Wednesday, January 14, 2009

WSBGM's Hall of Fame

It's Hall of Fame time. Rickey Henderson (my favorite player ever...) and Jim Rice got into the MLB Hall, so it's time to see who gets into the WSBGM's Hall of Fame.

Here is how our Hall of Fame works. Each year, Carson and I will nominate a few people (players, coaches, ballgirlz, etc.) that have had an impact on the blog. We'll put the nominations up for vote. If the person receives a certain percentage of the vote (which we will arbitrarily change every year to suit our needs), then he will be officially enshrined in the Hall of Fame, which will be less of a hall and more of a widget in the sidebar.

Some other rules that I'm making up right now: 1) a person can only be nominated three times 2) a person cannot be currently playing/coaching/working for the Phils to be nominated and 3) I reserve the right to make up more rules later.

So, here are this year's nominations, in alphabetical order.

David Bell - Oh God, did we hate David Bell. Most of the first year of this blog was spent pointing out all the negative aspects of David Bell's game. Our hate was complete...and completely out of proportion to his play. He wasn't that bad and suffered from injuries that hurt his numbers, but we weren't about to give him the benefit of the doubt or let facts get in the way of some good complaining. Carson once wrote, "If you like David Bell, then you might like Coldplay and gerbling." That pretty much sums it up.

Bell posts - HGH use.

Pat Burrell - Burrell is my favorite Phillie of all time, so this is a sentimental pick for me. But he has some WSBGM's Hall cred, too. Possibly no other player has been as analyzed and scrutinized as often and as severely as Pat Burrell. But his on-field performance is only part of what makes Pat Burrel fascinating. Homeruns made Burrell a favorite, but stories of womanizing, boozing, Marlboro smoking have made him a legend.

Burrell posts - There are soooooo many Burrell posts, I can't begin to narrow them down. Just search for Burrell on the blog search on the right toolbar if you are so inclined. You'll find posts marking the end of the Burrell era (two years ago...), posts touting him for an All-Star spot, and MVP award or the Triple Crown, and posts arguing that he should play more and play less. So, in lieu of specific posts, I'll put up a few of my favorite Burrell photos.

Steve Jeltz - Jeltz is not just another jheri-curled, light-hitting middle infielder, he is the embodiment of the Phillies that Carson and I grew up watching. Sure, Mike Schmidt was the face of the franchise, but Mike Schmidt was good. Hell, he was great. The Phillies were not, however. They sucked. But we loved them anyway. So when I think of the Phils of the late 80's and early 90's, I think of Juan Samuel's unorthodox throws to first, Von Hayes' batter's box spanning stance, and Rich Schu's mustache. I think of Steve Jeltz's jheri curl. So, when we decided to create an outlet for our 25 years of Phillies frustration, naturally the first player pictured was Steve Jeltz. And ever since, he's been our go-to guy.

Jeltz posts - The original. -- Pics of Jeltz

Abraham Nunez - When we weren't complaining about David Bell, we were complaining about Abe "No-hit" Nunez. The argument against Nunez was simple: he was never any good, the Phils gave him too much money, he was the worst hitter in all of baseball, and yet he continued to get playing time. I'm getting angry just reminiscing about Nunez.

Nunez posts - Nunez on roids -- Unspeakable.

Rick Schu - Just take the above paragraph about Steve Jeltz and replace "jheri curl" with "fu mancu." I would rather look at pictures of Rick Schu and his fu manchu 'stache than celebrity nip slips on And I love celebrity nip. Quite frankly, there is no better thing on the internet, and our blog is immeasurably better because of his facial hair. For this, he gets a nomination.

Schu posts - 2nd post ever. -- Celebrate the 'stache.

The poll is on the right sidebar. And like the other baseball Hall of Fame, you can vote for more than one person, but you can only vote once.



GM-Carson said...

Wow, that's a great ballot to kick off the WSBGM's Hall of Fame. I have to vote for Bell and No-Hit. I still hate Bell and as Corey suggested, our hate and anger cast his direction was a bit unwarranted. No-Hit still gets mentions throughout the season, so that is Hall worthy. Jeltz is awesome, gotta give him love too.

GM-Carson said...

Phils signed lefthanded reliever Jake Woods to a minor league deal. He's pitched for the Angels and Mariners, career stats: 8-5 in 84 games, 162.3 ip, 4.60 era, 1.57 whip. Not good, but not abysmal either. Amaro may not have acquired a lot of talent to help out the Phils roster on a daily basis, but he sure did get a great roster for the Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs.

Matt said...

Nunez looks like he needs to tan with his shirt off more often.

I voted for Burrell and Jeltz. For pretty much all the same reasons. As a guy in his mid 30s, I have a stack of Steve Jeltz cards. The number of dupes alone is staggering.

goDuke said...

The Bat must get in!

GM-Carson said...

Burrell is almost a lock, but I truly can't believe more people aren't voting for Bell and Nunez. They deserve the "honor" after the amount of abuse they took on here.

GM-Carson said...

