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Articles Tagged Ron Santo 

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February 2, 2012 9:00 am

Overthinking It: The Overlooked Overlooked Hall of Famers

28

Ben Lindbergh

Why have two of the top 30 position players since 1950 been ignored by BBWAA voters and bloggers alike?

The last thing I want to do is create another Bert Blyleven.

I don’t mean Blyleven the pitcher or Blyleven the person. The world could probably use more of those. I’m talking about Blyleven the Overlooked Hall of Fame Candidate. Don’t get me wrong—I’m glad Blyleven is in the Hall of Fame. He deserves to be. His induction was a triumph of critical thinking over snap judgments, of evidence over empty arguments, of the hard work and research of writers like Jay Jaffe and Rich Lederer over the bluster and baseless self-assurance of others in the mainstream—an infinitesimal triumph, in the grand scheme of things, but a triumph nonetheless.

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How well do the players on the Golden Era ballot stack up to Hall of Fame standards?

The Hall of Fame's Golden Era ballot has been out since November 3, offering 10 familiar names from the 1947-1972 era for Cooperstown consideration. This isn't the Veterans Committee anymore; when last year's reforms were announced, the words "Veterans Committee" were conspicuously omitted from all press releases. Rather, it's the second of three Era Committees to get its turn at bat, following last year's Expansion Era Committee, which voted on players from the 1973-1989 period and managers, umpires, and executives from 1973 to the present. Theoretically, next year’s panel will consider candidates from the Pre-Integration period (1871-1946), but the Hall has changed the rules so often lately that all bets are off.

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December 6, 2010 9:00 am

Another Look: Ron Santo

0

Bob Hertzel

Reflecting on the Cubs third baseman and broadcaster, and his upbeat personality.

I don’t know why, but when the word of Ron Santo’s death began filtering across the nation last week, the words of a song began running through my head:

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One of the greatest Cubs - and Cubs fans - is gone from us.

Aww, geez.

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The longtime Cubs third baseman passed away on December 3, with his greatness still not fully appreciated

It's with great sadness I heard the news of Ron Santo's passing. He died on Thursday due to complications from bladder cancer at the age of 70, having waged a courageous battle with diabetes for his entire adult life, enduring dozens of surgeries and ultimately losing both legs to the disease.

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September 21, 2007 12:00 am

Lies, Damned Lies: The Best Player in Baseball, Part Two

4

Nate Silver

The conclusion to Nate's overview on the game's best player, season by season.

This is the resumption of the discussion of the best player in baseball, season by season throughout history, that began with yesterday's article. If you missed Nate's handy field guide and spreadsheet from yesterday's piece, you can download it here.

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February 26, 2007 12:00 am

Grumpy Old Men

0

Jay Jaffe

The newly-constituted Veteran's Committee takes its third look at the Hall-of-Fame ballot, and if they don't elect Santo and Co. this time, says Jay, it should be "three strikes and you're out."

In 2002, the Hall of Fame revamped its Veterans Committee. Formerly, it was the freight-elevator entrance to the institution for those unable to enter via the red-carpeted front door of the Baseball Writers Association of America ballot. Out went the old 15-member voting body, a group which included baseball executives, writers, and former players. That group annually conducted its dirty work behind closed doors, outside of which nobody knew who was up for election, and unless someone received 75 percent of the vote, nobody knew any results. With the process completely opaque and with accountability nil, cronyism and senility abounded, and errors that diluted the honor of election to the Hall were made. Legend has it that the Veterans Committee (or VC) elected the vastly inferior Waner brother, Lloyd, in a case of mistaken identity. For that among other reasons, I say good riddance to a flawed system.

In its place is the new VC, a body of 84 eligible voters: 61 living Hall of Famers, 14 Frick Award recipients (broadcasters), eight Spink Award recipients (writers), and one "old VC" member whose term hadn't expired. The new VC uses a voting process analogous to the BBWAA's: a pre-screened ballot made public before a decentralized vote conducted by mail, with the results made public afterwards, and 75 percent of the vote required for election. The vote is held in odd-numbered years for players, and in every other odd-numbered year for nonplayers (managers, umpires, executives). The pool of potential honorees is determined by a panel of 60 BBWAA writers (two for each major league city/team) plus a board of six Hall of Famers; my colleague Steven Goldman turned a jaundiced eye on the new process last fall.

