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View Full Version : A Hall of Fame voter picked Matt Williams over Rickey Henderson


Mr. Man
01-07-2009, 03:40 PM
Corky Simpson (http://homerderby.com/archives/2247) - retired Arizona-based Sportswriter is the first (possibly not the last) to not vote for Rickey Henderson for the Hall of Fame.

Apparently Matt Williams got his vote, but not the Man of Steal.
http://homerderby.com/archives/2247

Same site has a Hall of Fame vote tracker (http://homerderby.com/2009-baseball-hall-of-fame-bbwaa-vote-tracker), too

doublem23
01-07-2009, 03:43 PM
****ing BBWAA.

The best part is that Corky Simpson didn't vote for Mark McGwire due to his alleged steroid use, but voted for Matt Williams based on his "intensity and reverence to the game." The same Matt Williams named in the Mitchell Report for buying and using steroids.

:scratch:

areilly
01-07-2009, 04:20 PM
http://www.gannett.com/go/newswatch/2003/april/simpson.jpg
"Rickey always seemed..."


http://thisdistractedglobe.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/08/high-fidelity-2000-todd-louiso-jack-black-pic-2.jpg

"He always seemed what? He always seemed really great is what he always seemed. He picked up where your precious Jim Rice left off, and you're sitting around complaining about no more Jim Rice. I can't believe you didn't vote for this ****ing player. [tosses a Rickey card to the Corky Simpson and walks away] That's insane. Jesus."

kittle42
01-07-2009, 04:21 PM
As long as this "guy doesn't deserve to get in on the first ballot and I'm a writer and can do what I want" stuff remains, the process sucks.

hi im skot
01-07-2009, 04:26 PM
http://www.gannett.com/go/newswatch/2003/april/simpson.jpg
"Rickey always seemed..."


http://thisdistractedglobe.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/08/high-fidelity-2000-todd-louiso-jack-black-pic-2.jpg

"He always seemed what? He always seemed really great is what he always seemed. He picked up where your precious Jim Rice left off, and you're sitting around complaining about no more Jim Rice. I can't believe you didn't vote for this ****ing player. [tosses a Rickey card to the Corky Simpson and walks away] That's insane. Jesus."


You're on a roll this week. Well done.

Chrisaway
01-07-2009, 04:26 PM
:rolleyes:What a joke.

asindc
01-07-2009, 05:06 PM
As long as this "guy doesn't deserve to get in on the first ballot and I'm a writer and can do what I want" stuff remains, the process sucks.

Exactly. This is complete BS. Rickey Henderson, arguably the greatest leadoff hitter ever (certainly the one all others will be judged by) vs. a good-to-very good 3rd baseman who was not a standout.

What, the itty-bitty sportswriter is mad because Rickey was mean to him one day? Get over it and do your job professionally.

PKalltheway
01-07-2009, 05:10 PM
What a clown. He can take his Hall of Fame vote and shove it up his ass.

InKennyWeTrust
01-07-2009, 06:22 PM
I don't know who this guy is, all I know is that I've always hated him.

BainesHOF
01-07-2009, 06:43 PM
Rickey Henderson, arguably the greatest leadoff hitter ever...

Does anyone have any doubt that Henderson is the greatest leadoff hitter ever? Heck, he's one of the greatest offensive players, period.

Dan Mega
01-07-2009, 06:45 PM
As long as this "guy doesn't deserve to get in on the first ballot and I'm a writer and can do what I want" stuff remains, the process sucks.

The entire voting pool should be scrapped to give everyone a fresh start. Get some legit young blood in there.

BleacherBandit
01-07-2009, 07:25 PM
There should be a high commitee for the BBWAA that can throw off writers from the list if they make terrible decisions in their voting process...

thomas35forever
01-07-2009, 08:14 PM
Wow. This ranks up there with Cal Ripken not getting 100% of the vote.

Brian26
01-07-2009, 08:31 PM
What a clown. He can take his Hall of Fame vote and shove it up his ass.

Along with Matt Williams' syringe.

Konerko05
01-07-2009, 09:02 PM
I found it funny he voted Raines but not Henderson. Henderson is a better version of Crack Rock.

WHILEPITCH
01-07-2009, 10:24 PM
http://www.gannett.com/go/newswatch/2003/april/simpson.jpg
"Rickey always seemed..."


http://thisdistractedglobe.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/08/high-fidelity-2000-todd-louiso-jack-black-pic-2.jpg

"He always seemed what? He always seemed really great is what he always seemed. He picked up where your precious Jim Rice left off, and you're sitting around complaining about no more Jim Rice. I can't believe you didn't vote for this ****ing player. [tosses a Rickey card to the Corky Simpson and walks away] That's insane. Jesus."
A's for effort and content. Nice.

akingamongstmen
01-13-2009, 11:17 PM
Rickey Henderson not getting 100% of the vote is totally indefensible. If you were to ask any rational owner, GM, manager, coach, player or fan who their ultimate lead-off hitter would be all of the above would say, "Rickey Henderson in his prime." He is, and probably always will be, the protype of what a lead-off hitter should be. The guy was a freak. One of the all-time greatest baseball players.

Now I'm fired up...Hall of Fame voting is reaching the point of absurdity. A player is or isn't a Hall of Famer. It SHOULD NOT matter if they get in on the first ballot. Maybe the format should be restructured so that players only appear on the ballot for one year. In the event of a royal screw-job by the BBWA, then the Veterans Committee should use their power to clean up the mess with one final vote for those that are excluded in their only year of eligibility.

