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Was Joe Gordon's HOF election in '08/''09 Controversial.

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  • Was Joe Gordon's HOF election in '08/''09 Controversial.

    Even though I've been a baseball-fever member since 2006 here's one topic that escaped my notice at the time (December 2008). Was the election of Joe Gordon in 12/08, for Cooperstown induction in the Class of 2009 the following July, considered controversial?
    He was held in high esteem by his peers but he falls below HOF career statistics standards by a fairly large margin.
    Gordon was an 8-time all-star. He was in the top 10 in MVP voting five times, and won the American League MVP award for 1942.
    He reached 20 home runs seven times and 30 home runs twice, hitting 253 home runs overall in a career that was interrupted by World War Two military service. However he hit .300 only once and he hit only .268 for his career. He failed to average a hit per game with 1515 hits in 1533 career games. Even if you add projected totals for the two seasons he lost to the military - Gordon was not on pace for a 2000 games or 2000 hits career. (although he might have reached 300 home runs if he had played in 1944 & 1945). Even though he was elected 30 years after his death and almost 60 years after his playing career ended there are some who I'm sure would say he wasn't worthy of election at all.
    Refresh my memory. Was there many objections raised over his election? What is your personal opinion of Gordon's
    Hall-Worthiness?

  • #2
    Career milestones are nice, but not necessary for election. Gordon was one of the best second basemen of his generation. WWII also put a damper on his career a bit. Gordon is borderline, but one the VC got right. Prior to his election, his name frequently came up here as one of the best players not in the HOF.

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    • #3
      Most statheads felt Gordon was a reasonable selection based on peak value.
      Buck O'Neil: The Monarch of Baseball

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      • #4
        I always thought he was on the "not quite" range for me, and I was surprised that when he was elected almost everyone on Fever thought he was a good choice. I've changed my view. I appreciate defense more, and also the lost seasons. If he were not in the hall of fame he would be one of the 3 best eligible guys not in (along with Bagwell and Dahlen who are the only eligible "no brainers" for me). He may have been as good a fielder as Mazeroski, and he might be the 7h best hitting second baseman (while MAZ is only about an average hitting second sacker).

        Bobby Grich is probably a sabermetric clone though who is only not in because he put up his stats in a lower offensive time period.
        Last edited by brett; 05-11-2012, 07:16 AM.

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        • #5
          Once Doerr got in it was hard to not put in Gordon.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by PVNICK View Post
            Once Doerr got in it was hard to not put in Gordon.
            That is true.Doerr,a right-hand hitter,had the benefit of hitting in Fenway.Gordon,also right-handed,had to contend with Yankee Stadium.Doerr hit (per 154 game seasonal average).261 with 13 homers and 85 rbi in road games.Gordon hit .279 with 26 homers and 104 rbi in road games.Gordon was a Sporting News All-Star 6 times,Doerr only twice.Gordon had a total of 525 MVP points,while Doerr had 316.I got this information from Bill James`book,The Politics Of Glory.Doerr was a great fielder,but Gordon was not exactly chopped liver with the leather.(Doerr has a 13.4 dWar-Gordon has a 22.4 dWar).IMO Gordon should have gone into the HOF long before Doerr.
            Last edited by Nimrod; 05-11-2012, 08:20 AM.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by PVNICK View Post
              Once Doerr got in it was hard to not put in Gordon.
              Since Doerr got in 22 years earlier it seems it was. Gordon is a much better candidate in my view and a better fielder.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Nimrod View Post
                That is true.Doerr,a right-hand hitter,had the benefit of hitting in Fenway.Gordon,also right-handed,had to contend with Yankee Stadium.
                Gordon's home parkfor the last four years of his career was Cleveland's Municipal Stadium and it wasn't exactly easy to reach the seats there either.

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                • #9
                  Gordon's election was only questioned by those disinclined to give him war credit.

