Friday, March 18, 2011

My Royals Hall Of Fame Ballot.

The first question that must be asked isn’t “Does Kevin Appier [or whoever] belong in the Hall of Fame?” The first question is, “What are the standards for the Hall of Fame?” This crucial first step is so often skipped over during Hall of Fame discussions, which leads to people arguing that Jim Rice belongs in the Hall of Fame because he was the most feared hitter of his time, without ever stopping to ask whether being the most feared hitter of his time (which he wasn’t, but that’s another issue) is enough to meet the standard of the Hall of Fame. Bert Blyleven was left out of the Hall for over a decade because too many voters said that he didn’t “feel” like a Hall of Famer, without taking the time to look at who’s actually in the Hall of Fame. When Rube Marquard and Jesse Haines are in the Hall, feelings have nothing to do with it.

Bill James addressed this point head-on in his great book, “The Politics of Glory”, later republished under the more descriptive but less highbrow name “Whatever Happened to the Hall of Fame?” His point is that the Hall of Fame never set objective standards for what constitutes a Hall of Famer, so in the end the Hall of Fame became a self-defining standard – the bar was set by the players who had already been inducted. This becomes a problem when someone like Rabbit Maranville* gets in, or when Frankie Frisch gets on the Veterans Committee and proceeds to have every one of his teammates inducted. (If you don’t believe me, take a look at George Kelly’s stats. Then take a look at Sean Casey’s. That’s right – the 1920s version of Sean Casey is in the Hall of Fame.)

*: Maranville played 2670 games in the majors, which is damn impressive, but his career line was .258/.318/.340, and he spent most of his career in the high-octane 1920s and 1930s. But for whatever reason, baseball men thought he was the cat’s pajamas. In his final season as a regular, 1933, the 41-year-old Maranville hit .218/.274/.266, and didn’t hit a home run. He wasn’t even a shortstop anymore – he had been moved to second base by that point. Here’s the kicker – he finished 12th in MVP voting that year, the fifth time in six years he finished in the top 20. It’s as if every writer in the American League had collectively fallen under the same spell that bewitched the Royals last year, and found a spot on their ballot for Jason Kendall.

So before I break down the Royals Hall of Fame ballot (and at this point it’s an academic exercise, as the deadline for voting has passed), I think we have to take a step back and ask ourselves, “What should be the standard for a Royals Hall of Famer?”

The first place to start would be to look at those players who have already been inducted into the Hall. Here’s a list of the best players in Royals’ history, the 24 players who have amassed over 15 Wins Above Replacement as listed at baseball-reference.com. (This only counts a player’s performance with the Royals.) Players in bold are in the Royals Hall of Fame, players in italics are not yet eligible.

George Brett (85.0)
Kevin Appier (44.1)
Amos Otis (42.3)
Bret Saberhagen (37.3)
Willie Wilson (35.7)

Mark Gubicza (35.6)
Frank White (26.9)
Hal McRae (26.1)
Dan Quisenberry (25.2)
Carlos Beltran (24.6)

Dennis Leonard (24.0)
Zack Greinke (22.8)
Mike Sweeney (22.2)
David DeJesus (21.7)
Jeff Montgomery (21.5)

Charlie Leibrandt (21.4)
Paul Splittorff (20.9)
John Mayberry (20.2)
Darrell Porter (17.3)
Larry Gura (16.6)

Freddy Patek (16.6)
Johnny Damon (16.2)
Tom Gordon (15.8)
Steve Busby (15.5)

The first thing that stands out to me is that, to be perfectly frank, the voters for the Royals Hall of Fame have done a pretty damn good job – a hell of a lot better than the voters (or at least the Veterans Committee) for the National Hall of Fame. The voters have enshrined 15 of the 19 best Royals in history who haven’t retired yet, and that number will rise to 16 of 19 when Appier gets elected this year. I wouldn’t have guessed that Charlie Leibrandt was the best Royal not to be elected to their Hall of Fame, but it’s somehow appropriate.

Leibrandt was a hard-luck loser of many a playoff game; most memorably, he came into Game 6 of the 1991 World Series in the bottom of the 11th and immediately allowed a walk-off homer to Kirby Puckett. It wasn’t really his fault – Bobby Cox should never have brought in a lefty in that situation, as Puckett hit over .400 vs. southpaws that year. The following year, he made only one World Series appearance, and it again came in extra innings in relief in Game 6. He pitched a scoreless tenth, but with two on and two out in the eleventh he was allowed to pitch to Dave Winfield, who doubled in two runs. The Braves scored a run in the bottom of the inning, but Mike Timlin got the final out with the tying run at third, and the Blue Jays had won their first World Championship.

