Box-Toppers top two “all-time” players were elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame Tuesday in a field of four new inductees.
Pitchers Randy Johnson and Pedro Martinez—number one and number two respectively in Box-Toppers points (since record keeping began in 1995)—will be joined in July’s induction ceremony by pitcher John Smoltz and second baseman Craig Biggio.
Johnson, Martinez and Smoltz, who were each in their first year of eligibility and Biggio, who was in his third, all were voted for induction into the hall by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America. Players needed to be named on at least 75 percent of the ballots and each of the 549 voters could select 10 players.
All four inductees (and in fact, most of the eligible hall candidates) have careers that began before Box-Toppers record keeping started in 1995. Yet all four still rank among Box-Toppers best players.
Johnson leads all players with 278.8 Box-Toppers points. He holds the record for most Box-Toppers points in a single season—33.7—which he did twice with the Diamondbacks in 2000 and 2002. He also has three other seasons with 25.0 or more Box-Toppers points:
• 1999—31.5 Box-Toppers points.
• 1998—26.4, with both the Mariners and Astros.
Only 20 times in the past 20 years has a player earned more than 25.0 Box-Toppers points in a season. Johnson has done it five of those 20 times.
Martinez is ranked second among all players in Box-Toppers points since record keeping began in 1995—he has 244.8 points. While he has four of the best single seasons in Box-Toppers history, he never led all players in Box-Toppers points in a single season, often finishing behind Johnson, as he did in Tuesday’s voting. His best years:
• 2000—33.5 Box-Toppers points with the Red Sox. The third-best single-season total, but he finished 0.2 behind Johnson.
• 1999—31.4. But he finished 0.1 behind Johnson.
• 2002—28.8. But Johnson bested him with 33.7.
• 1997—26.7 with the Expos. That year, Martinez finished behind Roger Clemens, then of the Blue Jays, who had 27.4.
Smoltz is ranked 11th among all players in Box-Toppers rankings with 160.9 Box-Toppers points. He ranks eighth among all pitchers. His best season was 1996 when he led all players with 26.1 Box-Toppers points.
Smoltz did not pitch in 2000, recovering from Tommy John surgery, and eventually returned in 2001 as a closing pitcher, his primary role for four seasons, before returning to the starting rotation in 2005.
Biggio is ranked eighth in Box-Toppers points among players whose primary position was second base (though Biggio also played outfield for a couple of seasons). Biggio has 54.2 Box-Toppers points, which puts him at only 242nd among all players since 1995.
In terms of Box-Toppers points, Biggio ranks far behind fellow second baseman Jeff Kent who missed induction in his second year of eligibility. Kent has 109.7 Box-Toppers points, most among second basemen since 1995. He ranks 47th among all players. However, Kent only received 14 percent of the votes—far below the 75-percent threshold for induction.
Among other notable players who missed the cut:
• Mike Piazza, in his third year of eligibility, received 69.9 percent of the vote. He played from 1992 to 2007 and recorded 95.7 Box-Toppers points, 71st among all players and first among all catchers.
• Curt Schilling, in his third year of eligibility, received 39.2 percent of the vote. He played from 1988 to 2007 and had 194.1 Box-Toppers points, ranked third among all players, behind Johnson and Martinez. Schilling now has the highest Box-Toppers point total of any non-Hall of Fame inductee.
• Jeff Bagwell, in his fifth year of eligibility, received 55.7 percent of the vote. He had 100.4 Box-Toppers points, 62nd among all players and ninth among first basemen.
• Gary Sheffield, in his first year of eligibility, received 11.7 percent of the vote. He had 124.1 Box-Toppers points, 32nd among all players and fourth among all outfielders.
• Nomar Garciaparra, in his first year of eligibility, received 5.5 percent of the vote—just above the 5-percent threshold to remain on next year’s ballot. He had 74.9 Box-Toppers points, 124th among all players, but third among all shortstops—behind Derek Jeter and Miguel Tejada.
• Carlos Delgado, in his first year of eligibility, received 3.8 percent of the vote, not enough to remain on the ballot next year. He had 117.7 Box-Toppers points, 36th among all players and fourth among first basemen.
