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Nellie_Fox
08-24-2007, 03:32 AM
The White Sox web site has an article about why Minnie Minoso hasn't been named to the HOF. Link (http://chicago.whitesox.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20070822&content_id=2164015&vkey=news_cws&fext=.jsp&c_id=cws).

Do you think that Minnie's prospects for the HOF were damaged by appearing for single AB's long after his career was over? Is he viewed by many as a side-show attraction, rather than for what he did in his prime?

LITTLE NELL
08-24-2007, 07:12 AM
I love Minnie, but the numbers just aren't there for the HOF. We need to get Billy Pierce in the Hall.

soxfan80
08-24-2007, 09:44 AM
The White Sox web site has an article about why Minnie Minoso hasn't been named to the HOF. Link (http://chicago.whitesox.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20070822&content_id=2164015&vkey=news_cws&fext=.jsp&c_id=cws).

Do you think that Minnie's prospects for the HOF were damaged by appearing for single AB's long after his career was over? Is he viewed by many as a side-show attraction, rather than for what he did in his prime?ask fay vincent

Lip Man 1
08-24-2007, 11:47 AM
Nellie:

Like with everything else I think time is the biggest issue with Minnie.

Many of the players he played with and against who could 'testify' to his greatness are no longer with us...many doing the voting never saw him play or perhaps saw him at the tail end of his career in the early 60's (think 64 with the Cardinals) and regretably there is very little film on him from his best days (fortunately I do have a decent amount including a particular play from 1960 at Baltimore).

It's hard to 'hype' someone if you don't have video to help do it.

I think the few at bats in the 70's / 80's was more of a novelty and is basically treated as such.

Althgough what does it saw about Minnie that he was able to get a clean single to left off the Angels Sid Monge? I mean Minnie was 53 at the time!

Lip

WhiteSox5187
08-24-2007, 03:20 PM
I love Minnie, but the numbers just aren't there for the HOF. We need to get Billy Pierce in the Hall.
I agree, Minnie was a good solid player, but not a HOFer...if Billy Pierce had played in New York, he'd be Whitey Ford.

Nellie_Fox
08-24-2007, 03:33 PM
I agree, Minnie was a good solid player, but not a HOFer...if Billy Pierce had played in New York, he'd be Whitey Ford.Read the article. They make an interesting point that since he played part of his prime in the Negro Leagues, and part in MLB, his entire career isn't considered. Those guys are looked at either for their Negro League performance, or their MLB performance, but the few who "bridged" get missed.

WhiteSox5187
08-24-2007, 03:45 PM
Read the article. They make an interesting point that since he played part of his prime in the Negro Leagues, and part in MLB, his entire career isn't considered. Those guys are looked at either for their Negro League performance, or their MLB performance, but the few who "bridged" get missed.
Well...they have a point, but at the same time, didn't Willie Mays (who's rookie year was also 1951) play a couple of years in the Negro Leagues? Did that cut into his playing time at the Major League level at all? I'm not trying to take anything away from Minnie, and maybe he SHOULD be in the Hall if only because he was one of the pionerring Lation players in the big leagues, but alone on his numbers, I just don't think he cuts, even if we do consider the three years he played in the Negro Leagues. Didn't Willie essentially do the same thing? Didn't Ernie Banks?

Fenway
08-24-2007, 04:10 PM
Well...they have a point, but at the same time, didn't Willie Mays (who's rookie year was also 1951) play a couple of years in the Negro Leagues? Did that cut into his playing time at the Major League level at all? I'm not trying to take anything away from Minnie, and maybe he SHOULD be in the Hall if only because he was one of the pionerring Lation players in the big leagues, but alone on his numbers, I just don't think he cuts, even if we do consider the three years he played in the Negro Leagues. Didn't Willie essentially do the same thing? Didn't Ernie Banks?

