Hall Of Fame, Baseball, Baseball Writers Association discussed on Effectively Wild: A FanGraphs Baseball Podcast


That stir last year. But he is lovable in a lot of respects and he does these things on the field that make you think he is a happy go lucky fun guy. And it seems like a lot of his teammates have very nice things to say about him. But presumably not opponents he is punched in. Yeah. Yeah, and it's tricky. I think that we can maybe and we don't know that this was what was at play. I think you can understand the context that might lead someone to behavior like this without excusing it, but it is important to sort of understanding it. And I don't know if you've been DFA, maybe that, you know, shakes you and puts you on your back foot from a mood perspective. But yeah, he can't you can't bunch someone without don't punch people, first of all, we can stop at that. We don't really need to qualify, but if you're going to engage in punching in the baseball context switch, you know, some baseball players seem really motivated to do despite us thinking that it was that it's not the best way to resolve conflict. It's generally best for people to have a sense that you're coming because you can really hurt someone that way. It's good that that doesn't seem to have happened here, but don't cold cock someone, that's bad. All right, so let's get to today's topic. The Hall of Fame ballot was released today Monday and I need some help here because any day now before the end of the month, I will be getting a Hall of Fame ballot in my mailbox for the first time ever. I got the email today, notifying me that my ballot was mailed or was going to be mailed today. I am eligible for the first time. I've been a member of the baseball writers association for ten years now. So my privilege as part of that is that if I want to, I can vote on the Hall of Fame. And my inner 12 year old is pretty pumped about this. Yeah. My outer 34 year old is sort of hoping the ballot gets less in the mail somehow. So I genuinely do not know what to do. And I don't mean that I'm like kind of conflicted, but really I've made up my mind already and I just want someone to endorse my decision. I really have not made a decision and I could use some advice from you from the listeners from anyone who wants to weigh in here. And we talked a little bit about the issues with Hall of Fame voting these days last year, and episode 1640, we had a couple of philosophy professors on to talk to us about the ethics of Hall of Fame voting, but this is really real to me now. And I guess it's a year closer to being real for you. And I'm pretty conflicted here. I don't want to sound super self serious and act as if this is the weightiest moral decision anyone has ever wrestled with because I think baseball writers can be a bit precious about this at times. Not naming any names. But in the grand scheme of things, the Hall of Fame ballot doesn't matter that much. But this is a baseball podcast, so most of what we talk about doesn't matter that much. So I basically picked the worst possible time to enter the voting body. I mean, my timing is the opposite of impeccable here. It's like the Donald Glover in community meme where he walks into the room with the pizza and he's smiling and then the room is on fire. That is me work again with my first ever Hall of Fame ballot in the final year of eligibility for Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens, semi Sosa and Kurt Schilling. The first year of eligibility for Alex Rodriguez and David Ortiz. And of course, you have the lockout potentially contributing to a dearth of other baseball news. So December might just be like Hall of Fame all the time. That will not be the most pleasant discourse. I don't think. So this is basically like I'm the contestant on who wants to be a millionaire who's torn between two answers. And so I'm using a couple of lifelines today. I'm phoning a friend that you and I am asking the audience and I'm not going to necessarily abide by anyone else as a opinion about what I should do here, but I do value anyone else's opinion about what I should do here because this is not necessarily what I envisioned. Yeah. I thought about voting for the Hall of Fame to the extent that I ever thought I would. Like, once I was in the BBW a and I started looking ahead and said, oh, hey, you know, ten years down the road. I could potentially vote for the Hall of Fame. That's kind of cool and I can have a little impact on history here and I can join the rich tradition of baseball writers voting on the Hall of Fame and I care about baseball history. And in theory, it's sort of a fun activity to participate in. But a little less fun now and I know I'm not the only writer who shares that opinion. So basically it's like, you know, I always envisioned that this would be about picking who were the best baseball players. That's kind of always what I thought the Hall of Fame was not the museum portion, which is separate, of course, but the plaque part, the part where we decide is this guy Hall of Famer or not and he gets to have his plaque in the room. That to me was always about, well, were you one of the best baseball players ever, and it was basically only about that more or less. And now it is not only about that. And I don't know whether that's a good thing or a bad thing, but it is definitely different. And so when I was looking ahead to this, I was like, you know, I can be in on the next 11 or Tim raines or Larry walker. You know, I can support those candidates who maybe deserve or support than they get. And I can prevent or help prevent a future snub of an archaeon or a Bobby gricar and Alan Trammell or a Kenny Lofton someone like that. You know, I can cast my righteous vote for the saber metrically supported candidate. And now, well, I guess it would be fun to vote for Scott Roland. But beyond that, almost every legitimate candidate has some sort of controversy associated with them that makes it bigger than just baseball than just the stats. Yeah, just the numbers and just the jaws score. And so it's a different exercise and when that I feel more ambivalent about than they expected that I would. Well, perhaps we can start with a couple of sort of ideological questions that might help you to put some bumpers on this. Because I think that there are a couple of things that as a voter you need to answer for yourself and perhaps first and foremost, well, do you want to do the character stuff now? Or would you like to save it for a second question? Well, it all comes down to the character stuff, I suppose. I guess so. It depends what your other question is. I don't know. Let's start with a question that is relevant both to some returning candidates and also to some of the newcomers. So have you developed your opinion of where performance enhancing drugs factor into your ballot? Well, 'cause I think there are a couple of ways that you can go about this. I have always thought that Jay's approach, Jay jaffe's approach to this is sort of a reasonable one, right? Where he sort of bifurcates the group between those whose association with PEDs was part of what he dubs the wild west period right before there was a collectively bargained policy, the one that we know now that governs enforcement..

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