You would think Bobby Cox would have known better. In the 1985 ALCS, with Cox managing the Blue Jays, Leibrandt got beat up for five runs in two innings in the opener. But in Game 4, Leibrandt pitched a gem, throwing eight shutout innings. The problem is that the Royals only scored one run. Despite having Dan Quisenberry in the pen, Dick Howser left Leibrandt in to start the ninth inning. He allowed a walk and a double to tie the game. Quiz came in and allowed a single and a double, and the Jays won, 3-1. Quisenberry’s inability to get lefties out – specifically Rance Mulliniks and Al Oliver – led to Howser’s brilliant Game 7 strategy, where Saberhagen started, and Leibrandt came in to start the fourth inning. Cox bit on the gambit, and pulled Mulliniks and Oliver – who were platooned all year – for Garth Iorg and Cliff Johnson. Leibrandt pitched into the ninth, and when he tired, Quisenberry came in without have to face his nemeses.

Leibrandt started Game 2 of the World Series against St. Louis, and once again was brilliant, throwing eight shutout innings. Once again, the Royals didn’t fare much better, scoring only two runs. Once again, Howser left Leibrandt out there to start the ninth. Willie McGee doubled. With two outs, Jack Clark singled. Tito Landrum doubled, putting the winning run on second base. Cesar Cedeno was intentionally walked, and Howser inexplicably left Leibrandt in to face his seventh batter of the inning, Terry Pendleton, who cleared the bases with a double. Quiz came in, but it was already 4-2.

And in Game 6, Leibrandt again was brilliant, taking a shutout into the eighth. This time the Royals didn’t score any runs. In the top of the eighth in a scoreless tie, Pendleton singled with one out, and Cedeno walked. Darrell Porter, a left-handed hitter, and Porter struck out. With two outs, the Cardinals pinch-hit for their starter with the right-handed hitting Brian Harper. If my memory is accurate, there was a meeting on the mound – after which Howser once again left Leibrandt into pitch. And once again the move backfired; Harper drove in the go-ahead run. Leibrandt then walked Ozzie Smith before Quisenberry was brought in to stop the bleeding. It was the third straight start Leibrandt had made where he had taken a shutout into the eighth, only to be hung out to dry even though one of the game’s best closers was in the pen, and each time he was relieved for by Quisenberry only after the game slipped away.

Only this time, the Royals had two chances to come back, and thanks to Don Denkinger and Dane Iorg, they did. But if they hadn’t, the story of the postseason would have been Howser’s mismanagement of Leibrandt, instead of his brilliant field generalship.

And just for good measure, Leibrandt also started Game 3 of the 1984 ALCS, trying to prevent a sweep by the Tigers. He allowed just one run in eight innings. Detroit won, 1-0. Leibrandt threw 57 innings in his postseason career, with a fine 3.77 ERA. He was 1-7, and that one win came in relief.

This tangent has gone on way too long…suffice it to say that Leibrandt was remarkably snake-bitten in his career, so perhaps it’s only fitting that he’s snake-bitten when it comes to the Royals Hall of Fame. But he’s a worthy candidate, and if I’m ever on the Veterans Committee he’d get my vote.

Anyway, getting back to the topic at hand…you’ll notice that there are 15 names in bold above, but there are 16 players in the Royals Hall of Fame. The 16th player is Cookie Rojas, who with just 4.2 WAR ranks tied for 72nd all-time on the Royals, tied with Alberto Callaspo and Steve Mingori. When I looked up these numbers, I expected to find Rojas and Freddie Patek both way down the list, thinking that both guys were light-hitting middle infielders who earned their way into the Hall because they played on such great teams, not because of anything they did themselves.

Turns out I was too harsh on Patek. For one thing, Patek was an everyday player for nine seasons with the Royals, which is impressive in itself. He was never a good hitter, and in some seasons he was downright awful, but he was an above-average fielder, stole 336 bases with a good success rate, and he played in an era where none of the other shortstops hit either. But Rojas, aside from playing the better part of just six seasons with the Royals, was only marginally better as a hitter, and didn’t have Patek’s speed. He played a less difficult position at second base, and didn’t play it as well as Patek played shortstop.

