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Bless You Boys votes Lou Whitaker into the Hall of Fame for 14th straight year, elects other Hall of Famers too

Okay, we haven’t actually voted on this every year but I’m sure our staff would agree.

Lou Whitaker

The Baseball Writers Association of America (BBWAA) will soon release the results of their 2019 Baseball Hall of Fame ballot. While the actual results of the ballot are rarely in doubt thanks to the excellent work of Ryan Thibodaux, there are still enough private ballots to create an air of mystery for when the full results are made public.

Here at Bless You Boys, we try to put together our own Hall of Fame vote every year. Unfortunately, that vote always gets sidetracked by the fact that former Detroit Tigers second baseman Lou Whitaker is not in the Hall of Fame. It is a topic we have written about extensively, and one that we take as seriously as Jonah Keri’s affinity for eventual Hall of Famer Tim Raines.

So while our “official” ballot is below, recognize that we would trade all of these fake votes for even one real one for Sweet Lou, who is one thousand percent deserving of induction into the Hall of Fame. Whitaker’s 75.1 career rWAR tops all but five of the 20 second basemen that have been inducted into the Hall. Six of the top 10 players he compares to on Baseball Reference are also in the Hall, and one (Jimmy Rollins) is not yet eligible for induction. Whitaker’s JAWS score also compares favorably to the average Hall of Fame second baseman.

But yeah, onto the ballot.

Bless You Boys 2019 Hall of Fame Ballot

Writer Player 1 Player 2 Player 3 Player 4 Player 5 Player 6 Player 7 Player 8 Player 9 Player 10
Writer Player 1 Player 2 Player 3 Player 4 Player 5 Player 6 Player 7 Player 8 Player 9 Player 10
Patrick Barry Bonds Roger Clemens Edgar Martinez Mike Mussina Mariano Rivera Curt Schilling
Brandon Bonds Clemens Andruw Jones Roy Halladay Martinez Fred McGriff Manny Ramirez Rivera Scott Rolen Larry Walker
John Bonds Clemens Halladay Martinez Mussina Ramirez Rivera Rolen Sammy Sosa Walker
Zane Bonds Clemens Halladay Jones Martinez Mussina Rivera Rolen Schilling Walker
Ashley Bonds Clemens Halladay Martinez McGriff Mussina Ramirez Rivera Rolen Walker
Chris Bonds Clemens Halladay Todd Helton Martinez McGriff Mussina Rivera Rolen Walker
Peter Bonds Clemens Halladay Jones Martinez Mussina Rivera Rolen Schilling Walker
Rob Bonds Clemens Halladay Martinez Mussina Ramirez Rivera Rolen Schilling Walker

Of the 14 players that received votes, eight (!) garnered enough votes to eclipse the 75 percent threshold players need to be inducted into the Hall of Fame. Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens, Edgar Martinez, and Mariano Rivera were unanimous selections, while Roy Halladay, Mike Mussina, Scott Rolen, and Larry Walker received seven of eight possible votes.

Bonds and Clemens are obvious Hall of Famers that stand head and shoulders above the rest of the candidates on this year’s ballot. Both players are receiving more support as the years go on, but neither is particularly close to being inducted because of their previous links to steroids and performance enhancing drugs. Bonds’ 162.8 rWAR is fourth all-time, sitting behind only Babe Ruth, Cy Young, and Walter Johnson. Clemens is eighth on the list with 139.6 WAR. Only Willie Mays, Ty Cobb, Hank Aaron, and the five players mentioned above have more WAR in MLB history.

Rivera and Halladay are locks to make the Hall of Fame this year. Rivera has received all of the 165 publicly released votes so far, and could potentially be the first unanimous inductee in baseball history. Halladay has received 155 of 165 votes, a 93.9 percent rate. He only needs 62.3 percent of the remaining vote to be inducted in his first year on the ballot; he should easily meet that threshold. Edgar Martinez is another likely inductee that can probably be lumped in with Rivera and Halladay. It is Martinez’s 10th and final season on the ballot, and he has received 90.9 percent of votes so far. He only needs 64.4 percent of the remaining vote, but he could still miss out; Martinez only earned 52.4 percent of the vote on private ballots in 2018.

Mussina’s case for induction is solid, but his actual chances of being enshrined this year aren’t as good as the three players mentioned above. He has received 81.8 percent of the vote so far, and still needs another 70.4 percent of the remaining votes. However, he did not even receive 50 percent support on private ballots last year, and the ballot has only gotten more crowded.

Our other inductees don’t stand much of a chance of being voted into the Hall of Fame this year, unfortunately. Larry Walker has earned a respectable 66.1 percent of the vote thus far, but still needs 81 percent of the remaining vote. His candidacy has seen a huge jump compared to 2018, but he only received 23.8 percent of the vote on private ballots last year. Curt Schilling is also within striking distance, at 72.7 percent of the current vote, but he too was hurt on private ballots last year. One stat worth repeating: every player who has ever received at least 70 percent of the vote has eventually been inducted into the Hall.

Scott Rolen is the final inductee on our ballot. Unfortunately, he is not likely to make it into the actual Hall of Fame. He has only received 20.6 percent of the vote this year. That is a nice jump from the 12-ish percent he received last year, but not even remotely close to enough to warrant serious consideration for enshrinement.