As we draw nearer the January 6th announcement date for the 2016 Hall of Fame class the discussion has picked up on which of the candidates will be selected. Over at SI.com, Jay Jaffe has been breaking down the chances for each of the players–including Jim Edmonds.
“When I compare Edmonds to the Hall of Fame centerfielders, he comes up a little bit short on both the career and peak fronts,” said Jaffe, who notes the injuries and missing the 2009 season keeping the centerfielder short of a few benchmark stats. “The milestone thing hurts him as well, more in the minds of traditional voters. Nobody has been voted in to the Hall of Fame by the writers who’s career took place in the post-1960 Expansion Era by getting fewer than 2,000 hits. He has 1,949. 51 more and he could’ve crossed that line, at least.”
Edmonds himself recently shared that he has tempered expectations for the voting. “I don’t know what the qualifications are,” he said. “The coolest thing that I’ve ever heard was a guy like Ozzie Smith–who dominated being an amazing shortstop for so long and especially in his prime.
“He got in for his glove and then people say, ‘well, you were as good in centerfield as anybody and then you have offense to go with that’. That’s very flattering to hear, but like I said, when I was a kid baseball players were gods and I thought they were untouchable and then I became one and then all of a sudden the Hall of Fame was in that kind of light and now I’m on the ballot, so it’s a really weird situation.”
While Jaffe wasn’t optimistic about Edmonds chances, it wasn’t for lack of appreciation for his game as he used over 3,000 words to explain the merits of Jimmy Ballgame’s play dating all the way back to high school.
“Viscerally to me, he was one of the most exciting players I ever saw,” stated Jaffe, a self-proclaimed “stat-head” who also enjoys the game on other levels.
photo credit: Bill Greenblatt/UPI