as did Henry Aaron ( the last Negro League player to make MLB )

http://www.nlbpa.com/aaron__hank.html

Nellie_Fox
08-24-2007, 04:11 PM
Well...they have a point, but at the same time, didn't Willie Mays (who's rookie year was also 1951) play a couple of years in the Negro Leagues? Did that cut into his playing time at the Major League level at all? I'm not trying to take anything away from Minnie, and maybe he SHOULD be in the Hall if only because he was one of the pionerring Lation players in the big leagues, but alone on his numbers, I just don't think he cuts, even if we do consider the three years he played in the Negro Leagues. Didn't Willie essentially do the same thing? Didn't Ernie Banks?Mays only played Negro League ball on weekends while he was in high school. He debuted with the Giants at age 20 (link (http://www.nlbpa.com/mays__willie.html)); Minnie was 26 and had played several all-star seasons in the Negro Leagues before the Indians gave him a real shot.

Banks was 24 when he became the Cubs full-time shortstop.

WhiteSox5187
08-24-2007, 06:06 PM
Mays only played Negro League ball on weekends while he was in high school. He debuted with the Giants at age 20 (link (http://www.nlbpa.com/mays__willie.html)); Minnie was 26 and had played several all-star seasons in the Negro Leagues before the Indians gave him a real shot.

Banks was 24 when he became the Cubs full-time shortstop.
K, but still, Minnie only played three seasons in the Negro Leagues (not to diminish that)...so again, there is no doubt in my mind that had he played those years in the majors, he probably would had about 2,200 hits, but I'm still not sure that those are HOF numbers. Now, if we took his numbers from the Carribean League (which I THINK, I'm not positive, but I think that's where Minnie got his start before he even played in the Negro League) then he would have been a HOFer, no doubt.

Nellie_Fox
08-25-2007, 01:16 AM
K, but still, Minnie only played three seasons in the Negro Leagues (not to diminish that)...so again, there is no doubt in my mind that had he played those years in the majors, he probably would had about 2,200 hits, but I'm still not sure that those are HOF numbers. Now, if we took his numbers from the Carribean League (which I THINK, I'm not positive, but I think that's where Minnie got his start before he even played in the Negro League) then he would have been a HOFer, no doubt.He also had some time in the Mexican League, maybe two years, I'm not sure, before going to Cleveland.

Besides, the HOF is not simply a statistics exercise. Otherwise, they could just set up a spreadsheet and let that decide who gets in. It should be about the impact you had on the game.

hold2dibber
08-25-2007, 01:53 AM
I no longer have "espn insider" access,but Rob Neyer wrote an article a few years ago that pretty persuasively showed (based upon Negro League and MLB stats) that Minnie was the most deserving LF in history not enshrined. I'll see if I can dig it up.

kitekrazy
08-25-2007, 02:33 AM
It was nice to read all this baseball history before "prima donna" contracts, and artificial enhancements took over.

ode to veeck
08-25-2007, 02:54 AM
There's no question Minnie belongs in the HOF. The 2006 picks were a travesty (Minnie not the only one left out)

ode to veeck
08-25-2007, 03:09 AM
Minnie not only was the starting 3B in two negro all-star games, his offensive production as leadoff helped lead the NY Cubans to an easy Negro League World Series Title (batting over .400 in the series) in 1947 before he signed with the Indians

Minnie also played 9 seasons in the Cuban winter league in the 40s and 50s and then, late in his career, 9 seasons in the Mexican leagues, hitting .265 in his last year there in '73 at age 50

ode to veeck
08-25-2007, 03:59 AM
a recent article on the topic

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/07182/798436-63.stm

Nellie_Fox
08-25-2007, 04:08 AM
a recent article on the topic

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/07182/798436-63.stmWhat a great article. It should settle the discussion. Thanks for the link.

ode to veeck
08-25-2007, 04:12 AM
I no longer have "espn insider" access,but Rob Neyer wrote an article a few years ago that pretty persuasively showed (based upon Negro League and MLB stats) that Minnie was the most deserving LF in history not enshrined. I'll see if I can dig it up.

Here's a different, more recent piece from Neyer, including some of his reasoning for why he'd vote for Minnie:

http://espn.go.com/mlb/columns/neyer_rob/1514118.html

<...> (skipping the stuff on why Santo should be in)

"Minoso isn't going to get elected, because not enough voters saw him play. But Minoso almost certainly does belong in the Hall of Fame. It's hard to say exactly when he'd have first played regularly in the major leagues if not for the color line, but it stands to reason that it would have happened before he was 28."

