You can’t just ask the Hall of Fame what they value in their enshrinees. Or can you?
Here’s a pair of word clouds (hat tip: Tag Cloud) of all batter and all pitcher Hall of Fame plaques. Click ’em to embiggen. Three notes:
- I standardized the language because the plaques same the same things different ways
- I abbreviated for space: putouts (PO), Assists (As), Total Chances (TC), Total Bases (TB) among the less obvious stats
- All franchises noted by their most recent team nickname
Chicks dig the long ball, but the Coop falls for batting average (AVG). It also loves players who lead the league a lot, who set records, and who rack up a mess of career hits and homers. MVPs are highly valued. There’s a greater balance than I’d expected between season and career accomplishments—especially because HOF discussions usually center on career accomplishments.
Also also: managing? Huh.
It’s all about the winzzzzz, baby! Ks and ERA are kinda groovy to the Hall, too, and winning the Cy Young Award makes you part of the cool kids club.
Funny that career losses comes up, but that’s an artifact of the plaques often presenting career won-loss records.
It’s hard to say, but I think pitching leans a little more toward career accomplishments.
In general, the Hall mentions the A’s, Braves, Cards, Cubs, Giants, and Yanks a lot, which makes sense since they are among the oldest and/or winningest franchises in history. The Phils and Dodgers get some sunshine too. Sorry Browns fans.