Thursday, January 10, 2013

All right, who voted for Aaron Sele and Steve Finley?

                                                      No disrespect                                                                   No disrespect

Your three favorite bloggers were absolutely disgusted by yesterday's announcement that NO ONE will be making the Baseball Hall of Fame this year. We have all taken to the Internet to express our displeasure, with Sean outlining a logical Hall of Fame ballot (with which I agree about 90%), and Jon going HAM on the downright gross baseball writers who vote on this thing.

My rage is taking me in a slightly different direction. I want the ballots to stop being anonymous. These ballots should be public. We need to know who has never voted for Tim Raines, and we damn well should know who voted for Aaron GD Sele.

In a previous post, I explained my thinking on what kind of players should be Hall of Famers. I already wrote a piece on Kenny Lofton's candidacy, and I think it's a shame that Lofton didn't even get the 5% of the vote necessary to remain on the ballot.*

This year, to the best of my knowledge, 569 BBWAA members submitted their Hall of Fame ballots. We know how many voters voted for each player, but we do not know which voters voted for whom. The baseball public, including angry early-20s sports bloggers, have the RIGHT, nay, the BIOLOGICAL NEED to know who voted for whom. 339 writers voted for Jeff Bagwell. Who are the other 230 miserable idiots who didn't, so we can denounce them ROUNDLY on this blog? 385 writers voted for fucking Jack Morris. Who are the other 184 so we can set up a fan club for each and every one?

Even more interestingly to me, there were 4 people who voted for Steve Finley, 2 who voted for Shawn Green, and 1 lone writer who voted for Aaron Sele. Are these people serious? WHO ARE THESE PEOPLE?! Where's Ryan Klesko's vote? Where's Jeff Conine's vote? Where's Royce Clayton's vote?

I need to know who voted for these guys. I don't know if I've ever been more curious about anything in my life. What is the thought process behind voting for Aaron Sele, a guy who pitched for 15 years in the Majors and was, by my estimation, as average as they come, maybe even a little below average. I think Randy Wolf has had a better career than Aaron Sele. Aaron Sele? AARON SELE?!

I have an absolute obsession to see this voter's HOF ballot. Voters can vote for up to 10 people. Who was left off this ballot? One can only assume that anyone who has strong suspicions of steroid use (Bonds, Clemens, McGwire, Sosa, Palmeiro, Steve Finley, Rondell White) were left off this voter's ballot. I'd be willing to bet that guys with no evidence of steroid use, but who were muscular in the '90s, were left off the ballot (Bagwell, Piazza, Edgar, McGriff, Larry Walker, Shawn Green, Ryan Klesko). Okay, fine.

Let's say Aaron Sele is this voter's absolute baseline of what a Hall of Famer is. That means the following people should, logically, be left on his ballot:

1. Craig Biggio
2. Tim Raines
3. Lee Smith
4. Curt Schilling
5. Jack Morris
6. Alan Trammel
7. Dale Murphy
8. Don Mattingly
9. Bernie Williams
10. Kenny Lofton
11. Julio Franco
12. David Wells
13. Woody Wiliams
14. Jeff Cirillo
15. Reggie Sanders
16. Aaron Sele

That's more than 10. Even excluding a bunch of players for completely illogical reasons, Aaron Sele is the 16th-best player that this voter could possibly have voted for. I must see his (or her?) ballot. I MUST. I want to interview this person and see the reasoning behind this ballot that includes Aaron Sele.

Also, let's consider the 4 votes for Steve Finley. Steve Finley was a fine player, but obviously not deserving of the Hall of Fame. Interestingly enough, however, Steve Finley is implicated in steroid use (Creatine to be precise). So if that doesn't bother this voter, then his ballot must look like this:

1. Barry Bonds
2. Roger Clemens
3. Jeff Bagwell
4. Curt Schilling
5. Larry Walker
6. Alan Trammell
7. Tim Raines
8. Rafael Palmeiro
9. Kenny Lofton
10. Edgar Martinez
11. Craig Biggio
12. Mark McGwire
13. Mike Piazza
14. Sammy Sosa
15. David Wells
16. Fred McGriff
17. Bernie Williams
18. Dale Murphy
19. Steve Finley

This is absolutely hilarious to me.

This is my newest crusade. I need to find out who, in the year in which no one was elected to the Hall of Fame, voted for Aaron Sele and Steve Finley. And when I find out, I'll do everything in my power to JAIL THEM.

*To summarize, I think a simple way to boil down my definition of "Hall of Famer" (for position players...pitchers are too complicated to boil down) is looking through the lens of WAR. If you have over 67 WAR for your career, there's about a 75% chance that I think you should be a HOFer. If you have over 70 WAR, there's about a 95% chance that I think you should be a HOFer (the reason it's not 100% is because WAR is not a perfect stat). That's not to say that anyone with fewer WAR should be kept out (Ichiro has 55.8 WAR so far, and he's a perfect case of someone who doesn't meet the WAR requirements but belongs). It just means that almost no one with higher WAR should be kept out.

This means that, by my definition of Hall of Famer, the following people should have made the Hall of Fame (I'll even take out those with any evidence of steroid use): Craig Biggio, Jeff Bagwell, Mike Piazza, Tim Raines, Curt Schilling, Edgar Martinez, Alan Trammell, and Kenny Lofton.


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  2. I'm dying to know what Claud wrote here. DYING TO KNOW.