Which current MLB players are going to the Hall of Fame?

So of those currently playing, who’s going for sure? Based on their achievements to the present, of course. No can’t-miss Double A phenoms, please.

I’ve got Clemens, Maddox, Bonds, Palmeiro, Rivera, and I know I’m forgetting a bunch of others. How about Bagwell and Biggio? Ramirez?

Who you got?

Palmeiro is on the bubble, and I don’t know if he gets in; 500 HRs used to make someone a lock, but I’ve never thought of Palmeiro when I think of the top 5 hitters in the league for the last decade. Unless McGwire repairs his image, I don’t know if he will make it in on the first ballot. Those two are going to be iffy with the steroid cloud. Then again, who knows what will change in 3-5 years.

If Alex Rodriguez retires tomorrow he is a lock to be inducted in 2010. Since he has at least another good 4 years in him, and will eventually get a ring, he’s such a sure thing, that it’s probably why he’s one of the guys you forgot.

Ramirez will probably get in eventually, but I’m not sure about first ballot. Maybe he’ll sneak through in a week year.

If Derrek Lee wins the Triple Crown, will he get in? Is one spectacular year enough? Every other modern Triple Crown winner is in (though they had outstanding careers in addition to their TC year).

Eventually Vladimir Guerrero will get in, he just needs to stay healthy. Frank Thomas used to be a lock, but now he’s more iffy, kind of like Palmeiro. If the Big Hurt gets in, then (unfortunately) I think Palmeiro has to go in too.

[li]Alex Rodriguez[/li][li]Gary Sheffield[/li][li]Randy Johnson[/li][li]Mike Piazza[/li][li]Eric Gagne[/li][/ul]

Gagne? He’s like a .140 lifetime hitter, man!

Well, anyway, he’s had about four good years, and it’s hell for closers to get in. I think he needs to pitch for another 20 years to have a shot.

One of the ESPN talking heads mentioned Ken Griffey Jr. will probably get in based on his early career stats. Sammy Sosa will most likely make it too.

As a Braves fan, I have to say John Smoltz. He has had quite a career with the Braves, as a Starter, then a Closer, then a Starter again.

Are we doing Managers? If so then Bobby Cox will make it, as will Laurassa (or how ever you spell his name)

Palmeiro has over 500 home runs and is 13 hits shy of 3000. The only players in baseball history with 500 HRs and 3000 hits are Hank Aaron, Willie Mays, and Eddie Murray. That’s a pretty select list. I’d put Palmeiro in.

Gagne’s about to have a second Tommy John surgery on his elbow. He had a few years as a mediocre starters, then three years as a top-flight closer (including one of the most dominant performances ever in 2003). If he never plays again, or if he comes back and can’t perform the way he has the last couple of years, I don’t think he gets in.

Of players who haven’t been mentioned, I think Derek Jeter and Sammy Sosa are pretty sure to get in. Albert Pujols and Vlad Guerrero are both off to good starts, but they’ve got a ways to go.

Another Braves fan here… Chipper Jones has lots of consecutive 100RBI 30HR seasons, MVPs, All-stars, etc. A possibility if he can get back on track for the next few years.

Palmeiro Lines garentees HOF but he will have done it somehow underwhelmingly. He even has many Gold Gloves (Yes I know at least one year was a joke)
TOTAL 2792 10332 1646 2983 561 1809 1336 1330 97 40 .371 .515 .289
Frank Thomas: not a lock
1940 6889 1318 2123 442 1449 1457 1145 32 23 .428 .568 .308

Clemens, Maddox, Bonds, Rivera are locks.
I think Glavine will go in. Good Numbers, Cy Young, some excellent Post Seasons.

Pudge Rodriguez will go in, great numbers as a great catcher.
Sammy Sosa is closing in on 600 HR. he’s in.

Manny Ramirez has a good shot but injury could stop him

I think Pedro was so great for 7 years that he’s already a lock.
Craig Biggio numbers aren’t a lock, but they’re very good and he meant so much to Astros they put him in, not first ballet.
I don’t think Bagwell will go. Number aren’t a little low for 1b. Far behimd Palmiero.
Managers that are a lock:
Torre & Cox: Any others?
Lou Piniella & Dusty Baker have a good shot.

I love Jeter, he’s my favorite player. But speaking from experience, Munson & Mattingly did not make it in and so I just hope Jeter stays healthy. If he can put up 5 more typical Jeter years he’ll definitely go in.
On same note, is Griffey going in, because he was once a lock as was Strawberry once upon a time.

**Should go first ballot, unanimously. Though there never has been an unanimous selection. **

A Rod (best chance for 756, but will go without the record)
Bonds (juiced out of unanimous)
Clemens (why would anyone not vote for him on the first ballot)
Johnson (why would anyone not vote for him on the first ballot)
Maddox (why would anyone not vote for him on the first ballot)

In. Most should be first ballot

Griffey (If he quit today, he should be in. Healthy, he’ll have 600+ homers)
I Rod
Martinez, Pedro

Good chance, if…


I don’t mean to be a dick, but it’s Greg Maddux, not Maddox.

