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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  • Not sure I agree with this logic. The Cubs are one of the best teams in baseball, they have spent heavily on the team over the past couple of seasons, have more hitting prospects than they have places for them to play (and more on the way), a clear weakness in the bullpen, and have a 1.5 year window with Arrieta (to say nothing of the likely declines of Lester and Lackey).

    Unless you think (maybe even if you do think) Schwarber is the next coming of Babe Ruth, I would certainly consider trading him if it brought back a couple of the best relief pitchers in baseball.

    Rob Richardson 2 hours 8 min ago view
  • Miggy was going to sit anyway with Lester starting.

    In related news, do any of the Cubs pitchers want to throw to Contreras?

    Rob G. 2 hours 20 min ago view
  • Only Russell and Miggy failed to reach base yesterday. Both sit today.

    billybucks 2 hours 29 min ago view
  • Trading Schwarber actually makes a lot of sense because his actual position is currently being taken by Anthony Rizzo, unless they vote in the DH this offseason.

    Trading him for a reliever is never going to happen though. I don't think you can trade Schwarber unless you get a CF'er for a few years (presume Fowler finds his multi-year deal next offseson) or a couple of high end young starters...or an established starter...a good one like Chris Sale.

    Rob G. 2 hours 40 min ago view
  • I don't see what the Yanks have that the Cubs need.

    Ryno 2 hours 45 min ago view
  • peter gammons on MLB network pushing the yanks/schwarber angle...says insiders from the yanks say brian cashman highly covets him.

    unless that conversation starts with a.miller (2/18m left on contract) i dunno how you even start that conversation given the "not trash, but no stars" state of the yanks minor league system.

    they got corner OF'r aaron judge, C gary sanchez, RHP james kaprielian's questionable elbow, RHP domingo acevedo...all interesting, none expected to impact the game like schwarber's power potential.

    crunch 3 hours 18 min ago view
  • Zo, Heyward, KB, Riz, Contreras (LF), Baez (SS), Szczur (CF), Ross, Lester

    Cubster 3 hours 26 min ago view
  • damn. low sample size blah blah whatever, but that slash got sneaky good. 10 hits, 4 walks, 2hr, 1 double through 39 PA...nice

    crunch 3 hours 46 min ago view
  • Buddy Ryan takes his place alongside George Allen as the great Bear head coaches who never were.

    VirginiaPhil 6 hours 41 min ago view
  • Well, at least he can still hit: Jake slashing .294/.368/.868. Forget hitting 8th -- he should hit 6th.

    billybucks 6 hours 59 min ago view
  • Curious to see today's lineup vs. a LHP: Ross needs to catch Lester, Joe likes Javy at 3B when Lester pitches. Heyward with back-to-back good games at the plate, and is actually hitting a little better against LHP (.247/.341) than RHP (.232/.321), although neither is much to write home about. But, tomorrow is an early day game, so some regulars will probably sit either today or tomorrow.

    Maybe Willson in LF, KB in RF and Almora in CF? If so, Albert Jr., assume every ball is yours.

    billybucks 7 hours 4 min ago view
  • "Pitching prospects not looking so hot"

    That reminds me that Lucas Giolito will start for the Nats tonight.

    VirginiaPhil 7 hours 7 min ago view
  • Well, there you go. Federowicz is one of the best at balls in the dirt.

    VirginiaPhil 7 hours 26 min ago view
  • Reds pitching meeting tomorrow:

    "Hey coach...maybe we should walk Bryant?"
    "No...keep challenging him with fastballs! What kind of man are you?! The Cubs walked Harper, and look what happened there! They got teased for it, by one of the Nat players! Is that what you want?"

    billybucks 18 hours 8 min ago view
  • How can I get that feature? I think it woudl be a win-win for all involved.

    billybucks 18 hours 12 min ago view
  • Ian Happ is hitting.733 after 5 games at Tennessee. He went into tonight's game hitting .667 -- and went 3-for-3 to raise his average.

    2-for-3, including a bomb, for LaStella at Iowa. Pierce Johnson very bad -- 2IP, 5ER. Pitching prospects not looking so hot -- Underwood has been awful.

    Did Jiminez get hurt? I noticed he came out early yesterday.

    billybucks 19 hours 13 sec ago view