EndemicSox
01-14-2009, 02:06 PM
I penciled in Rickey Henderson and Barry Bonds for 100% of the vote a few years ago. Not that the HOF really means anything to most fans, but still...

I can see one or two voters who may have some inside information regarding PED's/off-the field antics not voting, but Rickey was the man, and one of the best players of all-time.

TDog
01-14-2009, 02:40 PM
Rickey Henderson not getting 100% of the vote is totally indefensible. If you were to ask any rational owner, GM, manager, coach, player or fan who their ultimate lead-off hitter would be all of the above would say, "Rickey Henderson in his prime." He is, and probably always will be, the protype of what a lead-off hitter should be. The guy was a freak. One of the all-time greatest baseball players.

Now I'm fired up...Hall of Fame voting is reaching the point of absurdity. A player is or isn't a Hall of Famer. It SHOULD NOT matter if they get in on the first ballot. Maybe the format should be restructured so that players only appear on the ballot for one year. In the event of a royal screw-job by the BBWA, then the Veterans Committee should use their power to clean up the mess with one final vote for those that are excluded in their only year of eligibility.

I don't understand what you're so fired up about. Henderson wasn't denied, and he was on the ballot for just one year. Matt Williams was denied, and he was on the ballot for just the one year. Ted Williams was on the ballot for just the one year, and he was more deserving than Henderson, although he got just 93.4 percent of the vote in 1966.

Carlton Fisk didn't get elected in his first year of eligibility. If it hadn't been for his home run in Game 6 of the 1975 World Series, he might not have been elected in his second or subsequent years of eligibility. Early Wynn was on the ballot for four or five years, despite winning 300 games. Writers didn't leave him off the ballot because they didn't believe he was worthy of being a first-ballot Hall of Famer. Many writers questioned his qualifications. It took time for him to gain support.

Cy Young only was only named on 49.1 percent of the ballots in the first Hall of Fame vote. I wonder if people complained about the Hall of Fame lowering its standards when he was elected the next year with 76.1 percent of the vote.

Luke Appling, who retired in 1950, was elected in 1964 in a run-off after he led all former players with 70.6 percent of the vote. Under today's rules, no one would have been elected that year. Maybe we should question whether Appling truly belongs in the Hall of Fame. Twenty-somethings who think they know baseball tell me Luis Aparicio and Nellie Fox shouldn't be there.

Taking you out of context, you are right in the it should not matter if they get in on the first ballot. And it shouldn't matter if they weren't unanimous. You are getting fired up over nothing.

If Henderson takes the $1 million offer from the San Diego Surf Dawgs of the Golden Baseball League (where I believe he lost Hall of Fame votes in his 2005 season) to be enshrined as a Surf Dawg, a lot of people are going to wish they hadn't voted for him. Of course, the plaque will have him as a member of the Yankees or A's no matter what he wants. Apparently, though, the Golden Baseball League wants to actually pay him $1 million to just wear a Surf Dawg cap at the ceremony. I'm so fired up that I'm splitting infinitives.

doublem23
01-14-2009, 04:08 PM
If Henderson takes the $1 million offer from the San Diego Surf Dawgs of the Golden Baseball League (where I believe he lost Hall of Fame votes in his 2005 season) to be enshrined as a Surf Dawg, a lot of people are going to wish they hadn't voted for him. Of course, the plaque will have him as a member of the Yankees or A's no matter what he wants. Apparently, though, the Golden Baseball League wants to actually pay him $1 million to just wear a Surf Dawg cap at the ceremony. I'm so fired up that I'm splitting infinitives.

I would do it if I were him. As long as the clowns in the BBWAA hold the keys, the Baseball Hall of Fame deserves no reverence.

jabrch
01-14-2009, 05:22 PM
I'm amazed at how mad people get over irrelevant ****.

Cooperstown is a museum. The curators of the musuem choose who and how exhibits get shown. The have tasked the BBWA with voting on the player members. They also have tons of exhibits that they put in on their own.

Why care so damn much about 1st ballot, unananimous, or what Corky Putzenberg votes?

People just need to sit back and enjoy the game for more of what it is and stop pissing and moaning so much about things that are not relevant.

Enjoy baseball. Don't worry about it.

Craig Grebeck
01-14-2009, 05:23 PM
I don't understand what you're so fired up about. Henderson wasn't denied, and he was on the ballot for just one year. Matt Williams was denied, and he was on the ballot for just the one year. Ted Williams was on the ballot for just the one year, and he was more deserving than Henderson, although he got just 93.4 percent of the vote in 1966.

Carlton Fisk didn't get elected in his first year of eligibility. If it hadn't been for his home run in Game 6 of the 1975 World Series, he might not have been elected in his second or subsequent years of eligibility. Early Wynn was on the ballot for four or five years, despite winning 300 games. Writers didn't leave him off the ballot because they didn't believe he was worthy of being a first-ballot Hall of Famer. Many writers questioned his qualifications. It took time for him to gain support.

Cy Young only was only named on 49.1 percent of the ballots in the first Hall of Fame vote. I wonder if people complained about the Hall of Fame lowering its standards when he was elected the next year with 76.1 percent of the vote.

Luke Appling, who retired in 1950, was elected in 1964 in a run-off after he led all former players with 70.6 percent of the vote. Under today's rules, no one would have been elected that year. Maybe we should question whether Appling truly belongs in the Hall of Fame. Twenty-somethings who think they know baseball tell me Luis Aparicio and Nellie Fox shouldn't be there.

