.6%
+2.1
Billy Wagner
10.1%
9.4%
+0.7
Gary Sheffield
12.4%
12.9%
-0.5
Jeff Kent
12.4%
18.1%
-5.7
Fred McGriff
12.4%
19.4%
-7.0
Curt Schilling
50.6%
58.7%
-8.1
 
Fascinating results so far.  Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens are doing much better than last year, with both tracking on over 70% of the public and anonymous ballots to date, although it remains to be seen how they will fare on the private ballots, which, again, tend to be a little more restrictive.
 
Several voters have already mentioned that, for a variety of reasons, they are re-evaluating how they feel about Bonds and Clemens specifically (and, by extension, the PED era).  Some have cited the recent news that Bud Selig has been elected to the Hall of Fame by the "Today’s Game" committee as triggering their re-evaluation, some have referenced being tired of being the "morality police".  In any event, Bonds and Clemens are both seeing a huge increase at this point vs. their public results in prior years.
 
Even with solid support so far on the public ballots, Bonds and Clemens are probably not going to be elected this year, but after finishing in the mid-40%’s last year, they seem certain to finish well over 50% this year, and 60% or more is within reach.  Again, a lot will depend on whether or not the non-public voters follow a similar change of heart as the public ones have exhibited so far.  I think this is shaping up as a bit of a tipping point, at least for Bonds and Clemens, as they are in their 5th year on the ballot.  I used to think that they were unlikely to get elected by the writers within their 10 year span of eligibility.  Seeing this leads me to believe that, while I think they’ll fall short this time, they will have gained enough support that they will probably be elected sometime before their 10-year eligibility on the BBWAA ballot expires.
 
Edgar Martinez, Tim Raines, Jeff Bagwell, and Mike Mussina are all also showing healthy % gains over last year’s public results.  For Raines and Bagwell, it will likely translate into election this year.  For Martinez and Mussina, it implies that they may take another significant step up, although Martinez is in his 8th year on the ballot and starting to run out of time.
 
On the flip side, Curt Schilling and Fred McGriff appear to be the big decliners at the moment.  More on Schilling later….
 
Net +/- Votes Among Returning Voters
 
This table compares how players have fared among returning voters who have voted in the past 2 years, and whether they have gained (or lost) any support among those particular voters.  Note that it does not necessarily imply that a voter has changed his mind on whether or not a player deserves to be elected into the Hall of Fame, as some voters who use all 10 slots may have simply not had room for a particular candidate among his top 10 in one year or the other.  
 
For example, a voter for Edgar Martinez may very well have left him off his 2016 ballot because he had him ranked #11 on his personal list, but after Ken Griffey Jr. and Mike Piazza were elected, that could have opened up room for him, assuming that he preferred Martinez to newly eligible candidates such as Ivan Rodriguez or Vlad Guerrero.  So, we don’t always necessarily know why someone voted for someone this year but not last year (or vice versa), unless they specifically address in their public commentary.
 
In any case, here are the net changes that we’ve seen among returning voters.
 
 
 
 
 
Player
Gained Votes from Returning Voters
Lost Votes from Returning Voters
Net +/- Among Returning Voters
Tim Raines
16
0
16
Edgar Martinez
14
-1
13
Roger Clemens
10
-1
9
Barry Bonds
9
-1
8
Larry Walker
7
0
7
Mike Mussina
10
-4
6
Jeff Bagwell
4
0
4
Sammy Sosa
5
-3
2
Gary Sheffield
4
-2
2
Trevor Hoffman
7
-6
1
Lee Smith
2
-1
1
Billy Wagner
3
-2
1
Jeff Kent
1
-2
-1
Fred McGriff
3
-4
-1
Curt Schilling
5
-14
-9
 
Some pretty striking results at the top of the list.  What we’re seeing on Tim Raines is likely the infamous "last ballot" bounce that we often see by candidates who are in their final year of eligibility.  Raines has picked up 16 votes from returning voters without having anyone going the other direction.  Heading into this year, if the same number of ballots are submitted as were submitted last year, Raines needed to gain 20 extra votes.  With only roughly 20% of the vote in, he seems well on his way.
 