<...>


"Minoso's career "rate stats" are outstanding: .389 OBP, .459 slugging percentage. He was exceedingly durable, especially for a player who led his league in HBP no fewer than 10 times. But he finished his career with "only" 1,963 hits, which of course isn't a lot for a Hall of Fame outfielder who wasn't a big power hitter.

It's fairly safe to assume, though, that if Minoso had grown up in Georgia with pale skin rather than in Cuba with dark skin, he'd have reached the major leagues three or four years before he did. Let's be conservative, and give Minoso four more seasons. He was good for approximately 175 hits per season, and 175 times four is 700 hits. Add 700 to 1,963, and you get 2,663 hits.

There are, to be sure, players with more than 2,663 hits who aren't in the Hall of Fame. But I think you'd be hard-pressed to find anybody with 2,663 hits and Minoso's broad base of skills who hasn't been elected or won't be. Bill James rates Minoso as the 10th-greatest left fielder ever, and I think that's just about right."

<...>

And as an aside, at the end of the article, Neyer also plugs for Dick Allen:

"Yes, he could be a real pain in the rear end. And yes, he was a pretty crummy fielder. But for 11 seasons, 1964 through 1974, he was one of the most devastating hitters on the planet. Think of Albert Belle -- the production, if not the attitude -- then double it, and you've got a pretty good idea about Dick Allen's career. He was so devastating with the stick, in fact, that I've concluded that a Hall of Fame without him just doesn't make as much sense as it should. "

WhiteSox5187
08-25-2007, 04:50 AM
He also had some time in the Mexican League, maybe two years, I'm not sure, before going to Cleveland.

Besides, the HOF is not simply a statistics exercise. Otherwise, they could just set up a spreadsheet and let that decide who gets in. It should be about the impact you had on the game.
This part I agree with, if Minnie is to get in it should be because of his impact (which is quite hefty) however I think to argue that his numbers in the majors were robbed because of time in the Negro Leagues and time in the Mexican League...this I disagree with. Even with those numbers I don't think he's a HOF candidate on his numbers ALONE. But then again, neither is Jackie Robinson, based on numbers ALONE. But again, to re-state, because of his impact Minnie belongs in the Hall, but that probably won't happen anytime soon.

ode to veeck
08-25-2007, 04:54 AM
Soxtalk had an exerpt (or most) of a 2005 Neyer ESPN article on Minnie's career with more of his HOF argument:

http://www.soxtalk.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=31088

(Including an interesting tidbit on Minnie's real age from Minnie himself, from page 5 of his 2nd autobiography: "People always want to know how old I really am. The official sources have me listed as being born on November 29, 1922. That would make me 71 years old, and I would not make excuses or apologies. I am actually just 68 years old. I was 19 years old when I arrived in the United States in 1945, but my papers said I was 22. I told a white lie in order to obtain a visa, so I could qualify for service in the Cuban army. My true date of birth is the 29th of November, 1925.")

Although the Indians signed Minnie in '49, they mostly had him languising in the minors for a couple of years before trading him to the Sox. Was there another couple of years lost there that shouldn't have been due to race? With previous years' playing in the Caribean and all-star and world series leading years in the negro league, you'da thunk Minnie certainly was ready for "the show" from the time he was signed, not 3 years later. Neyer's article tries to project stats for Minnie if he had been allowed in the majors 5 years earlier)

ode to veeck
08-25-2007, 06:32 AM
This part I agree with, if Minnie is to get in it should be because of his impact (which is quite hefty) however I think to argue that his numbers in the majors were robbed because of time in the Negro Leagues and time in the Mexican League...this I disagree with. Even with those numbers I don't think he's a HOF candidate on his numbers ALONE. But then again, neither is Jackie Robinson, based on numbers ALONE. But again, to re-state, because of his impact Minnie belongs in the Hall, but that probably won't happen anytime soon.