Taking you out of context, you are right in the it should not matter if they get in on the first ballot. And it shouldn't matter if they weren't unanimous. You are getting fired up over nothing.

If Henderson takes the $1 million offer from the San Diego Surf Dawgs of the Golden Baseball League (where I believe he lost Hall of Fame votes in his 2005 season) to be enshrined as a Surf Dawg, a lot of people are going to wish they hadn't voted for him. Of course, the plaque will have him as a member of the Yankees or A's no matter what he wants. Apparently, though, the Golden Baseball League wants to actually pay him $1 million to just wear a Surf Dawg cap at the ceremony. I'm so fired up that I'm splitting infinitives.
You will defend the BBWAA at all costs.

For the record, I'm one of those twenty-somethings "who think they know" about baseball. I do know about baseball.

Here's a question for you: what makes these guys qualified?

Craig Grebeck
01-14-2009, 05:25 PM
I'm amazed at how mad people get over irrelevant ****.

Cooperstown is a museum. The curators of the musuem choose who and how exhibits get shown. The have tasked the BBWA with voting on the player members. They also have tons of exhibits that they put in on their own.

Why care so damn much about 1st ballot, unananimous, or what Corky Putzenberg votes?

People just need to sit back and enjoy the game for more of what it is and stop pissing and moaning so much about things that are not relevant.

Enjoy baseball. Don't worry about it.
Jabrch, you can't be serious. If you're in the BBWAA, it is a special privilege. This privilege should be reserved for those who know how to look at a baseball-reference page, or differentiate between good and bad. Not voting for Rickey Henderson is one thing, but voting for Matt Williams AND mis-stating the amount of teams Henderson played for (by three, no less) is embarrassing.

TDog
01-14-2009, 08:21 PM
You will defend the BBWAA at all costs.

For the record, I'm one of those twenty-somethings "who think they know" about baseball. I do know about baseball.

Here's a question for you: what makes these guys qualified?

What makes Nellie Fox and Luis Aparicio qualified to be in the Hall of Fame? If you know baseball, you should be able to answer that question on your own.

MarySwiss
01-14-2009, 08:37 PM
I am a longtime Rickey Henderson hater, but that's because of what he did against teams I supported. How could anyone in his or her right mind believe that he was not a first-ballot hall-of-famer? It's ludicrous. :o:

Craig Grebeck
01-14-2009, 08:37 PM
What makes Nellie Fox and Luis Aparicio qualified to be in the Hall of Fame? If you know baseball, you should be able to answer that question on your own.
Well, Aparicio was a great defender and an ambassador for the game. Offensively, he was below average, but he's one of the best players of his era. Fox, though overrated by some (and by some I only mean those who believe he's the best 2nd baseman in the history of the Sox), had legendary bat control and over 2600 hits. He got in late, but he should be in.

I ****ed up. I meant to ask about the BBWAA and their qualifications. Sorry TDog.

Daver
01-14-2009, 08:44 PM
Jabrch, you can't be serious. If you're in the BBWAA, it is a special privilege. This privilege should be reserved for those who know how to look at a baseball-reference page, or differentiate between good and bad. Not voting for Rickey Henderson is one thing, but voting for Matt Williams AND mis-stating the amount of teams Henderson played for (by three, no less) is embarrassing.


The BBWAA is a joke, and the fact that are responsible for selecting who get's into the HOF merely advertises this fact in spades to the entire world.

october23sp
01-14-2009, 09:00 PM
The tracker link says Rice got 72.5 percent of the vote.:scratch:

TDog
01-14-2009, 09:10 PM
Well, Aparicio was a great defender and an ambassador for the game. Offensively, he was below average, but he's one of the best players of his era. Fox, though overrated by some (and by some I only mean those who believe he's the best 2nd baseman in the history of the Sox), had legendary bat control and over 2600 hits. He got in late, but he should be in.

I ****ed up. I meant to ask about the BBWAA and their qualifications. Sorry TDog.

Assume 94 percent of the Baseball Writers Association of America is qualified, considering that is less than voted for Rickey Henderson. That really isn't such a bad percentage. I think the percentage is higher. For all I know there may have been writers with a legitimate reason not to vote for Henderson who have the dignity to keep such reasons to themselves.

There are some arrogant writers, just as there are some arrogant fans. The BBWAA, though, has a much higher percentage of people who know what they're talking about.

Members of the Hall of Fame aren't a good group to do the selecting. The current lot find it in their best interests to keep their club exclusive. An earlier Veterans Committee was like a fraternity that let in old friends.

I certainly wouldn't want to put the Hall of Fame in the hands of Baseball Prospectus or any statistical formulas.

You could complain that Henry Aaron's vote wasn't unanimous for obvious reasons. But Aaron treated the game with far more reverence than Henderson. For that matter, so did Jim Rice.

The idiots in the BBWAA are the exception. But I don't define an idiot as anyone who disagrees with me.

Craig Grebeck
01-14-2009, 09:14 PM
Assume 94 percent of the Baseball Writers Association of America is qualified, considering that is less than voted for Rickey Henderson. That really isn't such a bad percentage. I think the percentage is higher. For all I know there may have been writers with a legitimate reason not to vote for Henderson who have the dignity to keep such reasons to themselves.