I’ll concede that baseball-reference may be a little harsh on Rojas’ defense, but even if you grade him as a plus defender you can’t massage the numbers to put him among the elite in Royals history. I won’t call his election a mistake; I’ll simply state that Rojas did not meet the standards that the Royals have set for their Hall of Fame. Every Hall of Fame gets a mulligan or two. But we can’t use Rojas as our Hall of Fame standard. I’m not prepared to see a massive photo of Steve Mingori hanging at the stadium.

So if we use the Royals’ history as our standard, it would appear that the standard is approximately 15 WAR. If we set the bar at exactly 15 WAR, there are 24 Royals who have had Hall of Fame-worthy careers, and Joe Randa straddles the bar at exactly 15.0. That seems like a reasonable ratio – 24 or 25 players in the 42 years of the franchise, or a little more than one worthy inductee every other year.

With full awareness that the numbers should only be our guide, and that statistics should never be used as our sole resource for making Hall of Fame decisions, it would appear that the bar for the Royals Hall of Fame is roughly 15 Wins Above Replacement.

(It would also appear, as I’ve argued previously, that David DeJesus is a worthy Royals Hall of Famer.)

And with that, let’s examine the ballot…oh, would you look at that, my Sports Illustrated just arrived, and Joe Posnanski has written an entire column on the Royals’ farm system. I’ll be back with my ballot soon.





28 comments:

Drew said...

While perhaps the MLB HOF can rely on only statistics, I think a team's individual HOF has to also factor in certain intangibles, like community participation, or fan appreciation, for instance. I would much rather see Tom Gordon in the Royal's HOF than Beltran any day, whether or not the stats dictated it or not. Hell, I wouldn't mind if Sweeney got in. A guy like Mike McFarlane, who is still around the KC metro, or a guy like John Wathan mean a lot more to KC the town, community, and fan base than Dejesus ever will. That might not be Dejesus' fault, but if statistical prowess is the determining criteria for the Royals HOF, then those stats better be MLB HOF worthy too. With the MLB HOF, at least you're comparing the best of the best, instead of comparing someone like Bob Hamelin, or Beltran.

John said...

I'm actually surprised that Leibrandt isn't in the Royals' Hall of Fame already. I know if you asked me to name the top pitchers in Royals' history, he's one of the first names that comes to mind.

Dick Howser did leave him in too long in those 1985 playoff games, but I also remember that Quisenberry wasn't at his best that season. He gave up an awful amount of hits, and was one year from a very steep decline. I also remember that Leibrandt was actually every bit as good as Saberhagen; actually he had a lower ERA. And in 1985, pitchers were still allowed to complete games even if their name wasn't Roy Halladay.

Incidentally, four of the most five similar players in history to Rabbit Maranville are in the Hall of Fame, and the other one is Omar Vizquel, who isn't eligible. Maranville is in the Hall of Fame because he was considered the Ozzie Smith of his generation; we only accept Ozzie more because he started as a terrible hitter and became decent. Rabbit was pretty much mediocre all the time, but on balance, not much worse at bat.

If you want to start listing unworthy Hall of Famers, Maranville is not the place to start.

Bryan said...

Thanks for helping me relive those memories of Leibrandt.

If I am not mistaken he was a free agent minor leaguer that the Royals gave life to.

I agree with Drew that the community participation has to be given consideration. I would be more inclusive though and have DeJesus, Macfarlane and Wathan in my Royal HOF. You can't have everyone I guess, but it seems to me to make sense to be more inclusive especially with an organizations HOF.

ChaimMKeller said...

Very nice analysis, Rany, but I hope your voting methodology is not so rigid that it can't accommodate the living highlight reel, Bo Jackson.

kstatejed said...

Bryan, Liebrandt was actually acquired in a trade with the Cincinnati Reds.

Chris said...

Does anyone find it curious that the founders of the Hall named it the "Hall of Fame"? They could have named it the "Hall of Greatness" or the "Hall of Most Valuable Players" or the "Hall of Counting Numbers." (and the tired joke about "Hall of Pretty Good" would be a lot funnier if they had.) They could have also established statistical goal posts for each category and simply inducted players once they'd ticked enough boxes. They wouldn't have even needed to wait for player retirement, they could have avoided all that veteran's committee nonsense and all the fuss that goes along with actually having elections.

Was "Fame" just an accidental choice? Something picked from a box or chosen late on a Friday afternoon before a three day weekend when nobody cared enough to take the time to toss around other ideas? The dictionary has two definitions for "fame" and neither include any mention of talent or accomplishment (just ask Paris Hilton). I've always thought we should take the founders at their word. "Fame" means fame and it should mean making room for the weird, the beloved, the unlikely, the tragic, the courageous, the admired and even the occasional flash-in-the-pan alongside the accomplished.