Anyway, I tried grouping these guys into similar types.

There are some pretty obvious certainties:



I can’t think of a good active comparison. I know nobody seems to rate Glavine as a certain choice, but he is, really. Going into 2006 he was 262-171, with two Cy Young Awards and a World Series MVP. It would be unprecedented for a pitcher with his qualifications to be excluded. He’s as great a pitcher as Bob Feller and damn near as great as Bob Gibson.


The homers will get them in, irrespective of anything else. And I’m fine with that.

Ivan Rodriguez
Mike Piazza

A reasonably good argument can be made that Ivan Rodriguez is the greatest catcher to ever play Major League Baseball. He is without question in the top ten. He’s a Hall of Famer any day that ends with the letter Y.

Piazza, IMHO, has clearly slipped behind Pudge, but he’s still in, and I’ve no doubt about it. He is certainly the best HITTING catcher ever.

Roberto Alomar
Craig Biggio
Jeff Kent
Bret Boone

I know Alomar just retired so technically he doesn’t belong in this discussion, but he’s a good match for Biggio. Alomar was a bigger star and he led the Blue Jays to two World Championships, and they just kind of LOOKED different, but they were very similar players in many respects. I think both will end up in the Hall of Fame eventually.

Kent and Boone are a different sort, power hitters at the second base position. I don’t think either will make it.

Derek Jeter
Alex Rodriguez

If they died today it would be tough for A-Rod and Jeter, but assuming they play a little longer, they’re guaranteed.

Frank Thomas
Jeff Bagwell
Jim Thome
Juan Gonzalez

These five guys may not make it 500 homers. Any one of them who does is elected; any one who doesn’t may have to wait awhile. This would be especially unfortunate in the case of Thomas, who for awhile was the absolute #1 hitter in baseball. Thome and Bagwell deserve to go too. McGriff is very marginal. Gonzalez is hard to rate.

Gary Sheffield
Manny Ramirez

Sheffield will be an interesting case; he has been a grat hitter for many years but his career has been so transient it doesn’t have a well defined shape. He is still young enough to reach big numbers, like 500 taters.

Ramirez was once considered an airhead; I guess that’s kind of over. If he stays healthy he will be remembered as one of the greatest hitters ever.

John Smoltz
Curt Schilling
Mike Mussina
Kevin Brown
David Wells

Both Smoltz and Schilling have unimpressive W/L records for Hall of Famers, but both have been REALLY effective; Schilling has a career 131+ ERA, Smoltz 125+, both of which are Hall-type numbers. They also have the rings and glories needed for Hall of Famers. But injuries and such have kept them from pitching quite as many innings as most Hall of Fame starters. Odds are against them but they wouldn’t be the worst pitchers ever elected.

Mussina and Brown have similar resumes but lack the highlights. Mussina, however, has an extraordinarily good W-L record - 211-119 going into this year. No pitcher with that many wins and such a high winning percentage has been denied. If he can come back and have some more good years I think he’s a lock.

David Wells is famous and has been good a long time but isn’t really a great pitcher.

Kevin Brown has been even more effective than Mussina by some measures, but at his age I don’t think he can add enough to his resume.

Larry Walker
Jim Edmonds

Walker’s career numbers are warped by Coors Field and he’s had a very short career for a Hall of Famer, because of injuries. Edmonds is a truly great player but the injury big slowed him down too. I don’t think either will make it, but you never know.

John Olerud
Not like anyone else. An insanely underrated player; got on base his whole career and was a tremendous defensive player. Not really a Hall of Famer though.

Mariano Rivera
Not like anyone else. I don’t think people realize how short his career has been, but let me throw an example at you: Tom Henke. Why is Rivera such a lock for the Hall of Fame but Tom Henke wasn’t?

Jesus, why would you put Rivera in before GOOSE GOSSAGE? Rivera has been awesome - in about the same number of innings that Roy Halladay has pitcher since he got back from A ball in 2001. Rivera, to my mind, just hasn’t pitched long enough. But he’s still going strong so who knows?

Too early to tell:

Vladimir Guerreo
Albert Pujols
Miguel Tejada
Carlos Delgado
etc. etc.

As a Met fan, I have to say the Met careers of Glavine and Alomar (and to a degree Piazza) argue otherwise. It’s not so much that they were old, which they were, but the lack of inspiration in their play, the lack of ability to adjust to their declining skills, the stubborn cluelessness of their head-up-the-ass approach the the game.

I don’t think these three are getting many votes from the NYC metropolitan area. I saw HOF play from none of them.

Yeah, this is an interesting one. I agree with you that he’s underrated – and boy, was I glad when Boston got him. He could have another half dozen years left in him, so HOF isn’t out of the question. But he’ll probably get passed over.

Sorry about the Maddox/Maddux thing. I started it, so I guess I get the blame.

