December 31, 2015

2016 Hall of Fame ballot

In my previous Hall of Fame posts, I have covered former Red Sox on this year's ballots, as well as Canadians.  Those posts covered 14 of the 32 players on this year's ballot. This post will cover the remaining players and reveal my ten player ballot.

Of the remaining players, I would cast a vote for:

Alan Trammell
Barry Bonds
Ken Griffey Jr.
Trevor Hoffman (can't not vote for him, after making the case for Lee Smith and Billy Wagner)

No need to justify Bonds and Junior.  As for Trammell,comparing him to other shorstops he should be in. He has a higher JAWS than some Jeter guy and essentially the same WAR as Barry Larkin. He was overshadowed by Ripken during his career so may not have gotten as much recognition as he deserved, even being robbed of a well earned 1987 MVP. Alas, by the time the voters recognized the extent of his full accomplishments the ballots were too crowded and there was no room for him.

December 24, 2015

Hall of Fame - Canadian related players

Now that I’ve covered the former Red Sox players on the Hall of Fame ballot, time to look at players of interest to Canadians.  This includes both players born here, as well as those who played here. As I did in my previous post, I will just look at each player on his own merits to see if he deserves induction, and ignore the ten vote per ballot limit for now.

The players who I will cover today (in order of years on ballot) are:

Tim Raines (9th season, 55% votes last year)
Fred McGriff (7th, 13%)
Edgar Martinez (7th, 27%)
Larry Walker (6th, 12%)
Roger Clemens (4th, 37%)
Jeff Kent (3, 14%)
Mark Grudzielanek (1st year)
Troy Glaus (1st)

December 23, 2015

Happy Festivus! The Airing of Grievances

Those of you who know me, know how I feel about xmas (not spelling it out and keeping it lowercase should give you a clue - Bah, Effing, Humbug!).

The only good thing is that it's close to Festivus and its tradional airing of grievances.  I rant a lot throughout the year, here, on twitter, and on my blog dedicated solely to rants, and this day is specially made for it, so without furter ado, here is my top 10 list of baseball related grievances:

December 22, 2015

Hall of Fame time - former Red Sox

Who will be the next Red Sox player I'll see in Cooperstown?
That time of year again.  My BBA ballot will be due by New Year's Eve. As in previous years I will start with a post analyzing former Red Sox on the ballot with a detailed explanation for why I will or will not be voting for them. Then I will repeat this exercise with Canadians or those who have played North of the border.  And finally, probably just hours before I partake in this age-old tradition of getting drunk because the earth succesfully spun around the sun another time without deviating course, I will post my ballot which will include the aforementioned Red Sox and Canadian players as well as any others.

There are 32 players on this year's ballot, including seven players who payed in the Boston organization at some point in their career.  These players who I will cover today (in order of years on ballot) are:

Lee Smith (14th season, 30% votes last year)
Jeff Bagwell (6th, 56%)
Curt Schilling (4th, 39%)
Roger Clemens (4th, 37%)
Nomar Garciaparra (2nd, 5%)
Mike Lowell (1st year on ballot)
Billy Wagner (1st year)

December 06, 2015

The Price i$ Right! Or is it?

AP Photo/Winslow Townson
David Price recently signed a $217 million / 7 year contract.  There's an opt out after three years, and it's slightly back loaded, but to keep things simple let's just call it $31 million per year.

Two types of people complained about the contract: First there were the many baseball fans that thought it was too much relative to what other comparable players might have cost and/or it may hinder the Red Sox potential expenditures in future years. Maybe. But this group would have thought it was a great deal if it was say three years for only $60 Million.

The second group of grumblers were those that saw the headlines and remembered the outrageous sums of money that athletes are paid, and would protest whether he was being paid $31 million or $20 million per year. Their argument goes something like this: The purpose of  atheletes is to provide entertainment for fans. Surely policemen, teachers,medical professionals etc. are much more valuable members of society and should be compensated commensurate with that value. If a firefighter only makes $60,000 per year, a baseball player should not make more! Admittedly this may be an extreme characterization of this group, but an accurate depiction is that they would reluctantly be satisfied if top athletes earned "only" $5 to $10 million but anything more than that is just pure greed.

So, would society as a whole be better served - or to word it differently - would it be more 'fair' if baseball's top salaries were in the $10 million range, rather than the current situation where there are over 100 players making more than that, including 10 over $25 million?  To see why the answer is "probably not", read my rant over at my non-baseball blog.