Hall Of Fame Has Long History Of Voting For Mediocre Players

button more charts
button chart prev
button chart next

While most focus on the lack of inductees in this year’s baseball Hall of Fame class, the most perplexing result was the single vote somebody cast for Aaron Sele. In a 15 year big league career, Sele was fantastically mediocre, going 148-112 with a 4.61 ERA and was named to a grand total of two all-star teams.

However, Sele is not that unusual. In just the last 20 years, there were 26 players with less impressive careers than Aaron Sele, who posted a career 17.5 Wins Above Replacement (WAR). The worst was Dante Bichette who received three votes in 2007 despite a career WAR of just 3.0 (for comparison, Mike Trout had a 10.7 WAR this year).

There can be a lot of reasons for voting for such mediocre players. Maybe the player was a friend of the writer. Maybe he helped the writer by showing up to a charity event or signing a lot of baseballs. Or maybe the writer just wanted to acknowledge a nice guy. But with 10 spots on the ballot, a vote for a mediocre player is not taking a vote away from a deserving player.

Here are the 26 players that received at least one Hall of Fame vote in the last 20 years with a career WAR less than 17.5 (number of votes in parentheses)…

Basbeball Hall of Fame voting

Data via Baseball-Reference.com. Catchers were omitted as WAR does not accurately reflect a catcher’s defensive ability.

NOW WATCH: Briefing videos

Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.