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Based on an analysis of Hall of Fame voting between 1967 and 2011, I found that the increase in a player’s vote total is typically proportional to his percentage from the previous year. In his second year on the ballot, for example, the typical player’s vote share increases by a multiple of about 1.1.
Thus, a player who received 10 percent of the vote in his first year would be expected to receive about 11 percent on his second try, while a player who got 50 percent of the vote would go up to 55 percent.
The pace of improvement is typically highest in the first several years that a player spends on the ballot, slowing down once he has been eligible five or six times. (The exception is in a player’s 15 and final year of eligibility, when he may receive a fairly large boost.)
Piazza had a very strong debut, and Bagwell made a little progress despite the deluge.
Bagwell debuted at right around where Piazza did -- 56% for Bagwell, 57.8% for Piazza -- and yet Bagwell increased only to 59.6%.
Bagwell actually debuted in 2011 with 41%,
When they started in 1936, they had 50+ years of players to choose from, so only slam dunks got in on the first ballot. Perfectly deserving HoFers had to build gradually as the creme-de-la-creme got in. That tradition has simply persisted.
the odd tendency to have votes gradually build over time (which I've never fully grasped as a phenomenon).
Hall of Fame voting is ultimately designed to be a consensus process. One reason that players tend to gain votes over time is because the writers are looking at what their peers are doing and value the endorsements of their colleagues. Moreover, because they have as many as 15 chances to elect a player, many writers tend toward conservatism initially.
Any writer who throws a feel good vote to Shannon Stewart or even Luis Gonzalez or maybe even Jeff Kent should be tried for treason.
I just took another look at his career per b-r. I support him. Wasn't particularly healthy, but managed a 2200-game career, including 2,000 games at 2B. Very nice peak, and excellent offense at the position: a 123 career OPS+, with highs of 162, 147, 142, 133, 131. He takes a hit according to b-WAR on defense.
What struck me though in reviewing his career line was that he was hitting well for a 2B even outside of his peak. Never really had a bad year with the bat. Bulk/average value helps build a HOF case for me.
His b-WAR is relatively low because of the defense - just 51 b-WAR - but I use WAR as one part of my inquiry, not as the be-all, end-all. So I support him. I suppose my mind could be changed; one could make some hay arguing against him with defense and durability.
Had absolutely no recollection of him finishing his career with two years for the Astros and four years for the Dodgers.
The other is to dump other pretty hopeless cases like Palmeiro, Sosa, Mac, Walker and McGriff.
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