There are some arrogant writers, just as there are some arrogant fans. The BBWAA, though, has a much higher percentage of people who know what they're talking about.

Members of the Hall of Fame aren't a good group to do the selecting. The current lot find it in their best interests to keep their club exclusive. An earlier Veterans Committee was like a fraternity that let in old friends.

I certainly wouldn't want to put the Hall of Fame in the hands of Baseball Prospectus or any statistical formulas.

You could complain that Henry Aaron's vote wasn't unanimous for obvious reasons. But Aaron treated the game with far more reverence than Henderson. For that matter, so did Jim Rice.

The idiots in the BBWAA are the exception. But I don't define an idiot as anyone who disagrees with me.
I define idiots as those that could fathom a reason not to vote for Rickey Henderson other than utter obtuseness.

TDog
01-14-2009, 10:45 PM
I define idiots as those that could fathom a reason not to vote for Rickey Henderson other than utter obtuseness.

In other words, people who disagree with you.

Craig Grebeck
01-14-2009, 11:37 PM
In other words, people who disagree with you.
Well what are their reasons? I mean, it's a pretty flimsy argument. If you read a thermometer and it says 100 degrees Fahrenheit, and someone next to you says it isn't a hot day, I'd say that person is pretty obtuse.

I'd just love to read a well-reasoned defense from someone in the BBWAA. They have a responsibility, and they've been embarrassing.

Hendu
01-15-2009, 12:28 AM
I'd just love to read a well-reasoned defense from someone in the BBWAA. They have a responsibility, and they've been embarrassing.

Exactly - if writers can retire and take up a part-time gig writing for a retirement community newspaper, but still keep their hall of fame voting privileges...they should at least have to explain their picks (or lack thereof). This guy had 10 picks, but only chose 8 players. Is there a reason or did he just stop because Golden Girls was on?

Why did vote for Raines, but not Rickey? Why did he vote for Williams after his rationale for not voting in McGuire?

TDog
01-15-2009, 01:38 AM
Well what are their reasons? I mean, it's a pretty flimsy argument. If you read a thermometer and it says 100 degrees Fahrenheit, and someone next to you says it isn't a hot day, I'd say that person is pretty obtuse.

I'd just love to read a well-reasoned defense from someone in the BBWAA. They have a responsibility, and they've been embarrassing.

What is embarrassing? Henderson wasn't denied election to the Hall of Fame. Believing he was disgraced because he received almost 95 percent of the vote is reactionary. Henderson's BBWAA vote percentage may be close, perhaps higher, than a vote of his peers would be. The percentage of idiot fans is higher than the percentage of idiot baseball writers. And the writers who didn't vote for him knew he was going to be elected anyway. It wasn't like writers leaving Nellie Fox off he ballot in his last year of eligibility when he fell two votes short.

Voters may know things about Rickey Henderson that you don't but don't wish to make them public, knowing he would be elected regardless. Some people place more weight on character, an area where Jim Rice had a decisive edge. Whether I agree with that or not, I won't call someone an idiot for not voting for someone because, for example, he knew the player did drugs (which I am not accusing Henderson of doing).

When Barry Bonds becomes eligible, character will be a major issue. And most people who post here will be on the side of character.

People are taking this non-unanimous thing far too seriously.

Craig Grebeck
01-15-2009, 09:09 AM
What is embarrassing? Henderson wasn't denied election to the Hall of Fame. Believing he was disgraced because he received almost 95 percent of the vote is reactionary. Henderson's BBWAA vote percentage may be close, perhaps higher, than a vote of his peers would be. The percentage of idiot fans is higher than the percentage of idiot baseball writers. And the writers who didn't vote for him knew he was going to be elected anyway. It wasn't like writers leaving Nellie Fox off he ballot in his last year of eligibility when he fell two votes short.

Voters may know things about Rickey Henderson that you don't but don't wish to make them public, knowing he would be elected regardless. Some people place more weight on character, an area where Jim Rice had a decisive edge. Whether I agree with that or not, I won't call someone an idiot for not voting for someone because, for example, he knew the player did drugs (which I am not accusing Henderson of doing).

When Barry Bonds becomes eligible, character will be a major issue. And most people who post here will be on the side of character.

People are taking this non-unanimous thing far too seriously.
Jim Rice is a total jackass! How does he have an edge on character?

When 5% of the voters don't vote for Rickey, it means they don't believe he belongs. I'd like to know why. If Ty Cobb is in the HOF, I don't think character is an issue.

spawn
01-15-2009, 09:13 AM
When 5% of the voters don't vote for Rickey, it means they don't believe he belongs. I'd like to know why. If Ty Cobb is in the HOF, I don't think character is an issue.
Does that really matter? I mean, 95% of the voters felt he does belong, and rightfully voted him in. I agree with TDog. Who cares if it's unanimous or not? He's in on the first ballot.

Craig Grebeck
01-15-2009, 09:16 AM
Does that really matter? I mean, 95% of the voters felt he does belong, and rightfully voted him in. I agree with TDog. Who cares if it's unanimous or not? He's in on the first ballot.
In the case of the writer this thread is devoted to, it does matter. I just want to know why someone would leave him off. There are instances where player A getting in over player B doesn't make sense, and there needs to be some accountability.

spawn
01-15-2009, 09:21 AM
In the case of the writer this thread is devoted to, it does matter. I just want to know why someone would leave him off. There are instances where player A getting in over player B doesn't make sense, and there needs to be some accountability.
Again, why does it matter? He's in the HOF. Maybe the guy has a personal vendetta, or maybe Rickey slept with his wife. Does it really matter?

