Hall of Fame

2016 Hall of Fame Results

Ken Griffey Jr. was elected to the Hall of Fame on the first ballot, receiving 99.32% of the vote. He becomes the 51st player elected in their first year. His percentage of votes is the highest all-time. Mike Piazza was also elected in his fourth year on the ballot. 

With three players (Maddux, Glavine, Thomas) elected in 2014 and four players (Johnson, Martinez, Smoltz, and Biggio) elected in 2015, this now makes a total of nine players elected in a three-year span. This is only the third time that has happened in history, following 1954-56 and 1936-38.

2016 Hall of Fame Predictions

This year’s Hall of Fame ballot has 32 players total, including 15 newcomers, for voters to consider. Last year’s elections saw four worthy candidates elected—Randy Johnson, Pedro Martinez, John Smoltz, and Craig Biggio—and only one new-comer—Ken Griffey Jr.—is likely to get elected this year. This election is thus a crucial one for down-ballot players, especially given the reduction in the number of years a player can remain on the ballot from 15 to 10 made in 2015.

2015 HOF Ballots in: Johnson, Martinez, Smoltz, and Biggio Elected!

Randy Johnson (97.3%), Pedro Martinez (91.1%), John Smoltz (82.9%), and Craig Biggio (82.7%) were all elected to the Hall of Fame today. Mike Piazza came up just a bit short with 69.9%.

This is the first time four players have been elected in one year since 1955 (Dimaggio, Lyons, Vance, and Hartnett) and only the third time ever, following 1947 (Hubbell, Frisch, Cochrane, Grove) and the inaugural 1936 class (Cobb, Ruth, Wagner, Mathewson, Johnson). Four were also elected in 1939, but Lou Gehrig was admitted on a special ballot, not the normal writer’s ballot.

2015 Hall of Fame Predictions

This year’s Hall of Fame ballot is stacked with 34 players total, including 17 newcomers, for voters to consider. New rules, announced in July, reduced the number of years a player can remain on the ballot from 15 to 10, but failed to expand the maximum number of names a voter can list on their ballots from the current 10. Many voters will be faced with more than 10 worthy candidates. This is in part because a number of players with Hall of Fame numbers are linked to PEDs and are languishing in no man’s land, far away from election but with strong enough support to avoid falling below the 5% threshold and being removed from the ballot. Ballots were due by December 27, and the results will be announced on Tuesday (January 6). A player must appear on 75 percent of the Baseball Writers’ Association of America ballots to be inducted. The big question this year is whether or not the change from 15 to 10 years will cause voters to reconsider PED players and candidates nearing that 10-year mark more quickly, perhaps upping their totals. Therefore, there could be far more volatility in the vote totals this year than there typically is from year to year, making them difficult to predict. With that caveat, below are my brief thoughts on each player on the ballot and my prediction for the type of general support they are likely to receive.

The Hall of Fame Case of Lee Smith

Hall of Fame ballots were due by December 27, and the results will be announced on January 6. A player must appear on 75 percent of the Baseball Writers’ Association of America ballots to be inducted. I’ll have more commentary on the entire ballot soon, but in this post, I’ll more closely examine the case of one former Cub: Lee Smith.

Will Greg Maddux Bust the Unanimous Barrier?

The BBWAA released the Hall of Fame ballot today and I count 6 players that you can reasonably associate with the Cubs: Rafael Palmeiro, Jacque Jones, Sammy Sosa, Lee Smith, Moises Alou and Greg Maddux. Of course, all but Sammy and maybe Lee Smith are more closesly associated with other organziations.

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  • If he puts up Soriano numbers I will be ecstatic

    jacos 1 hour 40 min ago view
  • I think Javy is learning--but he's learning to make contact, not learning to lay off pitches out of the zone. A quick glance at his plate discipline numbers on Fangraphs shows that his contact rate is up, especially his contact rate out of the zone, but his swing rate is up too, especially his swing rate out of the zone.

    Charlie 2 hours 15 min ago view
  • I definitely saw ballpark radar guns go up to 102 on Kerry Wood back when he was still a starter, but who knows how accurate they were.

    Charlie 2 hours 28 min ago view
  • They've mentioned Henry Rodriguez (2013), Chris Carpenter, and Andrew Cashner as Cubs who have gone 100+. They said Rodriguez was tops at 100.8. Who knows before 2008?

    QuietMan 3 hours 52 min ago view
  • Regarding Heyward--

    He'll play regardless of what he does, just like Soriano played for seven years before they finally ditched him.

    What can they do? All I can think of is they can keep hiring and firing hitting coaches until they find one who can get him to stop hitting balls with the handle of the bat.

    (All those broken bats added to his paycheck is just a bit much.)

    VirginiaPhil 3 hours 53 min ago view
  • Lester will probably be all right.

    I think Arrieta might have added too much muscle preparing for that butt-naked ESPN photo shoot. Pitchers are supposed to be loose, not muscled up.

    Seriously.

    VirginiaPhil 3 hours 59 min ago view
  • I have basically written off Heyward for this year -- if you are working on major swing changes in late July, you are going to struggle. Hopefully, he can be more productive at the plate next year. It will be interesting to see what they do with him if the Cardinals keep winning and close the gap. Heyward is dead last in the NL in slugging and in the bottom 5 in OPS -- yet still has a positive WAR. Hunh.

    billybucks 4 hours 3 min ago view
  • Has anybody in a Cub uniform ever thrown a ball 103 before?

    VirginiaPhil 4 hours 6 min ago view
  • He certainly looks better, no doubt, and is a different player than what we saw when he first came up. Full credit to him for changing his approach and saving his career.

    But he has zero walks in 35AB since the break, and 10 in 251 AB all year. He does seem to be able to hit some pitches out of the zone, but, a guy with his pop should be drawing more walks. However, it's easy to forget he is still only 23, and probably trying to make an impact to prove he should be an everyday player.

    billybucks 4 hours 15 min ago view
  • The usual suspects, Molina and Wong. Gyorko drew a walk with two outs, none on. I recall us (particularly Szczur and Bryant) swinging at everything Familia threw.

    VirginiaPhil 4 hours 17 min ago view
  • Yup. Thanks Q

    The E-Man 4 hours 23 min ago view
  • QuietMan 4 hours 31 min ago view
  • I for one hope that Sosa comes back soon.

    Rob Richardson 4 hours 50 min ago view
  • O/B interesting you should mention that. Google ESPN Science Aroldis Chapman and you'll be treated to how his mechanics and delivery are possibly historic. It's the 120% of his body stretch plus the torque. They compare him to the Unit and NRyan.

    The E-Man 5 hours 28 min ago view
  • Amazing how much lower the production gets when Bryant runs into a mini-cold streak. He doesn't stay cold for long. If just one of Zobrist or, gulp, Heyward, gets hot, they oughta have one more really nice winning streak in them. Having a closer that you have absolute confidence in can't hurt.

    Old and Blue 6 hours 12 min ago view
  • I hope they hold onto Jimenez. Outfield depth is questionable, especially with McKinney, who struggled this year but still, gone.

    Old and Blue 6 hours 23 min ago view