Talking About HoF for MLB Players Under the Age of 28? Really?

Today on ESPN Boston, Joe McDonald wrote an article contemplating Dustin Pedroia’s chances of reaching the Hall of Fame.

Anyone else think this is a decade too soon?

McDonald does temper the article by saying,” Obviously, Pedroia has a long way to go before he can even be mentioned in the same breath as the Hall of Fame.” But nevertheless, he goes on to compare Pedroia’s stats through his first five full seasons with Roberto Alomar, who was inducted into the Hall of Fame this past weekend.

Alomar and Pedroia’s stats are similar in their first five seasons, but that’s not the point. Pedroia is a great player right now. Ten more years of playing at this level will put him in Cooperstown but that’s a long way to go and not a topic of today. What should be a topic is his 21-game hitting streak and the ease at which the Red Sox are winning ball games these days.

McDonald closes by saying:

Maybe we are witnessing a future Hall of Famer in Pedroia.

Well, whether we are or are we aren’t won’t be known for quite a while. Let’s just enjoy it while we can.

Wait. There’s more nonsensical Hall of Fame characterizations from ESPN today!

This is from Dan Szymborski (ESPN Insider subscription required). The title? “Under-28 players on HOF career tracks”

Come on! Two in one day! And guess what feisty second basemen Szymborski brings up as well? Yup, the Muddy Chicken aka the Laser Show aka Pedroia. Here’s what Szymborski says about him:

Dustin Pedroia is at 23 WAR at 27, but second basemen have a hard road in general; not only do they need more WAR to get into the Hall, but they have pretty steep aging curves that shorten their careers. Bobby Grich and Lou Whitaker are two of the biggest snubs, and ZiPS puts Pedroia in the range (58 WAR) where it’s not a slam dunk. Pedroia is at 48 percent odds now (a lot can go wrong in 10 years), but playing for the Red Sox won’t hurt him.

Shouldn’t the phrase “a lot can go wrong in 10 years” tell you that your article is at least five years too early? I’m a big fan of WAR, but a 48 percent chance based on projecting Pedroia’s WAR for the next 10 years (after only playing five thus far)? That just doesn’t make any sense.

I won’t go into each player Szymborski writes about since I doubt ESPN would be too happy with that, but let’s cool it with the talk of players under-28 and their Hall of Fame potential. Give it until age 33 at the earliest.

And don’t bring up Clayton Kershaw (23 years old) in this topic of conversation. He has 37 wins in his career yeesh.

There’s a lot of great stuff going on in the baseball world right now (Trading Deadline, NL Central Race, the actual Hall of Fame induction). Let’s focus on those great stories and leave the future for the future.


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