Center Fielders on the Veterans Committee Bubble

On Wednesday, Jerry Crasnick posted a column at ESPN arguing that Carlos Beltran is worthy of the Hall of Fame. I wholeheartedly agree. But he has ample company in his era. How many of his peers are worthy of Cooperstown, and how many of them will make it?

Among players who have played the bulk of their careers since 1980, exactly 12 center fielders have amassed at least 44 WAR. Three of them are already in the Hall of Fame: Kirby Puckett, Andre Dawson, and Robin Yount (whom I’ll consider a centerfielder for my purposes). Here are the other nine:

Ken Griffey Jr. 77.4
Andruw Jones 67.8
Jim Edmonds 64.2
Carlos Beltran 63.9
Kenny Lofton 62.2
Mike Cameron 49.7
Ellis Burks 44.7
Dale Murphy 44.3
Bernie Williams 44.3


Puckett was elected with 44.9 WAR — a bit more than Burks and Murphy, and less than Cameron — but his career ended with a glaucoma diagnosis when he was 35, and so the voters clearly expected that he would have otherwise continued to be productive. We don’t need to discuss the bottom three members of the list. Ellis Burks doesn’t have a prayer of making the Hall, and Bernie Williams doesn’t have much of one. On the other hand, Dale Murphy’s case has been endlessly debated over the last 15 years, and basically comes down to a philosophical question of how much you value peak vs. career value. I won’t wade into those waters here.

In my view, the top five names on that list are worthy of the Hall of Fame, and while I don’t believe Mike Cameron is Hall-worthy, he was a wonderful player for a very long time and he had a better career than several players in the Hall. So it’s worth discussing Beltran’s four peers — this won’t be the last time they’ll be mentioned in the same breath.

First, Griffey. He’s the only player on the list who was regularly mentioned as a future Hall of Famer by virtually everybody. Generally speaking, when others have trumpeted Hall of Fame cases for the other players on the list — as with Beltran in Crasnick’s column, or a piece I wrote this offseason about Kenny Lofton — it has essentially been couched as an apologia, as a formal defense of the rightness of their claim against the presumption that they are unworthy. I believe Griffey, Jones, Edmonds, Beltran, and Lofton all deserve the Hall, but many baseball fans would disagree with at least some of the names on the list, all except Griffey.

Ken Griffey, Jr. was, as Bill James pointed out in the New Historical Baseball Abstract, “the second-best left-handed hitting, left-handed throwing outfielder ever born in Donora, Pennsylvania on November 21.” It just so happened that Griffey shares a birthday and a birthplace with Stan Musial. (For what it’s worth, he also shares a birthday with undeserving Hall of Famer Freddie Lindstrom, as well as Jayson Werth‘s uncle Dick Schofield, and 19th-century hurler Bobby Mathews, who at 297 wins is the winningest eligible pitcher who is not in the Hall of Fame.)

Griffey hit 630 home runs, played brilliant defense as a young man, and was arguably the most popular player in the game for several years in the 1990s, a five-tool player with a thousand-watt smile. Of course, he basically had two careers, a decade in Seattle that cemented his legacy as one of the most brilliant players in the history of the game, and a decade in Cincinnati that was lost in injuries and frustrated expectations.

In his first eleven seasons in Seattle, Griffey was worth 68.4 WAR; in his last eleven seasons in Cincinnati, Chicago, and then back to Seattle, Griffey was worth 8.9 WAR. His bat was still reasonably good when he was on the field, but his defense underwent a disastrous decline, sapping nearly all of his value. (Not only that, but he was typically flanked by Adam Dunn in left field.) It was sad to watch Griffey struggle to stay on the field, the kid for whom baseball had seemed so effortless. But it was hard to blame him. He wanted to play. As with Kirby Puckett, it is hard to imagine that voters will penalize Griffey for his injuries. Instead, they’ll remember his brilliance as a young man.

The thing is, Andruw Jones had a somewhat similar career arc, though even more pronounced. He played his first 12 seasons in Atlanta, generating 65.1 WAR. But in the six years since he left Turner Field, Andruw Jones has only managed 2.5 WAR in the major leagues, and he is a Rakuten Golden Eagle this year. (He’s picked up where he left off, hitting .226 but popping 17 homers in 414 PA. He’s second on his team in homers, behind Casey McGehee, who has 20. In third place on the team is Kaz Matsui, who has eight.)

