After his biggest jump yet last year, the Mariners' legendary DH has two more years left on the ballot to make it into the Baseball Hall of Fame. Keep up with his progress as ballots are released here.
Update: The results are in, but Edgar Martinez is not. He received 297 of the 422 total votes cast, for 70.4 percent, falling short of the 75 percent needed for election to the Hall. Read more.
Below are his vote totals prior to the announcement. Here’s Larry Stone on why 2019 is looking up for Edgar.
As Edgar Martinez continues his quest for 75 percent and election to the Baseball Hall of Fame, keep coming back here for updates as he makes his biggest strides yet.
With two years left on the ballot, Martinez will need to gain another 17 percentage points to put him over the hump. He fell short last year, receiving 58.6 percent of the vote. That, however, marked a jump of more than 15 percentage points and his biggest since being on the ballot. There were 442 ballots filed last year. Assuming the same or similar number, Martinez would effectively need to gain another 73 votes on top of those he already had.
Do temper any expectations from numbers shown here, as vote totals tend to drop from non-public ballots. In 2017, Martinez appeared on 164 of 250 ballots made public (65.6 percent) but ultimately finished with 58.6 percent. In 2016, Martinez appeared on 47.1 percent of public ballots but received nearly 4 percent fewer actual votes.
The Hall of Fame Class of 2018 will be announced at 3 p.m. on Jan. 24, 2018, televised on MLB Network.
Below is live total of the ballots released thus far that will continue to update.
Total votes: 192
Total ballots: 248
vs. 2017: +25 votes
Darker shade=vote gained or lost
“The more you delve into Martinez’s statistics, the more impressive they become, across the board. He has virtually the same career WAR (68.3) as Tony Gwynn, who no one would ever argue is not a Hall of Famer. Another gem from [Ryan] Spaeder: Martinez would have to return to the majors as a DH and go 0 for 660 and never draw a walk or get hit by a pitch to have a worse career on-base percentage than Gwynn.”
“The first name I checked on my ballot. Because of covering Martinez’s hope for induction, I’ve seen so many different numbers and comparisons to know that he’s a Hall of Famer. Also being born and raised in the era of the designated hitter, I don’t have the perceived stigma about the positions that others do. And if you think David Ortiz is a Hall of Famer and yet don’t believe Edgar is also worthy, then I just can’t help you. One of my favorite stats: “Among players with at least 6,000 career plate appearances, only six have bested each leg of Edgar’s career slash line: Lou Gehrig, Rogers Hornsby, Jimmie Foxx, Babe Ruth, Joey Votto and Ted Williams.”
“I’ve compared Martinez to the Hall’s third basemen, corner infielders and hitters in general, mainly because when properly used, JAWS is a tool used to build an argument, not answer a simple yes/no question. Within its positional adjustments, which account for the differing degrees of difficulty along the defensive spectrum, the Wins Above Replacement system levies in a substantial penalty for not playing the field. But even with that penalty incorporated into his annual WAR and even after he got such a late start (his first season playing at least 100 games didn’t come until age 27), Martinez measures up as valuable enough to merit a bronze plaque. A two-time batting champion and a seven-time All-Star, he posted eye-opening numbers even in an era full of them and created enough value even while riding the pine between trips to the plate to score better than many of the current ballot’s more celebrated position players.”
“Edgar Martinez won two batting titles and drove in 100-plus runs six times in his career. I left him off my ballot last year because no voter can vote for more than 10 players and I thought there were more than 10 worthy candidates. That’s not the case this year so I’m putting him back on my ballot.”
“I admit it. My Hall of Fame ballot stinks. … He made my ballot last year for the first time, and if I had room, would have made it again. Some of the stats pointed out by Ryan Spaeder are pretty compelling. And if I’d had room I would have voted for him. But it came down to Rolen, Bonds and Martinez for the final spots, and with all sorts of conflicting thoughts. He is one of the greatest hitters of his era, no doubt about it, but a combination of limited innings in the field and lifetime totals that were less than overwhelming when compared to other Hall of Famers whose candidacy is based mostly on their hitting exploits kept him off the ballot this time.”
“I was thinking of Martinez as I drove to the post office to drop off my Hall of Fame ballot on Dec. 21. I’d never voted for Martinez in past years and thought hard about changing my mind on this vote after studying his career stats a couple more times. Being ranked 21st all-time in on-base percentage is pretty impressive, as is his .312 career average. Ultimately, I stuck with what my gut was telling me: Martinez’s career, by my judgment, falls into the very good category, and thus, like past years, he remained a near miss for my vote. Because Martinez always has been a borderline guy for me, I’ll be happy for Martinez if and when he gets in. And 2018, his ninth year on the ballot out of a possible 10, probably will be the year.”
“We have a distinctly different version of what Edgar Martinez was because, in my mind, he was without question the most respected hitter—right-handed for sure—in the American League for that 10-year period or so … I think he was an extremely dangerous hitter.”
“He was the third best player on his team, which wasn’t his fault necessarily. He’s playing on a team with Ken Griffey Jr. and Alex Rodriguez. No one ever said, “Oh, Edgar’s coming to town. I gotta go to that series this weekend.” He’s just not that kind of hitter. I thought he’s a little bit short on power numbers. I don’t hold the DH thing against any hitter, whether that’s David Ortiz or Vladimir Guerrero or Edgar, that doesn’t bother me … I’m close to cracking on Edgar and I know I’ve only got one year left.”