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Veterans Committee Hall of Fame ballot has a number of strong candidates

The Hall of Fame Veterans Ballot results will be announced December 8. Let's review the candidates and see if anyone nominated is deserving.

Malcolm Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Last week Jason reviewed the overcrowded BBWAA ballot for this year's Hall of Fame class. But there is a second vote upcoming as well, the Hall of Fame Veterans Ballot.

This was once known as the Veteran's Committee, but this process was changed from that previous incarnation back in 2010. The process is now split into a three eras: The Pre-Integration Cycle (pre-1947); The Golden Era (1947-1972); and The Expansion Era (1973-present). Each era is voted upon triennially by a 16-person panel, with 12 votes (75%) needed for election.

The initial foray into this new system was the Golden Era in 2011, with the Pre-Integration in 2012 and Expansion in 2013. Now it is the Golden Era's turn again. In 2011, only Ron Santo received enough votes (15) to reach the hallowed Hall. Jim Kaat received 10 votes, while Gil Hodges and Minnie Minoso got 9, and Tony Oliva 8. Buzzie Bavasi, Ken Boyer, Charlie Finley, Allie Reynolds and Luis Tiant each received 3 votes.

This year's nominees were announced on October 30, to little fanfare: Dick Allen, Ken Boyer, Gil Hodges, Bob Howsam, Jim Kaat, Minnie Minoso, Tony Oliva, Billy Pierce, Luis Tiant and Maury Wills.

This year's voting committee: Jim Bunning, Rod Carew, Ferguson Jenkins, Al Kaline, Joe Morgan, Ozzie Smith and Don Sutton; baseball executives Jim Frey, Pat Gillick, David Glass, Roland Hemond and Bob Watson; and veteran media members Steve Hirdt, Dick Kaegel, Phil Pepe and Tracy Ringolsby.


Dick Allen: First Base, Third Base, Outfield, 1963-1977

Allen played 15 years, nine with the Phillies. He was rookie of the Year in 1964, MVP in 1972 with the White Sox and a seven time All Star. He has a career slash of 292/378/534, good enough for a 156 OPS+. He hit 351 homers, drove in 1119 and has a career 58.7 bWAR and 61.3 fWAR.

Ken Boyer: Third Base, 1955-1969

Boyer also played 15 years, eleven with the Cardinals. He was the MVP in 1964, was an All Star seven times and notched five Gold Gloves. He has a career slash of 287/349/462, good enough for a 119 OPS+. He hit 282 homers, drove in 1001 and has a career 58.0 bWAR and 54.8 fWAR.

Gil Hodges: First Base, 1943-1963

Hodges played 18 years, sixteen with the Dodgers. He was an eight time All Star and netted three Gold Gloves. He has a career slash of 273/359/487, good enough for a 120 OPS+. He hit 370 homers, drove in 1274 and has a career 44.9 bWAR and 42.1 fWAR.

Bob Howsam: Executive, 1964-1984

Howsam was GM of the Cardinals from 1964-1966, and of the Reds from 1967-78 and 1983-1984. The Cardinals won the World Series in 1964 and played in the Series in 1967 and 1968 right after he left, and was the architect of the Big Red Machine, who split in four World Series appearances during his tenure.

Jim Kaat: Starting Pitcher, 1959-1983

Kaat pitched in an incredible 25 seasons, 15 with the Twins. He made three All Star teams, and finished with 16 (!) Gold Gloves. He was durable enough to pitch in 898 games and start 625. He finished with a 283-237 record, a 3.45 ERA and 108 ERA+. He had three 20-win seasons and pitched 180 complete games. His bWAR is 45.3; his fWAR is 69.4.

Minnie Minoso: Left Field, 1949-1964, 1976, 1980

Minoso is credited with 17 seasons, but really only should be credited with 15 as the 1976 and 1980 appearances were strictly publicity stunts at the ages of 50 and 54. He played parts of four seasons with the Tribe, but is really a White Sox guy, with 10 seasons in Chicago. He was seven time All Star and had three Gold Gloves. He has a career slash of 298/389/459, good for a 130 OPS+. He hit 186 homers, drove in 1023 and totaled 50.1 bWAR and 50.8 fWAR.

Tony Oliva: Right Field, 1962-1976

A lifetime Twin, he played 15 seasons in the Twin cities. He was Rookie of the Year in 1964, was an All Star eight times and had one Gold Glove. He has a career slash of 304/353/476, good enough for a 131 OPS+. He hit 220 homers, drove in 947 and has a career 43.0 bWAR and 40.7 fWAR.

Billy Pierce: Starting Pitcher, 1945-1964

Pierce played in parts of 18 seasons, thirteen with the White Sox. He was named to seven All Star teams. He finished with a 211-169 record, 3.27 ERA (119 ERA+), made 586 appearances, and started 433 games with 193 complete games. He had twenty wins in 1956 and 1957 and led the AL in ERA in 1955 with a 1.97 ERA (200 ERA+). His bWAR is 53.1; his fWAR is 54.7.

Luis Tiant: Starting Pitcher, 1964-1982

Tiant started with the Tribe and stayed with Cleveland for six years. He is better known nationally for his eight seasons in Boston. He made three All Star squads, lead the AL in ERA twice, including an incredible 1.60 in the pitcher's year, 1968. He finished with a 229-172 record, 3.30 ERA (114 ERA+), made 573 appearances, starting 484 games with 187 complete games. He had four 20-win seasons. His bWAR is 66.1; his fWAR is 53.9.

Maury Wills: Shortstop, 1959-1972

Wills played parts of 14 seasons, twelve with the Dodgers. He was MVP in 1962, made five All Star teams and two Gold Gloves. He led the NL in steals for six straight seasons (1960-1965). He has a career slash of 281/330/331, good enough for a 88 OPS+. He has 586 career steals and a career 39.5 bWAR and 35.7 fWAR.



When the announcement is made on December 8, I expect Kaat to get in as he was pretty close last time, but I think he has all the WAR from the extra longevity. I'd love to pull for both the LGFT, Minoso and Tiant, but if I had a vote I'd probably pick Allen and Howsam.

Who would you choose?