During his years in Seattle, Griffey averaged 6.1 WAR per 600 PA, while Jones averaged 5.4 WAR per 600 PA in Atlanta. After he left Seattle in 2000, Griffey dipped to 1.2 per 600 PA, while Jones dropped to 1.0. Basically, Jones was a somewhat better fielder while Griffey was an even more than somewhat better hitter. All the same, Jones was the best defensive player of his era, a five-time All-Star who has the fifth-most homers among all center fielders, behind Willie Mays, Ken Griffey Jr., Mickey Mantle, and Andre Dawson, and ahead of Duke Snider. Like Griffey (and, to some extent, Dale Murphy), Jones didn’t do much to add to his legacy once he was done as an elite player, but in my view, his decade plus as an elite player should have been enough to secure him a place in Cooperstown.

Edmonds is remarkable because he had nearly the opposite career arc. He did not do a good job of staying on the field in his 20s, and managed only 20 WAR in parts of seven seasons before departing Anaheim for St. Louis. Suddenly, he became a vastly better hitter. In his eight seasons as a Cardinal, his ISO was 64 points higher than it had been as an Angel, and his OBP was 44 points higher. His defense remained quite good, but he played a few more games each year, popped several more homers, took a bunch more walks, and all of a sudden was perennially one of the best players in the league, along with his teammate Albert Pujols. He was past his prime by the time of the Cards’ 2006 World Series win, but prior to that he was truly devastating: he averaged 6.6 WAR a year from 2000-2005, and not coincidentally, the Cardinals had four first-place finishes in six years, the first time that the club had done that since 1942-1947.

Edmonds’s candidacy really rests on that six-year peak, and that’s sort of the trouble: hitters aren’t supposed to have their best seasons from age 30 to 35, especially not when they immediately blossom after becoming Mark McGwire‘s teammate. Please note: I am not saying that Edmonds took steroids, only that he is likely to face the same skepticism that has greeted other eminently qualified candidates from the era like Jeff Bagwell. The only other thing against Edmonds is that his career was somewhat abbreviated: his first full season occurred when he was 24, he had reasonably regular injury problems, and as a result, he only had 7980 career plate appearances over 17 seasons. That would be a very low total by modern standards: in the 162-game era, the only Hall of Fame position player with that few plate appearances is Puckett, who obviously had extenuating circumstances. By the same token, he only played 2011 games, which likewise would be the lowest modern total other than Puckett; the only Hall of Famer who comes close is Jim Rice, who played 2089 games, the equivalent of another half season’s worth. Edmonds’s rate stats are phenomenal, but his counting stats are a little light.

Lofton is the final candidate worth mentioning. Unlike the other three, he exemplifies career longevity rather than career peak. His peak was certainly good: with his excellent defense and fine offense, Lofton was selected to the All-Star game six years in a row, from 1994-1999. But he was never the best center fielder in baseball: during his career, that was usually Griffey or Jones, and sometimes Edmonds. Still, he was always good. And his career also demonstrates the value of counting stats. Like Edmonds, he played for 17 years and retired after his age-40 season. But Lofton had 9235 plate appearances, 1255 more than Edmonds — nearly two seasons’ worth. Even if Lofton wasn’t as good a player as Edmonds, Lofton’s teams appreciated those extra plate appearances.

Lofton’s greatest achievement, though, was as postseason good-luck charm. In his final six seasons from 2002 to 2007, he was a faded good-not-great outfielder, and as a journeyman he played for nine different teams in six years. In three of those years he switched teams at midseason and led his new team to the playoffs. Also, the Indians have been virtually incapable of winning without him. As I wrote, Lofton was on hand for six first-place finishes by the Indians — he missed the 1997 AL championship, but was there for the 1995 World Series and pennants in 1996, 1998, 1999, 2001, and 2007. He was one of the best players on all of these teams. Since 1948 — the last time the Indians won the World Series — the Indians have been to the playoffs eight times, and Lofton contributed to all but two: 1954, when Willie Mays made The Catch; and 1997, when Lofton was with the Braves.

The trouble for Lofton is that he has trouble distinguishing himself in the company of Griffey, Jones, Edmonds, and Beltran, let alone that of the two best center fielders not currently in the Hall of Fame, Jimmy Wynn and Reggie Smith.

