I meant to add this to the last post but forgot. It's a list of who will be eligible for induction in the upcoming Hall of Fame elections. The list of all eligible candidates is usually narrowed down to whomever has an outside shot at the Hall; this is what gets voted on. Here, then, is a list of all remotely reasonable candidates for Hall induction, by year of eligibility:
This coming election is interesting, because I don't think any of these candidates will be inducted. The only one I'd vote for is Will Clark, but he'll never make it. I guess Gooden and Hershiser will get the biggest nibble from the voters, but nothing like 50%. Because of this, I think 2005 will be the year some candidates from the past get in. Judging from recent voting, Ron Santo, Gil Hodges, Jim Rice, Bruce Sutter, and Andre Dawson would be the most likely candidates. They'll elect somebody, because the city of Cooperstown would be very mad if they didn't.
Cal Ripken, Jr.
Ripken will get a monstrous percentage of the vote, and Gwynn won't be far behind him. We'll just have to see about McGwire; I don't think he'll make the first ballot the way people feel about him now, although the good news is that Palmeiro has replaced him as whipping boy of the media. Baines and O'Neill will get a good nibble, but they won't be inducted. Canseco? HA! My vote would go to Gwynn, Ripken, and McGwire, and I'd take a close look at Tony Fernandez.
Good news for Tim Raines after all! There's no one here who'll get any sort of support, leaving Raines as the best candidate in the field! And unless the voters just decide to elect some old faces like Rice or Dawson, Raines stands a fair chance of getting inducted!
I think Rickey will get in here, unless he succeeds in making a comeback to baseball. Grace has an outside shot, but I don't agree with that. Orosco's the only one who stands a chance, and that's highly unlikely.
2009 (tentative): Edgar Martinez, Barry Larkin
2010 (tentative): Larry Walker?