Unlike Josh Gibson and Satchel Paige, whose unprecedented stats in the negro leagues alone were enough to easily get them in, and unlike Willie Mays, Ernie Banks, and Hank Aaron, who were all a few years younger when the reluctantly easing race barrier enabled them long enough careers in MLB alone to make the HOF, a substantial portion of Minnie's peak playing years definitely spanned both leagues plus the time after he signed in '48 before he was given regular playing time in '51.

After a clearly belated start to the majors, Minnie really had only 13 seasons before retiring in '41 near age 40. In those 13 seasons, he was totally robbed of the ROY in '51, was an all-star 7 times, and received multiple MVP votes in 8 different years. Given Minnie was a starting negro all-star for two years and lead his team to a black WS title in the years '46-'48, there's a strong argument that he conservatively could have had as many as 5 peak years of potential MLB performance held back due to the racial barriers.

Today's writers think of Minnie's coming out of retirements as kind of a joke, but "el Charro Negro" ("the Black Cowboy") actually played very well for his 9 years in the mexican leagues in the mid 60s and early 70s, hitting .360 and .348 the 1st two years before later dropping to "only" .265 in '73 at age 50. His 1st MLB "unretirement" was actually only 3 years later when he was 1 for 8 in 3 games.

Over the years, Minnie has appeared in various Sox old-timers exhibitions, where he has regularly been one of the more consistent sticks at the plate, in spite of the fact he's usually been one of the oldest old-timers playing. Besides his "unretirment" in 1980 when he played in two MLB games, Minnie also played games for the independent Northern League's St Paul Saints in 1993 and 2003, (drawing a BB in his last appearance), becoming the only baseball player to appear professionally over 7 decades.

Minnie always had a great batting eye and was very good at drawing a walk. He is among the most prolific in that category among all latin american players born outside the US (who in general really like to take a cut at the ball, e.g. how many BB did the Allou bros. get each year?) Add in the fact that he lead the league in HBP for 10 seasons (9th on the all-time list for that one), and you start to see where he got his career .389 OBP.

When you threw in his phenomenal base stealing skills, the "Cuban Comet" really was unlike the other players of his time and much more a prototype of the later "lead off specialists" like Brock, Rose, Raines, and Henderson. Some have even argued the Indians' lack of understanding of the value of this new and different combined skills package in a different era was what held him back in the minors those extra couple of years (vs the race issue).

Most older Chicagoans remember Ernie Banks "let play two!" as Mr Cub, but one of Minnie's other popular nicknames was the ubiquitous "Mr. White Sox"

TDog
08-25-2007, 01:11 PM
... Let's be conservative, and give Minoso four more seasons. He was good for approximately 175 hits per season, and 175 times four is 700 hits. Add 700 to 1,963, and you get 2,663 hits.

There are, to be sure, players with more than 2,663 hits who aren't in the Hall of Fame. But I think you'd be hard-pressed to find anybody with 2,663 hits and Minoso's broad base of skills who hasn't been elected or won't be. Bill James rates Minoso as the 10th-greatest left fielder ever, and I think that's just about right."

<...>

And as an aside, at the end of the article, Neyer also plugs for Dick Allen:

"Yes, he could be a real pain in the rear end. And yes, he was a pretty crummy fielder. But for 11 seasons, 1964 through 1974, he was one of the most devastating hitters on the planet. Think of Albert Belle -- the production, if not the attitude -- then double it, and you've got a pretty good idea about Dick Allen's career. He was so devastating with the stick, in fact, that I've concluded that a Hall of Fame without him just doesn't make as much sense as it should. "

In a career unfortunately plagued by injury, Harold Baines had 2,866 hits and had just eight fewer RBI than Ernie Banks, although Banks hit 128 more home runs. If I had to choose between Baines, Minoso or Allen, I would cast my vote for Baines.

soxfan80
08-25-2007, 02:24 PM
Read the article. They make an interesting point that since he played part of his prime in the Negro Leagues, and part in MLB, his entire career isn't considered. Those guys are looked at either for their Negro League performance, or their MLB performance, but the few who "bridged" get missed.the 2006 vote was SUPPOSED to cover his entire career, including mexican league.

ode to veeck
08-25-2007, 04:36 PM
the 2006 vote was SUPPOSED to cover his entire career, including mexican league.

