I’m going to skip a couple of guys who are on the ballot:
Nick Swisher was a pretty good player. He played 12 seasons in the MLB, hitting .249/.351/.447, with 245 home runs in 1527 games. He made one All-Star team, never got MVP votes. I doubt there were many seasons where he was the best player on his team, never mind the league. His best OPS+ number was 129, in 2010. His best season for bWAR was a 4.4. If that is your peak, you need a very long career to get consideration for the Hall. Career numbers are here.
Shane Victorino also played 12 seasons in the MLB. He hit .275/.340/.425 with 108 home runs and 231 steals. He made 2 All-Star teams, won 3 Gold Gloves and received MVP votes 3 time, finishing as high as 13th. His career 102 OPS+ and 31.5 bWAR don’t help his HoF case. His peak was a bit higher than Swisher’s, he had a 6.0 and a 5.5 bWAR seasons, but only 6 seasons of 3 or better. His career numbers are here.
We come to a former Blue Jays player again, Omar Vizquel. It is his fourth time on the ballot. He was on 52.6% of ballots last year. Back when he was a player, I would have never guessed he would get that many votes.
Omar played his last MLB season for us. He was 45 in 2012, and played 60 games in Blue Jays colors, hitting .235/.265/.281 in 163 PA. I have no idea what Alex was thinking with signing him.
Omar played 24 seasons in the MLB. He came up with the Mariners and played 6 seasons with them, then 11 with Cleveland, 4 with the Giants, 1 with the Rangers, 2 with the White Sox, and then the last one with us.
He hit .272/.336/.352 with 404 steals in 2968 games. He made 3 All-Star teams. He got MVP votes once, but his supporters will point to his 11 Gold Gloves as the reason for him to go to the Hall of Fame.
Omar has a 45.3 bWAR. But it is his 28.4 defensive WAR (10th all-time) that we will buy him some votes.
I guess we can pretty positively state that he didn’t take PEDs. Or at least he didn’t gain a bunch of power from them.
The Writers voted other shortstops in because of their defense. Luis Aparicio comes to mind (his stats are here), but then Luis made 13 All-Star teams and was considered the best shortstop of his era. Ozzie Smith was maybe the best defensive player I ever saw (stats here), but he made 15 All-Star teams, and we also thought of him as the best shortstop of his era. I don’t think anyone ever thought of Vizquel that way.
I’m not sure if recent stories on allegations of domestic abuse will cause him to lose votes. Part of his appeal was his ‘good guy’ reputation. It appears it may not have been warranted.
If Baines gets to the Hall, well, I wouldn’t be surprised if Vizquel does, but if it were up to me, I couldn’t put him there. Anyone that plays 24 seasons is a good player. I guess it is up to you if you think he’s a Hall of Famer.
His career stats are here.
Would you vote Omar Vizquel into the Baseball Hall of Fame?
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