Hall Of Fame Debate: PICK ONE: Mike Mussina OR Curt Schilling

Hall Of Fame Debate: PICK ONE: Mike Mussina OR Curt Schilling

Last week’s discussion about the worthiness of Jack Morris and his potential Hall of Fame election was a lot of fun.  And while we did not walk away with a resounding opinion of ‘Yes’ or ‘No’, we did have a lot of spirited opinions.

That got me to thinking about other pitchers that fall into the same category of star pitcher, ‘ace’ of the staff, perennial all-star, but maybe just a step behind the elite of the sport.

Ultimately, I landed on Mike Mussina and Curt Schilling, two highly decorated pitchers from the era after Morris that put up similar numbers and were always considered as dangerous threats to their opposition.

I’d like to take this week’s conversation to a different level.  YOU HAVE TO VOTE FOR ONE OF THESE GUYS!!!

Sure, if you had a BWAA vote, you may bypass both of them.  But, in the world of ’30-YOC’, I make the rules and I am saying that this is a true head-to-head match-up.

If you had to pick one player for Hall of Fame induction and your choices were Mike Mussina OR Curt Schilling, tell me who you’ve got.

I thought that I would summarize some of their pitching feats for you here:

  Mussina Schilling
Seasons 18 20
Wins 270 216
Losses 153 146
Win % 63.80% 59.70%
20-Win Seasons 1 2
Complete Games 57 83
Shutouts 23 20
ERA 3.68 3.46
Strikeouts 2813 3116
Walks 785 711
K:Walk 3.58 4.38
WHIP 1.192 1.137
All-Star 5 6
Gold Glove 7
Cy Young Finishes 2nd Place (1x) 2nd Place (3x)
Postseasons 9 12
World Series titles 3

I told you that these guys have very comparable careers.

So, now the question is – Who would you vote for if you HAD TO CHOOSE ONE???

My pick has gone back and forth for the last few days since I started thinking about this match-up of very talented and durable pitchers.

Ultimately, I went with the guy that I would prefer to have on my pitching mound in Game 7 of a playoff.  I went with the guy that I felt had ‘better stuff’.  I went with the guy that I thought was the more accomplished and proven ‘big game’ performer.

By a very, very slim margin, my vote goes to Mr. Curt Schilling.

And that is my final answer!!!


How about you?  Where would your vote lie?  Make your pick now – Mike Mussina OR Curt Schilling.

Thanks for reading.  Have a great night!!!

12 responses to “Hall Of Fame Debate: PICK ONE: Mike Mussina OR Curt Schilling

  1. I’m going with Mussina on this one. Mussina was a much more consistent pitcher throughout his career than Schilling was. Schilling was great from 2001 – 2007, but had only spurts of greatness from 1988 – 2000. Mussina was great his whole career.

  2. I got to go with mussina too because of how well he fielded his position, 7 gold gloves.

  3. Ugh.

    Two really good pictures, but I don’t believe either one deserves to be in the Hall of Fame. Each pitcher had healthy careers (18 and 20 seasons) but neither one could reach 300 wins. Why? Well, Bloody Curt only averaged 10.8 W’s per season! Mussina was far better at over 15 W’s/season. Schilling DID reach 3,000 K’s, though……..neither one earned a Cy Young Award. That really hurts in my book. There’s an unwritten rule in the election process of somebody being the “best” at their position at some point during their career and the lack of at least one Cy Young for either guy creates some doubt as to when or even if they were ever the BEST pitcher around.

    The Gold Glove awards for Mussina is really commendable. It’s a tough award to garner as a hurler, so kudos to him for that – Mr. Schilling? Not so much.

    No no-no’s for either of these guys? Not a requirement for HOF-eligibility as a pitcher by any stretch of the imagination but, again, would have been one way to help either overcome their lack of career win totals, etc. I know – Schilling was one out away (thanks a lot, Shannon Stewart!)

    I’ve already addressed my thoughts on post season stats for election consideration. It helps to enhance/compliment a resume but doesn’t stand alone as an exclusively individual achievement.

    I sound like a Scrooge today! Sorry!

    Okay, okay – but you did lay down the rules of HAVING to vote for one, Brian – and I shall oblige.

    If I absolutely HAD to vote for one of these guys…..it would be….Moose. I believe Mussina was more consistently dominant and durable.

    A couple of stats stick out for me:

    (1) He’s very similar to Jim Palmer. Mussina has two more wins & one more loss than Palmer. Both have a .638 winning percentage but Palmer’s ERA is .82 lower……HOWEVER – Mussina finished his career with 601 more strikeouts than Palmer. So there’s that. Don’t forget – Mussina (and Schilling for that matter) clearly pitched during the Age of [PED affected] hitters & pitchers…..in the AL East, no less.

    (2) Only five pitchers in the history of major league baseball have as many W’s as Mussina and a better winning percentage: Lefty Grove, Christy Mathewson, Grover Cleveland Alexander, Roger Clemens, and Randy Johnson. That’s pretty impressive to me.

    It was a tough choice, though. The 3,000+ strikeouts for Schilling is a GREAT achievement and places Curt in the Top 15 all-time, I believe. I harp on focusing on substance not flash & lore, but the whole “Bloody Sock” thing sure does make for a good tale. His post season dominance IS something to respect, too. And that pains me to say such a thing, being a Yankees fan!

    Tough, thought-provoking question, Brian. Great post!



  4. I’m not sure if the HOF magic numbers(300 Wins, 3,000 strikeouts etc) for pitchers can stay the same for pitchers considering how much the game has changed for pitchers.

    But If Blyleven can get in the HOF with winning 17 more games and losing 97 more games than Mussina, then Mussina definitely belongs in the HOF!! If Mussina pitched in any other era in baseball he’d easily have over 300 wins. If Blyleven pitched in the steroid era would he get in the HOF?

    I don’t think that Mussina and Schilling is the best argument.

    The best argument is who belongs in the HOF Schilling, Pedro Martinez or John Smoltz? Very similar numbers for each of them.

  5. I am going with Schilling, as well his stats are slightly better in the right areas. 3 world series’s titles, over 3,000 strikeout, more complete games and 20 game wins.

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