Wednesday, January 05, 2011

Alomar and Blyleven Get into Hall of Fame

The Hall of Fame announced today that second baseman Roberto Alomar and pitcher Bert Blyleven have made it into the Hall of Fame. A candidate needs to receive 75% of the votes cast by the eligible Baseball Writers' Association of America members in order to make it. Alomar received 90% in his second year of eligibility and Blyleven received 79.7%.

It is especially good to see Blyleven get in after his long wait. With 3,701 career strikeouts (fifth all-time) 60 shutouts (9th), 4,970 innings (14th) and 328 pitching runs (23rd), he certainly deserved it. Blyleven received less than 30% of the vote in his first six years on the ballot and it appeared he would not make it. However, he gained steam in recent years thanks in part to the internet and sabermetrics.

Long-time Tigers Right-hander Jack Morris had a small jump this year from 52.3% to 53.5%. That does not bode well for Morris, who has only three more chances. Unlike Blyleven, Morris receives little support from the sabermetric community due to his underwhelming statistics such as a 3.90 ERA and 105 ERA+.

Tigers Shortstop Alan Trammell rose from 22.4% last year to 24.3% this year, so there is little chance of his ever getting voted in by the writers. I've always thought he and Lou Whitaker would get voted in together by the Veteran's Committee some day ala Joe Tinker, Jonny Evers and Frank Chance. I'm less sure about Whitaker though since he was knocked off the ballot getting less than 5% of the vote in his first year of eligibility. The VC doesn't generally consider those who received so little support from the writers.

This year's Whitaker was Kevin Brown who received only 2.1% of the vote. He deserved better. It's a flawed process no doubt.


  1. The Jack Morris situation raises a question about Justin Verlander. He has a career era 3.81, yet is considered one of the best in the MLB....does that mean he isn't a HOF-er?

  2. A 3.81 ERA today is a bit better than a 3.90 ERA in the 80s. one way to look at it is ERA+. ERA+ shows how far above average a pitcher is given the league average and home ballparks he pitched in. An ERA+ of 100 is league average. Above 100 is better than average. Below 100 is below average.

    Morris had an ERA of 106. Verlander has an ERA+ of 118. Verlander will probably pile up a lot of strikeouts if he keeps it up too. That would help. Obviously, Verlander would need to keep going for a long time before he would be a Hall of Famer.

  3. Trammell's continued omission (to say nothing of Whitaker) reflects badly on the voters. Go Veterans Committee.



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