Of course, the trouble for Beltran is likely to be similar. Every year, the ballot gets more crowded, especially as voters ineffectually register their disgust with the steroid era by unfairly casting guilt by association. Whenever Beltran reaches the ballot, there’s a good chance that he will be surrounded by ten other worthy Hall of Famers, all with a case at least as good as that of Edmonds, Jones or Lofton. That is not his fault. So I’m rooting for all of those worthy players to be inducted by the time he gets there.




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Alex is a writer for FanGraphs and The Hardball Times, and is a product manager for The Washington Post. Follow him on Twitter @alexremington.


56 Responses to “Center Fielders on the Veterans Committee Bubble”

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  1. Boris VZ says:

    Great article. I am saying that Edmonds took steroids: his thirties didn’t make sense then, and it don’t make sense now.

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    • rustydude says:

      The peak of my career as an accountant was in my 30’s, too. I guess that means I did steroids.

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      • B N says:

        Don’t be ridiculous. Everyone knows that people who work with financial data use performance enhancers like amphetamines. That’s why they call it “cooking the books.”

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    • AppleJim says:

      I am saying that people who write stupid comments such as that are stupid themselves. Oh wait, I didn’t prove the point I wanted to make.

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    • Steven says:

      Players similar to Edmonds whose best years were between 30 and 35:

      1)Larry Walker: Before 30 Avg WAR 4.3 30-35 6.4
      2)Roberto Clemente: Before 30 Avg WAR 2.6 30-35 6.8
      3)Willie Stargell: Before 30 AVG WAR 3.2 30-35 6.1

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    • Balthazar says:

      Edmonds . . . . funny how those injuries abated about the time most guys fall apart. St. Louis has had a lot of guys like that. Come up late; numbers surprise; stay on the field when they seem to have physical woes. Funny how one org has so many guys that stand out like that . . . . Tony’s got a handful of rings, and he loves guys who’ll do what it takes though. Never saw nothing, just ask him . . . .

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    • Gaupo says:

      I was looking at his stats and totally agree. ISO going from 240’s to 340’s in his early 30’s. Couldn’t stay healthy for years but then becomes a stalwart of heath from ages 31-35.

      Also, him staging a comeback in 2010 at the age of 40 tells you all you need to know about his character. Dude, you milked the system for all it’s worth, retire already.

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      • Steven says:

        Again, go compare his career to Willie Stargell. Stargell’s highest 5 ISO’s of his career occurred after he was 31. One year above .230 before he turned 29, then he goes .249, .247, .333, .265, .347. Another surge after he turned 37, .274, .272, .271. We all know Stargell must have been juicing.

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      • mandamin says:

        “Stalwart of health”? He averaged 145 games a season during the years you cite. 95 players played in at least 145 games in 2012.

        I’ve heard staying too healthy cited as evidence of PED use, and I’ve heard an inability to stay healthy cited as evidence of PED use. This is definitely the first time I’ve heard an injury-prone player having a few seasons during which he’s just *slightly* less injury-prone cited as evidence of PED use.

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    • stan says:

      I think you have to look for some sort of physical transformation too in any of these cases. Edmonds didn’t look any different when he took off whereas Bagwell’s performance coincided perfectly with his sudden physical transformation…

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      • Balthazar says:

        Some guys bulk up, some don’t. It depends on what they use, and on what kind of program they’re on. (I’m with you on Bagwell, btw. He looked and hit like Will Clark; pretty good. Then, . . . he changed. Hmm.)

        Things to look for: chronic or salient injuries suddenly stop being an issue. Batted ball distance really jumps. Guy starts getting the bat around on stuff he couldn’t touch, either recently or ever. Guy has a huge jump on balls in play even while nothing is really different in his swing or approach. And yes, a guy goes away in November and comes back with a hunk of muscle mass never there before, especially in the upper body. Anyone exhibiting three or more of those features attracts my personal, dour suspicion. Yes, that’s not ‘fair.’ It’s called ‘an unfair advantage.’

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  2. Mac says:

    It’s a pretty fascinating case study in being successful in different ways and past Griffey you pretty much have to let the whole group in if you let any of them in.

    Cameron and Lofton balanced slightly worse hitting with better fielding and baserunning. Jones was of course even that much better as a fielder, an all-time great. Edmonds and Beltran were both plus fielders but nothing special, but swung the bat like corner outfielders. Beltran was a slightly worse hitter but was a base path burner in his youth.

    None of them really excelled so much at one aspect of the game that they deserve special treatment, except maybe Jones for his defense. Griffey was the one with the unparalleled hitting and defense combo. So to take one but not the others is a statement that you value one aspect of the game over another, or something else like playoff experience or “impact”.