MLBTR has the Phils "keeping tabs" on Chad Cordero and Eric Milton. Cordero is worth a minor league flyer, because if healthy he could be a helluva setup man. Milton if healthy may be able to hold down the 5th spot in the rotation. Once again, on minor league deals only would I approve.

Andrew said...

I almost vomited when I read the Eric Milton line... Cordero, sure, he's worth a spot anyday. But Eric Milton just needs to retire and go away already!

furiousBall said...

i went with the bat and jeltz too, bell and nunez were on the fence for me, unfortunately it wasn't their head on a pike on the fence to ward off any other future philly asshats

GM-Carson said...

From Jayson Stark's piece on arbitration:

Meet the man responsible for all this. Howard has made only one trip through the arbitration jungle. But he walked away last year with the most landscape-altering arbitration payout of all time.

[+] EnlargeRyan Howard
Joel Auerbach/US PresswireRyan Howard was smiling after last year's arbitration ruling: He picked up a record $10 million.
He had just two-plus seasons of service time behind him back then. But he won his case and got a historic $10 million paycheck out of it. And the next sound you heard was salary structures crumbling all around baseball.

Now Howard is back for another round. And the first big mystery is: What salary will he file for? We've heard estimates ranging from $15 million to $17 million -- for a player with three-plus seasons in the big leagues. Can you spell "cha-ching"?

Next question: What are the odds the Phillies can sign him, even for a year, without a hearing? And the answer, from virtually everyone who knows Howard and his family well, is simple: None. Zero.

Howard's salary demands are being driven, in part, by his father's belief that he is an unprecedented player who should collect unprecedented paychecks. So the Phillies have never come close to signing him to ANY contract, one-year or multi-year, at any point since he reached the big leagues. And while they would never say this out loud, they practically are resigned to the reality that they never will.

So that's where the drama mounts. If that's the case, how long will he stick around Philadelphia? And that answer easily could be: maybe only one more year.

Clubs that have spoken to the Phillies are convinced that they were gearing up this past summer to start exploring a Howard trade as early as this winter. Then they went and won the World Series. So there went that plan.

But what if the 2009 season has a different sort of ending -- and Howard looks as unsignable as ever? Then get ready next winter for a barrage of Howard trade rumors, because the Phillies will have no choice but to start listening, with this guy suddenly two years from free agency.

Nevertheless, the Phillies haven't ruled out Plan B: Hang onto Howard through 2011 (when he'll be 32), hope they win again and then let him walk and collect his A-Rod contract elsewhere.

"It really wouldn't shock me if that's what they end up doing because of the age, because of the limitations defensively and because of the way his body's going," one general manager said. "With all that in play, I'm not sure they'll get the kind of value for him they'd feel they have to get to move him."


Meet the co-star of the Phillies' arbitration soap opera. Like Howard, Hamels has had trouble negotiating deals in his pre-arbitration years. Like Howard, Hamels erupted into stardom just before his first arbitration year arrived. And now, like Howard, he'll be looking for record dollars.

[+] EnlargeCole Hamels
Chris O'Meara/Pool Photo/US PresswireCole Hamels is about to find out what a World Series MVP translates to in arbitration.
It won't be $10 million, because Hamels is working off the starting-pitcher pay scale, not the MVP slugger pay scale. But the buzz is Hamels' request could top $5 million -- based on the $4.6 million Chien-Ming Wang asked for last year as a first-timer in arbitration.

Wang lost his case and wound up with $4 million. But Hamels is coming off an ace-caliber season and a spectacular October for a team that won the World Series. So his leverage is off the charts.

But Hamels also appears less likely than Howard to push his negotiations all the way to a hearing. So this case has a good shot at a short-term resolution. The larger question, though, is: Can the Phillies sign this man for the long haul? And people we've surveyed in the industry are divided on that.

One National League GM said, "If it were me, I would sign him. I wouldn't go beyond four years, but it's so hard to find top-of-the-rotation starters. And he clearly defined last year that that's what he is."

But the other side is this: The Phillies haven't guaranteed a contract or extension longer than three years for any starting pitcher in more than a decade. They wouldn't do it for Curt Schilling. They wouldn't do it for Brett Myers. And with Hamels not eligible for free agency until 2012, they're not likely to take that step now, either.

If they wait, however, the landscape for No. 1 starters who reach free agency now has been stretched to seven years by Sabathia and to six by Johan Santana. So if Hamels just keeps doing what he's doing, the Phillies are going to have to make a radical philosophical shift or start contemplating trading both Howard and Hamels. Yikes.

"That team," one AL executive said, "is about to walk through a mine field."

Lake Fred said...

Why isn't Abreu on the ballot? He got as much flack as Bell, Burrell and Nunez. I'm sorry, Jeltz doesn't belong on the list.

GM-Carson said...

Jeltz was the first ever Phillie featured on WSBGM's, reason enough to be on the ballot in my opinion. Abreu is one of my favorite Phils, but Corey didn't like him much.

GM-Carson said...

Phils also signed Pablo Ozuna and Jorge Velandia to minor league deals with invites to spring training.

Bob D said...

With Nunez and Bell on the ballot you should have included Ed Wade.

Burrell gets my vote, Jeltz is the only other one worthy. Nunez I hated too much to consider.