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Hall of Fame Poll: Trevor Hoffman

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Would you vote Trevor Hoffman into the Baseball Hall of Fame?

San Francisco Giants v San Diego Padres
Gotta love the leg kick.
Photo by Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images

I’m going to skip Livan Hernandez.

Livan had a very long career, 17 seasons. He finished with a 178-177 and a 4.44 in 519 games, 474 games. He played for 9 teams, including 2 seasons as an Expo. IN 2004, with Montreal, he made 35 starts and threw 255 innings. The next year he threw 246 innings for the Nationals. That was in the middle of a streak of 7 seasons of 200+ innings. In each of his 2 seasons, with the Expos, he led the league in complete games (which might say as much about manager Frank Robinson as it does about Livan).

He made two All-Star teams. He never got a Cy Young vote. He was second in Rookie of the Year voting in 1997 and won a Silver Slugger award (best hitting pitcher) in 2004.

That was the best stretch of his career. If he had been average for the rest of his career, he’d have an argument for the Hall. Unfortunately he wasn’t.

Matt and I went back and forth on whether to do a poll for him, but he’s really not a candidate for the Hall (as much as I was a fan when he was an Expo). He had a long career, with


It is Trevor Hoffman's third time on the Hall of Fame Ballot. He came so so close last year, getting 74% of the vote. Normally that would make him a sure thing this year, but I’m not sure.

Hoffman played 18 seasons, 16 of them with the Padres. He was closer for most of those years.

He pitched in 1035 games, with no starts. Had a 2.87 ERA. In 1089.1 innings, he allowed 307 walks with 1133 strikeouts.

The big number, of course, is the 601 saves, putting him second to Mariano Rivera on the all-time list. He is also 11th in games played as a pitcher.

He made 7 All-Star teams. He got Cy Young votes 4 times, finishing 2nd twice. And he had MVP votes 5 times (yes, he received MVP votes, one year, without getting any Cy Young votes that year. I'd love to hear the explanation for that one).

Baseball Reference has him at 28.0 career WAR.

Hoffman's Hall of Fame candidacy revolves all around that 601 saves. Whatever you think of the saves stat, being second all time is pretty impressive. But then, the only pitcher in the top 10 saves list who is on the list Hall is Dennis Eckersley (who is 6th, but then he has other points in his favor). And three others aren't eligible yet. I'm pretty sure that the number one guy on the list will make the Hall.

I didn't see him pitch all that often, and, unfairly, I always thought he was overrated, likely because I always wrote off the Padres. Dick Hayhurst said good things about him in his books.

To me, there are many more deserving players on this year’s ballot. In the end it depends on what you think of the save stat. If you think getting saves is a special talent, then he should go in. If you think saves are overrated, then he shouldn’t go in.

You can see his career numbers here.

Matt’s chart:

HoffmanHOF

Similar Players: Dan Quisenberry, John Franco, Brandon Webb (not enough seasons to qualify), Bruce Sutter (BBWAA), Mark Eichhorn, Jeff Montgomery.

Poll

Would you vote Trevor Hoffman into the Baseball Hall of Fame?

This poll is closed

  • 70%
    Yes
    (411 votes)
  • 29%
    No
    (168 votes)
579 votes total Vote Now