    Something that’s interesting about the group is they everyone in there except Lofton used the long ball as part of their offensive arsenal. Check out the list of all-time CF home run leaders:

    #2 Griffey Jr.
    #5 Jones
    #7 Murphy
    #8 Edmonds
    #10 Beltran
    #11 Burks
    #18 Williams
    #20 Cameron

    Now what’s really fascinating is that this trend of HR-hitting center fielders isn’t some steroid-era artifact; lots of older names are mixed in there including Dawson and Yount. Somewhere around 1980 it became normal to play a power hitter in center, something almost unheard of prior unless your name was Wille, Micky, or Duke.

    Final note: It’s worth mentioning that Lofton was part of the last wave of great base-stealers. Using the same 1980-present window, Lofton ranks 4th with 622. Juan Pierre has persisted long enough to also reach 600, and Ichiro would be somewhere way up there as well if hadn’t debuted at 27. Interesting prop bet: next guy to break 600? Reyes? Bourn?

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    • Many of the downriver names are just as interesting: #25 is Vada Pinson, a charter Hall of Very Gooder; #26 is HOFer Larry Doby; #31 is single-season RBI leader Hack Wilson; #32 is Wally Berger, the third-greatest center fielder in Braves history (http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/positional-case-study-atlanta-braves-center-fielders/). And on and on.

      It’s also interesting when toolsy players from other positions are converted to center field: Yount and Murphy on that list, and of course B.J. Upton.

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    • Drew says:

      Beltran certainly was special in the outfield, until he was beset by injuries.

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    • Balthazar says:

      Tris Speaker (what a player). Ty Cobb.

      Mays, Mantle, Snider (and Doby).

      Power in CF is nothing new. Some of the greatest players in baseball history have been centerfielders and amongst the best power hitters of their time.

      But CF has _always_ been recognized as a preeminent defensife position. It was never a ‘bat first’ position on any sane team. And there just aren’t that many guys who are good enough athletes to play CF and slug well both; more typical are fast guys who could hit for average (in part by using their speed). This is why Puckett, Loften, and Cameron ‘look like centerfielders,’ since historically those are the kind of guys sent out to play their.

      BTW Lofton’s power numbers are deceiving. He didn’t try for the fences up the middle, and had a classic ‘hit down on it and run’ swing. But he would pull a pitch well inside hard down the line, using his excellent bat speed to aim for the pole. The point is, on a particular kind of pitch he intentionally went for the HR, and had fair success there. But he didn’t get stupid on FBs in the middle, because he wasn’t a strong man with a swing grooved for the seats. One more point in Lofton’s favor: he had a good plan at the plate honed to his specific skills. And yes, his SBs were kind of glossed over in the post. Not a stat that helps much with the Hall, but he was amongst the best of his time in that capacity, and that’s worth noting. I’d have no problem with Lofton in the Hall, but I doubt he’ll get the call.

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  3. Scraps says:

    Mike Cameron was a wonderful (great word-choice, there. Absolutely correct) player. I was grateful to watch him patrol center field at his best years (only four years, but years 27 through 30). And when he left — not voluntarily; the Mariners didn’t offer him a free agency contract — he turned down the A’s despite the A’s offering him the most money because the fans treated him well in Seattle and he couldn’t see himself putting on the uniform of a rival.

    I know he’s not a Hall of Famer (whatever that means, anyway; who cares what most sportwriters think, especially now with so many deserving players getting the shaft right now, and that’s not even counting the huffy bleats of sportwriters about steroids, etc).

    Mike Cameron played center field wonderfully, the best I ever saw (definitely better than Griffey; if I saw Andruw Jones every day, I might change my mind). But — maybe you can see — Mike Cameron was my favorite player.

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    • jorgesca says:

      I saw Cameron even younger in his Winter Mexican League times, he was the greatest CF I’ve seen here, not that it says much, but I do think he was a better fielder than Griffey but obviously not better than Jones.

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    • Zak says:

      I got to watch Mike Cameron with the Brewers in his later years and in spite of his age, he was silky as ever in the field. I’ve never seen a CF with a quicker first step, take better routes, or make the difficult look routine as much as Cameron.

      As a Brewers fan, we are spoiled with Carlos Gomez in center, but he uses superior speed and lack of disregard for his body at the wall to make great plays. Cameron made everything look easy.

