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Former Twins on the 2022 regular HOF ballot


Okay - David Ortiz leads the pack - will he be elected?  Do steroids tarnish him and if not will Alex Rodriguez get in and if he gets in will Bonds and Clemens get in?  Stay tuned.  I have to feel that after getting Martinez in as a DH there are really no other barriers for the form Twin and standout Red Sox to be elected.  He is by far the greatest of DHs.  Ask the Red Sox fan who they would want to bat in a crucial moment on the big stage - WS, playoffs...

Now looking down the list I looked at Bleacher Report and they had the one and done list, many of which I agree with.  But on that list was Morneau and Joe Nathan and Pierzynski!  Do you agree?  They are not eventual HOF selectees but one and done seems harsh for a former MVP, a former Rolaids reliever of the year, and a 19 year catcher.  Do you agree with this?  

In the category of hanging around but not getting in is Torii Hunter.  They project him to get 9.5%.  I agree with this.

That is our Twins presence - what do you think?

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If Ortiz gets elected, Bonds should be the unanimous pick. The entire steroid debate is sticky. How can one of those players get in but not Bonds. Bonds was superior to all, complicated, and nearly the universal bad boy to seemingly everyone. I always felt Bonds was dragged into the whole messy steroids debacle by his massive ego, when Mark McGuire received so much acclaim. Bonds, apparently, made poor choices and is still paying the price. Ortiz has a welcoming personality but is just as guilty, making his redemption odd.

Joe Nathan should get a few votes as might Morneau and Pierzynski. I agree that one and done seems harsh, yet most would also agree that these players, as good as they were, do not meet the mark for the Baseball Hall of Fame. 

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I don't see a Twins name on the list that makes the hall of fame. Some will remain in the Hall of Memories.  Most Hall of Fame Players I have no favorite memories of simply because I rarely saw them play. Maybe always as an opponent.

I don't think any steroid user should ever make the Hall of Fame. How would you ever separate steroid produced play versus non steroid produced play. We have 2 otherwise certain Hall of Fame players banned from the hall for cheating that serve as good examples in Pete Rose and Joe Jackson.

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Is 9.5 percent a projection on Hunter? Because that's exactly what he got last year, his first year on the ballot. 

Here's last year's results: https://www.baseball-reference.com/awards/hof_2021.shtml

And the list of guys eligible for this year's ballot: https://www.baseball-reference.com/awards/hof_2022.shtml

Most guys track upward over time, with many particularly getting a bump in the final year. With Schilling throwing a fit over not getting elected last year, one wonders whether he'll change much. He might pick up a few voters, but also have alienated others. Bonds and Clemens were both a little ways away in the low 60s in their ninth year. Normally, that's probably a bigger jump than is typical for making it, but there's at least a sense that some voters have been taking an approach of "He was good enough to be in, but I'm going to make him sweat as long as possible" on both, so I think they could  make it. 

Add A-Rod on his first ballot, and this has the potential to be the most polarizing induction ceremony.

As to Ortiz -- I don't think he makes it. As you note, Edgar Martinez did, but not until his 10th year. I think the steroid stuff will affect Ortiz enough that he'll have to wait. 

And as to the Twins -- I'm a little surprised that Hunter got as high as 9.5 percent. Guys in that range often tail off in years 2 and 3, so I'm guessing he'll be right around the 5 percent and then fall off next year if he doesn't this year.

Nathan will get votes, but I suspect not get enough to stay on the ballot. JAWS doesn't handle relief pitchers well, but it's interesting to note that he is lodged between Lee Smith and Bruce Sutter on that list and is above Rollie Fingers and Trevor Hoffman. I think we often don't realize how really good he was and how well he stacks up to the best in history. Unfortunately, his career lined up with some guy in New York, so he was easily overlooked. He's a relief pitcher, however, and they've generally not done well. It also doesn't help to have Papelbon in the class.

Similarly, I think Morneau will get a handful or two of votes, but he'll almost certainly not stay on the ballot. If LaTroy Hawkins got two votes last year, Pierzynski might get a vote or two, but won't make it to next year.

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Hunter is a weird case, because while he was playing he was known for his defense as much as his offense. He got nine Gold Gloves. But his career dWAR was only 4.0. And that's not even weighted down by his later years as even in his prime his defensive numbers were never elite. Which of course doesn't jive with how everyone viewed him back in the early-to-mid 2000's.

Meanwhile, his contemporary Andruw Jones was at 24 dWAR. Funny thing though, despite Jones' superior power numbers, Hunter actually had a higher oWAR by 8 points.

Jones is an interesting case himself because he was always linked to steroids, but never busted. He's probably in the Jeff Bagwell bucket as far as that goes and Bagwell got in. Jones wasn't as good overall as Bagwell though, so he's going to struggle to get in. On the traditional ballot, I think it's going to be hard for Hunter to get in without Jones first going in. 

My guess is Hunter won't get in on the traditional ballot. But he was a very respected player league-wide, so he will get voted in by his peers later, or he'll get voted in if people start seeing flaws with current defensive metrics.

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They might have to make a separate room for the steroid users and other 'cheaters' of the game.  Put a big asterisk above the door and start letting these guys in.  We cheered for Ortiz, McGuire, Bonds, Clemens and Rose and all the others.  Yes, they cheated or gambled on the game.  But we loved the game and we loved the guys.  There were also a lot of guys that were using steroids that won't make the HoF even though they cheated.

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