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The 50 best baseball players not in the Hall of Fame

Jan 10, 2014, 2:52 PM EDT

Tim Raines

Earlier today we talked about the IBWAA and its conducting its own Shadow Hall of Fame vote. There are a lot of others too. The Hall of Merit. The Baseball Reliquary. Probably others I’ve forgotten.

For the fourth straight year friend of the blog Graham Womack of Baseball: Past and Present has compiled a list of the 50 best baseball players not in the Hall of Fame. It’s a reader/voter-driven thing, with 208 ballots cast this year. Seven players gained virtual election this year. Click through to see who. And yes, I have given you a hint with the picture already.

As always, good stuff.

  1. cohnjusack - Jan 10, 2014 at 3:16 PM

    Why only 208 people? I was one of those voters and it’s a damn fun list to make.

    It was the most fun I head with Baseballreference and a spreadsheet since that time I decided to make an ALL-MLB team (like the All NBA team) for every year dating back to 1900.

    • burrguana - Jan 12, 2014 at 8:29 AM

      Do you think Lance Parrish should have been on the list?

  2. deathmonkey41 - Jan 10, 2014 at 3:22 PM

    And once again, Dave LaPoint gets shafted by another list…

  3. dirtyharry1971 - Jan 10, 2014 at 3:24 PM

    50 best not in? that’s easy..

    1 roger Clemens
    2 roger Clemens
    3 roger Clemens
    4 roger Clemens
    5 roger Clemens
    6 roger Clemens
    7 roger Clemens
    8 roger Clemens
    9 roger Clemens
    10 roger Clemens
    11 roger Clemens
    12 roger Clemens
    13 roger Clemens
    14 roger Clemens
    15 roger Clemens
    16 roger Clemens
    17 roger Clemens
    18 roger Clemens
    19 roger Clemens
    20 roger Clemens
    21 roger Clemens
    22 roger Clemens
    23 roger Clemens
    24 roger Clemens
    25 roger Clemens
    26 roger Clemens
    27 roger Clemens
    28 roger Clemens
    29 roger Clemens
    30 roger Clemens
    31 roger Clemens
    32 roger Clemens
    33 roger Clemens
    34 roger Clemens
    35 roger Clemens
    36 roger Clemens
    37 roger Clemens
    38 roger Clemens
    39 roger Clemens
    40 roger Clemens
    41 roger Clemens
    42 roger Clemens
    43 roger Clemens
    44 roger Clemens
    45 roger Clemens
    46 roger Clemens
    47 roger Clemens
    48 roger Clemens
    49 roger Clemens
    50 roger clemens

    • doctorofsmuganomics - Jan 10, 2014 at 3:48 PM

      Why capitalize his last name but not his first?

      • unclemosesgreen - Jan 10, 2014 at 3:51 PM

        Unclean Harold made one brainless typographical error and then 49 brainless cut and pastes.

        /leans back smugly with an unkind smile on his face

      • Old Gator - Jan 10, 2014 at 4:23 PM

        Because he’s an illiterate jackass.

      • dirtyharry1971 - Jan 10, 2014 at 4:26 PM

        I didn’t do it that way, ever since they did the “spell” check on this thing it automatically does that stuff anymore. I know it ticks me off too, I gotta try harder to misspell words on purpose to upset old gasser

      • dirtyharry1971 - Jan 10, 2014 at 4:27 PM

        I will have you know unclemosegreen I wrote out each one and did not use copy and paste, I wouldn’t lie to you, trust me.

      • fanofevilempire - Jan 10, 2014 at 5:16 PM

        who is roger Clemens, is he related to roger Rabbit?

      • bbk1000 - Jan 11, 2014 at 5:18 PM

        Actually on 50 no capitals were used…..I’m thinking he actually did type this line by line…

    • unclemosesgreen - Jan 10, 2014 at 3:48 PM

      That’s interesting. So who would you put from 51-100?

      • scoutsaysweitersisabust - Jan 10, 2014 at 4:06 PM

        jack Morris

    • jfk69 - Jan 12, 2014 at 8:52 PM

      Yes I get it Roger’s wife or girlfriend or butt steroid shooting buddy.

  4. thinkfirstthenspeak - Jan 10, 2014 at 3:26 PM

    It seems to confuse things by titling the article “The 50 best baseball players not in the Hall of Fame” and coming up with the list based upon Y/N on the question “Does he belong in the Hall of Fame?”

    The concept of “belonging” in the Hall is what leads us down the path of leaving out some of the best ball players. This is also how you can end up with Raines being called a better player than Bonds in this list.

    It was a nice try, but to come up with the title list you have to ask the question differently.

    • unclemosesgreen - Jan 10, 2014 at 3:50 PM

      You should take the advice which is imparted by your user name.

    • scoutsaysweitersisabust - Jan 10, 2014 at 4:08 PM

      Um, why? It’s a list of the best players not in the hall of fame. Then it is asked if that player should be in the hall of fame.

      If done right, the top of the list will be answered yes, and at some point in the bottom of the list will be answered no. There should be a person who’s the best that’s not in the hall and does not belong in the hall.

  5. bostonboresme - Jan 10, 2014 at 3:27 PM

    I stopped reading when Bonds and Biggio weren’t #’s 1 & 2.

    • largebill - Jan 10, 2014 at 4:18 PM

      No argument on Bonds at #1. However, I’m struggling to see how you decided Biggio is #2. He’s about 10th best.

      • tebowspeech - Jan 10, 2014 at 8:32 PM

        Biggio is #2 (lol).

