Chase Utley: One of the Best Ever

If you are reading this, there is a remarkably decent chance that you are a somewhat invested baseball fan. As a baseball fan, you probably ...

Hall of famers

Some guys that might not get the hall of fame consideration they deserve. I'm not including guys like Bonds/Clemens, not because they're off the ballot, but because they were obviously good enough on the field and everyone agrees with that. There is an order within each tier. I will come back to this periodically to actually explain my perspective. 


Chase Utley-read my article on Chase Utley. Scroll down a bit. 

Todd Helton-the dude was a bonafide 7-8 win player at his peak. If you read my Utley article, you'd know that that means a lot more than it might sound. For example, Josh Hamilton, despite having a 7-8 WAR season, wasn't close to being a true 7-8 WAR player. I digress. He might have done steroids, but I don't recall any genuine evidence of such a claim. This matters, not because of the morality of the situation, which is nonsense, but rather the reality that his 7-8 WAR true talent would be a little bit higher had everyone else also not taken steroids. This applies to Derek Jeter and Ken Griffey Jr. as well. People probably forget that that is one of the reasons those dudes are "overglorified." He is the best player in Rockies history, probably could have played third base at a high level (boosting his already incredible production level), and also lasted long enough despite a pretty sharp decline. I don't care as much about longevity for a hall of fame argument; at least, I won't take away from a player for poor longevity. 

Andruw Jones- people talk about Jones a lot more than Helton, and I don't think he was as good, but he still deserves a quick and painless HOF induction. He was the best defensive center fielder we've seen, and hit a ton of home runs. Definitely somewhere from a 6-7 win player at his best, and he was at his best for all of his 20s. As much as I love to talk about how good Utley and Helton were at their peak, they got a ton of time to develop, while Jones was tossed into the mix as as a teenager, the consensus best prospect in baseball, and started hitting home runs in the world series. For the longevity nerds out there, he had a really good age 33-34 stretch. He was a great player. Put him in the hall. 

Given Legitimate Consideration:

Evan Longoria-he started his career a lot like Andruw Jones. Top prospect, great defensive player (not on Jones' level), immediately made the World Series, hit a ton of home runs, didn't get a ton of hits. His injuries came way before Jones', and he wasn't quite as good as Jones at his best, but he still deserves plenty of consideration.

Andrew McCutchen-another highly regarded prospect who ran the league for a couple of years. His peak talent might have been better than Longoria, but again, didn't last very long. These are the guys that deserve attention. He obviously wasn't a fluke, but maybe he wasn't quite the 7-8 win player that we saw in his best 3 years. Still probably a 6+ WAR player, a guy who made the Pirates relevant again,

Josh Donaldson- personal beliefs aside, Josh Donaldson is awesome. Unlike Jones, Longoria, and McCutchen, he was a late bloomer. He's still going somewhat strong, but his lack of playing time before his age 27 season will do him no favors in the race to 60 WAR. I don't buy into the 60 WAR thing as much as many people, partially because of that reason. However, I do like to credit guys that come up and immediately fuck up the game (hence Andruw Jones being ranked higher here), so Donaldson can't be completely absolved of his lack of good baseball in his early 20s. Still, the guy was a high 6 WAR player (by my estimate) at his best, he was really fun to watch, and his 'mysterious' resentment towards Tim Anderson makes him a not so cool villain. Like Longoria and McCutchen, he made his team relevant. Unlike those two, he made two separate teams relevant. That's pretty impressive. 

David Freese (Yes, that David Freese)

The guy leads everyone, all time, in championship win probability added. Everyone knows what he did against the Rangers, and he also happened to throw up solid performances in other playoff series' as well. He was also a very good player normally, although he was certainly not a hall of famer by talent alone. If Bill Mazeroski can be a hall of famer because of one at bat, Freese can be one because of 2+* appearances at the dish. 

Shohei Ohtani:

Shohei Ohtani

Shohei should definitely make the hall because of what he has already done. I'm sure some people get annoyed by people having this viewpoint, and I get it. We all know he can pitch and he can hit, and we don't need to be reminded of that every 30 seconds. However, Shohei is both a unicorn and an incredibly effective baseball player in all of the best ways. An MVP award on top of his pure baseball skillset, regardless of how much he helps his team win games, warrants his own wing in Cooperstown. There's also a great chance he is worthy of a hall of fame spot based purely on how much he contributed to winning, but he probably isn't quite there yet. It would definitely be awesome if he were to break the (post integration) single season WAR record, which is certainly in the cards if he can put together an incredible run prevention campaign. 

*He had the game tying triple and walkoff home run against the Rangers, but he also:

  • Hit a 2 run double in game 7 to tie the game at 2. Remember, the Rangers jumped out to a 2-0 lead. Pretty big moment
  • Went 3/4 with a home run in game 6 of the NLCS vs. the Brewers.
  • Homered off of David Price in game 5 of the 2018 World Series (no other Dodger hitter did anything, as they lost 5-1 in the clinching game for the Sox). This wasn't in 2011, obviously, but still worth noting.
  • Homered and drove in 4 runs against Roy Oswalt in game 4(an elimination game for STL) of the 2011 NLDS. The Cardinals were not supposed to win this series, and they probably don't without Freese's contribution.
  • and more. Point is, he is disproportionately responsible for a single world series championship. Not many people can say that. Barry Bonds would be able to say that, but he can't, because Scott Spiezio is a menace.