Lou Whitaker leads a strong Modern Baseball Era Hall of Fame Ballot

Getty Images
67 Comments

The Hall of Fame just announced the nominees for this year’s Veterans Committee ballot.

Well, they don’t call it the “Veterans Committee” anymore, but it basically is. For the past several years they’ve gone with an era-system which rotates every year, and this year’s era is the “Modern Baseball” era, covering candidates who made their mark between 1970-1987. Or, at the very least, the biggest part of their mark given that there will always be some overlap. People still call it the “Veterans Committee” though.

The big news: there are multiple candidates on this year’s ballots who REALLY deserve induction!

The full slate: Dwight Evans, Steve Garvey, Tommy John, Don Mattingly, Marvin Miller, Thurman Munson, Dale Murphy, Dave Parker, Ted Simmons and Lou Whitaker.

Over the years we have considered the candidacies of most of these guys in one form or another. We’ll do in-depth posts about all of these guys in the runup to the election results which will be announced during the Winter Meetings in early December, but in the mean time:

  • I’m very much pro-Lou Whitaker, Dwight Evans, Ted Simmons and Marvin Miller;
  • I would take no issue whatsoever with Murphy, Parker and perhaps Munson, though I have gone back and forth on all of their candidacies at various times; and
  • I’m generally not a supporter of Garvey, John and Mattingly, but at least John and Mattingly would be stronger candidates than guys like Harold Baines and Jack Morris, who were previously inducted.

It’s hard to get through the various permutations of the Veterans Committee, however. There are only a handful of voters, the threshold is high and this particular slate of candidates is going to lead to a lot of vote splitting. It’s certainly one of the more intriguing ballots in some time.

Gentlemen: start your arguments.

 

 

Pujols hits 701st career home run, connects for Cardinals

albert pujols
Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images
6 Comments

ST. LOUIS — Cardinals slugger Albert Pujols hit his 701st home run, connecting Friday night against the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Pujols launched a slider from former teammate Johan Oviedo over the Big Mac Land sign in left field at Busch Stadium. The solo drive in the fourth inning made it 1-all.

Pujols faced Oviedo for the first time and made the 24-year-old righty the 456th different pitcher he’s homered against.

The St. Louis star hadn’t homered in a week since hitting No. 699 and 700 at Dodger Stadium last Friday. Pujols had gone 10 at-bats without a home run after two starts and one pinch-hit appearance.

The Busch Stadium crowd gave the 42-year-old Pujols a long standing ovation before he came out of the Cardinals dugout to tip his cap for a curtain call.

Pujols hit his 22nd home run this season for the NL Central champion Cardinals.

Pujols is fourth on the career home run list behind Barry Bonds (762), Hank Aaron (755) and Babe Ruth (714).