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The 2011 Hall of Fame Class

Some people divide their Hall-of-Fame ballots up by separating the "first-ballot, inner circle" types from the "outer circle" types. I don’t have a ballot, of course, but I would divvy mine up into different categories.

If you do not vote for them, you should not even be voting, what in the hell is wrong with you, you awful person, you’ve ruined the sport of baseball for everyone, I can’t believe this, you make me sick, oh, the humanity, you probably were responsible for New Coke and "Cop Rock."

  • Jeff Bagwell
  • Tim Raines
  • Roberto Alomar
  • Bert Blyleven

Bagwell is getting hit because a) there aren’t rumors that he was involved with steroids, but doesn’t he seem like the type would do them?, and b) people don’t remember what an expanse of field the Astrodome was. If Colorado can put balls in humidors to level the playing field, Houston should have been able to put bowls of pills and syringes in each clubhouse to level the playing field. That was the Petco Park of its time, and Bagwell still demolished it.

Tim Raines is one of the greatest leadoff hitters of all-time, and it’s a bunch of south-continent bias that he’s not a first-ballot guy.

Alomar is getting in, most likely. Blyleven has a great chance, too, even though he was cained out of 300 wins by a baker’s dozen. If he gets a little more offense or a little more bullpen help

I’d vote for them, but I understand that there might be less-than-tortured arguments against them.

  • Barry Larkin
  • Edgar Martinez
  • Alan Trammell

Larkin gets hurt by the injuries he had almost every single year, but he was the league’s best shortstop for a decade. Martinez gets hurt because he’s a DH, but I never understood that. There is position called the designated hitter, and Martinez was the best ever. What’s the problem? It’s like refusing to induct a centerfielder because I think baseball should eliminate CF and go with eight fielders. That’s swell that I think that, but that’s not how baseball works.

Trammell is one of the better shortstops ever, but he’s killed by the lower offensive numbers from the ‘80s. A 110 OPS+ accounts for that, though, and it isn’t that impressive, even for a quality defensive shortstop. I still think Trammell and Lou Whitaker should go in together, and they should finish each other’s sentences during the induction ceremony.

I don’t think I’d vote for them, but I understand that there might be good arguments for them, and I reserve the right to change my mind in subsequent years

  • Kevin Brown
  • Fred McGriff
  • Dale Murphy
  • Larry Walker
  • John Olerud


  • Everyone else.

Especially you, Jack Morris, because "pitching to the score" is ex post facto nonsense. Every one else on the ballot would be on my Hall of Very Good ballot, except…

Kirk Rueter

  • Kirk Rueter

I’d be the guy to vote for Kirk Rueter because, hey, Kirk Rueter.

So now you. Tell the world your HOF picks and snubs, and when you don’t pick Tim Raines, we’ll laugh at you in that condescending internet nerd kind of way. It stings, doesn’t it? You know it does.