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Odds on Baseball's Top 30 Players to Make the Hall of Fame

Robert KnapelCorrespondent IJanuary 19, 2017

Odds on Baseball's Top 30 Players to Make the Hall of Fame

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    Getting enshrined in Cooperstown is the ultimate honor for a Major League Baseball player. This is the crowning achievement for the best players to ever step on a baseball field.

    Less than 250 players have plaques on the wall at the Baseball Hall of Fame. Each one of these players has made a major contribution to the game of baseball during their career.

    This list includes the best players in the game today. These stars are amongst the players that could make it to Cooperstown.

Prince Fielder

2 of 31

    Odds: 55 percent

    Prince Fielder still has a long way to go if he is going to be a Hall of Famer, but he has gotten his career off to a great start. Through just under 1,000 games Fielder has already slugged 230 home runs.

    Fielder could potentially get hurt by the fact that he will be a DH for the later part of his career. With that being said, if Fielder hits the 500-home run mark, then he should be immortalized with the game's elites.

Alex Rodriguez

3 of 31

    Odds: 55 percent

    Alex Rodriguez may have phenomenal numbers for his career, but that does not mean that he will make it to Cooperstown. Rodriguez may also end his career as baseball's home run king.

    The problem is that Rodriguez has the steroid issue hanging over his head. Voters have been tough on steroid users in the past and this will impact A-Rod's candidacy.

Hanley Ramirez

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    Odds: 15 percent

    Hanley Ramirez has had four 20/20 seasons during the first seven years of his career. Additionally, his batting average is over .300. This is certainly a good start to his career.

    As a shortstop Ramirez would have had a much better chance of getting into the Hall of Fame with his numbers. Now that he will be a third baseman, the offensive standard is much higher.

Mariano Rivera

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    Odds: 100 percent

    Mariano Rivera is the closest thing to a lock of any player that is on this list. He is the best closer in the history of baseball.

    The impact that Rivera has had on the game of baseball is huge. He is the all-time saves leader. Teams knew that if they were trailing the New York Yankees going into the ninth inning that the game was basically over.

Albert Pujols

6 of 31

    Odds: 99 percent

    If Albert Pujols' career ended today, he would certainly receive Hall of Fame votes. He still has 10 years left in his career.

    Pujols is a once-in-a-generation type of player and he is someone that is incredibly fun to watch. He has already picked up three NL MVP Awards and one Rookie of the Year Award.

Matt Kemp

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    Odds: 20 percent

    Matt Kemp is a very good player. The problem is that Cooperstown is not for very good players, it is for players that are on the next level.

    The good news for Kemp is that he is just entering his prime. If he is able to put up a few 40/40 seasons then Kemp's odds of being a Hall of Famer will increase significantly.

Joey Votto

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    Odds: 25 percent

    There have been a number of outstanding players throughout the Cincinnati Reds' history. One of the players that is trying to join that elite group is Joey Votto.

    Votto has already established himself as one of the premier first basemen in the major leagues. He has already taken home an NL MVP Award and if he wins one or two more then Votto could increase his chances of going to Cooperstown.

Ryan Braun

9 of 31

    Odds: 18 percent

    For now, the positive drug test will be a black mark on Ryan Braun's career and one that could eventually keep him out of the Hall of Fame even if he puts up elite numbers for the rest of his career.

    Braun is a former NL Rookie of the Year and he has won an MVP Award. Additionally, Braun has won four Silver Sluggers and appeared in four All-Star Games before he turned 28.

Jose Reyes

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    Odds: Five percent

    Jose Reyes certainly has a very unique skill set which is part of what makes him so valuable. Reyes' health has been an issue throughout his career, though.

    To amass the statistics that he will need to reach a Hall of Fame level, Reyes needs to stay healthy. Reyes will need to double his stolen base total and keep on hitting triples to have a shot at Cooperstown.

Clayton Kershaw

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    Odds: 40 percent

    It is hard to believe that Clayton Kershaw is not even 25 years old yet with all that he has accomplished. In fact, he is just 23.

