The Baseball Hall of Fame Class of 2016 poll and thread

The BBWAA has released the 2016 ballot for the Baseball Hall of Fame. You know the drill. Pick who think deserves entry in the poll and discuss whether a specific candidate belongs or not.

I’ll come in with my votes and arguments later.

In no particular order:

Ken Griffey
Jeff Bagwell
Barry Bonds
Mike Piazza
Roger Clemens
Mark McGwire
Sammy Sosa
Curt Schilling
Mike Mussina
Tim Raines

The new ones: Griffey and Hoffman. Any disagreement?

Holdovers: Clemens, Bonds, Piazza, Bagwell (IOW let’s cut the hypocrisy about PED’s), Schilling.

I think relief pitchers should basically be one per era and that one is Rivera, so no Hoffman.

Same with the DH, so let’s put Edgar in.

I don’t disagree with the sentiment, but how do you define era? I don’t think that’s an issue with Hoffman v. Rivera, but there tends to be some overlap.

And yeah - if we’re going to put relievers in, why the hell isn’t Edgar in? (Or Raines, for christsake?)

Yeah, I don’t know how I’d formulate it as a hard and fast rule, but since Hoffman was only active two years before Rivera, I don’t think that’s an edge case.

Another issue is that if you look at Hoffman vs. Billy Wagner, it’s not clear which of the two was better - Hoffman had more innings and saves, but Wagner was more dominant (by ERA+) - Hoffman’s 141 was as good as a good hall of fame starter (Clemens is 143) but Wagner’s 173 is better than Pedro Martinez or Clayton Kershaw and only behind Rivera - except that Wagner misses the 1,000 inning minimum by a hair.

Griffey jr. is a no-brainer, but I’m sure some knuckleheads will leave him off their ballots for dumbass reasons. I voted for ten, also choosing Bagwell, Bonds, Clemens, Piazza, Raines, Mussina, Edgar, Schilling and Hoffman.

Relief pitcher and DH are positions, and the very best should go into the Hall, imo. It’s fair to make the standard higher for those positions, but it’s ridiculous to exclude them.

Billy Wagner was just as good as Trevor Hoffman, probably a little better. If they both got in, along with Rivera, that would only be 3 who played in the past 20 years. That doesn’t seem outrageous.

The poll results are interesting. I’m curious about the person who (it would appear) voted for Clemens but not Bonds. Would you be willing to explain your thinking there?

Hoffman pitched in a extremely friendly pitchers park and was used very selectively through most of career. He was certainly good, but circumstance is all that separates him from any number of other relievers.

I’m happy the ballot logjam has eased at least a little bit from last year. There was only a couple of players I probably would have voted for, but lacked room for.

Huh, this is the first year in a while that I had a hard time finding 10 non-steriod candidates, only coming up with 9. So Bonds made the 10th. I would vote for Clemens and McGwire if the ballot was larger, but not over other deserving candidates.


Sheffield and Edmonds to me are just on the wrong side of qualified, I still may change my mind on either. Schilling is such a miserable human being I can’t ever see myself voting for him.

How do you know those nine guys were clean?

Bagwell, Griffey, Hoffman, Edgar, Piazza, Raines, Lee Smith.

And I’m almost numb enough to the PED issue that I very much considered just saying screw it, I’ll vote for Bonds, Clemens, et al. But I didn’t. Was Piazza 100% clean? I don’t know. Edgar, Griffey, Bags, Hoffman, hell any of the guys on that list? We’ll never, ever know. But the guys who got caught will have it held against them, right, wrong or otherwise. Eventually I might come around, but not today.

And Lee Smith, for the love of God, put him in. He’s no less deserving than Rollie Fingers or Goose Gossage and far more deserving than Bruce friggin’ Sutter. Dude was a seven time all star and the career saves leader for 13 years.

Unfortunately, this logic leads to an argument that every player better than the worst HoFer should be in–which would mean a Hall several times the present size, and basically meaningless.

I prefer to err on the side of exclusion, in any given vote. Guys who really belong will get in eventually.

Griffey, Hoffman, Martinez. No to the Roid Brothers.

Agreed - there’s already 200 or so members. That isn’t over-exclusive, I don’t think. Yes, there will always be many, many more in the Hall of Very Good.

Feel free to start your own Hall if you don’t like the standards at this one.

Which ones are which? And why does it matter?

No to Sosa, Clemons, Bonds, and McGwire. Besides getting records they didn’t deserve, too many guys ruined their health by taking steroids in an effort to keep up with other players. Hopefully we’ve turned the corner and made their use much less likely.

Any evidence on this claim? Personally, I find remarkable the lack of apparent long term effects of rampant steroid use in baseball. It isn’t like you have lot of retired players coming out about the negative consequences, like you do with concussions in football.

I don’t.
But there is far, far less evidence that they were using steroids than Bonds, Clemens or McGwire (and probably Sosa).
As I said, I would vote for the first three if there was room on the ballot. I just push the fairly certain users down on my list. Not as far down as Schilling, though. I’m just totally irrational about him.