It’s time for the baseball Hall of Fame debates to begin. From now until the results are announced, FanIQ will be taking a look at this year’s major candidates. Up next: Alan Trammell
Alan Trammell played for 20 years, all with the Detroit Tigers. Considered one the best shortstops of his time, he led the Tigers to the 87 World Series title with an MVP caliber season.
Pros For Induction
In an era before shortstops became the big hitters they are today, Trammell hit .285 and slugged .415 for his career. 1231 runs scored, 1003 RBIs, 185 home runs, and 236 steals.
Playing in the shadow of one of the all time greats at shortstop in Cal Ripken, his OPS+ was 110 (Ripken's was only 112).
Finished top ten in MVP voting 3 times (2nd in 1987)
3 Silver Slugger Awards
6 All Star Appearance
4 Gold Glove Awards
Cons Against Induction
Many people see his offensive totals as low when compared to either today's shortstops or when compared to other hall of famers at other positions.
Voters who accept his offense as being great for the position will compare him to another contemporary in Ozzie Smith and note that his Trammell's defense while above average, was just that, only just above average and not great.
Like Andre Dawson, Alan Trammell is another player who would get my vote. Trammell was a good offensive hitter at a time when shortstops didn't hit. The problem two of the best, Ripken and Yount, played shortstop in the AL during Trammell's prime. And another great fielding shortstop, Tony Fernandez was playing in Toronto. But even with the competition Trammell went to 6 all-star games and won 4 gold gloves. For a guy considered to be more of a hitter, he still had a great glove. Ripken was the better hitter and he walked in the hall. Ozzie Smith was the better fielder and he walked into the hall. Trammell was a better fielder than Cal and a much better hitter than Smith, but he is punished for be well rounded. It seems that if he were more one-dimensional, he might have been elected already.
Ozzie played in 280 more games than Trammell, but had a lower batting average by 23 points, a lower on base percentage by 15 points, a lower slugging by 87 points, fewer doubles by 10, homers by 157, and RBIs by 210. Over those extra 280 games, Ozzie only scored 26 more runs.
But Ozzie won 13 gold gloves to Trammell's 4 and went to 15 All Star games to Trammell's 6. Ozzie Smith was clearly the better fielder, but Trammell wasn't bad. Ozzie was the flashy, popular player, heck, he got voted to the all star game his last 3 years as a part time player. The two are a lot closer to be being equal on the field than the hall of fame balloting indicates.
Will He Get In?
If he's got friends in the veteran's committee. He only appeared on 13.4% of the ballots last year, and I don't know of anyone making that big of a climb to get up to 75% even if takes all 15 years on the ballot.
Now it’s your turn. Discuss Trammell's candidacy in the comments, and be sure to vote in both his individual poll and Seth’s poll encompassing the entire ballot.