Jim & Bob's Palatial Baseball Blog

Thursday, January 10, 2008

The Hell With It, Part II

Just a quick follow-up on Jim's post below...

Like Jim, I've come to the realization that the results of the Hall of Fame voting (much like the results of the post-season award voting) aren't worth the bother getting upset about.

I used to be quite passionate in my arguments, railing over the injustice of leaving Obviously Qualified Candidate A out of the Hall while, at the same time, Obviously Unqualfieid Candidate B gets a plaque in Cooperstown.

But now I'm older, and perhaps the additional gray hairs have allowed some wisdom to seep through my thick skull. Sure, I'll be disappointed if Santo and Raines and Blyleven never get in the Hall. But I shan't lose any sleep over it.

I'm not interested in arguing about it anymore. I don't mind the conversations -- you know, where I say, "I think Blyleven should be in the Hall because of X, Y, and Z" and then you say, "Really? I disagree because of Q, R, and S." Or maybe you agree, which would be nice, too.

But the only way we can get to that point is if we're both interested in having a conversation. A conversation is not "You fool! This guy's a Hall of Famer! I know what a Hall of Famer is, and this guy is all of that!"

That's just shouting. I'm too old and tired for that nonsense.

And then there's this special nonsense, courtesy of the Tribune's Mike Downey. Jeebus only knows why the editors at the Tower keep waving crap like this into print:

How do you justify to people why Goose Gossage and Bruce Sutter are in Cooperstown, with their humble stats, whereas Lee Smith is not and Clemens with his colossal 354 victories might never be?

How do you point out to the public—or, for that matter, to the voters—that Baines stands 40th on the all-time hits list? That he had seven fewer hits than Babe Ruth?

Couldn't they contend that Bill Buckner's 2,715 hits also are more than the likes of Ted and Billy Williams had, more than Reggie and Mickey, more than Fox and Foxx, more than Mr. Cub and Joe D and Yogi and the Duke? But that by no stretch of your imagination would Billy Buck strike you as worthy of the Hall?

How do you argue with Ron Santo's rabid supporters that, good as he was, he ranks tied for 140th place in hits, 80th in home runs, 82nd in RBIs and that his .277 lifetime average was not exactly the stuff of legends?

Downey pretends he's having a conversation, but he's not. He's throwing numbers around, but there's no real reasons behind the numbers -- Downey's just pulling things out of the Cupboard of His Love to shout all the louder just why Baines and Buckner and Big Lee are Hall of Famers.

This kind of rubbish is, sadly, what passes more and more for the Hall of Fame "debate." And it just doesn't interest me anymore. Oh, I'll probably still throw my ballot out there every January. But I've given up hope that the BBTAA will stop their collective shouting long enough to give their votes the thought they deserve.

Labels: , ,


Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home