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Is Tim Hudson a Hall of Famer?


BaltimoreTerp

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I was looking at the Braves for the discussion (or discussions, as they are scattered all over Orioles Talk right now) on a Jones trade, when my eye caught Tim Hudson's numbers on the Baseball-Reference page.

Rk	Pos		Age	W	L	W-L%	ERA	G	GS	GF	CG	SHO	SV	IP	H	R	ER	HR	BB	IBB	SO	HBP	BK	WP	BF	ERA+	WHIP	H/9	HR/9	BB/9	SO/9	SO/BB1	SP	Tim Hudson	35	16	10	.615	3.22	33	33	0	1	1	0	215.0	189	86	77	14	56	6	158	15	0	10	884	118	1.140	7.9	0.6	2.3	6.6	2.82

I thought to myself, "You know, I haven't looked at Hudson in quite a while. Hell, I almost forgot about him after he got hurt a couple years ago." So I decided to take a closer look.

What I found intrigued me. A record of 181-97 (for the wins-inclined) and .651 winning percentage. A 3.40 ERA, or a 127 ERA+, over 2,500 innings. Just about 1700 strikeouts with a 2.23 K/BB rate. An rWAR of 49.9 and fWAR of 49 even.

He's a 36-year-old right-hander. He has another year on his contract with the Braves, plus a $9 million option for 2013--he has been worth an average of $11 million during his time in Atlanta, including his years with injuries.

So, If he could pitch another five years and add another ten WAR to his totals, that would put him around 60 total for his career. Plus or minus a couple wins, he would be in the range of guys like Juan Marichal, John Smoltz, Jim Palmer, Jim Bunning, Dazzy Vance, Hal Neuhauser and Three-Finger Brown. Also, guys like Luis Tiant, Tommy John, Jerry Koosman and David Cone on the non-Hall side.

He finished second in the Cy Young voting in 2000, and sixth in 2001 and fourth in 2003, both years having cases against the winners (Clemens and Halladay, respectively).

Any thoughts? He's not there yet, but does he have a real shot before he's done?

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It's an uphill climb and a longshot, but he does have a chance. Like you said, it would take another handful of years at him pitching at a pretty high level for him to even be in the discussion. He certainly hasn't slowed down any the last two years and has looked very well since his surgery.

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If he retired tomorrow, no. And in reality he's probably done with his real impact accomplishments. He's kind of Mike Mussina, just with about 2/3rds or 3/4ths of his career. Looking at his bb-ref comps through age 35 there's not a single sure-fire HOFer in the bunch. Kevin Brown is his top comp, and pitched long enough to get 15 more WAR than Hudson, and he got about as much HOF support from the writers as John Franco and Juan Gonzalez and fell off the ballot after one year.

He's in that range of player where most of his comps don't get in, but if he gets a hook like Jim Rice's "most feared player of the late 1970s" he might get some consideration.

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If he retired tomorrow, no. And in reality he's probably done with his real impact accomplishments. He's kind of Mike Mussina, just with about 2/3rds or 3/4ths of his career. Looking at his bb-ref comps through age 35 there's not a single sure-fire HOFer in the bunch. Kevin Brown is his top comp, and pitched long enough to get 15 more WAR than Hudson, and he got about as much HOF support from the writers as John Franco and Juan Gonzalez and fell off the ballot after one year.

He's in that range of player where most of his comps don't get in, but if he gets a hook like Jim Rice's "most feared player of the late 1970s" he might get some consideration.

Brown should have gotten much more support, though. I think the perception that he was a huge bust with the Dodgers and maybe not such a good guy hurt him a lot. That along with many of the voters having weird criteria where Jack Morris is much better than Brown.

And I realize that's part of your point.

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I think he falls a bit short. Certainly there are quite a few guys ahead of him.

Yea, there will be a lot of guys you can say that about shortly. Poz and others have written pieces about the coming truckloads of excellent candidates on the HOF ballot, and how if nothing is done to change the voting we're going to have a bizarre decade. Setting aside PED issues, there are 15-20 guys who'd be shoo-ins who'll be coming onto the ballot over the next few years, and that's going to create a backlog whose impact will be felt for decades.

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