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So Deion Sanders is headed to the Hall of Fame ... that's right, the .273 career hitter, sho stole 56 bases over parts of nine MLB seasons learned yetsreday that he'll be inducted this summer into the NFL Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio, and rightfully so.

Which got me to thinkiing -- is he the best MLB vet in the Canton Hall? The only others I could think of are Jim Thorpe (.252 over parts of six seasons) and George Halas (2-for-22 with the 1919 Yankees, the year before they acquired a new RF with a football player's body, fella named Ruth). Deion pretty clearly outpaces both.

That said, is anyone missing from that list? Has anyone in Cooperstown played in the NFL? (I think one umpire did, but players?) And before anyone makes a "Bo knows" crack, Jackson was an All=Star in both leagues, but has not -- and will not -- earn enshrinement in either Hall.

Anyone?

By Mike Green, Bauxite emeritus

The hallmarks of Roy Halladay’s career have been precision, dedication and durability.  2010 was just another great year for him.  It looked superficially like his best year, as he went 21-10 with a 2.44 ERA and 30 walks and 219 strikeouts in 250 innings. It wasn’t really though, as he had moved to the weaker league, and run-scoring was down in both leagues in 2010.  The most important addition to his Hall of Fame portfolio was probably the playoff no-hitter, his second of the season. 

 

Roy Halladay was drafted by the Blue Jays out of high school with their first pick, the 17th overall, in 1995. 

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When we discuss "Hall Watch" candidates here on Batter's Box, we tend to (understandably) focus on the players of today's game who might someday have plaques hanging in Cooperstown.

But what about the skippers, the captains of the ship, the bench jockeys and leaders of those very same players? There are 17 managers currently in the Hall of Fame. Are any active skippers bound to join them there someday?

To my reading, there are currently only eight legitimate candidates to consider ...

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In what seems to be a pretty big shocker, the BBWAA decided that only Andre Dawson was worthy of their approval for 2010.
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Have you ever seen a Hall of Famer play baseball?
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Which eligible broadcaster should be placed on the final ballot for the 2010 Ford C. Frick Award?

Your chance to answer that question is now available ...

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The ballot for the 2010 Hall of Fame class has been released, and debuting on the list this year are former Blue Jay heroes Pat Hentgen, Roberto Alomar and Fred McGriff. (Projection: No chance, first ballot and probably should, but won't be.) David Segui, a Jay for 95 at-bats in 1999, also appears on the ballot for the first time.

Others premerieng on this year's ballot include Edgar Martinez, Barry Larkin and Andres Galarraga, among others. Ballot holdovers include, again among others, Don Mattingly, Jack Morris, Dale Murphy, Dave Parker, Tim Raines, Lee Smith, Alan Trammell and the controversy of Mark McGwire.

(Personally, I'd vote for at least five of those. And you?)

Great question recently from Bauxite Ron: "This just in, Ichiro is a good hitter. On a 0-2 count, he was able to hit a ball out of the strike zone to win the game. Despite being 35, I wouldn't rule out Ichiro getting 3000 hits Stateside. Has he done enough to be a Hall Of Famer?"

My initial reaction was "Oh my God, yes, of course! Why even ask the question?" But on closer look, there is an argument to be made ...

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Second in a six-part series ...

Last week, we examined the "hometown" AL East in terms of who among active players is headed to enshrinement in the Hall of Fame. Now, while staying in the junior circuit, we switch to the left coast to examine the same likelihoods for players on the four teams in MLB's smallest division.

Once again ...
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Every year, we have a discussion/debate/brawl regarding who among active players is headed to enshrinement in the Hall of Fame. This year, we'll break that down into six separate discussions/debates/brawls, divided (logically enough) by division. We'll start with the home of the home nine, the A.L. East.

To be clear -- this is not a prediction or a projection, but just an off-the-top starting point. To that end, each team's Hall possibilities are broken down into five categories ...
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Second base hasn't exactly been a black hole for the Jays recently, but with Orlando Hudson walking the free agent streets these days and Russ Adams designated for assignment, we can step back for a moment -- pivot, as it were -- and look at a couple of guys who once played the position in Toronto, each of whom will (should?) get some Hall of Fame talk going upcoming.

On next year's HOF ballot, ex-Jay (and ex-Met and ex-Indian and others) Roberto Alomar will appear for the first time, In five years, thanks to his recent retirement (just last month), ex-Jay (and ex-Met and ex-Indian and others) Jeff Kent will appear on the ballot for the first time.

So the question put forth to you is simple ...

 

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Entering the 2008 season, there are 96* active players I believe could someday end up enshrined in the Hall of Fame. In fact, probably only a very small percentage of them -- maybe 15-20 -- will actually do so. (*On original publication, this list had 89 names; several have been added after readers pointed out oversights.)

This is simply a prompt for discussion, not a projection. Who's going to get in? Who shouldn't even be on this list? Who's missing?
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What happened?

That's a question asked frequently of a number of players who were, at least in some eyes, seen as "potential Hall of Famers" during their playing days.

Consider -- teammates Doc Gooden and Darryl Strawberry were both mortal locks for Cooperstown once upon a time, but had ... issues. Albert Belle and Carlos Baerga, another pair of teammates, once played at Hall-worthy levels, at least for a time; they had issues, too, though not of the same sort as the vagabond Mets of yore.

Dave Kingman was never really a Hall-worthy player, though he hit home runs like one for a while. Don Mattingly -- nothing wrong with Donnie Baseball, he just plain hasn't been deemed worthy by voters thus far.

So there appear to be five "true outcomes" for those who fell by the HOF wayside ...

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Goose Gossage edged over the 70% mark in the most recent Hall of Fame vote. His election in the next year or two now seems likely. Would he be a good choice?
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In Part 1 last week, I looked at factors that are relevant for the comparison of closers to starters. This week, we'll look at the existing Hall of Fame closers using the adjustments we looked at in Part 1.
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