Almost as striking is the performance of Edgar Martinez, who has gained support among 14 returning voters and only lost one vote.  That one lost vote, by the way, was by a voter who included 4 new candidates (Ivan Rodriguez, Vlad Guerrero, Jorge Posada, and Jason Varitek) on his ballot and bumped Martinez down out of his top 10, and indicated that he would have voted for Martinez if he had the room.  So, he didn’t sour on Martinez….he just preferred the others.
 
This chart also provides additional evidence of the turning tide regarding Roger Clemens and Barry Bonds, who have picked up 10 and 9 votes, respectively, from returning voters while only losing support from one voter (yes, it was the same voter who dropped both).  In a very interesting ballot, probably the most volatile one I’ve seen, that one voter not only dropped Bonds and Clemens, but also dropped his support for Curt Schilling and Trevor Hoffman, while at the same time changing his vote this time in favor of Jeff Bagwell, Edgar Martinez, Mike Mussina, and Lee Smith, none of whom he voted for last year.  That’s quite a change of heart occurring all at once…..
 
Similar to the prior chart, Curt Schilling has been the big loser by this measurement as well.  Although Schilling has picked up 5 votes among returning voters who did not vote for him last year, he has lost 14 supporters, although at least 3 of those indicated that they would have included him if they could vote for more than 10, and they merely put others ahead of him.  In addition, some of the others could have felt the same way and simply not commented on it.  Most of the voters who dropped Schilling still have a full slate of 10 selections.  Still, we’ve seen at least a couple of mentions from voters that Schilling’s controversial comments are playing at least some role in their decisions.  I’ve also seen more than one voter cite the Hall of Fame’s "character clause" directly as the reason for dropping support for Schilling.  Whether or not Schilling personal behavior and public comments constitute a lack of "character" or "integrity" in a Baseball Hall of Fame context is an interesting subject, and is worthy of an article all by itself (it’s something I’m considering writing up…..)
 
Looked at another way, if you count up both the "gained" and "lost" votes, you can see which players have experienced the biggest number of total "changes" among returning voters.  These could be described as the most "volatile" candidates from last year to this year, with the ones at the bottom being the most "stable":
 
 
 
 
 
Player
Total Changed Vote Count Among Returning Voters
 
 
Gained Votes from Returning Voters
 
 
Lost Votes from Returning Voters
Curt Schilling
19
5
-14
Tim Raines
16
16
0
Edgar Martinez
15
14
-1
Mike Mussina
14
10
-4
Trevor Hoffman
13
7
-6
Roger Clemens
11
10
-1
Barry Bonds
10
9
-1
Sammy Sosa
8
5
-3
Larry Walker
7
7
0
Fred McGriff
7
3
-4
Gary Sheffield
6
4
-2
Billy Wagner
5
3
-2
Jeff Bagwell
4
4
0
Lee Smith
3
2
-1
Jeff Kent
3
1
-2
 
Here’s another interesting chart.  This one indicates how many additional votes a candidate would have received if the voters had been allowed to vote for more than 10.  This is based on specific comments (collected in the tracker) by the voter(s) in their columns or other mechanisms that they would have voted for the player if they had more slots.  
 
This list is sorted by the number of additional votes that have been expressed.  Note that this likely even understates the potential, as some voters may have voted for more than 10 but declined to comment on it:
 
 
 
 
 
Player
 
 
 
# Votes
 
 
2017 % of Vote (Public & Anonymous)
Expressed Additional Votes if Space Permitted
Potential 2017 %  if more than 10 Votes Allowed
Larry Walker
20
22.5%
7
30.3%
Vlad Guerrero
65
73.0%
5
78.7%
Curt Schilling
45
50.6%
5
56.2%
Edgar Martinez
59
66.3%
5
71.9%
Manny Ramirez
30
33.7%
3
37.1%
Mike Mussina
54
60.7%
3
64.0%
Sammy Sosa
12
13.5%
2
15.7%
Fred McGriff
11
12.4%
2
14.6%
Gary Sheffield
11
12.4%
2
14.6%
Billy Wagner
9
10.1%
2
12.4%
Jeff Kent
11
12.4%
2
14.6%
Ivan Rodriguez
75
84.3%
1
85.4%
Tim Raines
80
89.9%
1
91.0%
Trevor Hoffman
67
75.3%
1
76.4%
Lee Smith
30
33.7%
1
34.8%
Jorge Posada
6
6.7%
0
6.7%
Roger Clemens
64
71.9%
0
71.9%
Barry Bonds
64
71.9%
0
71.9%
Jeff Bagwell
81
91.0%
0
91.0%
 
