. . . know that, as of this writing, 29% of the fans in this ESPN poll would not vote for Greg Maddux this year. And 47% wouldn’t vote for Tom Glavine:
I saw some BBWAA members tweeting this around as evidence that maybe they don’t do so bad after all. And I suppose, on the whole, they don’t do this bad. But I do blame them for inserting the “but he’s not a first-ballot guy” into the minds of people. It’s a distinction that is utterly meaningless in the actual Hall of Fame, but for some reason it has been written about for years as some sort of special honor reserved for only an elite few.
Of course, Maddux is a member of any baseball elite you can think of, so I’m not sure why he gets this treatment. But that’s why I’ve always said: democracy is for suckers.
Free agent right-hander Chris Tillman is narrowing his pool of potential suitors, per Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports. Returning to the Orioles is one option, of course, but Heyman also mentions another two undisclosed teams who are still in the running. An earlier report from Eduardo Encina of the Baltimore Sun suggests that as many as four teams may be in the mix; either way, a final decision is expected by Monday.
Tillman, 29, has spent the entirety of his major league career in Baltimore. After posting career-high numbers in 2016, his progress was derailed during an injury-plagued 2017 campaign, during which he missed nearly six weeks on the disabled list with recurring right shoulder inflammation. He finished the season with a bloated 7.84 ERA, 2.3 BB/9 and 4.9 SO/9 over 93 innings.
While the mystery teams have yet to reveal themselves, the Blue Jays, Twins and Tigers have all expressed interest in the veteran right-hander this offseason. Both the Blue Jays and Twins have made big moves to bolster their rotations over the last few days, with the additions of Jaime Garcia and Jake Odorizzi, respectively. That doesn’t mean that Tillman is out of reach, however — if his price is right, he could provide some much-needed depth for pitching staffs that finished 15th and 22nd in the league last year.