Baseball’s Hall of Fame ballot was announced yesterday, and there were a few more Dodger connections among the first-time candidates. We’re guessing that none of these guys will make it in, but not to be overlooked …
- Shawn Green: For the Dodgers, Green’s 2001 (.297/49/125) and 2002 (.285/42/114) campaigns were on the short list of redeeming qualities in both years. Maybe if Green’s peak lasted a bit longer, he’d merit more consideration for the Hall, but he’ll probably go down as an all-time “good” — not an all-time great. His 19 total bases in a May 2002 game against Milwaukee remains an all-time record. And, for what it’s worth, at the time of his retirement Green was one of only four active players with at least 300 home runs, 1,000 runs and RBIs, 400 doubles, a .280 batting average and 150 stolen bases.
- Kenny Lofton: The “Dodgers Live” co-host only played one of his 17 major-league seasons for the Dodgers and it was in the twilight of his career, when he batted .301 and stole 39 bases at age 39 in 2006. Lofton was a career .299 hitter and his 622 stolen bases rank 15th all-time. He also played a mean center field. His Hall of Fame chances mirror that of Tim Raines, who remains on the ballot after several years of eligibility but wasn’t an elite leadoff hitter on enough elite teams to leave the necessary impression. (So far, at least.)
- Steve Finley: Similar to Lofton, a 39-year-old Finley made a late-career cameo in Dodger blue. Most famously, he hit a division-clinching grand slam to beat the Giants to cap the 2004 season. Finley’s 304 home runs and 320 stolen bases put him in elite company but he played during an era where the stolen base held little value. The guess here is that it costs him a spot in the Hall.
- Sandy Alomar: You’ll be forgiven for overlooking Alomar’s 27 games in Dodger blue in 2006. His legacy here: It kick-started a run of old catchers (Rod Barajas, Matt Treanor, Mike Lieberthal, Brad Ausmus) playing out their careers in Chavez Ravine. Alomar caught parts of 20 seasons in the bigs, batting .273. A decent glove, but his offensive credentials are nowhere near Hall-worthy.