Kill the Hall of Fame. Friday, December 26, 2014
Maybe a new form can be created in the near future. Maybe not. But let's just consign the current baseball Hall of Fame to the dustbin of history and let it die with what little dignity it deserves.
|Pedro Martínez July 26, 2009|
by Eric Kilby via Wikimedia Commons
I'm tired of hearing talking heads pontificate about not supporting this candidate or that because of what often is only a vague suspicion of impropriety. Such impropriety involves performance enhancing drugs (PED), including steroids, 100% of the time. No other character flaw is ever considered. So the writers who vote invoke the character clauses for qualification for only one type of offense to the exclusion of all others.
5. Voting: Voting shall be based upon the player's record, playing ability, integrity, sportsmanship, character, and contributions to the team(s) on which the player played.
Meanness Factor: how to determine if HBP is intentional. Saturday, August 20, 2011
Simple. Compare BB to HBP.
Do pitchers hit batters simply because they are wild or do they hit batters because they are mean? The Meanness Factor simply compares BB and HBP. It's pretty basic and indicates general intent.
A few years ago I applied the meanness factor to individuals. Among post WWII (after 1946) the meanest pitchers were Don Drysdale and Pedro Martinez with Jim Bunning third. There are two biases: sidearm pitchers who tend to miss in or out rather than up or down (see Sandy Koufax) and pitchers who walk so few batters that their meanness factor is skewed (see Mariano Rivera).
So why is Pedro Martinez a sure bet to be elected? Why does no one invoke the character criteria? Why doesn't borderline candidate Mike Mussina get any credit for having good character on this very point. While Mussina was an active player he explicitly renounced intentionally hitting batters, even in retaliation for his teammates being hit by an opposing pitcher, who sometimes was none other than Pedro Martinez. Mussina does not get such credit even from his supporters who concentrate exclusively on Mussina's "record" and "playing ability".
This is just another reason to kill the Hall of Fame. I think I'll call for a boycott.