The Hall of Fame vote for this summer's induction class will be announced tomorrow. I think this is the year Bert Blyleven finally gets in. I also think Andre Dawson will get in, but he's not the slam-dunk that Blyleven is. I think those are the only two hold-overs that will make it.
McGwire's case (which has been much analyzed and debated on this blog) hasn't changed much since last year. Maybe now that he's back in baseball he will address his steroid issues and the voters can forgive him and put him in (and I don't want to hear any debate about his case -- he's a HOF'er).
Alan Tammell should be in too, but won't make it this year (and probably won't come close). Mike Dodd of USA Today wrote one of the stupidest things I've read this year about the Hall of Fame. He compared Trammell to Barry Larkin and said they should both be in at some point. Then he said he wouldn't vote for Larkin this year because he's not a first-timer, but that he would vote for both next year. If they both deserve to be in, and Larkin won't get the vote because he's not a first-timer, why wait on Trammell? Stupid.
With Blyleven getting in, that leaves Tim Raines as the most deserving (and eligible) player not in the hall. There's no indication that Raines has a chance this year. Lee Smith will get a lot of votes from the hold-overs; just not enough to make it.
Of the new guys, look for Roberto Alomar to make it this year. He and Larkin have remarkably similar rate stats (Alomar's carrer OPS is .814, Larkin's is .815) but Alomar has the edge in counting stats thanks to a little more than 1000 extra AB's. Larkin could make it next year.
Both Fred McGriff and Edgar Martinez will fall short in their first year on the ballot. Martinez brings up some interesting issues with the DH, but ultimately doesn't have enough counting stats to overcome no production in the field. McGriff was quite a slugger, but never dominate enough in the era in which he played. Both could make it in eventually.
Mike Mussina, Hall of Famer
4 weeks ago