I am by no means an anti-stat guy. I love stats. They're the only way to build a team, evaluate a trade or a prospect, speculate about your team's future and even hand out post-season hardware, but a "Hall of Fame" that exists solely to enshrine a set of statistical accomplishments seems to me a pretty useless institution. If you want to know who had 3,000 hits or hit 400 home runs wouldn't you just go to Fan-Graphs? It seems the HOF should be about something more than that. It should include narrative and story and dumb emotion.

In my ideal world, induction to the HOF would be based solely on fan nomination/petition. Whenever the Hall had collected enough signatures/letters of support/etc. simply saying "I remember this guy. I loved this guy. I wore this guy's jersey in grade school." then he would go in. And if the guy turned out to not actually be as good as the fans remember him being? Well then, so what. The sky will not fall, nor the earth stop turning.

In my world Bo Jackson gets into Cooperstown. Jim Abbot gets in. Kirk Gibson-in. Dan Quisenberry-in. And in the Royals' HOF alongside Cookie Rojas I'd make room for Buddy Biancalana, Jim Eisenreich and maybe even Steve Balboni.

Jon Morse said...

Rany, you discuss Rojas from a somewhat detached view here, and to be honest I'm not sure whether you disapprove of his induction, or whether you view it exactly the same way I do but simply didn't expand on that point in your post. So, depending on which is true I'm either going to try and convince you or I'm going to provide an addendum for you. :)

As you note, he was not a great player, but in the years immediately preceding the moves and call-ups which would create the mid-70s AL West juggernaut the Royals had two clear "stars": Rojas and Otis. (Piniella was around for five seasons, too, but as your list demonstrates he wasn't that great either; he won the RoY in '69, and went to the All-Star Game in '72, but that pretty much sums up his contribution to Kansas City baseball.)

Rojas, on the other hand, represented the team in the ASG for four consecutive years. For fans used to the Royals sending guys like Mark Redman to the ASG, this would appear meaningless and laughable, but it takes on an entirely different meaning in 1971-74 considering he was never the Royals' sole representative. He wasn't there just because they needed a Royal; he "earned" it.

Beyond that, in those early years of Royal baseball the man was a consummate ambassador for the team. The fans loved Cookie Rojas... which more than anything explains why he was one of the early inductees into the team's HoF.

But just as with certain entrants into Cooperstown who may belong there for reasons other than their actual playing ability, it's important to recognize that Cookie's in the Royals HoF for intangible reasons, and should never be used as a comp to argue for other inductees.

A team's HoF is different than Cooperstown; there should be room to honor players who were exceptionally important to the team even if their playing performance doesn't measure up in the same way we'd like to apply to Cooperstown honorees. I mean, I'm not saying I'd support this, but if someone suggested inducting Dane Iorg or Jorge Orta... well, I think the suggestion is at least reasonable in context. We don't want to be putting Bill Mazeroski in Cooperstown solely because he hit a home run, because it's not "important" to baseball as a whole that he did so; it would be another thing entirely for the Pittsburgh Pirates to honor him for it, because that home run was obviously of paramount importance to the Bucs. And it's in that respect that I think not only is there no problem with Cookie Rojas being in the Royals' HoF... he almost has to be. He pretty much positively represents, along with Otis, the first seven years of Royal baseball.

McGoldencrown said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
McGoldencrown said...

Rany, how does a guy who put up a pre-steroid era stat line of .290/.376/.518/.894 w/ a 144 OPS+ over 5 seasons, averaging 465 ab, 28 d, 25 hr, 85 rbi, 65 bb (twice top 20 MVP vote-12, 17) NOT at least get on the ballot? Its a buncha Bull I say....

KHAZAD said...

Cookie Rojas is a legitimate member of the Royal's HOF. Jon Morse has already made my point well, but I will chime in also.

Cookie Rojas was the unquestioned leader and fan favorite of the early Royals. He came to the team as a respected veteran.(perhaps the first veteran here who was still a good player) He was an all star 4 consecutive years. The double play combo of Rojas and Patek was spoken of with admiration and respect leaguewide.

He was such a fan favorite that Frank White, now the rightful all time Royals 2nd baseman, was treated badly by fans and media alike when taking his place.

One of the things that made me happy when the Royals finally won the division in 1976 was that Cookie was still here to see it.

On a team HOF, sometimes the players importance to that team overrides looking back at their WAR. (and, let's face it, using 1970's fielding metrics instead of today's is like using a wheelbarrow instead of a car to get somewhere.)

