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1996, RIP, Obituaries of Players We're No Longer Considering

RIP, Players Falling Off the 1996 Ballot

You left us far too soon, Quiz. RIP.

You left us far too soon, Quiz. RIP.

In 1996 we did the unthinkable. We elected a player we had already killed, Roy Campanella. In addition to Campy, we elected three players – Keith Hernandez, Rick Reuschel, and Jim O’Rourke. And today we kill five semi-stars of the seventies and eighties.

Of the 744 players who were in our database at the start, we now have only 191 to review to fill out our institution. This was our 36th election, and the additions of Campy, Mex, Whale, and Orator Jim mean we’ve elected 151 so far. We’re also up to 403 obituaries, including the five below.

One correction from last election: last time I announced that Jim Rice was our 50th kill of a Hall member. While that’s true, the resurrection of Roy Campanella means we’ve killed only 49 Hall of Famers. And unless we kill one of the eighteen Hall members in our backlog, there’s only one member of the Coop to come who’s not a sure thing for the HoME.

At the start of our project we planned to elect 212, and the 1996 election means we’re within 61 of that number. We still have 191 of our original 744 to consider for those 61 remaining places, meaning that we can’t quite elect 32% of the remaining candidates.

Below is the tally from each election since our first in 1901.

Year   Carried     New      Considered   Elected   Obituaries  Continuing to
         Over    Nominees  this Election                       Next Election
1996      42         7          49          4           5           40
1995      41        11          52          4           6           42
1994      38       8+1          47          3           3           41
1993      41         9          50          3           9           38
1992      40        10          50          3           6           41
1991      40         9          49          1           8           40
1990      42         9          51          3           8           40
1989      45        10          55          6           7           42
1988      44         7          51          2           4           45   
1987      44         3          47          0           3           44
1986      44         4          48          1           3           44
1985      47        10          57          1          12           44
1984      50         5          55          2           6           47
1983      52         8          60          5           5           50
1982      51         8          59          3           4           52
1981      59         8          67          1          15           51
1980      59         8          67          3           5           59
1979      67         6          73          6           8           59
1978      78         6          84          5          12           67
1977      86         6          92          2          11           79
1976      82        26         108          6          16           86
1971      87        21         108          6          20           82
1966      94        26         120          7          26           87
1961      91        24         115          6          15           94
1956      92        32         124          7          26           91
1951      93        27         120          9          19           92
1946      94        26         120          8          19           93
1941      82        29         111          5          12           94
1936      75        29         104          8          14           82
1931      69        17          86          2           9           75
1926      71        25          96          9          18           69
1921      66        27          93          4          18           71
1916      53        31          84          5          13           66
1911      47        20          67          5           9           53
1906      33        28          61          3          11           47
1901       0        54          54          3          18           33

Dead in 1996

Bob BooneBob Boone played 19 years in the majors and was the all-time leader in games caught when he retired. Since passed by both Pudge Rodriguez and Pudge Fisk, the four-time All-Star won seven Gold Gloves and also caught Mike Witt’s perfect game. He was an outstanding defender, and though never a star, my catcher-converted numbers give him four 4-win seasons and 11 seasons of at least two wins, something that’s matched by only 18 catchers in our database.

Taking the baseball world by storm and becoming the first player ever to win Rookie of the Year and MVP honors in the same season, Fred Lynn was an aggressive defender and often-injured center fielder whose career may have gone a bit differently if he could have stayed on the field more. He never played more than 150 games in a season, and only four times did he Fred Lynnreach 140. Lynn could have won a second MVP trophy in 1979 when he won the triple slash triple crown and set career highs with 39 homers and 122 RBI. He also hit the only grand slam in All-Star history. And if you’re looking for a signature game, check out this box score.

One of the game’s best people, Dan Quisenberry pitched for a dozen seasons for the Royals, Cardinals, and Giants. With his submarine delivery and very effective sinker made three All-Star teams and led the AL in saves five times even though he wasn’t a flame thrower. He also won the Rolaids Relief Man of the Year five times. At his peak, he was great. Despite pitching exclusively in relief and thus accruing relatively few innings, he was the AL’s fourth most valuable pitcher from 1982-1985, a time during which he had two second place and two third place finishes in the AL Cy Young voting.

Jim Sundberg was an outstanding defensive catcher who played for 16 seasons in the majors. He won six Gold Gloves and was once determined the third most dominant defensive catcher ever. He also made three All-Star teams, but he received just one plate appearance, a fly out against Mario Soto in Frank White1984. He appears to be one of the best couple of dozen catchers ever, though it’s fairly clear he doesn’t deserve a spot in the HoME.

An 18-year major leaguer and career Royal, Frank White made it to five All-Star games and won eight Gold Gloves. For a time, he and George Brett held the big league record for most games played together before they were topped by the Detroit keystone of Whitaker and Trammell. White’s top week ever came in an MVP performance against the Yankees in the 1980 ALCS when he homered and hit .545 as KC swept the series.

Our 1996 election has now come and gone. Please go to our Honorees page to see the plaques of those who have made it into the HoME, and check back here after the 1997 election for more obituaries.

Miller

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Discussion

2 thoughts on “RIP, Players Falling Off the 1996 Ballot

  1. Sorry to see Quiz off the list. Really liked him. Met Sundberg once, briefly. Seemed like a nice enough person. And loved to watch Frank White.
    The problem with your new list is that you’re now getting deep into the era where I remember everyone and it’s tough to separate fond memories from career value. You guys do a pretty good job of doing that. Keep it up.
    v

    Posted by verdun2 | November 10, 2014, 9:05 am
    • I feel the same way. It’s kind of weird, actually, and it reminds me that I’m almost 40. It all started when Mike Scioscia became the first manager whose playing career I knew well as a kid.

      Posted by eric | November 10, 2014, 11:33 am

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