• Ryan Costello

Derek Jeter and Larry Walker Inducted into the Hall of Fame..but Who's Missing?

Updated: Apr 15, 2020

The inductees address the media. Photo courtesy of baseball hall.org

Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past few months, you’ve probably heard Derek Jeter was inducted into the Hall of Fame with Rockies legend, Larry Walker.

Jeter rounds the bases after his walk-off home run in Game 4 of the 2001 World Series

For those who were born a month ago, Derek Jeter is arguably the best shortstop in the history of the MLB. Throughout his time as a New York Yankee, Jeter put up unreal numbers and had several memorable moments in his lengthy career. Jeter, nicknamed “The Captain”, helped lead his team to four World Series wins, including a three-peat from 1998 to 2000.

Jeter played the 29th most games of any player in baseball history, an underrated stat in my opinion. He also finished his career with a hefty stat line. Derek Jeter had a career 72.4 WAR, 3,465 hits, 260 homeruns, a .310 batting average, 1,923 runs scored, 1,311 RBIs, and a career OBP of .377; pretty nuts.

The man also carries several accolades under his belt. Along with his five World Series appearances, Jeter was the 1996 Rookie of the Year, a 14-time all-star, five time Gold Glove winner, five time Silver Slugger, three time MVP finalist, 2000 World Series MVP, 2000 all-star game MVP, and the only man in baseball to have the nickname “Mr. November”.

The other BBWAA inductee goes by the name of Larry Walker. Larry Walker spent most of his career as a right fielder/first baseman for the Montreal Expos and Colorado Rockies. Walker not only finished his career with crazy numbers including 2,160 hits, 383 home runs, .313 batting average, 1,311 RBIs, .400 OBP, a .535 SLG, and a 72.7 WAR.

Walker also has several accolades under his belt too. Those accolades include the 1997 MVP award, five all-star game appearances, three silver slugger awards, seven gold gloves, and three batting titles.

My favorite stats about Larry Walker’s career occured in the 1997 and 1999 seasons. In 97’, Walker had an insane .720 SLG, which led the majors, along with 49 home runs that season, which led the National League. In 99’, Walker had some unreal stats and only finished 10th in MVP voting. The stats include a .379 batting average, .458 OBP, .710 SLG, and a 1.168 OPS; which led all of the major league in each category.

Image courtesy of the denverpost.com

2020 was not only the year Larry Walker got inducted into the Hall of Fame, but it was also his 15th and final year on the ballot.

The biggest headline not about the induction of the players: Derek Jeter not getting in unanimously. Now you may be wondering, “100% of voters didn’t vote for Jeter, surely it must’ve been around 90%?!” Unfortunately, Jeter was only one measly vote from being the second player to be voted into the hall of fame unanimously; and don’t call me Shirley.

Jeter only got 99.7%. Pause for a second, reread that. Yes, 99.7% of the vote, one vote away, 0.3% away from perfection. As a Red Sox fan, I absolutely love it. Seeing all those Yankees fans bitch and whine about Jeter and disrespecting “The Captain” is awesome. On the other hand, as a fan of baseball, who the fuck doesn’t give Jeter that last vote?

While on the topic of players not getting votes, I’m still looking at the three dickheads who didn’t vote for Ken Griffey Jr. in 2016, who doesn’t give one of the best players of all-time 100% votes. He was put on the MLB all-century team at age 30, still ten years away from finishing his career Back to this year’s induction though.

Ted Simmons and Marvin Miller were inducted into the Hall of Fame as the inductees from the veterans committee. Simmons spent most of his career as a member of the St. Louis Cardinals. He played from 1968 to 1988, and had career numbers of 2,472 hits, a 50.3 WAR, .285 batting average, and 1,389 RBIs. He was also a one time silver slugger and an eight time all-star.

Marvin Miller was voted as pioneer/executive. Miller was the former head of the Major League Baseball Players Association from 1966 to 1982. He was the MLBPA’s first full time representative, and during his tenure helped increase the minimum salary for players from $10,000 to $241,497 by 1982.