The Royals have done a fine job in not electing anyone who did not deserve to be there. They have let a couple of deserving guys fall through the cracks, though.

That being said, if I had to vote for 3, I would take Appier, Porter, and then I would write in Liebrandt.

curt.nelson said...

McGoldercrown - I wanted to address your question about why Danny Tartabull does not appear on the 2011 Royals Hall of Fame ballot.

The entire Royals Hall of Fame voting process was changed for 2011. To be eligible for the first time, players must have been active with the Royals for at least three (3) seasons and accumulated a minimum of 1,500 plate appearances or 150 innings pitched. Candidates had to have ceased to be an active on-field member of the Royals (or for any other Major League organization) in the role for which they are being considered for at least three (3) calendar years preceding the election.

The 2011 ballot under these new rules included all first-time eligible candidates plus any player who had received at least two votes in either of the two most recent RHOF voting cycles under the previous rules. Danny Tartabull was not grandfathered onto this ballot because he had not reached that threshold on either of the last two voting cycles.

Five seasons with the Royals - three with 100+ RBI, two with 30+ home runs and he lead the league in slugging in 1991. He was a consistent offensive force for some winning Royals clubs including the 92 win club in 1989.

The numbers certainly stack up for a reasonable discussion, but for whatever reason he didn't get the votes.

Thanks for the discussion. Though it’s a cliché to say fans are vitally important to baseball I’ll say it anyway – fans are vitally important to baseball. Royals fans are the lifeblood of this organization and have been from the start in 1969. They have seen the players at the ballpark, watched and listened to their careers in Kansas City. They know who has made the grade over the years and they should have a say in who receives the ballclub’s highest honor - Thanks again to all the fans who voted!

McGoldencrown said...

...and payed 100% of player salaries

DaveinKC said...

Thanks for the great article! I have never given the Royals' HOF much thought, but it was interesting to read how its members stack up against each other. I also enjoyed your Charlie Liebrandt digression! I was at that game 4 of the ALCS in 1985 & it is one of my outstanding, albeit depressing, baseball memories. I will never forget how quietly the packed stadium emptied after the Royals' loss. It was eerie....

Antonio. said...

I don't know when they voted back then, but Maranville died January 5th of the year he was elected in the Hall...and his vote % went up 20.8 points. Coincidental? I think the thought was that he wasn't a Hall of Famer but enough people gave him a sympathy vote to make him one.

Antonio. said...

Also, I noticed that those comparisons weren't in the 900 range, meaning they weren't THAT similar. And really, Ozzie is the only one that really isn't questioned as far as the HoF goes...well, other than Wallace, but he's from turn of the century and debating his merit would truly be head scratching. And I for one really hope Omar doesn't make it, but he will.

kcghost said...

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McGoldencrown said...

'He was such a fan favorite that Frank White, now the rightful all time Royals 2nd baseman, was treated badly by fans and media alike when taking his place.'

......KHAZAD, did you ever wonder if maybe there was another reason for the harsh treatment of White? Something a little more...how you say...black and white?

Sean said...

I don't see how DeJesus could be voted in. He was a pretty good player on awful Royal teams. He was traded in his prime and netted Vin Mazarro. Royals HOF wouldn't be an honor if that qualifies in my opinion.

Antonio. said...

I'm sorry, Sean, but did you say a qualification of being a Hall of Famer is that the front office has to be good at its job in player acquisition? What does the surrounding team or who we netted when we traded him (a poor time to trade DDJ) have to do with what he did when he was on the field in Blue?

Michael said...

I have to agree with Sean. Dejesus was an all around average player. His greatest strength was a lack of weakness. He was average to slightly above, but not nearly good enough to be in the Hall. On a good team, he's a contributor, but not a star. He's what Melky Cabrera was when he was a Yankee.

Sean said...

Well I would argue back that he hit over .300 twice, never stole more then 11 bases in a season, and his high in home runs was 13. He never drove in more then 73 runs and scored over 100 runs once. He never sniffed an All-Star game. If you want him in the HOF then I guess that's your opinion but I'm hoping the future in KC produces players that jump off the page as "YES's" then DeJesus. He was a nice player but they lost 95+ games every year. I wouldn't vote him in strictly because he was a nice guy. I would say Tartabull and Bo Jackson have a lot stronger arguments.

Tom,Sherry&Joe said...