    Kershaw has gotten off to a fast start in his career. He has a 2.88 career ERA and Kershaw picked up his first Cy Young Award last season.

Cliff Lee

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    Odds: 20 percent

    Cliff Lee has one Cy Young Award to his name and he is looking to add another one. He is one of the best pitchers in the major leagues right now, but he has a long way to go if he is going to reach the Hall of Fame.

    Lee has 119 wins over 10 season in the majors. He is going to need to eclipse the 200-win mark if he is to even have a shot of becoming enshrined in Cooperstown.

Roy Halladay

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    Odds: 65 percent

    With Tim Wakefield's retirement, Roy Halladay became the MLB's active wins leader. He has 188 wins entering the 2012 season.

    Halladay has won two Cy Young Awards and he is still looking to add a third to his collection. If Halladay can hit the 250-win mark then he will put himself in a solid position to make it to the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Troy Tulowitzki

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    Odds: 15 percent

    Playing at Coors Field has had a positive impact on Troy Tulowitzki's numbers. He has been one of the best shortstops in the major leagues over the past few seasons.

    Tulowitzki broke into the major leagues at age 21 and he is still very young. During the past two seasons Tulowitzki has won two Silver Slugger Awards and two Gold Glove Awards.

Justin Verlander

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    Odds: 30 percent

    Justin Verlander has reached the upper echelon of pitchers in the major leagues right now. He has led the American League in wins in two of the past three seasons.

    The 2011 season was a phenomenal one for Verlander as he picked up both the AL Cy Young and the AL MVP Award. If he can put together one more season like that, Verlander could be on the fast track to Cooperstown.

Pablo Sandoval

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    Odds: Five percent

    Pablo Sandoval has gotten his career off on the right foot. He has put up some good numbers, but the problem is that he will need to average more than 20 home runs a year if he wants to be a Hall of Famer.

    The San Francisco Giants are happy to have Sandoval on their roster even if it is not likely that he is a future Hall of Fame player.

Jose Bautista

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    Odds: Five percent

    Prior to the 2010 season, it would have been foolish to even think about considering Jose Bautista to be a future Hall of Fame player. With his explosion over the past two season, he still really hasn't broken into the conversation.

    His late start will likely be the biggest thing that hurts Bautista. Even if he keeps up a 35-home run pace for the next seven years, Bautista will only have hit 401 home runs which is short of Hall of Fame production in his case.

Miguel Cabrera

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    Odds: 40 percent

    It was an absolute steal when the Detroit Tigers acquired Miguel Cabrera from the Florida Marlins. Cabrera has been a key part of the Tigers' lineup for years now.

    Cabrera will break the 300-home run plateau before he turns 30 years old and he should have no problem hitting more than 500 for his career. Additionally, Cabrera has a chance to eclipse 3,000 hits. If he does these two things, then he should be a member of the exclusive group that is already at Cooperstown.

Jacoby Ellsbury

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    Odds: Five percent

    Jacoby Ellsbury surprised a number of people with his power during the 2011 season. He hit 12 more home runs than he had in his previous 349 games.

    Ellsbury has great speed, but his stolen base total declined in 2011. If there is any chance for Ellsbury to make the Hall of Fame, he is going to need to replicate his 30/30 season at least a few more times.

Robinson Cano

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    Odds: 20 percent

    Robinson Cano is one of the best second basemen in the major leagues today. He already has seven years under his belt and he has improved as time has gone on.

    Cano enters the 2012 season with 1,263 hits and 144 home runs. Expect those totals to grow significantly over the next few seasons. Cano's prime could be the difference between him being remembered as a very good player or a Hall of Fame player.

Evan Longoria

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    Odds: 20 percent

    Evan Longoria stared his career off with a bang as he won the American League Rookie of the Year Award at the age of 22.

    Longoria has demonstrated that he has 30-home run power. He will need to keep up that rate for the next 12 to 14 seasons if he has hopes of reaching the Hall of Fame. Longoria will also need to maintain a batting average of at least .275.