Unfortunately, that panel failed miserably in several respects, and even more so for Buck O'Neill, who also clearly also deserves "the Hall" and who, unlike Minnie, is no longer on the list considered by the new veterans' committee.

In a career unfortunately plagued by injury, Harold Baines had 2,866 hits and had just eight fewer RBI than Ernie Banks, although Banks hit 128 more home runs. If I had to choose between Baines, Minoso or Allen, I would cast my vote for Baines.

You can't take just a solely sabremetrics viewpoint on this. Harold's candidacy really rests on the perception question: can a long later career at mostly DH really make it?

Allen's candidacy relies on the additional intangible considerations of the guy who was one of the most devastating hitters of his time throughout his career, not only threatening the triple crown late in his career with the Sox, but the single human on the planet closest to actually doing what Roy Hobbs does in The Natural, i.e. viciously tearing the cover off the ball. As time fades the memories of Allen's actually playing days, it will be harder for his candidacy to succeed, even in the ranks of the vet committee (as it has with Minnie's).

Minnie has several powerful intangibles within the context of his MLB career. His role is very similar to Jackie Robinson's (a HOF player also slightly short in pure sabremetricians' terms). Minnie was the 1st pioneering Latin American "superstar" caliber MLB player who lead the way for Roberto Clemente and all those that followed as well as being the 1st black White Sox player and one of just a handful in a league and at a time when there was still a lot of resistance, double standards, and overtly practiced prejudices against black MLB players. If Jackie got additional (well deserved) consideration for his role, Minnie certainly deserves at least some add ons for his roles here too. Unlike Jackie, Minnie barely spoke english in the years he suffured the greatest racial indignations (e.g., separate living quarters in spring training, playing minor league ball in Dayton, OH), making the experience that much tougher and lonelier.

Second of all is Minnie's combined skills package and raw impact to a team, that go way beyond the basic H/RBI/HR stats HOF benchmarks typical of non-pitching candidates. Not only was he a prototype of the modern leadoff hitter in combined offensive weapons, he was also an outstanding defensive infielder and outfielder, with 3 GGs with the Sox, and two Negro league AS appearances at 3B (as well as also playing many games early in his career with the Sox on occasion when needed at 3B and even SS). His three GGs only came after the award originated in '57 and he'd have likely won at least a few more if the award had been around earlier.

If you look at the raw impact of Minnie to a team as measured by overall team success, before and after he arrived, it is undeniable and it is large. He lead the NY Cubans to the black WS title in '47, playing 3B, batting leadoff, and hitting over .400 in the WS. He joined an already assembled nucleus of strong Sox players (including Nellie, Chico, and Pierce) when traded from the Indians early in 1951, and the Sox, who had only one winning season in the previous 20 years, were transformed into the Go-Go White Sox, and didn't have a losing season until four years after Minnie retired. Of course, it took a whole team to have 17 winning seasons in a row, but the Sox most certainly would never have achieved that success without Minnie.

Sure, Harold had great combined skills early in his career, and in spite of his injuries, an impressive set of career hitting stats, but I don't think you ever would have characterized him with the same superstar status that Minnie clearly had throughout most of his MLB career, even for Harold's peak years in '82-'85. For the record (& all those pure offensive sabremetricians), Minnie's lifetime BA/OBP of .298/.389 stand slightly above Harold's .289/.356 and could easily balance out the (projected small) delta in lifetime hits and RBIs especially when you add in Minnie's topnotch leadoff role skill set: OBP, SB, and baserunning.