In the Hall of Fame Post, Rany perpetuates the myth, first created by Bill James in his 1986 Abstract, that Dick Howser "out-managed" Bobby Cox in the 1985 ALCS by replacing Bret Saberhagen with Charlie Leibrandt after 3 innings. I have a tape of the game and Saberhagen was hit in the hand by a shot off the bat of Willie Upshaw in the 1st inning. The hand swelled and he was removed while warming up in the top of the 4th. Leibrandt was in the dugout at the time, not in the bullpen.

Howser probably acted as he did because in the 3rd game (the "Brett game") he left Saberhagen in the game after he was hit in the leg with a batted ball. Saberhagen soon gave up a three-run homer to give Toronto a 5-2 lead. Brett had to save the Royals in this game, along with sterling relief by Steve Farr.

I don't think Howser or any other manager would remove their leading pitcher (and 20-game winner)
early in a game just to get the platoon advantage.
After he did make the move, I think Cox was stupid for removing such a fine hitter as Al Oliver from the game.

I do not blame Howser for not going with Quisenberry in the 9th inning of the 2nd game.
Quisenberry blew 12 save opportunities during 1985 and his overall statistics showed he wasn't the pitcher he had once been. Howser clearly had lost confidence with him. Quisenberry never had a good year after 1985.

Kansas City said...

Tom,

Terrific comment.

I remember that Quisenberry was not any good and Howser lost confidence in him. I had forgetten how much impact that had on the games.

I used to love Leibrandt. He was very good. I looked him up and he had a 6.3 WAR in 1985 and was 5th in CYA voting.

I also remember a quote from him in the paper at his prime saying he threw abuot 70% fastballs and the rest change ups. He used to break a lot of bats. I never could figure out how he was so effective. His career strikeout rate was only 4.4. He made $13 Million in his career. He probalby would make close to that each year today.

Antonio. said...

Tartabull does have a stronger case than DDJ. Jackson doesn't have near the WARP that DDJ does. I know he was crazy awesome, but time put in has to account for something too. And I wouldn't vote him in because he was a nice guy. And what does the perennial 95-loss team have to do with anything? Would you keep Brett out if he were 20 years younger and played on those shit teams? Why would you judge an individual player on what an entire team does? DDJ should be in.

Chris said...

To curt.nelson--

So let me get this straight. Kris Wilson somehow deserved to be on the ballot because he fits some criteria set up by the Royals committee yet Danny Tartabull does not make it due to this same arbitrary criteria.

Are you f****** kidding me?

Now I have another piece of the puzzle of why this organization has been screwed up for so long....

curt.nelson said...

Chris--

Danny Tartabull was absolutely eligible in multiple Royals Hall of Fame voting cycles from the first time he became eligible under the previous rules - which was have been 2001.

The new voting system more closely resembles the National Baseball Hall of Fame system in that there is now a ballot with eligible players. The eligible players on any particular ballot now are the first time eligible players along with those that received a minimum number of votes in the previous election cycle. Danny had not received a minimum number of votes in either of the two most recent voting cycles under the old rules so he was not on the 2011 ballot.

Kris Wilson is a first time eligible this year in the same sense any previous player in Royals History has been eligible for the first time - only now he could be eliminated from further consideration by not reaching a minimum vote threshold - which he clearly will not reach. Therefore he is one and done. Whereas Danny under the original rules was eligible through ten previous voting cycles with no regard to the number of votes he may or may not have received.

Actually the new procedure is much less arbitrary then the original. Plus the fans now have a voice.

Keep in mind an eligible player is just that eligible - they are not nominees. The fitness of each eligible player being worthy of a vote is completely left to the discretion of the voter.

Chris said...

Well then, curt, don't count on me attending any hof ceremonies because if Danny Tartabull can't make it, hell, can't even still be ELIGIBLE for this franchise, then the people that vote for it are frauds.

Tartabull's averages for his five years: 25 HR, 85 RBI, with a line of .290/.376/.518 with OPS+ of 144. Yes, that's right 144. And your educated "voters" couldn't find a spot for him in the hof?

Really?

KHAZAD said...

curt.nelson- If Tartabull was under the older, more arbitrary system, and the new system is a reward for the fan, perhaps fans should get a chance to vote for the player who ranks first all time in slugging percentage, OPS and OPS+ in Royals history? Top 5 in OBP and batting WAR? Top 10 in batting average, home runs and RBI? While he was here, he was the best offensive player that the Royals have had!

Mcgoldencrown- Sorry, I just don't think in "black and white." Perhaps that makes me naive. If so, we could all use a little more naivete.