The man at the top of the list, Larry Walker, has received 20 votes so far, but apparently would have received at least 7 more if the voters had more room, which would have boosted him from 22.5% to over 30%.  These types of factors are interesting to consider in future years, because it implies that, at least for these voters, if the ballots become less "crowded", you could see a potentially significant increase in some players’ vote totals as they work their way into a voter’s personal "top 10"
 
It’s interesting to note that Schilling, who has seen the biggest decline among returning voters, is also missing at least 5 potential votes because voters didn’t include him in their top 10, but would still vote for him if they had the room.
 
Also, note that Guerrero hidden support would be enough to push him over the 75% threshold (at least among public voters), and Martinez, who has already seen a big increase over last year, would be pushed to over 70% among public voters with the extra support.  Again, that bodes well for his future, but he is also running out of time.
 
There’s lots more to look at, but I’m going to stop here.
 
Wrapping it Up
 
Here’s what I would deduce at this point.  Note that none of these updated thoughts will impact my entry in our Hall of Fame "contest"….those entries have all been submitted and locked away.
 
  • Tim Raines and Jeff Bagwell look like they’ll be elected.  With around 90% support among public voters to date, I think they’ll end up in the low 80’s overall by the time all votes are tallied.

  • I would classify Ivan Rodriguez and Trevor Hoffman as "too close to call". 

    Rodriguez has 84% among public voters so far, but I have a suspicion that the private voters might be less forgiving.  I estimate he would need about 55% support among private voters.  He might very well get that, but Bonds and Clemens only received low-40%’s from last year’s private voters.  Of course, Rodriguez only has "suspicion" of PED’s, with no hard evidence, and, as mentioned before, the tide may be turning regarding PED’s anyway.  I think Rodriguez will be somewhere in the 70-75% range overall by the time all votes are tallied.  Even if he doesn’t make it this year, he’ll likely go in shortly.

    Hoffman had a terrific debut last year with  67% of the vote, which was pretty even among public (66.5%) and private (69.2%) voters.  He’s currently right at 75% among public voters in 2017, which would normally imply that he would fall short when the more restrictive private votes are included, except that he’s one of the exceptions who actually did better among private voters last year.  I think he’ll be very close, probably in a similar 70-75% range as Rodriguez

  • I believe that Vlad Guerrero, who is currently tracking in the low 70%’s among public voters, will end up in the mid-to-high 60%’s.  I think he will get in by 2019.

  • I believe that Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens will end up in the low-to-mid 60% range, and that this will set the stage for their eventual election in the following 2-3 years, although I’m sure there will still be some strong resistance as they make their way up the charts.

  • I believe that Curt Schilling, who has consistently finished higher than Mike Mussina in their mutual years on the ballot, will be surpassed by Mussina this time around.  I believe Mussina will end up around 50%, with Schilling dropping down to the low-tomid-40%’s.

  • I believe that Edgar Martinez will surpass 50% overall this year, but that he will run out of time as he only has 2 more years on the ballot.

  • Manny Ramirez is doing better than I thought he would.  He’s currently at about 34% on the public ballots.  The private ballots might provide minimal support, but I think he’s shaping up to end up with 25% or so.  That’s not a bad starting point, and better than I thought he would receive.
 
 
More to come later….
 
Thanks,
Dan
 
    
 
 

COMMENTS (13 Comments, most recent shown first)

DMBBHF
Dave,

Interesting question. I don't recall seeing anything along those lines. Generally speaking, it does seem to me like early voters tend to be more inclusive (more names per ballot), and then the # of votes per ballot tends to come down over time, but I don't have anything to directly back that up.

