Hall Of Fame Debate: PICK ONE: Harold Baines OR Edgar Martinez
When the Hall of Fame made the announcement that their would be no modern players inducted into Cooperstown in 2013, I was not completely shocked. I had read enough to understand that the BWAA voters were not all on the same page and that they were still split on whether players linked to PEDs should be in our out of the Hall of Fame.
For me, the most alarming aspect of the vote was that certain players that I felt would easily get more votes than they did in prior years simply did not. From Tim Raines to Lee Smith to Alan Trammell, I thought that these ‘clean’ guys would benefit from the votes not given to the more prolific and stat-packed players.
But, that did not happen.
Two of the guys that I thought would get big bumps in voting were Edgar Martinez and Harold Baines. Both guys are supremely respected players, and are considered to be among the greatest designated hitters of all-time.
So, for this week’s debate, I thought I would put the two of them in a head-to-head battle for your vote.
I’m not saying that both deserve election. And I am not saying that neither of them do. What I am saying is, if you have to choose only one, which player’s resume stands out the most to you? Who would you vote into the Hall of Fame if you had to choose between Harold Baines and Edgar Martinez??
First, let’s look at their numbers:
Ok, when you look at these numbers, it shows that both players were supreme hitters. And they were both very good at their job.
But, which one is better?
Baines’ numbers are greater in many areas, but he also played for more seasons. Martinez’s career is more compacted in length, but he offered more production per year during his prime.
So, who gets the vote? Who gets your vote?
While Baines may have been the first, great full-time designated hitter, Edgar Martinez took the position to another level. My vote goes to Martinez. He won two batting titles and had a much higher on-base percentage than Baines. And as a professional hitter, those categories are very important. And during his prime years, he was driving in runs at a rampant pace. I also take into consideration the Silver Slugger awards – they are chosen by your peers, and with Martinez racking them up, it shows the respect that people had for his ability to do his job at the highest level.
And now that you have my vote, who ya got??