    • dcfan4life - Jan 11, 2014 at 12:31 AM

      Biggio, over the 3 new to the list, Maddux, Glavine and Thomas, or Pete Rose, or Roger Clemens. Based solely on baseball stats Biggio is not near #2. Hes a HOF and will get in next year, but to think hes the second most glaring omission in the HOF is ridiculous.

  6. Roger Moore - Jan 10, 2014 at 3:34 PM

    Bad Bill Dahlen on 42nd? The voters need to learn more about Dead Ball and earlier baseball.

    • ezthinking - Jan 11, 2014 at 3:12 AM

      Exactly. Dead ball players are disgustingly over-rated.

      • mrgjg - Jan 11, 2014 at 11:18 AM

        Yea, like Ted Williams, Mickey Mantle and Stan Musial. Bunch of overrated bums. And as soon as Willie Mays and Hank Aaron dies, they’ll become overrated too.

  7. golfrangeman - Jan 10, 2014 at 5:39 PM

    I like how he said roger Clemens used ped’s last time I checked he never tested positive and was found not guilty in a court of law.

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Jan 10, 2014 at 6:41 PM

      So you think OJ didn’t kill Nicole too?

  8. burgundyandgold - Jan 10, 2014 at 7:24 PM

    1. Bonds, 2. Clemons, 3. Sosa, 4-50 Dale Murphy

    • ezthinking - Jan 11, 2014 at 3:14 AM

      Clemons? Is that something you squeeze in a margarita?

    • mrgjg - Jan 11, 2014 at 11:04 AM

      You were doing good till you got to #3, than it all fell apart on-ya.

  9. rgledz - Jan 10, 2014 at 8:25 PM

    Nobody ever mentions Tony Oliva. It’s a damn shame, he should be in the HOF.

    • cardsman - Jan 11, 2014 at 12:05 PM

      really good player. just didnt play long enough to put up the big numbers. usually only incredible players like dimaggio and koufax, can get in without the big numbers, that can only be obtained by having a long career. unless of course, they are incredible defensive players like the wizard.

  10. mtr75 - Jan 10, 2014 at 9:15 PM

    Look at the silliness people are resorting to to argue in favor of Biggio:

    And Biggio did this while earning four Gold Gloves, playing his entire career for a single organization, making 19 straight Opening Day starts, being honored as a Roberto Clemente Award recipient for community service, and being recognized – by teammate after teammate – as the lock-down, no-questions-asked leader of a Houston franchise that enjoyed its only run of sustained excellence on his watch. He goes in.

    Wow, digging deep there. A career .281 hitter and .360 OBP as a lead off man. That’s pathetic. Add to that the fact that he averaged 6 HR a year under 26 years old and 19 a year over 35 on perhaps the most ‘roided up franchise of that era. The guy was obviously enhanced. Never the best player at his position, never a dominant player. It’s hilarious that people are now resorting to his number of opening day starts as an argument for HOF inclusion.

    Good player. Not even remotely close to being a HOF’er.

    • cardsman - Jan 11, 2014 at 10:56 AM

      if you are not suspected of ped use, there are certain milestone achievements, that traditionally are automatic, for hof inclusion. 3000 hits, is one of these magic numbers.

  11. thebigwhitecat - Jan 10, 2014 at 9:36 PM

    Why not just include anybody who’s hung around for awhile…Ron Cey, Rico Carty, Milt Pappas, Mike Scioscia, Fernando Valenzuela…

    • ezthinking - Jan 11, 2014 at 3:16 AM

      Because they weren’t great and some of your list really didn’t hang around. Fernando especially.

  12. vafootballfan - Jan 10, 2014 at 11:57 PM

    Pete Rose should be in. He wouldn’t be going in as a manager. He was a hell of a baseball player.

  13. braxtonrob - Jan 11, 2014 at 6:55 AM

    Don Mattingly!! (compare him to Kirby Puckett; what about all those GG’s! No love for saving runs at 1B?)

    If you saw him play, you know he belongs.

  14. pastabelly - Jan 11, 2014 at 10:23 AM

    The list should be different because HOF has an integrity clause. Pete Rose was an unethical bastard, but is absolutely the best player not in the HOF. His stats are also 100% legitimate. I really can’t buy any argument that doesn’t list him first.

    • mrgjg - Jan 11, 2014 at 11:12 AM

      As much as I love Mattingly, he’s just not a HOFer. You could probably make the same argument for Puckett using sabermetrics, but the guy was money in the bank every year and the abruptness of the way it ended makes it easy to extrapolate 3000 hits, maybe 1500 R/RBI, 300HR, 500-600 2B etc.
      Add the signature moments in the World Series and it’s not surprising that he had such an easy time getting in HOF.

  15. joestemme - Jan 11, 2014 at 11:19 AM

    Nice to see Dwight Evans so high up on this list. But, I don’t understand that author’s comment that “Evans did a host of things very well, without being truly outstanding at any particular one.”

    Huh?! Playing the best Right Field in his generation isn’t a “truly outstanding” attribute????????

  16. burrguana - Jan 12, 2014 at 8:35 AM

    What about Lance Parrish? He was an awesome player

  17. tdreher1 - Jan 12, 2014 at 1:51 PM

    The Hall of Fame became a joke when they refused to induct Pete Rose in his first year of eligibility. Yes, he gambled. Yes, he’s a jackass. Ban him from working in the game. But the man has more base hits than anyone who ever set foot on a major league baseball field. Put him in the hall!

    • jfk69 - Jan 12, 2014 at 8:50 PM

      yes I will put rose in. Just as soon as they put Shoeless Joe Jackson in.
      Where do YOU DRAW THE LINE?

  18. jfk69 - Jan 12, 2014 at 8:53 PM

    Why isn’t Choo Choo Coleman in. Is it because he played for the Mets?

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