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Hall of Fame Polls: Abreu, Bonds: The polls work now

Toronto Blue Jays vs San Francisco Giants - June 12, 2007 Photo by John Medina/WireImage

We have been doing Hall of Fame polls for years. We did one player per post in the past, but then SB’s story editor only allowed one vote per post. Now we can do multiple polls in a piece, so let’s do it, two guys, at a time this year, at least for the guys that have been on the ballot before.

All things going well, we should get through them before the end of the month. Unless the team makes a lot of news over the next three weeks. For some reason I’m picturing laughter here.

I’m going to skip guys on the ballot but who I don’t think anyone would think should be in the Hall.

Today we will do two.

Bobby Abreu is on the ballot for the second time. The first time on the ballot 5.5% of the BBWAA put him on their ballots, which just cleared the 5% hurdle to stay on the ballot. There have been times when players start in the single digits and gain votes over the years to make the Hall.

Abreu was a much better player than I thought.

Abreu had a very good 18-year career. In total, he hit .291/.395/.475 with 288 home runs and 400 steals (that surprises me) in 2425 games. The significant number, to me, is the 1476 walks (good for 20th all-time). He took over 100 walks in 8 straight seasons. He had OBPs above .400 in 9 seasons. I’d love the Jays to have a player who could get on base like that.

Bobby received MVP votes in 7 seasons (though his high mark was 14th. He had one Gold Glove, made 2 All-Star teams, and one Silver Slugger. Career he had a 60 bWAR.

He doesn’t have the single stat that writers like to use to point to when voting. He doesn’t have 500 home runs, he doesn’t have 3000 hits (but then 2470 hits isn’t bad), but he did everything well. His career had a high peak, but he also had a long stretch of being useful after the peak.

He is the type of player I would love to have on my team. Not many thought of him as a Hall of Fame player during his career, but he was a very good player. In some ways, he is like Scott Rolen, a player who is good at everything.

You can see his career numbers here.


Would you vote Bobby Abreu in to the Baseball Hall of Fame?

This poll is closed

  • 23%
    (56 votes)
  • 76%
    (185 votes)
241 votes total Vote Now

Barry Bonds is on the ballot for the 9th time, so this is his second last chance. He received 60.7% of the vote last year.

There isn’t any doubt that Bonds used PEDs. My feeling is that if I think a player would have made the Hall without PEDs, then I don’t care if he used. In Bond’s case, he was going to be Hall-worthy even without the PEDs, in my opinion. He was the NL MVP in 1990, before when most of us think he started juicing. To me, he was the best player in baseball ever before his head got so big it started getting its gravitational pull.

You all know the numbers. He won the MVP award 7 times (and likely should have won it more), made 14 All-Star teams, and has 8 Gold Gloves. Baseball Reference has him number 2 in WAR, among position players in baseball history, at 158.1. He only trails Babe Ruth. He’s the all-time leader in home runs (762), walks (2558), and intentional walks (688).

And he used steroids. And he was (is) a jerk. Not that we don’t have a lot of jerks in the Hall of Fame. If there was a jerk quotient (some way of quantify jerkiness), let’s face it, Ty Cobb and several others would have 10 times the number Bonds’ number.

I have a hard time with writers being holy than thou over steroids when they ignored the problem back in the day. And, let’s face it, we all cheered when they were hitting home runs. I think Bonds would have Hall of Fame numbers even if he didn’t use. Ignoring one of the top 2 or 3 players in baseball history seems stupid for the Hall to do.

You can take a look at his numbers here.


Would you vote Barry Bonds into the Baseball Hall of Fame?

This poll is closed

  • 68%
    (217 votes)
  • 31%
    (101 votes)
318 votes total Vote Now