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The 100 Best Players Who'll Never Make the Hall of Fame

Austin SchindelAnalyst IIJuly 15, 2011

The 100 Best Players Who'll Never Make the Hall of Fame

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    The Hall of Fame is the ultimate recognition of a player’s accomplishments, achievements and ability to play the game at the highest level over a long period of time. Great cities such as Canton, Ohio, Cooperstown, New York, Springfield, Massachusetts and Toronto, Ontario house these shrines to legends old and young.

    The Hall of Fame is a place for generations to come together and teach about the past, admire the present and look toward the future. It is a magical place that everyone needs to visit at least once in his or her life.

    These are the people that won’t be going there.

    It might be too few home runs or not enough rebounds, a cheating scandal or a bad injury that keeps each of these stars out of their respective halls.

    Here are the 100 best athletes who will never make the Hall of Fame.

100. John Taylor

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    Resume: 9 seasons, 3 quality, 2x Pro Bowler, 2x NFL All-Pro ('88, '89), 3x Super Bowl champ (’89, ’90, ’95), NFL 1980s All-Decade team

    Records: Longest punt return (45 yards), most punt return yards (56) and highest punt return average (18.7)

    League Leader: Punt return yards (1x), punt return touchdowns (1x)

    Career: 121 games (102 starts), 347 receptions, 5,598 yards, 43 TDs (45 total)

    Some may be wondering why Taylor would even show up on a list like this. The reason is because both he and Lynn Swann have very similar career stats.

    Taylor was an essential part of the 49ers championship teams and caught the game-winning touchdown pass in Super Bowl XXIII.

    He won’t make the Hall of Fame because of his lack of pedigree compared to the “great” Swann.

99. Gino Cappelletti

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    Resume: 11 seasons, 5 quality, 5x Pro Bowler, 1964 AFL AP Player of the Year

    League Leader: Punt return yards (1x), punt return touchdowns (1x)

    Career: 153 games (two starts), 292 receptions, 4,589 yards, 42 TDs

    Before there were highly specialized positions, Cappelletti was the do-it-all type of guy. He was both a wide receiver and a kicker and was the all-time leading scorer in Patriots history up until 2005.

    They are not going to induct him until they can decide what position he even played.

98. Jack Sikma

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    Resume: 14 seasons, 7 quality, 3x All-Star, NBA champ (’79), NBA All-Defensive second team (’82)

    League Leader: Free-throw percentage (1x)

    Playoffs: 102 games, 14.3 points, 9.3 rebounds, 2.4 assist

    Career: 15.6 points, 9.8 rebounds, 3.2 assists, No. 43 retired by Seattle Supersonics

    Sikma had the rare skill of a shooting touch and a nose for the basketball. He twice led the league in defensive rebounds and holds the NBA record for free-throw shooting percentage by a center (92.2 percent).

    What he lacked was dominance over a long period of time.

    When you compare Sikman next to the likes of Moses Malone, Wes Unseld and Robert Parish, he cannot stack up. He is not the type of player that will win you a championship on his own, but instead is a perfect complimentary piece.


97. Eric Gagne

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    Resume: 10 seasons, 3 quality, 3x All-Star, 2003 Cy Young Award winner, 2x NL Rolaids Relief winner (’03, ’04), World Series champion (’07)

    Record: Consecutive saves (84)

    League Leader: Games finished (1x), saves (1x)

    Playoffs: 2 series, 4 games, 0 appearances

    Career: 402 games, 33-26, 3.47 ERA, 187 Saves, 718 Ks

    Eric Gagne took HGH. He fully admits it and has come clean as part of a dark era in baseball. His use of these drugs will almost immediately disqualify him in the minds of many voters.

    Looking at his statistics, he had the most dominant stretch any closer has ever had. If he was clean, he could have at least accumulated an interesting amount of votes for someone who was so good for such a short period of time.

    That being said, he is a cheater and wrote his own ticket out of the Hall.

