I don't expect the same for Pettitte despite his wins and five rings. Helton , whose peak is above the first base standard and who's within one point of the JAWS standard, will have his adherents, but between his mid-career falloff and the voters' resistance to the far more well-rounded Larry Walker and to Coors-inflated stats in general, he's got an uphill battle.
As for the rest of the candidates, Mussina—who has gained Bonds and Clemens, who only gained about three points this year in the face of vice chairman Joe Morgan's letter , will regain a bit of momentum, riding the overwhelming support of first-time voters 23 out of 26 who have supported the former over the past two years, 24 of 26 for the latter amid a shrinking electorate into the low 60s.
Schilling will climb into the mids if he can avoid further alienating Hall voters during the other election cycle, the political one. Jeter, Mussina Falling off: With his 3, hits sixth all-time , 14 All-Star appearances and five championship rings, Jeter isn't just a lock for Cooperstown, he's got a very strong chance at a top 10 share of the vote— upwards of Whatever chance he had at unanimity is gone thanks not only to the Hall's decision but to the rocky early going in his tenure as the part-owner of the Marlins, where it appears he's been less than forthcoming about the depth of his payroll cuts.
Jeter is almost certainly alone among this year's first-ballot set. Neither Konerko's career homers nor his respectable. Likewise for Dunn and his bombs, particularly given the way his career slid into replacement level territory once he joined Konerko on the South Side. Abreu, despite a stellar. Lee, with just career wins and the th-highest JAWS among starting pitchers, will go the way of Santana and Oswalt.
Bonds, Clemens, Schilling, Vizquel Most likely to be elected: The first year that I'll have a ballot will be the weakest one for newcomers since , as none is anywhere close to the JAWS standard at his position or has a notable milestone that will fuel his candidacy; note that there won't be a single candidate in his 10th year, as nobody from even made it onto the ballot.
Ramirez had some thump homers and a. All of which suggests that this will be a year for holdovers such as Kent, Sheffield, Rolen and Jones to step forward, though the top ones by this point are likely to be the controversial trio, Bonds, Clemens and Schilling.
A year ago, I had this year as the Gruesome Twosome's opening, with Schilling a year behind, but—spoiler alert—this time I'm reversing that. Cooperstown better root hard for somebody to break through on the Era Committee ballots, specifically the Golden Days Dick Allen?
Bonds, Clemens Falling off: This, the 10th year of their candidacy, is where Bonds and Clemens will finally gain entry. Ortiz is a different story.
The key to Big Papi's candidacy is his career home runs and great postseason numbers. He'll have to overcome a more minor PED connection, as he was reported as having failed the supposedly anonymous survey test as were Ramirez and Rodriguez , but in late , when Ortiz was near the end of his career, commissioner Rob Manfred basically disavowed the veracity of that test on the grounds that there were at least 10 false positives among the reported positives; the discrepancies were never ironed out because the threshold to trigger mandatory testing had been met.
Rodriguez might get half that, better than Ramirez his first time around, but hardly enough to suggest inevitable election. Beyond Ortiz and Rodriguez, it's difficult to see any of the other newcomers making a dent. Neither Teixeira nor Fielder even reached 2, hits.
The modest crop will leave a lot of room for holdovers, though we shouldn't expect the fervor that has greeted ballots over the past five years, during which voters have included at least 7. Or maybe it's Sheffield or Kent benefiting from the absence of players with impressive career totals. I'll freely admit that at this point, I'm throwing darts.
Vizquel, Rolen, Helton, Sheffield Most likely to be elected: Ortiz, Beltran, Suzuki Falling off: This ballot will include players who hung up their spikes following the season, but of the ones listed above, only Beltran has officially retired. With nine All-Star appearances, three Gold Gloves, 2, hits, homers, outstanding postseason numbers.
Unlike Beltran, the year-old Ichiro is still searching for a major league job, but given his replacement level showing in , and a meager net 5. With 3, stateside hits, 10 All-Star appearances, 10 Gold Gloves, and his MVP and Rookie of the Year awards, not to mention his status as one of the most beloved players in recent history, and a tremendous international ambassador for the sport, he's a first-ballot lock no matter when he becomes eligible.
Utley hasn't retired yet either, and has gracefully accepted a diminished, elder statesman role. He's 10th in JAWS at the position thanks to the tremendous impact of his fielding and baserunning, but appears to be two seasons away from reaching 2, hits he has 1,, including just 73 in , which means rough sledding ahead.
Colon, coming off an ugly 6. Rodriguez, with career saves, was torched for a 7. The presence or absence of those candidates will have only so much impact on the holdovers, but it's too soon to say whether any of them will be within striking distance by I don't see Kent, who's maxed out at I wish I knew where the candidacies of Rolen, Helton, Jones, Sheffield, Wagner and Vizquel were going, but five years requires more crystal ball polish than is currently on the shelf at my local hardware store.
What I do know is that with 11 candidates projected for election over this span, we'll see a lower concentration than in these five historic years, while still leaving room for a surprise or two. I can't wait to see how it plays out.
Written by Ricky Dimon Sep Written by Chris Kubala Sep The Kansas City Royals kick off the final two weeks of the A pair of teams from the National League East will square off this evening as the Washington Nation pay a visit to Written by Brian Spaen Sep Minnesota and Detroit begin their division series on Monday night at Comerica Park.
The Twins had a rough showing in Written by Adam Rauzino Sep Louis Cardinals in the series opener Monday The Rays continue to keep Written by Chris Altruda Sep Framber Valdez looks to get back on track and help the Houston Astros take another step closer to the AL West title as