      I remember one play in particular where Cameron was calmly jogging towards the wall in left center and then without breaking stride, or a sweat, he jumps at the perfect time and takes a HR away. Based on Cameron’s reaction, I assumed it was a routine fly ball rather than an awesome play that he was going to make look routine.

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  4. Bronnt says:

    I think the debate about Andruw Jones should be less about whether he’s a hall of famer, and more about whether he’s the best defensive outfielder in history. There’s a huge error margin in the numbers, especially numbers prior to 2002, but by the numbers, he’s the best there ever was by a very large margin. He was a darn good hitter at his peak as well.

    The only thing hurting Andruw Jones’ case is how quickly he fell off, and the fact that he didn’t have one more really good season left in him. One more 5-6 WAR season after he’d hit 30, and he’d be cemented as a hall of famer.

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    • stan says:

      I agree. I think he should get extra votes for being one of the greatest at his position defensively a la Brooks Robinson and Luis Aparicio. Scott Rolen should get that treatment too.

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      • will says:

        I usually lean on the side of a big hall, but I just don’t think Andruw Jones makes the cut. The .254 career batting average jumps out at me. For his whole career he only hit above .280 in a season once, and while he walked a decent amount, a .337 career OBP is nothing special. Especially for a guy who didn’t get to 2000 hits. I loved Andruw as a player, but he was a 2 dimensional player (defense and pop). I think a more well rounded player like Kenny Lofton has a better case (career .299/.372/.423 hitter with 2400 hits, 600 steals, and great CF defense. And he failed to get even 5% of the vote last year, what a travesty)

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  5. Brendan says:

    Admittedly a Braves fan. But my take on Andruw Jones is that if someone can be legitimately argued as the best defender of all time. He shouldn’t be held out of the hall for “merely” hitting 430 home runs. Of course, Home Runs was most of his value offensively. A 111 career wRC+ paints a more modest picture than all the home runs. But still, above average offense with that type of defense seems worthy.

    I’ll also note that he actually did OKish in part time his final 4 years. He was more or less hitting at his career lines for the yankees, white sox, and rangers (power the same, average down, walks up). It was just without the defense, and he only got 200-300 PAs. Of course he was probably getting played in matchups favorable to him. I didn’t see him much once he was in the AL so I don’t know how he actually looked.

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  6. david says:

    i wouldn’t discredit bernie williams so quickly. earle combs is in the hall and how’d he get there? play cf in ny for a team that won a bunch of titles. bernie might not have the stats, but he has the hardware: ws rings galore, gold gloves (deserved or not),a batting title, and a bunch of all star games.

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    • Mike Savino says:

      All of these things are really irrelevant to Hall of Fame discussion: WS Rings, Gold Gloves, all star games, New York.

      Center field is relevant and so is a batting title (although its pretty weakly relevant).

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      • David says:

        what is relevant? WAR? yeah right. writers and veterans have been voting in guys on tangible criteria such as hardware for decades.

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  7. YankeeGM says:

    If ANY of the above get in ;or even serious consideration) Bernie Williams MUST get in first. Bernie was never best player in the keague, but he played at an incredibly high level for an extremely long time.

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    • BurleighGrimes says:

      Carlos Beltran has had a substantially better career than Bernie Williams did. Not knocking Bernie, but he seems like a classic Hall of Very Good type player, while Beltran (& Edmonds, & Jones) have more legitimate arguments for making the hall.

      Now, if Beltran goes in whose hat will he be wearing?

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    • TKDC says:

      You should probably take out the words “incredibly” and “extremely” when making this statement.

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    • Bernie was not a substantially more valuable player than Jorge Posada. He was substantially less valuable than Andy Pettitte, who’s a borderline Hall of Famer, and the two no-doubt Hall of Famers, Derek Jeter and Mariano Rivera.

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    • stan says:

      Here’s an example of why Bernie gets buzz and Ellis Burks never gets a sniff: Bernie was a Yankee and Yankee fans tend to think that all of their good players are deserving of the HoF.

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      • Scraps says:

        I like Bernie, but there are plenty more deserving players from his era, at least. If he gets in, it will be like Phil Rizzuto getting in.

        Like BurleighGrimes said, Bernie is a classic Hall of Very Good player. There’s no harm in recognizing that.

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  8. Stringer Bell says:

    Kirby Puckett getting in is an absolute joke.

