This is coming kinda late, because the ballot was dropped a while back and all the debate has pretty much gone quiet at this point. The announcement of who gets in (and who falls off the ballot) will be coming soon and I figured I wanted to just give a take because I do probably care about this more than most.
All I’m going to do is quickly go through EVERY name on the ballot and give you a yes or no on whether they should get in at all, not just this year, with an explanation. I don’t want to do the whole thing where I just pick a few guys to get in this year so I’ll just get it all out of the way. Here we go.
Barry Bonds- YES
I’m totally in on steroids guys getting in the HOF, IF you can confidently say they were a great player without the juice. Just throw an asterisk on there and have a paragraph about what he did on his plaque.
Roger Clemens- YES
The same rule applies.
Edgar Martinez- YES
This one is one I hate to admit, but the question is about whether he should ever get in. He’s NOT the best DH of all time, that’d be Mr. David Ortiz, but he’s worthy of the call to Cooperstown at some point.
Vlad Guerrero- YES
No real steroid suspicion, despite being an amazing slugger in that era. I honestly just think this guy was a freak. From hitting balls in the dirt for a double or a dinger to just HOSING dudes with his cannon of an arm, Vlad was one of the most entertaining players of my lifetime. He’s in, no doubt.
Trevor Hoffman- YES
I don’t totally understand why there is a debate about this. I’m in on Hoffman being one of the best closers of all time. That means you are in.
Brad Lidge- NO
Good closer, not much more.
Jason Isringhausen- NO
He’s got less of a case than Lidge.
Chipper Jones- YES
Throw out the fact that he was the first baseball player I ever knew of, he’s still an absolute lock. Love Chipper.
Hideki Matsui- NO
I somewhat subscribe to the rule that if you have to convince yourself or think to hard about a guy, they aren’t worthy. I thought Matsui was great, even as a Red Sox fan. But he’s not there based on his numbers in the United States (if you wanna add in Japan and make it a world thing, he’s in).
Johnny Damon- NO
Haha, sorry Johnny.
Mike Mussina- YES
I always thought he was awesome, but his numbers are actually even better than I thought. He’ll make the cut.
Curt Schilling- YES
This one, is a doozy. People get very hot and bothered about Curt but I know that there is no doubt he deserves enshrinement. Just because he’s a kook and gives a lotta hot takes does not mean he’s a bad guy. Even if he was a bad guy, that has nothing to do with whether he should be in. There are a lot of worse people in the Hall right now and Curt not getting in is bullshit.
Scott Rolen- NO
I hate this because Scotty Rolen was one of my favorites growing up. He’s a guy on the fence which means he does not make it.
Fred McGriff- NO
I’m gonna be honest, I don’t know much about Fred because I never saw him play. All I can go on is his numbers and what I have heard. Therefore, I’m not letting him in.
Jim Thome- YES
I find it funny that so many people say Thome was definitely not on steroids. He seems to be the exact type of guy that would be filled with the juice. But, there really aren’t any allegations and he was a beast so I think I’m giving him the pass. But I got my eye on you, Thome.
Manny Ramirez- YESI know he was linked to steroids and caught multiple times. But one thing about Manny is that he could roll outta bed and hit. The ‘roids didn’t help him make contact, and I stand firm that he’s the best right handed hitter I’ve ever watched. (Also very biased as a huge Red Sox and Manny fan).
Kevin Millwood- NO, WTF?
Orlando Hudson- NO
Love the O-Dawg. Don’t love him enough to say he’s even close to a Hall of Famer.
Jamie Moyer- NO
Just because you played forever doesn’t mean you get to be considered one of the greats.
Jeff Kent- NO
Alotttttta people would put Jeff in, but he just doesn’t have the type of impact on me to swing me in his favor.
Aubrey Huff- NO
Any Hall of Fame with Aubrey Huff in it would need to be torn down immediately.
Carlos Lee- NO
El Caballo. Awesome nickname, not an awesome HOF case.
Kerry Wood- NO
Oh, what could have been.
Livan Hernandez- NO
Chris Carpenter- NO
I was a big Chris Carpenter guy for literally no reason that I can think of. But no.
Omar Vizquel- NO
For fielding? Yes. His bat takes him out.
Carlos Zambrano- NO
Big Z was entertaining as hell. I’ll always miss his tirades. He can go in the HOF of throwing Gatorade coolers.
Larry Walker- NO
This one is a bit controversial because I think a lot of people want him in. I’m out on him.
Johan Santana- NO
It feels weird to say no to a guy who dominated for a good part of my childhood, but injuries took his career so far down that it’s impossible to say he’s in.
Sammy Sosa- NO
Sammy is where the steroids rule backfires. There is no evidence of him being good without cheating, so he therefore does not get the benefit of the doubt.
Gary Sheffield- YES
Sheff cracked 500 homers and almost hit .300 for his career. This means he shall pass.
Andruw Jones- NO
The Jones brothers of the Braves were a dynamic duo there for a while but Andruw’s career couldn’t keep going and sustain it.
Billy Wagner- YES
I’m down with Billy Wagner getting in, by a hair.