Here is my take, if you took steroids or were linked to steroids in any way shape or form, no way you get in.
Okay, that's fine. I understand a lot of people feel this way, and I can see the sentiment in wanting to keep "cheaters" out of the Hall of Fame. I disagree with this sentiment because I believe the vast majority of MLB players did (or were "linked" to) steroids and it's unfair to just simply reward the players who didn't get caught. But again, I can understand this view and won't fault anyone for having it.
So far, so good.
You need at least 7 years of domination, where you were by far and away (sic) one of the 20 best players in the game.
Ehh.. This is pretty sketchy. I'm not sure that being in the top 20 for seven years is quite up to Hall of Fame standards. I feel like there's quite a few mediocre players out there who can claim this accomplishment.
That's not too bad, though, what else you got?
Automatics are 3000 hits, 500 home runs, 800 stolen bases, 300 wins, 300 saves, or 3000 strikeouts.
-If Billy Buckner averaged 13 more hits a season over his 22-year career, he would have finished with 3,000 hits.
-Seven home runs are separating Fred McGriff from the Hall of Fame.
-Vince Coleman would be in were it not for four more stolen bases a year, despite his .324 OBP and 83 Career Adjusted OPS.
-Tommy John, Jim Kaat, Tony Mullane... so close.
-Congratulations John Franco, Jeff Reardon, Troy Percival, Randy Myers, John Wetteland, Roberto Hernandez(!), Jose Mesa(!!), Todd Jones(!!!), Rick Aguilera, Robb Nen, Tom Henke, Jeff Montgomery, and Doug Jones, you are all deserving of an induction into the Hall of Fame! Also, congratulations to every slightly above average closer in the future.
-Mickey Lolich is pissed he didn't get those extra eleven strikeouts a year.
Ask yourself, would these players really have deserved to be in the Hall just because they reached a subjective, public-induced "milestone"? No. The majority of these players aren't even close. There should be no "automatics" when considering a player for induction. You should never look at any single statistic when evaluating a player's production, because there is no single perfect stat. Bert Blyleven should not be penalized because he failed to accumulate thirteen more wins, nor should Tommy John be rewarded had he collected twelve more. This seems to be a simple concept. I would hope that the BBWAA's apparent recent improvement would transfer over into Hall of Fame standards, although I think that's still probably wishful thinking at this point.
My ballot, were I to submit one, would look like this:
Rickey Henderson will obviously make it easily, I don't see it happening for any of those others this year, though. Unfortunately, I believe Henderson now being on the ballot will cause people to look more dimly upon Raines' case, so he'll probably still have quite a ways to go before he gets any serious consideration. Blyeleven seems to have the best shot out of the other four.
I love this time of year. I can't wait for more and more columns to come out attempting to justify the cases for Matt Williams and Mark Grace because they were true "gamers" and "played the game the right way." I can't wait to hear the reasoning behind a single writer's vote for Jesse Orosco as I sit bewildered at the surprisingly strong support for Mo Vaughn.
Don't worry everyone, the Winter Meetings are coming soon!