The Hall of Fame will announce those who have gained entrance at 5pm central time on the MLB Network. While Ken Griffey, Jr. is expected to be elected with a few others possibly joining him, over at Viva El Birdos, we have had more pressing concerns. Jim Edmonds is in his first year on the ballot, and is in danger of falling off after just one year.
Of those who have submitted public ballots, Jim Edmonds has received just six votes: Derrick Goold, Dejan Kovavecic, Earl Bloom, Wallace Matthews, Mike Nadel, and Mike Peticca. With 43% of the roughyl 450 votes in, Edmonds likely needs 17 more votes from the remaining 57% of the votes. It is not over yet:
Despite the early returns, it is too early to give up on Jim Edmonds. Last year Nomar was only on 2.4% of public ballots, and ended at 5.5%.— viva el birdos (@vivaelbirdos) January 6, 2016
While our campaigning has yet to bear fruit, we are hopeful to continue that campaign in future years.
Joe Schwarz got us started one year ago:
Over 17 seasons, Edmonds was worth 64.0 fWAR, 12th most among MLB center fielders all time. From 2000 through 2005 (his first six seasons with the Cardinals), Edmonds was worth 39.6 fWARâthe third most in all of baseball behind Barry Bonds (54.8) and Alex Rodriguez (51.8). Breaking this down, Edmonds had six straight seasons with at least six wins above replacement (peaking at 8.0 in 2004). Of the center fielders with higher career fWARs than Edmonds, only three others (Mickey Mantle, Ty Cobb, and Willie Mays) also sustained streaks of six straight seasons worth at least six wins above replacement.
We tried to pick up the pace in recent weeks:
First, the disappointing revelation that ballot limits would hurt Edmonds:
There is a backlog of very good candidates for the Hall of Fame on the ballot this year due to mixed practices when it comes to voting for players from the steroid era. Hall of Fame voters are not able to vote for every candidate they deem worthy for the Hall of Fame leaving potential borderline candidates like Jim Edmonds in trouble to even stay on the ballot to have his case heard in future years when the number of candidates has thinned.
Then, a strong case for the Hall of Fame:
At his best for more than half a decade, Edmonds was one of the greatest baseball players of all-time. From 1995-2005, only Alex Rodriguez and Barry Bonds had a higher fWAR than Jim Edmonds, and it is even possible that Edmonds is underrated by WAR as the metrics in place before UZR in 2002 rate Edmonds as merely above-average. Edmonds should not be punished for the strike in 1994 or sitting out a year at Age-39. It is what happened in between those years that really mattered, and in those years, Jim Edmonds played like a Hall of Famer.
Jim Edmonds is one of just ten players with more than 1700 games in center field over the last 40 years.
Most 6+ fWAR seasons by an OF last 60 yrs
Since Willie Mays retired 40 years ago, Jim Edmonds wRC+ of 132 is the highest among center fielders with 5k PA.
Ben Godar's great piece on Jim Edmonds' supposed bad attitude:
But whether they called him "lackadaisical," implying even though he's playing great he could be doing better, or called him selfish for injuring himself while pushing his limits to make spectacular plays, Edmonds critics had a hard time making a case that all that "attitude" added up to anything less than a superb baseball player. Perhaps Tom Friend put it best when he wrote "[Edmonds] first mistake was making the game look easy."
Alex Crisafulli remembers the time Jim Edmonds really ticked Carlos Zambrano off:
But nope, Zambrano stayed out there and that he drilled Edmonds for a second time on his very next pitch surprised no one - except maybe Edmonds, who I'd like to think still didn't even know Zambrano's name or that it was the same pitcher that had hit him a few hours earlier. Edmonds didn't put up much of a protest - he took his base with a look of amusement and the Cardinals soon won the game.
And more recently, John Fleming suggests ignoring the Hall of Fame if they are ignoring you:
It is not worth being upset that some baseball writers don't agree with your definition of a Hall of Famer. You saw these players. You know their numbers. As silly as it sounds, it doesn't matter if these greats are enshrined in Cooperstown because they are, more importantly, etched into the baseball immortality of the memories of fans.
We will find out in a few hours whether Jim Edmonds made the Hall of Fame, but just a few more nuggets from @JimEdmondsHOF
Jim Edmonds is one of only 38 players with 400 homers, 2,000 hits, and 1,000 walks, inc. playoffs. Mays, Mantle, Griffey, Jr. only other CF.— Edmonds for the Hall (@JimEdmondsHOF) February 5, 2015
Career WAR After Age-21 Season Ken Griffey, Jr.: 63.3 Jim Edmonds: 64.5— Edmonds for the Hall (@JimEdmondsHOF) January 5, 2016
Keep your fingers crossed for 5%.