Dan
8:14 PM Dec 24th
 
DMBBHF
Regarding Rolen....

Although I still think that a lot of voters still go very much by "gut" as to whether someone strikes them as a Hall of Famer or not (the old, "I know a Hall of Famer when I see one" stance), I do agree that there's a chance that a decent amount of voters will see him as a top-10 quality third baseman.

Consensus top 8 would probably be (not necessarily this order, and classifying Molitor and Martinez as DH's rather than 3B):

Schmidt
Brett
Mathews
Boggs
Brooks Robinson
Chipper (not eligible yet, but will probably be a first-ballot induction)
Beltre (still active, should go in pretty quickly especially with his 3,000 hit milestone on the horizon, and maybe getting to 500 HR's to boot)
Santo

After them....who, maybe Home Run Baker as a top 10? Then I think you have a group of players like Rolen, Nettles, Boyer, Bando, Bell, Collins, Hack, Cey, and Evans. Most of those aren't in the Hall. I think Rolen has an argument for top 10.

So, perhaps that will help his case. My gut just tells me that I think he'll start relatively low (probably below 30%) and have to build support. Like Mussina. Like Raines. Players like that.

Dan


8:13 PM Dec 24th
 
DaveNJnews
I am wondering if anyone has ever looked for a pattern among voters who turn in their ballots early vs. those who turn them in at the last minute.
7:57 PM Dec 24th
 
MarisFan61
I think Rolen will do well, as long as there isn't felt to be any PED issue. I think he'll benefit from the current zeitgeist (good word) :-) about there being an underrepresentation of third basemen in the Hall of Fame. I don't see him as 1st or 2nd ballot, but not that long after.

A difference between his case and Grich's, again just IMO, is that I think Grich's main fly in the ointment was that people just didn't see him as a second baseman, notwithstanding the gold gloves; I think many or most people felt at a gut level that he didn't 'seem' like a second baseman, and so they don't judge him as one. Let me put it this way, however circular it is: If they had, he would have gotten into the Hall of Fame pretty easily; or, if you don't like that reasoning, how about if we put it this way: He sure as heil would have gotten way more than 4% of the BBWAA vote.

The comparison to Ken Boyer does seem very good, and..... All I can say is I've never gotten why he hasn't made the Hall of Fame and why there hasn't been more interest in his case in recent years. To me he's an absolute no-doubt Hall of Famer, obviously not "Category A" or "Level 1" or whatever we want to call it, but a very solid, way-above-the-line guy. Maybe the current "zeitgeist" about the Hall of Fame, assuming there is such, doesn't much extend to players from the past. I'd guess that it will apply with Rolen.
4:29 PM Dec 24th
 
DMBBHF
3for3,

Yeah, Grich is a good comparison. I also think Ken Boyer is a good comp.

Certainly Rolen comes out pretty well on the WAR scale, but I just envision that a lot of writers will go with their gut and think "Rolen? No, he doesn't strike me as a Hall of Famer". I think they're going to remember that he seemed to get injured a lot. The 8 Gold Gloves will help, but I just think he's going to have trouble getting a ton of support. I could be wrong.
1:24 PM Dec 24th
 
3for3
Dan: I always assumed Rolen would be a good candidate, but going back and looking at him from a non sabrmetric POV, I think he will struggle. Sort of a 3d base Bobby Grich, I guess
1:03 PM Dec 24th
 
MarisFan61
Yes -- I knew that was what you meant. You wrote it as sort of a Rubik's cube. :-)
Somehow it's hard to see very well what we're typing in this section (until after it posts) as well as in "Hey Bill," and so the posts (including Bill's) have frequent typos. I've mentioned that we really could use an edit function over here.
I almost care more about that than who gets into the Hall of Fame. :-)
10:43 AM Dec 24th
 
DMBBHF
OOPS....

Re: my last post, I stated something wrong. It should have read:

So, I guess next year will be a very interesting one. Will Edgar still be in the 50's after next year so that he has to make a 20-point or so jump in the final season? Or will he make a big jump next year so that, like Raines, he's on the brink and just needs a few more converts?


I should have proofread before I hit post.