                  We did a project, The Ultimate Quest for Candidates in 2007-08. In the final poll, Gordon was voted the 14th best player from MLB that the Hall should elect.

                  We also produced a list of The Top 100 MLB Player HOF Candidates. Off of that list the Hall has elected Rice, Gordon, Dawson, Blyleven and Santo. Also since then, many certain top 100 candidates have become newly eligible: Jeff Bagwell, Edgar Martinez, Rafael Palmeiro, Larry Walker, Kevin Brown, Fred McGriff, John Olerud, Bernie Williams, and Robin Ventura. Pehaps also Kevin Appier, John Franco, Ellis Burks and Juan Gonzalez.

                  Perhaps we need to redo that project.
                  Si quaeris peninsulam amoenam, circumspice.

                  Comprehensive Reform for the Veterans Committee -- Fixing the Hall continued.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by brett View Post
                    Since Doerr got in 22 years earlier it seems it was. Gordon is a much better candidate in my view and a better fielder.
                    Oh my. Was it really that long ago that Doerr got in. Either time flies or I'm getting old.

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                    • #11
                      Some sabermetricaly inclined did not like the election. But Sean Smith's WAR went mainstream shortly after (or around the same time) and was very favorable to Gordan's peak (54 WAR in 11 years is enough even without WW2 credit) , and most of the detractors went quite. I for one, was always in favor of his election.
                      Last edited by Bothrops Atrox; 05-11-2012, 08:51 AM.
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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by philliesfiend55 View Post
                        Gordon's home parkfor the last four years of his career was Cleveland's Municipal Stadium and it wasn't exactly easy to reach the seats there either.
                        Good point.I also noticed that Gordon missed 2 years due to military service.Doerr one year.Doerr was a fine player,but not Gordon`s equal.I think "Teddy Ballgame" had a little to do with getting Doerr in HOF,much like Musial did for another fine Second Baseman,Red Schoendienst,who was also not the equal of Gordon.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Nimrod View Post
                          Good point.I also noticed that Gordon missed 2 years due to military service.Doerr one year.Doerr was a fine player,but not Gordon`s equal.I think "Teddy Ballgame" had a little to do with getting Doerr in HOF,much like Musial did for another fine Second Baseman,Red Schoendienst,who was also not the equal of Gordon.
                          Doerr also GOT to play in a depleted league in '43 and '44.

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                          • #14
                            Gordon belongs, surprised it took so long to put him in. He was hurt by his homeparks as compared to Doerr.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by philliesfiend55 View Post
                              Even though I've been a baseball-fever member since 2006 here's one topic that escaped my notice at the time (December 2008). Was the election of Joe Gordon in 12/08, for Cooperstown induction in the Class of 2009 the following July, considered controversial?
                              He was held in high esteem by his peers but he falls below HOF career statistics standards by a fairly large margin.
                              Gordon was an 8-time all-star. He was in the top 10 in MVP voting five times, and won the American League MVP award for 1942.
                              He reached 20 home runs seven times and 30 home runs twice, hitting 253 home runs overall in a career that was interrupted by World War Two military service. However he hit .300 only once and he hit only .268 for his career. He failed to average a hit per game with 1515 hits in 1533 career games. Even if you add projected totals for the two seasons he lost to the military - Gordon was not on pace for a 2000 games or 2000 hits career. (although he might have reached 300 home runs if he had played in 1944 & 1945). Even though he was elected 30 years after his death and almost 60 years after his playing career ended there are some who I'm sure would say he wasn't worthy of election at all.
                              Refresh my memory. Was there many objections raised over his election? What is your personal opinion of Gordon's
                              Hall-Worthiness?
                              I didn't know that there were HOF statisical standards. Please enlighten me? I thought that voters had their own individual standards and therefore the voting was subjective.

                              As for Gordon, he was somewhat of a reach, but not a disgrace to the hall.
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                              #5 in games played as a Giant with 1721 , Bill Terry

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