The Big Reveal is tomorrow to find out who the BBWAA selects to join Ted Simmons and Marvin Miller in the 2020 Baseball Hall of Fame class. I’ll save my applause or complaints for tomorrow. For now, here’s how the publicly announced ballots are looking, per Ryan Thibodeaux’ BBHOF tracker with about 45% of the expected ballots in:
Derek Jeter is at 100%. Assuming that doesn’t change, and it would take a voter with a bee up his butt/personal animosity having little to do with Jeter’s resume as a player to keep him from becoming the second unanimous choice to the Hall.
Larry Walker stands at 85.9%. This represents a huge bump from last year’s final tally in the 54% range. If it holds up, I’ll be grinning big tomorrow as a big ol’ Walker fanboy. The problem is, the anonymous voters tend to be the curmudgeonly, and frankly less informed, voters. If a voter stops his/her thinking at counting stats and home games at Coors Field, he does fall short (and I read an article just this AM from a voter whose thinking was just that teaspoon deep). However, (1) Coors had zero to do with how excellent a base runner and fielder he was and (2) if one is going to be fair about the “Coors effect,” then one should look at the whole picture. If the home games are at Coors, a plurality of away games at in LA, SF, Arizona, and SD—all pitchers parks, thus suppressing away split hitting stats, making the home/road split look worse. Yet Walker was still a near .300 hitter on the road. Okay, off the soap box for now; nearly 86% of the vote looks good…I hope enough of the remaining ballots have his name on them for him to stay at/above 75% so he gets elected. He deserves it. If not, I doubt he’ll have to appear on a Today’s Game ballot more than once.
Curt Schilling is running at 79.5%. He, like Walker, has in the past done significantly worse among the older anonymous voters. Since I’m predicting it will be close for Walker, I have to predict Schilling misses the cut this year…but has a great shot next year with no shoo-in names coming on the ballot.
My mythical ballot:
Derek Jeter, Larry Walker, Curt Schilling, Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens, Scott Rolen, Gary Sheffield, Todd Shelton, Billy Wagner, and Andruw Jones.