Orioles Card "O" the Day

An intersection of two of my passions: baseball cards and the Baltimore Orioles. Updated daily?

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Vladimir Guerrero, 2011 Bowman #167

Yesterday the Baseball Hall of Fame announced its four newest inductees, as they revealed the results of the BBWAA ballot. Kudos are in order for one-time Orioles Vladimir Guerrero and Jim Thome, as well as Chipper Jones and Trevor Hoffman.

Vlad was certainly running on fumes by the time he arrived in Baltimore as a 36-year-old DH, and his 2011 season in Baltimore was pretty forgettable for team and player. But he still played in 145 games and rapped out a .290 average. He also eked out the last 13 of his 449 career home runs. I'm a little disappointed that he's chosen to wear an Angels cap on his plaque instead of the Expos, but I guess he enjoyed his time in Anaheim.

Jim Thome was an incredibly fun player to watch, a big, strapping guy with an aw-shucks demeanor who just hit the bejeezus out of the ball. When the O's acquired him for the second half of the 2012 season, it made a magical season that much more entertaining. It's a shame that a herniated disk limited him to 28 games as an Oriole (plus four postseason contests), but even at 41 he still held his own with a batting line of .257/.348/.396 in that limited stint. Like Guerrero, Thome ended his career in Charm City, mashing three taters to wind up with a total of 612, good for eighth all-time.

As for the other ex-O's on the 2018 ballot:

-Mike Mussina was frustratingly passed over again, but got closer than ever in his fifth year of eligibility. At 63.5% of the vote (up from 51.8% in 2017), he is on track to make it to that 75% cutoff in a year or two.

-Curt Schilling is farther off the pace, coming in at 51.2% in year six. If he ever stopped sharing his repugnant opinions, he might do a bit better.

-Sammy Sosa is barely hanging on, garnering just 33 votes on the 417 ballots cast. At 7.8% in his sixth try, he is in danger of falling below the 5% cutoff to remain on the ballot.

-Sadly, there were four one-and-done guys with Baltimore ties: Jamie Moyer, receiving ten votes (2.4%), didn't get much credit for his remarkable longevity and late-career renaissance. Also receiving a mere ten votes was Johan Santana, whose 2014 comeback bid with the Birds was snuffed out by an Achilles tear in rehab. Lastly, Kevin Millwood (4-16 for the 2011 O's) and Aubrey Huff (2008 Most Valuable Oriole and 2017 Least Valuable Tweeter) were both shut out completely. Such is baseball, such is life.


Commishbob said...

I had hopes for Moose this year. Hope he gets in next time. He can share the stage with Rivera and (hopefully) Edgar Martinez.

Aubrey Huff is an idiot. Schilling is beneath contempt.

Kevin said...

Bob - Yeah, I think Moose has momentum on his side. The electorate changes a bit every year, and more forward-thinking writers fill the ranks. As to Huff and Schilling, you're preaching to the choir.