Let’s skip a couple:
Juan Pierre had a pretty good 14 year career. He hit .295/.343/.361 with 614 steals (caught 203 times). It might just be me, but I think an outfielder should have better than a .704 OPS if he’s going to make the Hall. He had a 17.1 bWAR.
Juan led the league in steals 3 times (led the league in caught stealing 7 times). He did play 5 consecutive seasons of 162 games. And he led the league in hits twice. But he never made an All-Star team. He wasn’t thought of as a great outfielder. I don’t imagine many would vote him into the Hall.
Placido Polanco is a little more interesting.
He played 16 seasons. Hit .297/.343/.397 in 1927 games. He had a 41.5 WAR (clearing the Baines benchmark).
But, early in his career he was a utility infielder. He got more regular playing time late in his career, and won 3 Gold Gloves, all in his 30s, at second base.
He had a some good seasons with the bat. Hit .341/.388/.458 in 2007, at age 31, for the Tigers. Hit over .300 four times. And he learned to get on base more later in his career. He made 2 All-Star teams, won 1 Silver Slugger and got MVP votes twice (finishing 17th and 25th in voting). He had a 6.1 bWAR season and four more seasons with bWARs over 4.
But I’m thinking he’s well short of being worthy
Manny Ramirez was a pretty good hitter....a bit of an understatement. 19 seasons, a .312/.411/.585 line with 555 home runs, 1831 RBI. bWAR of 69.2.
This is his third time on the ballot. He was on 22.0% of the ballots last year. I though his number would jump last year, but it went down a bit.
He made 12 All-Star teams, picked up MVP votes 11 times (finished 3rd twice, and in the top 10 9 times), 9 Silver Slugger awards, won the Hank Aaron award twice and was World Series MVP in 2004. And he finished second in Rookie of the Year voting in 1994, after playing in just 91 games.
And, I know it shouldn’t impress me, but he drove in 165, back in 1999, with Cleveland.
He played 8 seasons with Cleveland, 8 with the Red Sox, 3 with the Dodgers and 1 each with the Rays and White Sox.
Manny played left field (1037 games), right (904) and DH (332). He was pretty terrible defensively.
He also played 111 playoff games, hitting .285/.394/.554 with 29 home runs. He has two World Series rings.
On the negative side, he was suspended for PEDs twice. Players lose votes for rumors of PED use, but with Manny they have proof. For me, it is often a question of if I think the player would have been a Hall of Fame type without the help. Manny is kind of a tough call, but his numbers are pretty terrific. I’m not sure how much to discount them because of the PEDs.
It will be interesting to see how Andy Pettitte’s vote count compares to Manny’s. Both used. Manny had the better WAR (69.4 compared to 60.3). Both were playoff heros (Manny holds the record for most playoff home runs with 29. If Pettitte gets more votes it would be interesting to see how Writers explain it.
Ramirez stats are here.
Most similar careers: Frank Thomas (elected BBWAA), Carlton Fisk (BBWAA), Rod Carew (BBWAA), Luke Appling (BBWAA), Willie McCovey (BBWAA), Ryne Sandberg (BBWAA), Harmon Killebrew (BBWAA), Alan Trammell (Veteran’s Committee), Lou Whitaker, Graig Nettles.
Would you vote Manny Ramirez into the Baseball Hall of Fame?
This poll is closed