Thoughts on the HOF
In his 2019 Handbook, Bill James has a an article on the HOF that I found interesting. I highly recommend it. He looked only at position players Here are a few tidbits:
- Five worst players in the HOF: Tommy McCarthy, George "High Pockets" Kelly,Chick Hafey, Freddy Lindstrom, and Ross Youngs. No surprises there. Four of the five were from the Frankie Frisch debacle.
- Five best players not in the HOF (excluding gamblers and roiders): Bill Dahlen, Lou Whitaker, Ted Simmons, Dwight Evans, and Bobby Grich.
In the book each list contains 25 names. He looks at all players who meet a certain level of achievement (the books explains it). As an example, he names Reggie Smith as the 10th best player not in the HOF, and assigns him a record of 66-9. He is better than 66 people already in, and is worse than 9 players not in the hall. He assigns Mazeroski a record of 6-207. He is better than 6 other HOFERs, but is worse than 207 not in.
FWIW-he would vote for Rivera, Walker, Helton, Halladay, Schilling, Rolen, Martinez, Sheffield, and Mussina. In re to Kent and the Crime Dog, they both make his list of the 25 best not in, but I do not see that he said he definitely would or would not vote for them. I might of missed it. He did state that he would not vote for Vizquel.