Friday, November 20, 2015

#BYBHUB Change-Up: Is David Ortiz a HOFer? - The Yankees Perspective

I am excited to bring you this post and my case against David Ortiz making the Hall of Fame. Not because I’m a Red Sox hater, but truth be told I am, and not because I am a David Ortiz hater, respect can be had while still hating a player and I have both in my heart for Big Papi, but because we are doing something a little special here. Myself, along with Section 36 (a Red Sox blog that is listed on the BYB Hub), are syndicating these posts at the same time on both blogs so both sides of the argument can have both arguments in the same place at the same time. Maybe it will lead to more posting between blogs, maybe it won’t, but this is just the tip of the iceberg with what we have planned as far as interaction between the BYB Hub bloggers. I hope you enjoy my case, a Yankees side of the argument, against David Ortiz’s Hall of Fame case. Please keep all comments respectful, thank you.

Entering the 2016 season David Ortiz has the stats of few before him in Major League Baseball history. Ortiz has enjoyed one hell of a career, let’s call a spade a spade, for the Minnesota Twins and the Boston Red Sox including such milestones as breaking the Curse of the Bambino in 2004, winning another World Series in 2007 and yet another World Series in 2013 and many other statistical markers. You know the numbers so I won’t dwell on them much; 503 home runs, 1641 RBI, a career triple slash of .284/.378/.547 and for a long time he was one of the most feared hitters in all of Major League Baseball. Ortiz has been great and if you’re using the back of his baseball card alone the argument against his case into the Hall of Fame is not only pointless, it’s mundane. The problem for Ortiz, Major League Baseball and its fans is that players these days are judged on much more than that.

Me personally I have no issue with an accused steroid user getting into the Hall of Fame. Frankly I wouldn’t mind it if they all got in. At the time these steroids were not against the rules of Major League Baseball, they weren’t mentioned in a Collective Bargaining agreement and I don’t think they should be an issue as long as the steroid use stopped there. Should Alex Rodriguez be in the Hall of Fame? Hell no, not after Biogenesis, lying a second time and then going on a lawsuit rampage against the league, the union that represents him and his own family. Do I think Roger Clemens and Barry Bonds should be in? Absolutely and I continue to vote for them every single year on my Internet Baseball Writers Association of American (IBWAA) ballot. The problem here is I think it would be irresponsible to go on a case-by-case basis for Hall of Fame voting and I think it sets a nasty precedence that nobody wants to set. You either, again in my opinion, have to let everyone and anyone into the Hall of Fame that was even so much as linked to steroids during their playing career or none at all.

Looking at the Mitchell Report you see that 89 players were named in the report which basically showcased who did steroids and who failed the supposed anonymous test that they were promised back during the 2003 season. The list includes a few notable names and some names that will never have their names discussed in a Hall of Fame roundtable. That list includes Barry Bonds, Jason Giambi, Gary Sheffield, Kevin Brown, Roger Clemens, Lenny Dykstra, Eric Gagne, Jason Grimsley, Jerry Hairston Jr., David Justice, Chuck Knoblauch, Denny Neagle, Andy Pettitte, Brian Roberts, Dave Segui, Miguel Tejada, Mo Vaughn, Jose Canseco, and Rick Ankiel to name a few. One notable name not on the list was that of Ortiz or his teammate Manny Ramirez although both reportedly failed a drug test either in 2003 or later on in their careers. 

None of those players; not Bonds the all-time home run king, not Rafael Palmeiro who hit 500+ home runs but shook his finger in front of Congress vehemently denying his steroid use only to fail a drug test later that calendar year, not Roger Clemens who won 350 games and was acquitted of all charges related to perjury and steroid use and none of the other players mentioned got into the Hall. What makes Ortiz different or special? Because he “bought the damn things” at a GNC in the mall? Because he can take selfies with President Barack Obama and hugs Commissioner of Major League Baseball Bud Selig after winning the World Series? If you’re asking me, a full-fledged Yankees fan but a general baseball fan as well, I have to say nothing makes him special.

Look, if Clemens, Bonds, Sosa, McGwire, probably Gary Sheffield on this upcoming ballot and the slew of others that are being kept out of the Hall not because of their stats but because of their links or suspicions to steroids get in then 100% absolutely put Ortiz in. I’ll vote for him 10 times out of 10 and I’ll walk him in myself, he’s a special talent. I’m just fighting for an even and for a fair playing field here and if Ortiz gets in they should all get in. If they all can’t get in, because maybe they went to that same GNC… we’ll never know for sure, then Ortiz shouldn’t either. Those are my two cents anyway.

If this isn’t enough then someone explain to me why Ortiz should be in, basically a full-time DH for much of his career, and Edgar Martinez of the Seattle Mariners, another full-time DH, is not. Martinez is probably a better hitter than Ortiz according to the numbers and only managed to receive 27% of the vote in his sixth season on the ballot of 2015. If that’s not enough then you’re either a Boston fan or you haven’t been following the Hall of Fame votes and blogs I’ve been writing for the past two or three seasons anyway.

I want to thank Section 36 for allowing us to post this on his blog and for shooting over his side of the argument over for us to syndicate on ours. If you want to tweet or follow Section 36, and he truly is a great follow, then give @Section_36 a follow on Twitter. Also check out his blog HERE where this post is also live, all that I ask is that if you comment alongside his viewers and readers that you keep things respectful and on topic. This is all for fun and Section 36 is run by a man that I truly respect, thank you again and I look forward to your comments, comments from his readers and fans and from everyone on Twitter. Have a great day. 


  1. I am A Yankee Fan first and foremost, as with Daniel, talent is talent, but my vote against him is he was given special treatment as a hitter and only a one-way player. I know he was a good glove at 1st base, but he would make it as having been a DH over the majority of his career in Boston.

    This would be another one-way player to get into the HoF because he was a nice guy and the face of the team. His name was on the Mitchell Report and has had (it has been said) known use of PED's along with his buddy Manny but wasn't given tests like the other players.

    His style of hitting was to make the plate only 10" wide, the outside 10"! He stood on the batters box line and leaned over the plate giving the pitcher less than half the plate to throw the ball for a strike. A pitcher would miss the to the inner half of the plate, it was long gone. If it was a strike on the outer half of the plate it was a double or single (HR, sometimes) because he could still reach it and put good wood on it. At first, some of the pitchers would throw inside to him and (sometimes) hit him, getting tossed out of the game just for throwing a strike. With all that body armor, he could care less if you came inside on him because if you didn't hit him he would step back and put a charge into it. I think everyone knows, if you are in the Show, one can hit a fastball...right, well how is it possible for a right-handed pitcher to throw anything but a fastball to him? If one throws a curve he will let it hit him or if not inside enough to hit is in his wheelhouse and gone. Splitters and chang-ups would get him out...good ones!
    So, even though Ortiz is a great baseball talent and on that alone should be a shoe-in for the Hall. Forget about all the innuendos of PED use.

    I say Nay for the HoF...Only because he had the advantage of playing 1/3 of the games each year as the team's DH and didn't wear down as most other players did.

  2. And that's before you mention that according to adsvances metrics Edgar Martinez was a better hitter than Papi... And he isn't in. And Edgar didn't fail a steroid test in 2003.

    1. Damn, Daniel, you are good! You even correct your own misprints! LOL!

    2. The Yankee perspective was written by me, the Red Sox perspective was written by a friend of mine who has a blog and is a Red Sox fan.

    3. Ok, 50 lashes with a wet noodle, I should have known better! lol


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