Jul 3, 2013; Boston, MA, USA; Boston Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia (15) hits a double off the green monster during the eighth inning against the San Diego Padres at Fenway Park. Mandatory Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

Who Will Be Next for the Great Hall of Fame?

Deep in New York State there is a tiny, tiny town situated literally in the middle of nowhere. The words “historic”, “quaint”, and “charming” are frequently used to describe it. There is one signal light on Main Street. This town, Cooperstown, is home to the Baseball Hall of Fame.

The Hall was built, in 1936, in Cooperstown because that’s where Abner Doubleday “invented” the game. There are, of course, always disagreements about who invented something and baseball is no exception. The thing that is surprising is that the town has not grown up around the Hall. It’s still a town that pretty much consists of a Main street and not much else. There are hotels and restaurants, naturally. But they are sprinkled along Lake Otsego on route 80, not clustered together with strip malls and busy intersections.

The Baseball Hall of Fame itself isn’t large, but it’s packed with plaques, photos, and baseball artifacts. There aren’t a lot of “interactive” exhibits. There isn’t a petting zoo or an amusement park. The Hall is best enjoyed at a slow and steady pace. It’s no coincidence that this is how the game of baseball is best enjoyed. There’s no rush. There is only the joy and reverence for the great game.

The heart of the HOF is the Plaque Gallery which is a long hallway lined with the plaques of the men, and women, who have been inducted into the hall. Visitors are not held back by ropes. They can, and frequently do, touch the brass plaques. You can’t help but notice that some players’ faces have been shined by admiring hands more than others. There are players who have the numbers the prove they deserve to be in the Hall. And then there are the fan favorites who inspire more than just appreciation; they inspire adoration.

This made me wonder: are any of the current Sox players destined for the Hall of Fame? If he can get healthy again, will Clay Buchholz be Hall of Fame bound? John Lackey has been having a renaissance season. Will he continue in this direction and eventually erase his years of struggle enough to be in HOF? David Ortiz holds so many records as a designated hitter. Will this be enough to get him in The Hall someday? Dustin Pedroia is a fan favorite, a great hitter, a two-time Gold Glove winner, and a “scrappy” player who is fun to watch. Will his plaque be one that fans keep shiny with loving hands?

Only time will tell.

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Tags: Boston Red Sox Hall Of Fame

  • John Fahrer

    If Ortiz can surpass 450 HR and 1500 RBIs by the end of next season, he does have a legit case for the HOF. Pedroia’s on a good pace, but still a really long ways away. If he can reach 3000 hits, it’ll punch his ticket in.

    Buchholz and Lackey? Very doubtful given both guys’ current ages combined with the injuries they’ve had.

  • Rick M

    The first three HOF classes should be the standard but there are a lot of very good players in the hall and not great ones.

    • John Fahrer

      Very true though first ballot is usually reserved for the very elite from respective eras. Bert Blyleven had to wait awhile thanks to having played for some really bad teams over his career. Had he played on a few more contenders, he would’ve had over 300 wins and at least one Cy Young.

      He retired as the third all-time leader in strikeouts and has since been surpassed by Clemens and RJ.

      300 wins, solid ERA, 3,000 Ks, and/or one or few Cy Youngs is the standard for HOF SP. Big reason why I laugh at the Andy Pettitte HOF advocates. The guy’s career ERA is near four, he never won a Cy Young, and hasn’t reached either milestone (3,000 Ks, 300 wins) despite never playing on a losing team. Put him on some of those teams Blyleven played for and he has a good 30-50 less wins and probably 30-40 more losses.

      Granted people can make the same argument when referring to Tom Glavine and John Smoltz. But at least both of those guys won the Cy Young, Glavine got to 300 wins, and Smoltz eclipsed 3,000 strikeouts and also had a nice few seasons as a closer.