Our 2006 election, #46 in our process, might have a somewhat surprising result to some. On his first ballot, 1988 playoff hero Orel Hershiser was elected. In terms of how we see him overall, Hershiser is very close to HoMErs Urban Shocker and Bret Saberhagen. Hershiser being the most spread out of them, Saberhagen being the most peak-oriented of them, but none are that different. All very fine pitchers in the lower third of the HoME but very much deserving. Everyone has the same guys in the upper third. Nearly everyone has the same guys in the middle third. It’s the lower third that really speaks to the quality of the players elected. Hershiser is in the Hall of Stats, and he’s been elected by a couple of others. We’re proud that he’s now in the Hall of Miller and Eric as well.
The Bulldog takes the Hall of Miller and Eric to 180 of the greatest players in history. We’re now down below 100 players up for consideration. Thirty-five of our remaining 95 will get in, approaching 37%.
Here’s how we voted in 2006.
Miller Eric 1 Orel Hershiser Orel Hershiser 2 Pud Galvin 3 Sal Bando
The Class of 2006
Orel Hershiser: In the last 30 seasons perhaps no player carried his team to a World Series title more ably than Hershiser. That year he won his only Gold Glove, his only Cy Young, his only wins title, and made one of his three All-Star teams. To end that regular season he threw a major league record 59 consecutive scoreless innings. Then he pitched a shutout and added a save in the NLCS against the Mets before winning two games in the World Series against the heavily favored A’s. But 1988 wasn’t his only great year. He posted two more campaigns of 7-WAR and ten beyond those when he averaged over 3.5 WAR. Hall voters dropped him off the ballot after only two appearances, but he gets into the HoME on his very first try.
We’re now up to seven consecutive elections with the same solo votes from Miller.
Pud Galvin: I’m not having second thoughts here.
Sal Bando: I am here. While I continue to prefer him to Heinie Groh, I’m beginning to think I may prefer Roy White to help fill the era. Honestly, possibilities still include one, both, or neither.
That’s all for our 2006 election. Please to visit our Honorees page to see the plaques of those elected and to see plenty more information about the HoME.