Craig Grebeck
01-15-2009, 09:28 AM
Again, why does it matter? He's in the HOF. Maybe the guy has a personal vendetta, or maybe Rickey slept with his wife. Does it really matter?
I'd say yes, it does matter when you are responsible for casting a vote for the hall of fame.

FedEx227
01-15-2009, 10:22 AM
Does that really matter? I mean, 95% of the voters felt he does belong, and rightfully voted him in. I agree with TDog. Who cares if it's unanimous or not? He's in on the first ballot.

I think what Craig can't understand is what reason those 5% could come up with to note vote for the greatest leadoff hitter in baseball history.

spawn
01-15-2009, 10:28 AM
I think what Craig can't understand is what reason those 5% could come up with to note vote for the greatest leadoff hitter in baseball history.
I understand that. I guess we differ, because he got in with 95% of the vote, so to me it makes no difference if 5% of the voters deemed him not worthy. He was still overwhelmingly voted in.

areilly
01-15-2009, 10:52 AM
The percentage of idiot fans is higher than the percentage of idiot baseball writers.

As both a fan and a baseball writer, I find this theory interesting but debatable.

FedEx227
01-15-2009, 11:04 AM
I understand that. I guess we differ, because he got in with 95% of the vote, so to me it makes no difference if 5% of the voters deemed him not worthy. He was still overwhelmingly voted in.

In the end it doesn't matter for a guy like Rickey, but if some of those idiots are capable of not voting for the greatest leadoff hitter of all-time on his first ballot in a relatively weak class, who else can they screw up.

That's Craig's point I believe. Yes, it's not a big deal in this case, but it just shows the utter stupidity a lot of these writers display in the HOF voting.

PennStater98r
01-15-2009, 11:49 AM
Some people place more weight on character, an area where Jim Rice had a decisive edge.

Uhm - according to whom? Sure Rickey talked about himself in the first person. He was very vain - but I seem to remember Rice being very stand-offish with the fans and being criticized for not being a team player. I thought I also remember reading about him being quite upset with Fred Lynn winning the MVP instead of him. Maybe Fenway can help with whether that's a true statement or not. Regardless - I think that proving the statement above would be like trying to figure out whether politician X has more integrity than politician Y when both are covered in mud.

TDog
01-15-2009, 02:03 PM
... If Ty Cobb is in the HOF, I don't think character is an issue.

Ty Cobb wasn't a unanimous selection. Rickey Henderson is headed for the Hall of Fame and he wasn't a unanimous selection. But both of them were elected. I don't know why people left Ty Cobb (or Babe Ruth for that matter) off their ballots in 1936. I would be surprised if I learned any of those voters who left Ty Cobb off their ballots are still alive to justify their votes. This was an era when the media wasn't telling the public that their president was crippled, of course, so there were different sensibilities.

Regardless, the idea that every player placed in the Hall of Fame establishes some sort of precedent for every other player considered for the Hall of Fame is ridiculous. People might say, "If Bill Mazeroski, why not Frank White?" But when the Veterans Committee elected Bill Mazeroski, they didn't elect everone with comparable career stats. They didn't set some sort of legal precedent by which Frank White could file suit for admission to the Hall of Fame.

Character will be a huge factor when Barry Bonds comes up on the ballot. It also will be for Sammy Sosa. It has been for Mark McGwire. I trust most of the people posting in this thread wouldn't vote for any of them. I don't outrage over the exclusion of Mark McGwire anyway.

Eddo144
01-15-2009, 02:53 PM
Ty Cobb wasn't a unanimous selection. Rickey Henderson is headed for the Hall of Fame and he wasn't a unanimous selection. But both of them were elected. I don't know why people left Ty Cobb (or Babe Ruth for that matter) off their ballots in 1936. I would be surprised if I learned any of those voters who left Ty Cobb off their ballots are still alive to justify their votes. This was an era when the media wasn't telling the public that their president was crippled, of course, so there were different sensibilities.

Regardless, the idea that every player placed in the Hall of Fame establishes some sort of precedent for every other player considered for the Hall of Fame is ridiculous. People might say, "If Bill Mazeroski, why not Frank White?" But when the Veterans Committee elected Bill Mazeroski, they didn't elect everone with comparable career stats. They didn't set some sort of legal precedent by which Frank White could file suit for admission to the Hall of Fame.
And yet you're justifying Henderson's non-unanimous election by bringing up other non-unanimously elected players. Pot, meet kettle.

I don't recall Grebeck being super-pissed that Henderson wasn't unanimous, just that those who didn't vote for him didn't give logical reasons. In fact, writers have flat-out said in the past, "I didn't vote for so-and-so because Babe Ruth wasn't unanimously elected, so no one should be." Can you not see the difference?

As for BBWAA's role, when you're tasked with electing players to the highest honor of their sport, you had better be reasonable, logical, and damn serious about it. Don't vote for a player because you personally liked him, vote for him because he deserves it.

spawn
01-15-2009, 02:59 PM
As for BBWAA's role, when you're tasked with electing players to the highest honor of their sport, you had better be reasonable, logical, and damn serious about it. Don't vote for a player because you personally liked him, vote for him because he deserves it.
I just want to know one thing. What constitutes "deserving" enshrinement in the HOF?

