Todd Helton_HOF 2024 or later?

#1

SNAFU

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#1
Helton spent 17 seasons playing for the Rockies. He finished his career with a .316/.414/.539/.953 slash line. You know how many players whose career started after 1930 have topped that? Exactly two: Ted Williams and Stan Musial.

So do we even have to ask whether Helton would already be a Hall of Famer if he’d put up those numbers anywhere else? That’s obvious.

But what’s also obvious is that Coors Field is like no place else. And Helton is the first player ever to play his whole career in Colorado and find himself on the precipice of the Hall of Fame. So even if the Coors Cooperstown Curse isn’t what it used to be, has it magically evaporated all of a sudden? Don’t be so sure of that.

Nevertheless, there’s an excellent chance Helton’s time has arrived. He was the biggest shooting star on the ballot last year, jumping by an amazing 20 percent. So he missed election by 11 votes last year, his fifth on this ballot. And history tells us that pretty much everybody who comes that close gets his ticket to Cooperstown punched the next year.

In the past 50 elections, only 10 other players returned to the ballot after coming up short by 11 votes or fewer. Of that group, just Jim Bunning didn’t get elected the next time he was up. And Bunning got his plaque eventually (via the Veterans Committee).

So Todd Helton is going to be the first career-long Rockie to make it onto that podium. The drama over these next two months is whether that happens now or later. And “now” is an excellent bet.

Jayson Stark, The Athletic
 
#2
#2
Helton spent 17 seasons playing for the Rockies. He finished his career with a .316/.414/.539/.953 slash line. You know how many players whose career started after 1930 have topped that? Exactly two: Ted Williams and Stan Musial.

So do we even have to ask whether Helton would already be a Hall of Famer if he’d put up those numbers anywhere else? That’s obvious.

But what’s also obvious is that Coors Field is like no place else. And Helton is the first player ever to play his whole career in Colorado and find himself on the precipice of the Hall of Fame. So even if the Coors Cooperstown Curse isn’t what it used to be, has it magically evaporated all of a sudden? Don’t be so sure of that.

Nevertheless, there’s an excellent chance Helton’s time has arrived. He was the biggest shooting star on the ballot last year, jumping by an amazing 20 percent. So he missed election by 11 votes last year, his fifth on this ballot. And history tells us that pretty much everybody who comes that close gets his ticket to Cooperstown punched the next year.

In the past 50 elections, only 10 other players returned to the ballot after coming up short by 11 votes or fewer. Of that group, just Jim Bunning didn’t get elected the next time he was up. And Bunning got his plaque eventually (via the Veterans Committee).

So Todd Helton is going to be the first career-long Rockie to make it onto that podium. The drama over these next two months is whether that happens now or later. And “now” is an excellent bet.

Jayson Stark, The Athletic
He was so close last year. Should get it next year.
 
#10
#10
"The other guys with a .300/.400/.500 slash line plus 2,500 hits and 350 homers are Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Jimmie Foxx, Mel Ott, Ted Williams, Stan Musial, Manny Ramirez and Chipper Jones. That’s heady company for the Toddfather, but it’s better to think of him as a left-handed Jeff Bagwell: a first baseman who spent his whole career with one team, which he helped lead to its first World Series. Bagwell was better — more power, better on the bases — but their OPS was roughly the same (.953 for Helton, .948 for Bagwell)."

The Athletic

Projected in the HOF 2024
 

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