Adrian Gonzalez

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    Odds: 18 percent

    Adrian Gonzalez has proven that he can produce both offensively and defensively. He has power, the ability to hit for average and a great glove.

    Gonzalez has picked up three Gold Gloves as well as one Silver Slugger. He will need to improve on his numbers if he wants a ticket to Cooperstown.

Dustin Pedroia

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    Odds: 15 percent

    The first two years of Dustin Pedroia's career speak volumes to the type of production that he is capable of. Pedroia won a Rookie of the Year award and then followed it up by being the AL MVP in 2008.

    Pedroia's contributions are not only limited to the offensive side of the game. He has already collected two Gold Gloves to put on his mantle. Pedroia still has a long way to go if he wants to reach the Hall of Fame.

Felix Hernandez

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    Odds: 35 percent

    Felix Hernandez reached the major leagues well before his 21st birthday which has given him some time to build up his resume. He has already picked up 85 wins.

    Hernandez has won one American League Cy Young Award and with his talent he should have no problem winning at least one more. Hernandez has the ability to win 14 games a year over the next 10 seasons and that will put him in a great spot in regards to Hall of Fame candidacy.

CC Sabathia

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    Odds: 75 percent

    At some point during the next two seasons, CC Sabathia will hit the 200-win mark. Sabathia will be close to 33 years old when this happens.

    If Sabathia pitches for seven more years after he reaches 200 wins, then both 275 wins and 300 wins should be within reach. Should Sabathia stay healthy, he shouldn't have much of an issue when it comes to become a Hall of Famer.

Jered Weaver

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    Odds: 10 percent

    Even though he is one of the better pitchers in the American League right now, Jered Weaver does not have that great of a chance of making it to the Hall of Fame.

    Weaver has turned into a strikeout machine and he has been in the top five of the Cy Young voting for the past two seasons. The problem for Weaver is that he only has 82 wins at this point of his career.

Buster Posey

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    Odds: 10 percent

    Buster Posey has the potential to make the Hall of Fame if he pays as a catcher for the rest of his career. If he becomes a full-time first baseman, then Posey will have no shot of being a Hall of Famer.

    Posey is still young and he already has a Rookie of the Year award under his belt. There is the potential for Posey to reach more than 350 home runs, which is very impressive for a catcher.

Joe Mauer

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    Odds: 20 percent

    Joe Mauer has established himself as one of the best hitters in the American League. He has won the AL batting title three times during his career and his .323 batting average is third amongst active players.

    Mauer picked up a MVP Award in 2009 when he put up absurd numbers. One or two more years like that and Mauer will be in a good place. He is already a three-time Gold Glove winner and a four-time Silver Slugger.

Tim Lincecum

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    Odds: 55 percent

    It is scary to think that the only time that Tim Lincecum did not finish in the top 10 of the NL Cy Young voting was first year that he was in the major leagues. Lincecum picked up two Cy Young Awards before he turned 26.

    While Lincecum's win total is a bit low, it is hard to deny the fact that he is one of the best pitchers in the majors today. Should Lincecum reach the 225-win mark and win another Cy Young Award then he should have no problem finding his way to Cooperstown.

Curtis Granderson

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    Odds: 15 percent

    Curtis Granderson has really taken advantage of the short porch in the new Yankee Stadium. Granderson will need a lot more 40 home run years if he has any chances of being a Hall of Famer.

    He will be 31 years old when the 2012 season starts and he has not yet broke the 1,000-hit mark. As good as Granderson is right now, it is unlikely that he will be a Hall of Fame player.

Ian Kinsler

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    Odds: 20 percent

    When talking about the elite second basemen in the major leagues today, Ian Kinsler's name is one that needs to be brought up. He has had two 30/30 years before his 30th birthday.

    Kinsler still has a lot of work to do if he is going to go down in history as a Hall of Fame-caliber player. If Kinsler can hit 300 home runs and 300 stolen bases, then the voters will have something to think about.

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