Image courtesy of time.com

Altogether, the Hall of Fame has a great induction class coming to Cooperstown in 2020, but I believe they may have missed a few players this year. One of those players goes by the name of Curt Schilling. Curt Schilling was not only a great pitcher throughout his career, but one of the most clutch starters in the history of the postseason.

His most memorable moment wasn’t helping the Arizona Diamondbacks stop the Yankees in the 2001 World Series, but his bloody sock game from the 2004 ALCS. His performance in the midst of the Yankees blowing a three to nothing lead in the American League Championship Series, in the year of our Lord 2004, perfectly defines who Curt Schilling is as a pitcher. He’s a fighter, and will do anything to help his team win.

Curt Schilling had 216 wins, 3,116 strikeouts, a 79.5 WAR, 3.46 ERA, three-time MVP finalist, six-time all-star, and three-time World Series champion. Also in the latest hall of fame voting results, Schilling’s voting

percentage moved up to 70%. Meaning he will most likely be voted into the hall of fame next year.

The iconic Curt Schilling bloody sock game from 2004 ALCS

I’d also like to add that Curt Schilling should’ve been voted in years ago, but the things he’s said and tweeted off the field have kept him out, which is pretty bullshit, seeing that his comments haven’t affected his performance in any way. To make a long story short, let's keep it about baseball.

Another player that I think should’ve been inducted into the Hall this year goes by the name of Todd Helton. Todd Helton is another Rockies legend who went through his second year on the ballot this past winter, and I believe it should’ve been his final year.

Todd Helton has put up ridiculous numbers throughout his whole career, and some argue him not getting in two years in a row is due to his entire career being played in Colorado. Helton was a beast for the Rockies, he had 2,519 hits, 369 (nice) homeruns, a .316 batting average, 1401 runs, 1401 RBIs, a .414 OBP, a 61.2 WAR, and a .513 SLG. I’m also biased because I love watching Todd Helton highlights.

Helton was a five-time all-star, three-time gold glove, four-time silver slugger, and won a batting title. Another interesting fact, Todd Helton has finished top-20 in MVP voting six times. He also led all of the majors in batting average, RBIs and slugging percentage in 2000. Those numbers look like .372 BA, .698 SLG and 147 RBIs.

Image courtesy of denverpost.com

Todd Helton’s future looks bright for the hall of fame because in his two years on the ballot his voting percentage has gone from 16.5% in 2019 to 29.2% in 2020.

My honorable mention is Omar Vizquel. I believe he could still be playing today and he has the best hands in the history of baseball. Vizquel also has over 2,800 hits in his career.

Paul Konerko watches as he launches a grand slam in Game 2 of the 2005 World Series. (dallasnews.com)

I’m also pretty sad to see Paul Konerko fall off the ballot, he had a great career as well. I believe hits 2,340 hits, 439 home runs and 1,412 RBIs are worth a second year on the ballot at least! It’s mind boggling. I also believe the voters have to take into consideration what he did for the Chicago White Sox in 2005 too.

Both Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens saw their voting percentage increase, but yet again they didn’t get in.

I’m confused, the baseball writers who submit these votes for the Hall of Fame ballot need to make up their minds. They won’t vote in two of the best players to ever grace the game of baseball because of their use of steroids, but will vote in players like Mike Piazza and Ivan Rodrieguez. Piazza and Pudge have both admitted to using PEDs at one point in their career. Mike Piazza, some might say, “oh they didn’t help him that much”, but he said he used them early in his career. Mike Piazza finished top-10 in MVP five straight seasons early in his career, so please explain to me how that could be different than mashing 70 home runs in a season.

Image courtesy of blacksportsonline.com

I personally am opposed to players who used steroids heavily in their career to make the Hall of Fame. If it’s a guy who used them for a season or two, and the seasons were bad, I couldn’t care less; but winning four straight MVP awards because of steroids is fucked up.

All I’m saying is the Hall needs to make a stance, and if you’re going to allow juiced up freaks of nature in the hall of fame will you at least lift the ban on Pete Rose. Just put Pete Rose in the Hall of Fame already, he's the best hitter ever.

In the end congrats to Jeets and Larry Walker on being the face of baseball, and having two incredible careers.

P.S. I’m sorry this is late. I started writing this in January and then school and the Mookie Betts story got in the way.

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