TDog
01-15-2009, 03:05 PM
And yet you're justifying Henderson's non-unanimous election by bringing up other non-unanimously elected players. Pot, meet kettle. ....

That is a quite the faulty analogy. I am saying there is no reason to expect anyone to be unanimously elected and there is no reason the first one to be should be someone like Henderson.

akingamongstmen
01-15-2009, 03:30 PM
I don't recall Grebeck being super-pissed that Henderson wasn't unanimous, just that those who didn't vote for him didn't give logical reasons. In fact, writers have flat-out said in the past, "I didn't vote for so-and-so because Babe Ruth wasn't unanimously elected, so no one should be." Can you not see the difference?


This accurately represents my issue with the BBWA voting from earlier in the thread. Understand that I do not care about players being unanimously elected. Jim Rice is a great example. He is now and forever a member of the Hall of Fame, and the percentage of votes assigned to him is irrelevant. As has been said many times, a Hall of Famer is a Hall of Famer with no mention of voting percentages on their plaque.

I just fail to comprehend how a singular talent like Rickey Henderson could be left off of anyone's ballot given that no illegal/unethical actions have been associated with his career. He may have been arrogant, but nobody has ever accused him of cheating to my recollection.

As for why I am "fired up" about this, I made my first visit to the Hall of Fame in January of 2006 and was awestruck. It was practically a religious experience for me. I care deeply about the history of the game. I'm sure most of us do.

This may be a topic for another thread, but I'm curious about what the Hall of Fame represents to each of us. For some, I would imagine, it is a largely irrelevant museum. For me, it is a shrine to the history of baseball, and it should be treated with respect by fans and writers alike.

doublem23
01-15-2009, 03:34 PM
Character will be a huge factor when Barry Bonds comes up on the ballot. It also will be for Sammy Sosa. It has been for Mark McGwire. I trust most of the people posting in this thread wouldn't vote for any of them. I don't outrage over the exclusion of Mark McGwire anyway.

I would. :dunno:

The Steroid Era will be impossible to fully unravel. Players should be judged solely based on their performance on the field. Peroid. To say with 20/20 hindsight that Player X shouldn't have done what we think he did, especially when the suits that run baseball and members of the BBWAA applauded their heroics is so unbelievably hypocritical, it boggles the mind. Ironic you bring this debate up today, since it was just revealed that Barry Bonds may NEVER HAVE TAKEN AN ILLEGAL STEROID (http://sports.yahoo.com/mlb/news;_ylt=AmVKR0i8rg8m8d1YjOnOr8c5nYcB?slug=li-clear011409&prov=yhoo&type=lgns). Seems the ingredients in "the Clear" were perfectly legal.

Eddo144
01-15-2009, 03:43 PM
I just want to know one thing. What constitutes "deserving" enshrinement in the HOF?
Well, that's a tricky question, and there's not a simple answer.

However, "he was a nice guy" or "he wasn't as good as Babe Ruth" are not good measures of a player's merit, I can tell you that. And the writer(s) in question here did not give good reasons for excluding Henderson.

Hell, if one had just said, "I believe only the top two players at a given position should be enshrined, and for LF, it's Williams and Bonds, so I'm not voting for Rickey," I'd be OK with that. I wouldn't share his view of the Hall (it would be way too exclusive), but at least he has a reason regarding Henderson's that's baseball-related, and not political or "because it's always been that way".

Eddo144
01-15-2009, 03:45 PM
I would. :dunno:

The Steroid Era will be impossible to fully unravel. Players should be judged solely based on their performance on the field. Peroid. To say with 20/20 hindsight that Player X shouldn't have done what we think he did, especially when the suits that run baseball and members of the BBWAA applauded their heroics is so unbelievably hypocritical, it boggles the mind. Ironic you bring this debate up today, since it was just revealed that Barry Bonds may NEVER HAVE TAKEN AN ILLEGAL STEROID (http://sports.yahoo.com/mlb/news;_ylt=AmVKR0i8rg8m8d1YjOnOr8c5nYcB?slug=li-clear011409&prov=yhoo&type=lgns). Seems the ingredients in "the Clear" were perfectly legal.
I go back and forth on voting for Bonds, McGwire, and Sosa. You have to figure that many, many players were taking the same drugs they were, yet not producing nearly as much on the field. Relative to their peers, they have Hall of Fame credentials (especially Bonds). But again, I wouldn't necessarily have a problem with a writer excluding anyone who was named in the Mitchell Report, as long as he's consistent with that standard. No voting for Matt Williams, just because you liked him, for instance.

Eddo144
01-15-2009, 03:46 PM
That is a quite the faulty analogy. I am saying there is no reason to expect anyone to be unanimously elected and there is no reason the first one to be should be someone like Henderson.
But that's the problem! Someone will have to be first, and it can't be Babe Ruth or Ty Cobb any more. Who are these writers to make that judgement? They should be deciding if a player is worthy, not if he deserves unanimous election.

Craig Grebeck
01-15-2009, 05:38 PM
Ty Cobb wasn't a unanimous selection. Rickey Henderson is headed for the Hall of Fame and he wasn't a unanimous selection. But both of them were elected. I don't know why people left Ty Cobb (or Babe Ruth for that matter) off their ballots in 1936. I would be surprised if I learned any of those voters who left Ty Cobb off their ballots are still alive to justify their votes. This was an era when the media wasn't telling the public that their president was crippled, of course, so there were different sensibilities.

