Author: Craig Calcaterra

Jim Bunning

Jim Bunning was disgusted by the Veterans Committee vote


Hall of Fame pitcher Jim Bunning was one of the members of the Veterans Committee this past December. The Veterans Committee which selected no players or executives for the Hall of Fame. Bunning opened up about the process to Stan Hochman of the Philadelphia Daily News. Short version: he was disgusted by the process and the result:

“I felt useless,” Bunning seethed the other day, his voice crackling with anger. “It was the most disappointing 3 days I’ve ever spent in my life!” . . .  To me, it was a wasted weekend. We were there to pick someone for the Hall of Fame. We didn’t accomplish anything. OK, maybe Allen and Oliva will be at the top of the list in 3 years when they come up again. But who will be on the committee of voters? What will the rules be? Things have to change!”

His ire is mostly about former teammate Dick Allen not making it and the fact that there were several writers on the committee, one of whom — Phil Pepe — he singled out for submitting a blank ballot back in 1988 when Bunning was up for election and, whom he believes, cost him his election that year. He was also critical of the balance of the committee, noting that there were “two Tigers guys” in Al Kaline and Dave Dombrowski on the committee. Bunning, of course, played for the Tigers too, but obviously feels more like a Phillies guy.

I dunno, it’s Bunning. He’s never been shy to complain about things. Sometimes he’s full of it, sometimes he makes decent points. I see both of those qualities present in his full rant here, which you should go read.

I mean, yes, having a VC in which everyone submits full ballots but by which no players are elected is sort of a structural problem. And the makeup of the committee is always fair game. At the same time, Bunning says he made a sharp argument for Murray Wills, and Wills ain’t exactly the Platonic ideal of a Hall of Famer.

James Shields is expected to sign by the end of the week

James Shields

Fox’s Jon Morosi reports that “James Shields has multiple offers in hand and is expected to sign by the end of this week.” It’s about time. We’re now two weeks from pitchers and catchers reporting so he needs a gig.

No clue who the frontrunner is. Shields has been reported to want to be on the west coast, yet two teams that make a lot of sense for him are the Red Sox and the Yankees. The Cardinals have likewise been reported to be in on Big Game James in the past few days. At one point Miami was thought to be keen on the right-hander, but Shields was thought to be not so keen on Miami. Guess we’ll see by the end of the week.

Shields has started 33 or 34 games for seven straight seasons and has never been injured as a major leaguer.

Gentlemen: start your bidding. Yoan Moncada can now sign a major league deal

cuba hat

Cuban infielder Yoan Moncada has been in regulatory limbo for some time, unable to sign a deal with a big league team due to federal regulations, MLB regulations or both, but now that looks to be over:

Moncada has already worked out with multiple teams, so it may not take long for him to be signed. The Yankees and Red Sox are thought to be favorites. Moncada, 19, is expected to get a deal in the $30-40 million range.