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Tim Raines Misses the Cut

While Mike Piazza and Ken Griffey Jr. undoubtedly deserve induction into the Hall of Fame, Tim Raines should be joining them in Cooperstown this summer.

Congratulations to Ken Griffey Jr. and Mike Piazza, who will be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2016. It is a great honor for the both of them and they both deserve it. However, one more former player, who just missed getting in this year, should be enshrined alongside them this summer: Tim Raines.

The former Montreal Expos great once again did not get the required 75% of votes it takes to get into the Hall, and 2017 is set to be the last year of eligibility. A good fielder, batter, and, of course, base runner, he recorded 2,605 hits, 1,571 runs scored, 980 RBI, and 808 stolen bases. He also owns a truckload of awards and honors, including two World Series rings, a silver slugger award, NL batting champ in 1986, seven All Star appearances, All Star MVP in 1987, and four-time stolen base leader.

Tim Raines is only one of five baseball players to record 800 or more stolen bases and, with the glaring exception of Raines, all of them are in the Hall. He doesn’t have 500 home runs and didn’t reach 3,000 hits, but that doesn’t matter like it used to. People look at all the stats and all the advanced stats these days, and Raines is one of the top players in a lot of those categories. Here’s some food for thought: Raines got on base more than Tony Gwynn and Roberto Clemente.

It wouldn’t be hard to be really angry that Raines missed the ballot, but Raines himself was pure class on twitter, thanking everyone for the support and stating his belief that he still has a chance. The numbers are on his side when it comes to voting; yes, he only got 69.8% of the votes this year, but that is huge step up from 55% last year. Almost 15% more people feel that he should be in the Hall. With voters knowing that next year is his last year of eligibility, the odds of him getting into the Hall of Fame are very high. The dream scenario for Montreal Expos fans would be Tim Raines and Vladimir Guerrero getting in the same year. Let’s just wait and see shall we, but first let’s enjoy 2016. Happy New Year everyone!

Nick’s Notes:

There are two quick notes to share: first off, Toronto Blue Jays fans found out the other day that Alex Anthopoulos has been hired by the LA Dodgers to work in their front office. He joins fellow Canadian and Dodger GM Farhan Zaidi. This is good news for him and his family, as he will continue to work in baseball. It also puts him in a position to one vie for the GM’s job in Los Angeles and will be allowed to spend money without many restrictions. This is also good thing for the Jays because they won’t have to face AA and his new team regularly, so letting him leave can’t bite them in the butt.

Secondly, there was a report that Mark Buehrle is contemplating retirement. This doesn’t come as a surprise, as it has been speculated for a while. It would be nice to see if Toronto could find a way to get Buehrle to return in a Jays uniform, but with the way things are going in Toronto with Shapiro and company, I wouldn’t hold my breath. This is more of a question: do you think Mark Buehrle would have potentially returned if the Jays had been more aggressive with bringing in a top arm or two, instead of letting many of those good arms go? Just a thought.

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