Regardless, the idea that every player placed in the Hall of Fame establishes some sort of precedent for every other player considered for the Hall of Fame is ridiculous. People might say, "If Bill Mazeroski, why not Frank White?" But when the Veterans Committee elected Bill Mazeroski, they didn't elect everone with comparable career stats. They didn't set some sort of legal precedent by which Frank White could file suit for admission to the Hall of Fame.

Character will be a huge factor when Barry Bonds comes up on the ballot. It also will be for Sammy Sosa. It has been for Mark McGwire. I trust most of the people posting in this thread wouldn't vote for any of them. I don't outrage over the exclusion of Mark McGwire anyway.
They should justify why Bill Mazeroski and not Frank White, or why Jim Rice and not Frank Howard, why Don Sutton and not Bert Blyleven, etc. That's the idea! What is wrong with Rickey Henderson's character? That's what I don't understand. He was eccentric? STOP THE PRESSES!

jabrch
01-15-2009, 06:01 PM
Character will be a huge factor when Barry Bonds comes up on the ballot. It also will be for Sammy Sosa. It has been for Mark McGwire. I trust most of the people posting in this thread wouldn't vote for any of them. I don't outrage over the exclusion of Mark McGwire anyway.

You are mistaking steroids and cheating for character. Differentiate the two. I don't think folks will not vote for Bonds the Douchebag. They will not vote for Bonds the cheater. They voted for Cobb the Douchebag, but not will exclude Rose the Cheater. They voted for Jim Rice the Douchebag (to players and media) but exclude Shoeless Joe the cheater.

Douchebags allowed. Cheaters not. That's my personal opinion.

And for the record, Ricky is not a douche. He's just a nut.

TDog
01-15-2009, 07:05 PM
You are mistaking steroids and cheating for character. Differentiate the two. I don't think folks will not vote for Bonds the Douchebag. They will not vote for Bonds the cheater. They voted for Cobb the Douchebag, but not will exclude Rose the Cheater. They voted for Jim Rice the Douchebag (to players and media) but exclude Shoeless Joe the cheater.

Douchebags allowed. Cheaters not. That's my personal opinion.

And for the record, Ricky is not a douche. He's just a nut.

I believe, as so many people with whom you disagree, that cheating relates to character. Of course, I'm not calling you an idiot because we disagree.

A writer who left Gaylord Perry off of his ballot said he couldn't vote for Perry because he threw an illegal pitch. A writer last year who left McGwire off the ballot mentioned the steroids stuff. A writer in Contra Costa who accused Frank Thomas of being doing the steroid thing in 2005 might leave him off his Hall of Fame ballot, unless the two got chummy in Thomas' days with the A's. Character may involve drugs -- taken with a goal of performance enhancement and recreation (i.e. cocaine) alike. Ferguson Jenkins lost points because of drugs. His election doesn't mean that voters will no longer not vote for players involved in recreational drug use. I have no doubt people on this year's ballot lost points because of drugs. Additionally, some people define character as reverence for the game.

Some voters explain why they leave players off of their ballots, but it is rare. More often columnists write about why they voted for people. For one thing, it often doesn't reflect well on a voter to dwell on the negative, not because he left a player off of the ballot, but because he has compounded his slight by writing what some readers would take as slander. I have no doubt that Henderson knows why some voters didn't vote for him.

Everyone who is Hall of Fame eligible carries some baggage, and the institution is probably better off if it's not made public. (Although I did make a career out of making things public that people didn't want made public.) The Hall of Fame, of course, isn't about stats. The Hall of Fame is about reverence for the game, which is so much more than stats.

If it were only about character, of course, Harold Baines would have been elected on the first ballot.

Craig Grebeck
01-15-2009, 08:01 PM
I believe, as so many people with whom you disagree, that cheating relates to character. Of course, I'm not calling you an idiot because we disagree.

A writer who left Gaylord Perry off of his ballot said he couldn't vote for Perry because he threw an illegal pitch. A writer last year who left McGwire off the ballot mentioned the steroids stuff. A writer in Contra Costa who accused Frank Thomas of being doing the steroid thing in 2005 might leave him off his Hall of Fame ballot, unless the two got chummy in Thomas' days with the A's. Character may involve drugs -- taken with a goal of performance enhancement and recreation (i.e. cocaine) alike. Ferguson Jenkins lost points because of drugs. His election doesn't mean that voters will no longer not vote for players involved in recreational drug use. I have no doubt people on this year's ballot lost points because of drugs. Additionally, some people define character as reverence for the game.

Some voters explain why they leave players off of their ballots, but it is rare. More often columnists write about why they voted for people. For one thing, it often doesn't reflect well on a voter to dwell on the negative, not because he left a player off of the ballot, but because he has compounded his slight by writing what some readers would take as slander. I have no doubt that Henderson knows why some voters didn't vote for him.

Everyone who is Hall of Fame eligible carries some baggage, and the institution is probably better off if it's not made public. (Although I did make a career out of making things public that people didn't want made public.) The Hall of Fame, of course, isn't about stats. The Hall of Fame is about reverence for the game, which is so much more than stats.

If it were only about character, of course, Harold Baines would have been elected on the first ballot.
Reverence for the game? Again, statistics are usually used as a benchmark. When someone talks about why player X was voted in, what's the first thing they mention? Is it the amount of HR or the career OPS of the player, or is it about how he revered the game? I don't see how this is debatable.

And, when you say that Rickey knows why he was left off some ballots -- I'm guessing he doesn't. Was it his eccentricity? If you can't vote for Rickey Henderson, who can you vote for?