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August 2, 2005 12:00 am

Prospectus Matchups: Word to the Third

0

Jim Baker

With Sunday's Hall of Fame inductions in mind, Jim takes a look at the most underrepresented position in the Hall.

The Hall of Fame inductions of Wade Boggs and Ryne Sandberg on Sunday put me in mind of another player who conjoins two of their signatures: third base (Boggs) and the Chicago Cubs (Sandberg). A lifer from the former who played the latter remains unelected to date and it may well be the biggest injustice in the game today. He is, of course, Ron Santo.

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March 2, 2005 12:00 am

The Veterans Committee Ballot

0

Jay Jaffe

The results of the second election by the latest version of the Veterans Committee will be released today. How do the candidates stack up?

Should a player not gain entry through the front door, his only chance for admission is through the institution's freight elevator, the Veterans Committee vote. Evolving out of an older voting body, the Old-Timers' Committee (which also served as the institution's Board of Trustees), the first VC was appointed in 1953, consisting of baseball executives and writers. Over the years, the VC--a 15-member voting body which gradually came to include former players--swept up the ashes with far less discrimination than the writers had exercised. Voting was done behind closed doors, cronyism abounded, mistakes were made (legend has it that the VC elected the vastly inferior Waner brother, Lloyd, in a case of mistaken identity) and the honor of election was somewhat diluted.

The attrition of aged VC voters and the controversies generated by their selections led to an overhaul in 2002. The new Veterans Committee now includes all living Hall of Fame members, Spink Award recipients (writers), Frick Award recipients (broadcasters) and "old VC" members whose terms have not yet expired. Currently there are 83 eligible voters: 60 Hall of Famers, 14 broadcasters, eight writers and one "old VC" member. They vote on players every two years, and on nonplayers (managers, umpires, executives) every four years.

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While we wait breathlessly for word from Cooperstown about the results of the new Veterans Committee balloting, the STATLG-L Internet Hall of Fame voters have spoken their collective mind here on BP.

While we wait breathlessly for word from Cooperstown about the results of the new Veterans Committee balloting, the STATLG-L Internet Hall of Fame voters have spoken their collective mind here on BP.

Well, sort of. The voting patterns on the two ballots (Players and Composite) were rather similar in some respects. On both ballots, only one person received the support of as much as half of the voters. On both ballots, the average voter cast votes for only a small number of candidates. On both ballots, nearly half of the candidates were able to attract the votes of fewer than 10% of the IHOF voters.

Players Ballot

It turned out to be a pretty good day for Chicago at the top of the Players ballot. If the Hall of Famers cast their ballots in a manner similar to what our 1,789 participants did, the long, long wait is finally over for Ron Santo. The great Cubbie third baseman made it past the 75% plateau with 42 votes to spare; he was named on just over 77% of the ballots. With just over 40% of the vote, Minnie Minoso, who spent much of his career playing for the White Sox, finished a distant second to Santo. The only other man to garner as much as one-third of the votes on the Players ballot was Dick Allen, who spent three years on the South Side (among them, his 1972 MVP season). As a long-suffering Phillies phan, however, I will forever remember him in red pinstripes.

The complete tally on the Players ballot is displayed below:

Player Votes Percent Ron Santo 1384 77.4% Minnie Minoso 731 40.9% Dick Allen 638 35.7% Joe Torre 559 31.2% Gil Hodges 394 22.0% Tony Oliva 388 21.7% Curt Flood 361 20.2% Roger Maris 353 19.7% Joe Gordon 302 16.9% Carl Mays 262 14.6% Maury Wills 225 12.6% Ken Boyer 213 11.9% Bobby Bonds 213 11.9% Thurman Munson 179 10.0% Don Newcombe 139 7.8% Wes Ferrell 135 7.5% Vada Pinson 128 7.2% Mickey Lolich 100 5.6% Elston Howard 91 5.1% Rocky Colavito 88 4.9% Mike G. Marshall 87 4.9% Ted Kluszewski 84 4.7% Allie Reynolds 74 4.1% Marty Marion 54 3.0% Ken R. Williams 43 2.4% Bob Meusel 36 2.0% TOTAL 7261 Total Ballots Cast: 1789 Votes Per Ballot: 4.06

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