Curt Schilling is an assclown: He’s also a Hall of Famer
Is Curt Schilling not a Hall of Famer because he’s not a Hall of Famer, or is Curt Schilling not a Hall of Famer because he’s a vile xenophobe?
Might be a little of both.
The Hall of Fame isn’t determined by formula. It’s not – your career WAR, your seven-year peak, 300 wins, 500 homers, 3,000 hits, you’re in.
Maybe it should be.
If it was, Schilling is a Hall guy.
Career WAR: 80.5, ranks 26th all-time among pitchers.
His neighborhood among pitchers: Bob Gibson (81.7, 25th), Tom Glavine (73.9, 28th), Don Sutton (68.3, 32nd), Jim Palmer (67.6, 36th).
Using JAWS – the Jaffe WAR Score System, which takes into account career WAR and seven-year peak WAR – Schilling is 28th all-time.
The only pitcher ahead of him not in the Hall: Roger Clemens (third).
Pitchers in the Hall below Schilling in JAWS: 43.
Schilling and Clemens both are getting the short end.
Clemens, we know, it’s because the sportswriters of today aren’t ignoring PEDs in the form of steroids in terms of impact on performance the way sportswriters of the past ignored PEDs in the form of “greenies” in terms of impact on performance.
Schilling didn’t get caught up in the new-age PED stuff.
He’s actually the poster boy, from a pure analytics standpoint, for a modern-era Hall pitcher.
His counting numbers – 216-146, 3.46 ERA in 20 seasons – are good, not great.
Never won a Cy Young – finished second three times.
He was great in the postseason: 11-2, 2.23 ERA in 19 starts, including a 4-1 record and 2.06 ERA in seven World Series starts.
Counting stats-wise, what he did in the postseason pushes him to the borderline.
Factor in that when he was good, he was very good – three 20-win seasons in a four-year stretch from 2001-2004 – even closer.
It’s the deep dive into the metrics that makes him surefire.
So, that he’s nine years into eligibility and still on the outside looking in has to be about something else.
As recently as three weeks ago, he was tweeting support of the insurrectionists who briefly overtook the U.S. Capitol.
We all know about the “Rope. Tree. Journalist. Some assembly required” tweet from 2016.
The Baseball Writers Association of America criteria for HOF voters includes the words “integrity” and “character.”
Should those criteria be there? Is it fair for those who’ve said publicly that they would not vote for Schilling because of off-the-field, post-playing career issues to be able to do because Schilling’s issues are as public as they are?
Are we assuming, naively, that we know everything about everybody else that ends up being considered for Hall status?
A friend texted me last night to the effect that Schilling doesn’t deserve to be in the Hall because of his political stances.
I texted back: two-thirds of these guys don’t agree with you on politics.
I’m probably understating it dramatically there.
Baseball, especially, is a very white sport – and the top athletes are ridiculously wealthy.
You don’t even want to know what their politics are – if you’re a progressive, liberal, center-left, never-Trumper Republican, anyway.
Not knowing what they think because they don’t make public what they think doesn’t make those who don’t make public what they think more qualified for honors than knuckleheads like Curt Schilling who gleefully spew their mental diarrhea into the marketplace of bad ideas.
Schilling, as a person, is an assclown.
Schilling, as a baseball player, is a Hall of Famer.
It shouldn’t be that hard to reconcile the two.
Story by Chris Graham