The guy that voted for Jones pry had room on his ballot by not voting for Maddux
The guy that voted for Jones pry had room on his ballot by not voting for Maddux
I just changed my mind about this HOF voting: Since the writers try to make political statements and pass personal agendas with this vote, the HOF should take that privilege away from them. They do not deserve it. From the steroids witch hunting and not voting for people never proven guilty, just because they feel they are guilty, to sending empty ballots, to voting for non-worthy pet players to non-voting for someone like Maddux so he would not be unanimous, they blew it. Gone. No more BBWAA votes for the HOF.
How would players get in? It is a museum for the fans, let the fans (who are the ones who are spending $ to go and see the museum and not the writers who get in for free) vote. Open voting like the All-Star game, but have a 75% cut off.
For that matter why should Sosa and Palmeiro get way less votes than either 2 of them? They would both would be elected to the HOF if they retired in time before the scandal came out.
I like that the people that vote should be more educated than the average baseball fan...but jeez stuff like this really makes one question that thought.
That was the top 10. If you had the 75% cut-off rule, the inductees would have been: Maddux, Glavine & Thomas (already in by the writers) plus Piazza and Biggio.
I'd say as a group, the fans did about as good a job (if not better) than the writers. As a matter of fact, baseball fans probably watch more baseball than some of those guys who got the privilege because they covered baseball 25 years ago and now they moved to politics or horse racing or something like Gophers Basketball...
Well who reads Deadspin? Not the average fan. Fan voting would never work. Look at the votes Gladden gets for the Twins Hall of Fame. No way he deserves to get in, but thank goodness the vote isn't the final say.
Some writers won't vote for anyone in the steroid era. Some disregard the steroids and look at the stats to determine who's deserving. If I were voting, I'd pass until Pete Rose was made eligible.
Maybe instead of voting yay or nay for getting in they should use a ranking process. Send out a ballot with all eligible players, and voters MUST rank ALL the players from 1 through however many players there are. Then either assign points to each rank and have a point threshold a player must reach to be elected, and threshold to reach to remain on the ballot (though the thresholds would have to change every time the number of eligible players and/or voters changed, so that would get messy). Or say a player must have an average rank better than a certain number to be elected and better than a certain number to remain on the ballot.
I think fan voting is a lousy idea. I don't think anyone wants to hold up the AllStar Game voting process as one to replicate.
I think the following, relatively simple changes could go a long way toward fixing most of the problems:
1. Allow electronic media writers to gain membership in the BBWAA. "Print journalists" are just as much "electronic media" writers as those who they are excluding from their little club. To maintain an antiquated belief that they are somehow more knowledgeable than those writers who don't happen to have their work printed in ink on paper is absurd. How many organizations do you know who go to such lengths to keep new people out of their group? And if the BBWAA won't do this, the HOF should set up their own voter eligibility criteria, apart from BBWAA membership, where knowledgeable writers of print and electronic media outlets are included.
I would not include independent, self-employed electronic media among eligible those eligible to vote. The common blogger shouldn't have a vote no matter how long s/he has been blogging. I don't think it's unreasonable to require that an employer of some kind feels your work covering baseball is of sufficient value to pay you to do it on a regular basis in order to be considered for voting privileges.
2. The 10 year requirement for voter eligibility is fine. But balance that out by having voting privileges end once a writer has gone some period without being employed in a job that requires a significant about of baseball coverage. There is no reason at all that HOF voting should be a lifetime right. I understand that you want some voters who actually saw much, if not all, of the players careers that are on the ballot. A rule of thumb might be, once you've NOT been writing about baseball for as long as you DID write about baseball, your voting credentials are of questionable value.
3. The identities of eligible voters and their ballots are made public, as are the names of eligible voters who did not cast a ballot. Nobody can force anyone to defend their ballot choices, but the need for a "secret ballot" has long been overcome by a need for transparency. Voters hiding behind anonymity so they can stick it to players they don't like or make a "statement" with their ballot is a practice that should no longer be tolerated.
Many voters allow the BBWAA to make their ballots public. Not surprisingly, the vast majority of those ballots are at least defensible. The goofball ballots often seem to come from writers who do not give permission to BBWAA to make their ballots public. I doubt that's a coincidence.
That's it. End the silliness about having voting be the exclusive privilege of "print journalists," limit tenure of voters to a period equal to twice the years they actually held paid positions covering baseball that got them their voting privileges in the first place, and make public all votes (and lack thereof).
Notice I didn't suggest allowing voters to list more than 10 players on their ballot nor that the HOF come up with standards for PED user votes. I see those arguments as being BBWAA voters wanting a convenient way to fix a problem they have caused themselves. Fix the these three things and the other stuff will take care of itself eventually.
But fan voting for the all-star game is a travesty. a) The bigger market teams have more voters, 2) There is no limit to the number of times a fan can vote, III) Players and coaches are smarter voters than fans.
All they need is accountability. Give the Veterans Committee power to decide who gets a vote or not. Open it up to electronic media. Publish the votes on a moderated forum and let the fans have at it. Analyze the results and give it to the Veterans committee in the form of an annual report, helping them weed out the bad eggs.
I also think they should have ranked-choice voting. Especially in years with a glut of good candidates, it makes the most sense. Mike Mussina doesn't deserve it less because he has Glavin and Maddux in his class.
I think the important question is, did the right guys get in? Yes.
Who got one vote, who is boycotting PEDs, who didn't get in unanimously -- this is all noise. The system is working fine.
Six people got in this year (including the three managers) -- this is a lot. Borderline too many, if you ask me.
a. The Fans vote (the Deadspin vote) with the 75% cut off, would have gotten who the writers got in plus Biggio and Piazza. Not Mattingly, not Gagne. I'd argue that there are a lot of people who wonder why Biggio and Piazza were not elected today
b. We all know the BBWAA. There is a little group called the BBA (Baseball Bloggers Alliance; full disclosure: I am part of it) of independent baseball bloggers who every year they vote for the HOF. Here is this year's vote (with a bit of info about previous votes.) Guess what? They voted in exactly who the writers voted in.
That 75% cut-off is very powerful and it is a good check and balance...
My brain cramps every time I think of Mike Piazza not being in the HoF. Seriously. What the @&!$.
Sure, he was a lousy defender. But damn, a career 143 OPS+? I don't care if he wore his mitt on his head. His bat gets him in no matter what.
I'm also not saying that baseball bloggers are incapable or even unlikely to make wise choices with HOF votes. The point is simply that I do believe some baseline of experience doing more than just watching some baseball games and having the interest/ability to set up your own blog is not inappropriate. I don't think professional journalists who cover MLB for a living are a bad choice for entrusting the HOF vote. I just think that someone could do a better job of determining how "professional journalist" is defined in the modern age and in setting up rules for how someone is determined to be a voter.
Based on your "results are about the same" criteria, it's also fair to ask you why you think the current system should be changed at all. Why add the public if you think the public would just have included 2 more guys who will almost certainly get there in the future anyway? Why add bloggers if their votes add so little to the process that the results would have been identical to what actually happened?