Fangraphs says probably not, given that Jim Edmonds and Larry Walker were clearly superior, yet nobody’s heart would be broken if he got in.
I personally liked him quite a bit. He was fun to watch. He’s got good, not great, numbers. Unlike the other two important guys on the HOF ballot next year, Ivan Rodriguez and Manny Ramirez, there’s never been a hint of PEDs on him. For the record: both would be first ballot HOFers in my view. I think the electorate will give Pudge the nod on the first ballot, but maybe not. After all, as I grudgingly accepted, Piazza was better than Pudge, and Piazza didn’t get in on the first ballot. Then again, maybe Piazza didn’t make it because of the one time he called a press conference to say he wasn’t gay. Or maybe the fact that he secretly thought Hispanic players were conspiring against him, personally? (Piazza was a weird dude, is what I’m trying to get across.)
If I had to put 10 guys on my ballot, there’s no way Vlad makes the cut. Especially when he was a really bad baserunner, maybe the worst of all time. (See the Fangraphs article.) He was also bad defensively except for having a really good arm.
Still, I enjoyed thinking about Vlad as a candidate, almost as much as remembering how hilarious Piazza was. Mickey Pizza, you rascal you.
As time continues, more is revealed about the ouster of Pettine and Farmer. While Pettine and Farmer fought each other, they also teamed up to fight Sashi Brown and Alec Scheiner. The latter two would basically say “you guys suck and here’s why, try sucking less next time?” The first two would say “You guys don’t know football, how could you possibly understand it?” And so on.
It was in an effort to create a culture of analytical analysis that the Browns hired Paul DePodesta from the Mets. ESPN, for one, thinks positively of the move, and so do I. His formal job title will be “Chief Strategy Officer,” although Brown is the guy in charge.
The one concern that the original article brings up is that there are no available head coaches who will buy into this philosophy. A lot of them will not take kindly to criticism from people outside of football. I have a suspicion that Brown/dePodesta wouldn’t confine their criticism to purely roster construction; they might start chiming in on stuff like schemes and actual play calls, and very few head coaches would tolerate that willingly.
My proposal: hire Flip to be Head Coach. His inexperience at the highest level would be an asset, not a liability. His job would be to implement the front office’s goals, tinging them with his own experience as a player and coordinator, without being set in his ways.
We shall have to see how the coaching carousel progresses, but I like the idea of trying some new and innovative. I’ll post more as I learn more.