Interestingly, Harold and Minnie were teamates in the dugout for Minnie's 1980 "unretirement". Unfortunately for Minnie, even those among the oldest of WSIers like Lip (happy B-Day!) and myself (today a year younger than Lip)weren't around for the early part of Minnie's career, and even older HOF players, who are now the majority on the vets committee, will really have to do some research to be diligent, as they too weren't around to see the "Cuban Comet" in his prime. Harold, at least, will have the advantage that the voters on his candidacy were personal witnesses to much of his career.

ode to veeck
08-25-2007, 05:02 PM
By the way, another great read on Minnie's career and the HOF question by SI's Alex Belth:

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2006/writers/alex_belth/02/22/minnie.minoso/1.html

TDog
08-25-2007, 05:07 PM
...

You can't take just a solely sabremetrics viewpoint on this. Harold's candidacy really rests on the perception question: can a long later career at mostly DH really make it?

Allen's candidacy relies on the additional intangible considerations of the guy who was one of the most devastating hitters of his time throughout his career, not only threatening the triple crown late in his career with the Sox, but the single human on the planet closest to actually doing what Roy Hobbs does in The Natural, i.e. viciously tearing the cover off the ball. As time fades the memories of Allen's actually playing days, it will be harder for his candidacy to succeed, even in the ranks of the vet committee (as it has with Minnie's). ...
Sure, Harold had great combined skills early in his career, and in spite of his injuries, an impressive set of career hitting stats, but I don't think you ever would have characterized him with the same superstar status that Minnie clearly had throughout most of his MLB career, even for Harold's peak years in '82-'85. For the record (& all those pure offensive sabremetricians), Minnie's lifetime BA/OBP of .298/.389 stand slightly above Harold's .289/.356 and could easily balance out the (projected small) delta in lifetime hits and RBIs especially when you add in Minnie's topnotch leadoff role skill set: OBP, SB, and baserunning.

Interestingly, Harold and Minnie were teamates in the dugout for Minnie's 1980 "unretirement". Unfortunately for Minnie, even those among the oldest of WSIers like Lip (happy B-Day!) and myself (today a year younger than Lip)weren't around for the early part of Minnie's career, and even older HOF players who are now the majority on the vets committee, will really have to do so research to be diligent, as they too weren't around to see the "Cuban Comet" in his prime. Harold, at least, will have the advantage that the voters on his candidacy were personal witnesses to much of his career.


Before Minoso's first unretirement, he sat down next to me for an inning on a Sunday afternoon game in the boxes on the third-base side. But I never saw him play. Not since Nellie Fox have I advocating the Hall of Fame for someone I never saw play. I'm not looking at statistics when I advocate Baines. He does have a couple of statistics, though, that reflect his qualifications.

I saw Dick Allen play, and I was a huge fan from his incredible 1972 season to the end of the 1974 season when he announced he didn't feel like playing anymore (actually he did end up playing for the Phillies the next two years after his retirement before finishing his career with the A's). But I don't believe he belongs in the Hall of Fame.

FarWestChicago
08-25-2007, 08:22 PM
Allen's candidacy relies on the additional intangible considerations of the guy who was one of the most devastating hitters of his time throughout his career, not only threatening the triple crown late in his career with the Sox, but the single human on the planet closest to actually doing what Roy Hobbs does in The Natural, i.e. viciously tearing the cover off the ball. As time fades the memories of Allen's actually playing days, it will be harder for his candidacy to succeed, even in the ranks of the vet committee (as it has with Minnie's).As many of us geezers have pointed out, Dick Allen hit the baseball harder than any man, ever. No 'roid boy ever created the impact he did. He should be in the hall for pure physics. :cool:

PS I'm glad we never saw one of his screamers hit a pitcher in the head.

jortafan
08-26-2007, 09:13 AM
the 2006 vote was SUPPOSED to cover his entire career, including mexican league.

You probably mean the Cuban League, where Minoso played for the Marianao Tigers for many years, both before coming to the U.S. and also while playing in the major leagues.

Minoso didn't go to Mexico to play ball professionally until after his playing career was over for real (1964) in the major leagues.

Incidentally, Minoso IS a member of a baseball hall of fame -- the Mexican Baseball Hall of Fame in Monterrey. He is honored for his time as a player and manager in the Mexican Pacific and Mexican leagues.

