Friday, July 28, 2006

Baseball Heaven

Ok, so the hall of fame isn't baseball heaven. Players don't go the the hall of fame to die, but they are dying to get into the hall of fame. I've been very blessed to be a baseball fan my whole life and can just tell who a hall of famer is going to be most of the time. Right now there are several players who are nearing the end of their careers that will be shoe-in's for the hall. I think the biggest decision on some of these is how many to put into the hall in the same year.

Here's my list of current players that are hall of fame guaranteed pitchers
1. Roger Clemens - 340+ wins and number two all time in Strike outs. Several
3. Greg Maddux - With 318 wins already and having just turned 40, he could end up with close to 360 if he wants to.
3. Tom Glavine - Another pitcher that could get his 300th win next year.
4. Randy Johnson - If he keeps at it, then next year he might get his 300th win. I still think that 300 is the magic hall of fame entry number. Pitchers with less can get in, but if you have the 300th win, you're a lock.
5. Pedro Martinez - I'm not personally a fan of his attitude, but he wins a lot and strikes out more. He's one of the most feared strike out pitchers that I've seen and he can shut down any team.

Feel good pick
John Smoltz - He doesn't quite have the numbers that make him jump out as the best, but with 170 wins and 150 Saves, and 2500 stirkeouts he's really impressive. He's been the backbone of the Braves pitching for all 14 of their division titles. I thihnk if he gets to 200 wins and 3000 strikeouts then he'll get in, but he's already getting worn out and I'm not sure he'll make it there.

Guaranteed non-pitchers
1. Barry Bonds - He's going to get the all-time HR record, and most likely pass 3000 hits as well as he's got the most walks ever. Plus he's the only 500 HR and 500 SB guy ever, and may be the only one for the next 15 years at least.
2. Ken Griffey Jr. - Most likely he'll end up with more than 600 HR putting him 5th all time. He'll probably also end up close to 3,000 hits. For years he was one of the most feared hitters in baseball, and he's got so many gold gloves in Center field (an incredibly hard position to play) that he's locked.
3. Frank Thomas - Yes, I keep mentioning awesome HR guys, but Frank is more than that. He's a Career .305 hitter and has led the league in walks so many times that he's in the top 5 all-time in walks. Most of his walks are earned by being patient while pitchers try to avoid his mighty HR power, he does not have a lot of intentional walks.
4. Craig Biggio - He'll cross the magic 3,000 hit mark. More importantly he's 12th all time in doubles and has 407 stolen bases which has helped to put him at 24th all time in Runs scored. Maybe he's not been a feared hitter, but he's definitely hall of fame worthy

There are several more younger players that are most-likely going to make it, but they are not close enough to retirement that I wanted to say they are guaranteed.
Probables:
Jim Thome, Manny Ramirez, Derek Jeter, Alex Rodriquez, Ivan Rodriquez, Nomar Garciapara, Ichiro Suzuki, Jeff Kent, Mike Piazza, Carlos Delgado, and Bernie Williams

There will be more than these that make the hall of fame, I'm sure that a closer or two will make it, although I just couldn't bring myself to vote for a guy who pitches an average of 1 inning a game. I'm still a fan of the starter.