Dan
9:28 AM Dec 24th
 
DMBBHF
MarisFan,

Thanks for all the feedback and commentary. I can tell you're very much into it. :)

I can't really disagree with anything you're saying. You may be right that I'm underestimating Edgar's chances of making it over his final 2 years on the ballot. Raines hit 55% on his 8th ballot, then made the big jump last year (his 9th) to just under 70%, which gave him the springboard to where he's looking very likely to get in this year.

So, I guess next year will be a very interesting one. Will Edgar still be in the 50's after next year so that he only needs a few more converts? Or will he have to make a 20-point or so jump in the final season.

I think one of the real keys, as always, is the number of other qualified candidates that can potentially divert votes away. Chipper and Thome enter the ballot next year. So do Vizquel, Rolen, and Andruw. Chipper and Thome figure to get a lot of votes, and I think Vizquel could get some attention too. I'm not real sure about Rolen or Andruw....I'm sure they'll appeal to some, but I'm not sure how "Hall of Famey" (to borrow one of your terms...at least I think it is) they will seem.

Then, in 2019, which would be Edgar's final year, Mariano Rivera and Roy Halladay join the ballot, along with Andy Pettitte and Todd Helton. Unless a decent number of the current candidates like Rodriguez, Guerrero, Hoffman, Bonds, Clemens, etc. are already in, it's going to remain a very crowded ballot, which would hurt Edgar's chances of getting enough attention and votes. But, you may be right.

Thanks,
Dan


9:25 AM Dec 24th
 
MarisFan61
Dan: Thanks for all this! I'm a junkie for it too, and I've been following the Tracker quite closely, but I haven't done anything like this. Thanks! -- very interesting.

About the Wrap-Up:

""Tim Raines and Jeff Bagwell look like they’ll be elected -- seems solid.

Ivan Rodriguez and Trevor Hoffman as "too close to call" -- yes.
I might have thought that Hoffman, with 74% right now on the "public" ballots, has almost no chance -- except for what you explained (that last year he actually did better on the private ballots than the public ones).

I agree that Guerrero is likely to end up in the mid-to-high 60%’s, and that he'll get in by 2019; I'd say probably 2018.

Agree also that Bonds and Clemens will make it very soon.

Schilling: Not interested in thinking about him any more.

You think Edgar Martinez "will surpass 50% overall this year, but that he will run out of time as he only has 2 more years on the ballot." I agree that he'll fall short this time, but I think he's likely to make it in his remaining time. I think he'll be a big topic of the HOF conversation in these next 2 years, I think he'll get the benefit of a lot of love, and I think he'll fairly sail in by 2019.

Manny: Don't care too much about him either, one way or the other. I was impressed and amused by him during his career, but between the antics and the repeated PED suspensions, I just got tired of him. As to 25% not being a bad starting point, well, in general yeah, but he's such a "special case" (in more ways than 1) :-) that he might not follow any typical pattern. The 25% or whatever he gets now might be close to his ceiling. But then again that a kind of thing a lot of people said about Donald Trump too....

P.S. Thanks for helping to make it clear about the terminology on "public," "private," "non-public," and "anonymous." A lot of people (me among them) would probably tend to think the latter two are the same. Actually the middle two are the same. To me this means the terminology isn't real good, but that's not your fault. :-)
11:16 PM Dec 23rd
 
DMBBHF
3for3,

True enough, so the best thing for them, of course, is to hope that Rodriguez and Hoffman, in addition to Bagwell and Raines, all get in to clear some room (well, Raines would have dropped off anyway).

I agree that Jones and Thome should get strong support. Rolen is a WAR-darling, but I'm not sure how the general voting body will treat him. Andruw will get some support, for sure, but he sure dropped off quickly after his superior start. But, your point is well taken.
11:37 AM Dec 23rd
 
3for3
Some of the votes on the beyond 10 list won't likely have it easier next year. Chipper, Thome are going to get a lot of votes. Also on the ballot are Rolen and Andruw.
11:17 AM Dec 23rd
 
DavidHNix
Every one of those players would be an asset -- every one is better than at least a quarter of the current membership.
10:06 AM Dec 23rd
 
 
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