Paulwny
01-16-2009, 12:06 PM
And, when you say that Rickey knows why he was left off some ballots -- I'm guessing he doesn't. Was it his eccentricity? If you can't vote for Rickey Henderson, who can you vote for?


There a some voters who consider Ruth the greatest player in MLB history. When they see a " no brainer", such as Henderson, up for the HOF they will not vote for him.
I believe their thinking may be, " Ruth was the greatest ball player and wasn't a unanimous choice, unless a player is greater than Ruth he should not be a unanimous choice.

Eddo144
01-16-2009, 12:38 PM
There a some voters who consider Ruth the greatest player in MLB history. When they see a " no brainer", such as Henderson, up for the HOF they will not vote for him.
I believe their thinking may be, " Ruth was the greatest ball player and wasn't a unanimous choice, unless a player is greater than Ruth he should not be a unanimous choice.
Exactly, but that's terrible logic, and Grebeck and myself are both implying those writers should lose privileges, or at least be formally reprimanded.

These writers should be asking themselves, "What if every other writer felt this way?" If that were the case, Henderson would be bumped from the ballot with 0% of the vote, and not make the Hall of Fame until the Veteran's Committee had the chance.

Essentially, these writers are voting to keep Henderson out of the Hall (and yes, a non-vote is a vote against) because he's not the single best player ever. Do they really want a one-person Hall of Fame?

TDog
01-16-2009, 12:51 PM
Exactly, but that's terrible logic, and Grebeck and myself are both implying those writers should lose privileges, or at least be formally reprimanded.

These writers should be asking themselves, "What if every other writer felt this way?" If that were the case, Henderson would be bumped from the ballot with 0% of the vote, and not make the Hall of Fame until the Veteran's Committee had the chance.

Essentially, these writers are voting to keep Henderson out of the Hall (and yes, a non-vote is a vote against) because he's not the single best player ever. Do they really want a one-person Hall of Fame?


If you polled baseball writers (which was done), if you polled the players who used to play with Henderson, if you polled the living members of the Hall of Fame, if you polled fans, none of these groups would unanimously vote for Henderson to be in the Hall of Fame.

Paulwny
01-16-2009, 12:54 PM
Exactly, but that's terrible logic, and Grebeck and myself are both implying those writers should lose privileges, or at least be formally reprimanded.

These writers should be asking themselves, "What if every other writer felt this way?" If that were the case, Henderson would be bumped from the ballot with 0% of the vote, and not make the Hall of Fame until the Veteran's Committee had the chance.

Essentially, these writers are voting to keep Henderson out of the Hall (and yes, a non-vote is a vote against) because he's not the single best player ever. Do they really want a one-person Hall of Fame?

They were selected to be voters by baseball people who apparently respect their decisions. Your and Grebeck's opinion on their voting means nothing.

It's apparent by the voting throughout the years that the vast majority of voters don't feel this way.


I believe there are quite a few players in the HOF.

Eddo144
01-16-2009, 03:28 PM
They were selected to be voters by baseball people who apparently respect their decisions. Your and Grebeck's opinion on their voting means nothing.

It's apparent by the voting throughout the years that the vast majority of voters don't feel this way.


I believe there are quite a few players in the HOF.
Yes, because there still are more good writers than bad ones. Again, all we want to hear are valid reasons why these writers voted against Henderson.

Eddo144
01-16-2009, 03:33 PM
If you polled baseball writers (which was done), if you polled the players who used to play with Henderson, if you polled the living members of the Hall of Fame, if you polled fans, none of these groups would unanimously vote for Henderson to be in the Hall of Fame.
No kidding. The issue with me is not that he didn't get in unanimously. Frankly, I could care less, as long as he's in.

My issue is with the reasoning some voters use.

Here's an example. Let's say I'm a teacher, and I take over a class from a retiring teacher. He was a very harsh grader, and never awarded a 100% grade on a final paper, even the time he had a future Pulitzer Prize winning author in his class.

Now, when the time comes and I'm grading final papers, one of the students meets all criteria needed to get a 100%. Would it make sense for me to say, "Your paper was flawless, but since the greatest author to ever take this class didn't get a 100% twenty years ago, I'm only giving you a 99%"? No, yet that's essentially what these "not as good as Babe Ruth" cases are.

Paulwny
01-16-2009, 03:36 PM
Yes, because there still are more good writers than bad ones. Again, all we want to hear are valid reasons why these writers voted against Henderson.


The writers/voters only owe an explaination to the people who selected them. If these people don't seek an explaination, so be it.
They don't owe baseball fans any explaination.

TommyJohn
01-16-2009, 04:36 PM
The writers/voters only owe an explaination to the people who selected them. If these people don't seek an explaination, so be it.
They don't owe baseball fans any explaination.

I honestly believe it is all a matter of ego-not voting for a sure-fire first ballot HOFer is just a big ego trip for most. They're going to be the ones to ensure that so-and-so isn't a unanimous selection.

Eddo144
01-16-2009, 04:41 PM
The writers/voters only owe an explaination to the people who selected them. If these people don't seek an explaination, so be it.
They don't owe baseball fans any explaination.
Yeah, you're right, they don't. But if you're going to get that technical, then why announce the results? Why write columns at all? Come on, they clearly care about what the public thinks. And fans buy the papers or subscribe to the websites they write for, so the writers owe fans just as much as players or team personnel do.