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A brief follow-up on last night's Sosa post

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Wow. Didn't expect as much as a response as last night's post got (particularly on a Saturday night in a holiday weekend). And there's some discussion on the post over at BTF, in case you are interested.

A couple of things I wanted to clarify...

  1. One of the posters at BTF was critical of me for not clarifying whether I'm a "large hall" or "small hall" proponent (with another poster predicting I've never heard of those terms). I tend a little more towards the "small hall," although in this case, I'm just trying to evaluate whether Sosa deserves to be in, based on his performance compared to the performance of the HOFers the BBWAA has voted in, and the top candidates who have been excluded.
  2. There were numerous criticisms of the Keltner Test, and in particular, the subjective nature of several categories and the difficulty in attaining certain of the goals set out in the test. I don't disagree with those criticisms...however, as I mentioned last night, this is simply the first in a multi-part series looking at Sosa's qualifications, and I felt it was a useful jumping off point for the first post.
  3. There were several posts along the lines of, "He has 600 homers. He's getting in." Again, my objective is not to guess what the BBWAA will do, but evaluate whether he deserves to be in.
  4. How do I determine whether a player deserves to be in? I look at how good the player was, throughout his career, and compare him to those that the BBWAA has inducted and the top candidates who have been denied induction. I'm not concerned about milestones or other artificial benchmarks that have significance solely because of our adoption of a base ten numeral system...if Player X would be in the bottom of the BBWAA electees, and there are more deserving candidates on the outside looking in, then (as far as I'm concerned) he shouldn't be elected.
  5. My point isn't (and isn't intended to be) groundbreaking...Jay Jaffe touched on the shakiness of Sosa's HOF case earlier this summer. I'm just walking through in more detail all the evidence.
  6. I am borrowing Jaffe's notion of focusing on the BBWAA inductees in weighing whether players should be elected, given how the Veteran's Committee selections have tended to water down the quality of the Hall.
Anyway...I expect to have Part II up sometime tomorrow, I think...