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2014, RIP, Obituaries of Players We're No Longer Considering

RIP, Players Falling Off the 2014 Ballot

Baseball doesn't make the cover of Time a lot. I think this is a worthy exception.

Baseball doesn’t make the cover of Time a lot. I think this is a worthy exception.

On Friday you read about five more who we elected to the Hall of Miller and Eric. Today we end the chances of six others, including one of my favorite closers ever, Keith Foulke. To give you a sense of just how much the 2004 Red Sox season meant to me, I’ve cried on more than one occasion while watching the movie Fever Pitch. Just imagine how I felt during the actual games. For younger readers out there, the Sox had gone 86 years without winning the World Series. Seems like so long ago that they hadn’t won one. Ah, the passing of time…

There’s just one more to go until we’re all caught up. Today gets us to 533 obituaries in 54 elections, during which time we’ve enshrined 211 players into the HoME. So we now know the fate of 744 players (at least until we change our minds). We also know that we have four more to go and that four more obituaries will be written after the 2015 results are in. Once those results are revealed, we will have gotten through each one of our original group of 752 players up for consideration.

And very soon we’ll begin thinking about the 2016 election. How many will the Pre-Integration Committee and the BBWAA allow us to elect? We’ll have to wait to see. But first…

Below is the tally from each election since our first in 1901, all 54 of ’em.

Year   Carried     New      Considered   Elected   Obituaries  Continuing to
         Over    Nominees  this Election                       Next Election
2014       0        11          11          5           6            0
2013       0        15          15          7           8            0
2012       5         5          10          1           9            0
2011       6         9          15          4           6            5
2010       8         9          17          3           8            6
2009      10         8          18          4           6            8
2008      11         7          18          2           6           10 
2007      12        15          27          5          11           11
2006      13         5          18          1           5           12
2005      12         8          20          2           5           13
2004      13         8          21          4           5           12
2003      14         7          21          2           6           13
2002      18         7          25          6           5           14
2001      23         8          31          2          11           18
2000      26         9          35          1          11           23
1999      30         9          39          4           9           26
1998      33         9          42          4           8           30
1997      40         3          43          3           7           33
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 2014

Moises AlouSix-time All-Star Moises Alou was an outfielder who played for seven National League teams in his 17-year career. He wasn’t a good defender, but he did hit 332 home runs and drive in and score over 1100 runs. He was fairly similar to corner outfielders Frank Howard and Dusty Baker in terms of value. And in terms of trivia, he was the guy under the glove of Steve Bartman before the Marlins scored eight runs with five outs remaining to tie the 2003 NLCS at 3-3 in games and then go on to keep the Cubs out of their first World Series since 1945. For what it’s worth, Alou says he’d have caught the ball.

Ray DurhamA switch-hitting 2B for four teams, Ray Durham played for 14 seasons and made the All-Star team two times. In his first All-Star at-bat he singled in a run against Robb Nen and then proceeded to steal second base. He’s one of only six second basemen ever with 2000 hits, 1000 runs, 200 steals, and 100 homers. The others are Biggio, Sandberg, Morgan, Alomar, and Frisch. Nice company.

Perhaps my favorite out in baseball history was assisted by Keith Foulke. Foulke was an outstanding reliever from 1999-2004, and he stayed in the majors for eleven seasons. He was an All-Star in 2003 when he led the AL in saves. And for his work in 2004, he’ll always be one of my favorite players.

Luis GonzLuis Gonzalezalez may be the answer to the question, “Who’s the most surprising guy to even hit 50 home runs on a season?” Of course, he was pretty much the same quality player as George Foster. He made five All-Star teams, led the NL in hits in 1999, and hit 354 homers over his 19-year career. His career highlight was in the seventh game of the 2001 World Series against Mariano Rivera. After a Tony Womack double tied it in the bottom of the ninth, Craig Counsell was hit by a pitch, and Gonzalez ended it with chip shot to center.

Jon LieberLefty Jon Lieber pitched for four teams over his 14 seasons in the majors. He won 20 games and made the All-Star team for the 2001 Cubs, and he won 131 games overall. His only post-season action was for the Yankees in 2004. He downed the Red Sox in Game 2 before being touched by a Mark Bellhorn three-run shot, taking the Game 6 loss.

Kenny RogersNew York is a funny place. Kenny Rogers, a guy with 219 career wins and who didn’t allow a run in three post-season starts in 2006 with the Tigers, is thought of as un-clutch because of how he performed in the playoffs in 1996 with the Yankees and 1999 with the Mets. The Gambler made four All-Star teams in his 20 years in the majors. He’s underappreciated – in the neighborhood of Ron Guidry, Frank Viola, and Billy Pierce – and likely better than Hall of Famer Bob Lemon.

That’s it for our 2014 election. Take a look at our Honorees page to see the plaques of our new members and all of the HoMErs. And check back here after the 2015 election for my last set of obituaries.

Miller

 

 

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Discussion

3 thoughts on “RIP, Players Falling Off the 2014 Ballot

  1. All leading to the obvious question of what happens after you complete the 2015 election and the last set of obits?
    Sorry about Ray Durham. Always liked him (but no, he isn’t a Hall man)
    v

    Posted by verdun2 | August 3, 2015, 7:25 am
  2. I believe we’re going to tackle managers – 99% sure. There’s good reason to have content at least through the first week in January so we can get to the Hall class of 2016.

    Posted by Miller | August 3, 2015, 8:47 am
  3. Wonderful idea.
    v

    Posted by verdun2 | August 3, 2015, 9:55 am

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