For what it's worth, the following is a link to the portion of the hall's web site that is devoted to Minoso's career.

http://www.salondelafama.com.mx/salondelafama/trono/alfasf.asp?x=120

It's in Spanish, but it really isn't that hard to follow.

WhiteSox5187
08-27-2007, 01:07 AM
Unfortunately, that panel failed miserably in several respects, and even more so for Buck O'Neill, who also clearly also deserves "the Hall" and who, unlike Minnie, is no longer on the list considered by the new veterans' committee.



You can't take just a solely sabremetrics viewpoint on this. Harold's candidacy really rests on the perception question: can a long later career at mostly DH really make it?

Allen's candidacy relies on the additional intangible considerations of the guy who was one of the most devastating hitters of his time throughout his career, not only threatening the triple crown late in his career with the Sox, but the single human on the planet closest to actually doing what Roy Hobbs does in The Natural, i.e. viciously tearing the cover off the ball. As time fades the memories of Allen's actually playing days, it will be harder for his candidacy to succeed, even in the ranks of the vet committee (as it has with Minnie's).

Minnie has several powerful intangibles within the context of his MLB career. His role is very similar to Jackie Robinson's (a HOF player also slightly short in pure sabremetricians' terms). Minnie was the 1st pioneering Latin American "superstar" caliber MLB player who lead the way for Roberto Clemente and all those that followed as well as being the 1st black White Sox player and one of just a handful in a league and at a time when there was still a lot of resistance, double standards, and overtly practiced prejudices against black MLB players. If Jackie got additional (well deserved) consideration for his role, Minnie certainly deserves at least some add ons for his roles here too. Unlike Jackie, Minnie barely spoke english in the years he suffured the greatest racial indignations (e.g., separate living quarters in spring training, playing minor league ball in Dayton, OH), making the experience that much tougher and lonelier.

Second of all is Minnie's combined skills package and raw impact to a team, that go way beyond the basic H/RBI/HR stats HOF benchmarks typical of non-pitching candidates. Not only was he a prototype of the modern leadoff hitter in combined offensive weapons, he was also an outstanding defensive infielder and outfielder, with 3 GGs with the Sox, and two Negro league AS appearances at 3B (as well as also playing many games early in his career with the Sox on occasion when needed at 3B and even SS). His three GGs only came after the award originated in '57 and he'd have likely won at least a few more if the award had been around earlier.

If you look at the raw impact of Minnie to a team as measured by overall team success, before and after he arrived, it is undeniable and it is large. He lead the NY Cubans to the black WS title in '47, playing 3B, batting leadoff, and hitting over .400 in the WS. He joined an already assembled nucleus of strong Sox players (including Nellie, Chico, and Pierce) when traded from the Indians early in 1951, and the Sox, who had only one winning season in the previous 20 years, were transformed into the Go-Go White Sox, and didn't have a losing season until four years after Minnie retired. Of course, it took a whole team to have 17 winning seasons in a row, but the Sox most certainly would never have achieved that success without Minnie.

Sure, Harold had great combined skills early in his career, and in spite of his injuries, an impressive set of career hitting stats, but I don't think you ever would have characterized him with the same superstar status that Minnie clearly had throughout most of his MLB career, even for Harold's peak years in '82-'85. For the record (& all those pure offensive sabremetricians), Minnie's lifetime BA/OBP of .298/.389 stand slightly above Harold's .289/.356 and could easily balance out the (projected small) delta in lifetime hits and RBIs especially when you add in Minnie's topnotch leadoff role skill set: OBP, SB, and baserunning.

Interestingly, Harold and Minnie were teamates in the dugout for Minnie's 1980 "unretirement". Unfortunately for Minnie, even those among the oldest of WSIers like Lip (happy B-Day!) and myself (today a year younger than Lip)weren't around for the early part of Minnie's career, and even older HOF players, who are now the majority on the vets committee, will really have to do some research to be diligent, as they too weren't around to see the "Cuban Comet" in his prime. Harold, at least, will have the advantage that the voters on his candidacy were personal witnesses to much of his career.
Bravo, that's a great reason why he should be in the Hall. Well said.