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    • Hurtlocker says:

      .318 lifetime batting average, averaged 4.3 WAR per year, seven times in the top ten for MVP. A joke, really??

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      • Stringer Bell says:

        That’s…not really that special. At all.

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        • stan says:

          It does stand out as being a marginal mistake. I don’t think there’s any question the voters gave him a bit of a pity vote because of the career-ending injury and because he seemed like a nice guy at the time. His induction doesn’t approach the modern-era stupidty that was the Rice or Perez induction.

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      • Stringer Bell says:

        And since I just did the math…where are you get 4.3 WAR per year from? Per 162 game season he averaged 4.08, and per year he averaged 3.74.

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        • Hurtlocker says:

          50.8 WAR divided by 12 years = 4.233, off by .1.
          His .318 acreer avergae is 57th best in the history of baseball, almosyt everyone above him is in the HOF. I’m not the president of the Pucket fan club, but he is not a joke HOF selection.

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        • Puckett has 50.8 rWAR, but only 44.9 fWAR.

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        • Scraps says:

          Puckett is a questionable choice, but not a joke. Like Bernie Williams, if he gets in. IMGDO.

          That’s why leaving up to sportswriters is a joke. Kirby is a Nice Guy selection. As opposed to, say, Dick Allen.

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        • Stringer Bell says:

          Kirby Puckett was a fucking asshole, how was he a nice guy pick?

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        • Scraps says:

          Are you kidding? When he was selected, everybody thought he was wonderful. Then slowly the truth surfaced, years afterward.

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  9. Hurtlocker says:

    Griffey yes, Beltran maybe, no on the rest of them.

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  10. TKDC says:

    It is absurd that those five should all be in the hall of fame, but aside from Griffey (first ballot lock) and maybe Beltran depending on how much he can improve his counting stats, none of the others will make it in the next 20 years.

    Also, you shouldn’t even mention the steroid thing with Edmonds. Yes, you are probably right, but writing it into your article actually furthers the idiocy of guilt by suspicion, association, and third-grade level numerology.

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    • Others will mention it. Like I said, I am not accusing him. But he will have to deal with it, as have many other players who he played against.

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      • TKDC says:

        Yeah, that is what I meant by you are probably right, that people will mention it. But by bringing up that others will mention it, you are in a small way legitimizing the people who do mention it. Bringing up steroids based on basically nothing is akin to saying a player shouldn’t make the HOF based on race or religion, it is an utterly defenseless and cowardly tactic employed by morons (a real life parallel is people who talked about Obama not being electable because he is black).

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        • Look, I understand the point you’re making. But not talking about it doesn’t make it less true. You can’t wish it away and you won’t make it disappear by shutting your eyes.

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        • Scraps says:

          It should disappear when there’s no evidence. Seriously, I expect more than “not talking about it doesn’t make it less true” jazz from FanGraphs. “Less true”? Let there be a scrap of evidence before we talk about truth. And no, “evidence” does not mean hitting better after thirty, as though that’s never happened before.

          Let the morons chatter; then you slap them down. TKDC is right: when you bring it up with no evidence, you legitimize the discussion. That’s one of the ways smear tactics work.

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        • Scraps says:

          (I’m defending Jim Edmonds. I can’t believe what steroids make me do.)

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        • Scraps, when I said “less true,” I was talking about the fact that every power hitter from the so-called Steroid Era faces steroid accusations when he becomes eligible for the Hall of Fame. Such as, for example, this past Hall of Fame election, when no one made it, despite the fact that there were at least 10 candidates with viable cases.

          Take it up with the voters, if you like. But don’t ask me to ignore the obvious. Hall of Fame voters are going to accuse Edmonds of doing steroids. You’re fooling yourself if you think they won’t.

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        • Scraps says:

          I am on record about “who cares what the sportwriters think?” and the travesty of recent Hall of Fame voting. I still think you wait until the morons bring steroids up when they’re no evidence, for the reasons stated. We will disagree.

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        • Scraps says:

          argh, they’re > there is

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        • Scraps says:

          Really, if you’re talking about Hall of Fame voting by these bozos, you might as well say, it’s Griffey, and nobody else from that group stands a chance, which would make a slim piece; but it’s true, and you are fooling yourself if you think different.

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  11. Dave says:

    “but was there for … pennants in 1996, 1998, 1999, 2001, and 2007.”

    The Indians won pennants in none of those years. Perhaps the author meant central division first place finishes?

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