• Troy Percival, in his first year of eligibility, received only 0.7 percent of the vote, not enough to remain on the ballot next year. He had 80.7 Box-Toppers points, 109th among all players and fourth among pitchers who primarily served as closer. The closers ahead of him in Box-Toppers rankings: Trevor Hoffman (129.4), Mariano Rivera (126.4) and Billy Wagner (108.7).
A few players on the hall ballot played the bulk of their careers before Box-Toppers tracking began in 1995, including Tim Raines (who played from 1979-2002), Alan Trammell (1977-1996) and Don Mattingly (1982-1995). But there are also a few players this year who played their entire careers with each game they played tracked by Box-Toppers, including Garciaparra (1996-2009), Percival (1995-2009) and Brian Giles (1995-2009).
Other notable players, whose candidacies were all affected by the performance enhancing drug scandal, were again not elected to the hall:
• Roger Clemens received 37.5 percent of the vote in his third year of eligibility. His career began in 1984 and since 1995, he has 164.8 Box-Toppers points, 10th all-time and seventh among all pitchers.
• Barry Bonds received 36.8 percent of the vote in his third year of eligibility. His career began in 1986 and since 1995, he has 153.2 Box-Toppers points, 13th all-time and second among all outfielders (behind only Manny Ramirez).
• Mark McGwire received 10.0 percent of the vote in his ninth year of eligibility. His career began in 1986 and since 1995, he has 77.3 Box-Toppers points, 122nd all-time and 18th among all first basemen.
• Sammy Sosa received 6.6 percent of the vote in his third year of eligibility. His career began in 1989 and since 1995, he has 113.2 Box-Toppers points, 43rd all-time and fifth among all outfielders.
Box-Toppers points are a measure of how much a player provides key contributions to his team’s wins. Specifically, Box-Toppers tracks who most helps their team win the most games. Using standard box score statistics, Box-Toppers uses a simple formula to determine a Player of the Game for each Major League Baseball game played. That player is the person who contributed most to his team’s win. In regular season games, players earn 1.0 Box-Toppers point for being named Player of the Game and can earn bonus points for being Player of the Day or top player or batter in their league for the day.
How Hall of Fame candidates fared in Box-Toppers
Here are the results of Baseball Hall of Fame voting, with players listed from highest to lowest vote totals. The far right columns show how many Box-Toppers points (BTP) they earned during their careers (since 1995), their overall rank in Box-Toppers points (BT rank) and their rank among players at their position. Thirty-four players were eligible for the hall and 27 received at least one vote. Included here are the top 10 in voting and other selected players.
|1*||Randy Johnson||534 (97.3)||1||pi sp||88-09||278.8||1||1|
|2*||Pedro Martinez||500 (91.1)||1||pi sp||92-09||244.8||2||2|
|3*||John Smoltz||455 (82.9)||1||pi sp||88-09||160.9||11||8|
|4*||Craig Biggio||454 (82.7)||3||2b||88-07||54.2||242||8|
|5||Mike Piazza||384 (69.9)||3||ca||92-07||95.7||71||1|
|6||Jeff Bagwell||306 (55.7)||5||1b||91-05||100.4||62||9|
|7||Tim Raines||302 (55)||8||lf||79-02||17.7||947||207|
|8||Curt Schilling||215 (39.2)||3||pi sp||88-07||194.1||3||3|
|9||Roger Clemens||206 (37.5)||3||pi sp||84-07||164.8||10||7|
|10||Barry Bonds||202 (36.8)||3||lf||86-07||153.2||13||2|
|14||Mike Mussina||135 (24.6)||2||pi sp||91-08||155.6||12||9|
|15||Jeff Kent||77 (14)||2||2b||92-08||109.7||47||1|
|18||Gary Sheffield||64 (11.7)||1||lf||88-09||124.1||32||4|
|22||Nomar Garciaparra||30 (5.5)||1||ss||96-09||74.9||124||3|
|23||Carlos Delgado||21 (3.8)||1||1b||93-09||117.7||36||4|
|24||Troy Percival||4 (0.7)||1||pi cp||95-09||80.7||109||4|
* Denotes the player received the necessary 75 percent of the vote to be inducted into the Hall of Fame.
Note: Most Hall eligible candidates had careers that, in part, preceded Box-Toppers record keeping, which began in 1995.