Kahrl: Hall of Fame already compromised by PEDs

From SABR member Christina Kahrl at ESPN.com on December 28, 2012:

The announcement of the 2013 Hall of Fame voting results is around the corner, and there’s sure to be plenty of teeth gnashing involved once they come out on January 9. We might be treated to the spectacle of purportedly clean players like Craig Biggio and Jack Morris voted in, while vastly superior players like Roger Clemens and Barry Bonds remain on the outside looking in. Is this a case of results may vary? No, my friends, make no mistake: Results will vary.

Particularly where purported performance-enhancers are concerned, you already know to expect plenty of slow news day moralizing and some character assassination when the results come out. For that kind of sports-page sermonizing you can thank the guidelines, such as they are. What constitutes a Hall of Fame ballplayer is an opaque mishmash: “Voting shall be based upon the player’s record, playing ability, integrity, sportsmanship, character, and contributions to the team(s) on which the player played.”

The first two are rough synonyms for what a guy did on the field, which we can measure fairly objectively thanks to Alexander Cartwright. In contrast, the next three are entirely subjective and depend on the individual voter’s sense — or flat-out guess — about these things and their importance; relative to the first two statistical bases for voting, they’re sort of apples to oranges. Sure, they might matter, but good luck on nailing down how much and to what extent; results will certainly vary from voter to voter. And that last suggested standard sort of sums of these two broad categories of criteria, which to stretch the metaphor must make it a pluot or something.

Read the full article here: http://espn.go.com/blog/sweetspot/post/_/id/31743/hall-of-fame-already-compromised-by-peds

Originally published: December 30, 2012. Last Updated: December 30, 2012.