You didn’t exactly get Glavine or Alomar in their prime though. I mean, what the Mets have done recently is what the Yanks did in the 80s (and seem to be doing again) which is get stars at the tail end of their careers.

Mo’s dominant career goes back to 1997 as a closer. This is his 9th year.
Every single year has been great. His Post season numbers are spectacular. (really at this point the equivalence of an additional season). No closer has ever put up 9 years as great and as consistent. Even Gossage had bad years in his run. A large reason the Yanks had to come back in ‘78 was Gossage stank for 2 months to begin the year. Mo’ has bad weeks, everyone else has had bad seasons.

How do you rate his career short when as closers go he is already 6th in saves and well ahead of Henke {14th & not HOF caliber}
Mo has the best ERA of any Saves Leader.
All time Save Leaders:
If all this wasn’t enough, his 1996 season as setup man was one of the top 5 single seasons by a setup reliever anytime.

By the Gossage should be in HOF anyway. This is fairly silly that he’s not.

Ichiro’s an interesting case. He’s had 4 great years in MLB, but he’s not doing so well this year, and he’ll be 32 in October. If he puts together 5 more seasons on par with his first four, does he go in? 9-10 years is a pretty short career for a Hall of Famer, but he played 8 seasons in Japan before he came to Seattle. I think his career in Japan has to be considered, but I’ve heard arguments to the contrary.

Normally 10 years are required. If he completes 10 years with over 2000 hits and lets say a .325 BA he’ll have a good chance as many writers will give him some credit for the Japanese years.
By the way, in all likelyhood if he can finish 10 years with .325 BA he’ll probably have more like 2200 hits.

Willie Mays and Yogi Berra both finished their careers sucking as Mets. Juan Marichal (a good match for Glavine) ended his career as abad pitcher with Boston and L.A. Really, five years after they retire, nobody is going to penalize Glavine and Alomar for being bad at the end of their careers. EVERYONE is bad at the end of their careers.

The advantage of the five year waiting period is that it allows the voters to lose the recency effect and begin to see a player’s career as a whole. When the time comes, Alomar will be largely remembered for his glory years with the Blue Jays and to a lesser extent the Orioles and Indians; Glavine will be remembered for being with the Braves.

Dusty Baker? You can’t be serious. The guy has never won anything. He’s a very marginal manager with good PR. He’s presided over two of the worst clubhouses in recent memory and his teams have a way of imploding spectacularly. Plus, he’s hardly been at it long enough to even be considered a HOFer. If he puts together 15 more seasons of over .500 ball and adds a WS or two, then…maybe, still a longshot.

Jim Leyland has a better resume by a long stretch and probably won’t get much consideration.

Tony LaRussa will probably get in, the guy gets on my nerves, but he’s quality. Probably would take him over Torre if you held a gun to my head, it’d be a horse race between him and Cox.

About Frank Thomas, the guy should be a lock. His career is long enough even with the injuries. Comparing him to Palmerio is a bad idea. Raffy was above average for a very long time. Look at the number of games and at bats when you check out their statlines, then compare the hits, HRs and RBIs. Frank was simply transcedant for about 6 years and well above average the rest.

Look at him historically. He has the second highest OBP all-time for a righthanded batter. He’s got the 10th highest OPS all-time. You don’t have to be a SABRmetrician to appreciate the magnitude of that. HRs are nice, but if you want to talk about value and impact to a team, I’ll take OPS any day. Oh, and BTW, he won two MVPS, back-to-back.

Look at Baseball Reference and see how his offensive stats compare All-time. Plus, the guy has never been linked to any of the steroid talk. That’s important to me.

I’ll conceed that defensively he leaves alot to be desired. His personality isn’t great, but it’s not like he’s ever been in legal trouble or connected to anything violent. And that his last seasons have been marred by injury, but so have alot of HOFers last few seasons. Even at his age, when healthy he produces.

Thomas should be a lock, first ballot guy.

Raffy…I don’t think I’d put him in. Longevity has value, but it’s not a major factor. I think rate stats indicate a guys value more than grand totals. He’s been going for 20 years for god’s sake. He’d better climb the board for hits and HRs. But when you look at his career numbers compared to the all-timers, he’s barely a blimp on the radar. He’s got no MVPs, no WS rings, and his most talked about measure (HRs) only has him tenth all time. Never had a HR title and no one ever considered him to be the best player in the game at any point, nor even the best first baseman. You’ve got to stand out from teh pack, he doesn’t. He just stuck around and stayed healthy for a very long time. Oh yeah, and there’s that steriod thing…

I wouldn’t be pissed if he got in, wouldn’t get my vote, but he might be the best measure of how history will view this “juiced” era. If he gets in easily, it’ll mean that people accept the last decades numbers without a caveat. No one sets these records aside from the ones all-time. If he struggles, or doesn’t get in, it means that the last decades counter stats become marginalized and the “automatic” milestones lose meaning.