96. Alvin Robertson

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    Resume: 10 seasons, 6 quality, 4x All-Star, 1986 NBA Defensive Player of the Year, 1986 NBA Most Improved Player, 2x NBA All-Defensive first team (’87, ’91), 4x NBA All-Defensive second team (’86, ’88-’90), second team All-NBA (’86), one of four players with a quadruple-double in a game, gold medal 1984 Los Angeles Olympics (basketball)

    Records: Steals per game, career (2.71)

    League Leader: Steals (3x)

    Playoffs: 13 games, 20.2 points, 5.3 rebounds, 6.3 assist, 2.8 Steals

    Career: 14.0 points, 5.2 rebounds, 5.0 assists, 2.7 Steals

    Robertson made his greatest impact on the defensive side of the ball, where he won Defensive Player of the Year and has the highest steals-per-game average in NBA history.

    There are players that have made the Hall of Fame based on their defensive prowess, but Robertson misses out for two reasons. First, he never made an important contribution to a championship team. Second, he has experienced legal trouble beyond a slap on the wrist.

95. Daunte Culpepper

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    Resume: 11 seasons, 3 quality, 3x Pro Bowler, 2x NFL All-Pro (’00, ‘04)

    Record: Most combined passing and rushing yards in a season (5,123)

    League Leader: Competitions (1x), yards (1x), touchdowns (1x), yards per game (1x)

    Playoffs: Career record (2-2), no Super Bowl appearances

    Career: 105 games (100 started), 41-59 record, 24,153 yards, 149 TDs, 106 INTs, 63.0 competition percentage, 87.8 QB rating

    Culpepper-to-Moss was a connection unlike any other. It is hard to tell how much credit to give to each guy, but nonetheless, they were incredible.

    Once Daunte left the Vikings, things went south with his career and he never came back strong.

94. Steve Tasker

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    Resume: 14 seasons, 7 quality, 7x Pro Bowler, 7x All-Pro (’87, ’90-’95), 4 Super Bowl appearances, 1992 Pro Bowl MVP, Buffalo Bills 50th anniversary team, Buffalo Bills Wall of Fame

    Career: No significant stats; worked as a gunner on special teams

    I know he is a special teams player, but in many cases, field position is just as important of an aspect of the game as anything else. He was known as the best special teams player of all time and a main component of the Bills dynasty.

    He is not in the Hall of Fame because it is hard to justify putting in a guy with no reason statistical significance. 

93. Luis Tiant

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    Resume: 19 seasons, 6 quality, 3x All-Star, 1972 AL Comeback Player of the Year, 3x top 10 Cy Young Award voting

    League Leader: ERA (2x), shutouts (3x)

    Playoffs: 3 series, 4 starts (3-0), 34.2 IP, 2.86 ERA, 20 K's

    Career: 229-172, 3.30 ERA, 3,486.1 IP, 2,416 K's

    His big personality and cult following were hugely important to his importance during his time with the Boston Red Sox. He was an innings (and massive food) eater for the AL champions.

    He is no longer eligible for the Hall of Fame (15-year rule) despite showing dominant stuff at times and a strong will to win.

92. Devin Hester

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    Resume: 5 seasons, 3 quality, 3x Pro Bowler, 3x NFL first-team All-Pro (’06, ’07, ‘10), 3x NFL Alumni Special Teams Player of the Year (’06, ’07, ’10), NFL 2000s All-Decade team, 9x NFC Player of the Week

    Records: All-time kick and punt return touchdowns (14), punt return touchdowns in a season (4), kick returns in a season (6), non-offensive touchdowns in a season (6, twice)

    League Leader: Punt return yards (2x), Punt return touchdowns (3x), Kick return touchdowns (2x)

    Career: 76 games (33 started), 168 receptions, 2,196 yards (7,200 all-purpose), 12 TDs (27 total), 60.4 yards per game

    Bears fans will read this and immediately freak out. The truth is that Hester is an amazing runner and the best return man ever, but that does not ensure a Hall of Fame ticket.

    His returns will always impress, but as I see it right now, he is not a Hall of Fame player. If he remains somewhat consistent and healthy over the next few seasons, we will talk.

91. Priest Holmes

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    Resume: 10 seasons, 4 quality, 3x Pro Bowler, 3x first-team All-Pro (’01-‘03), Super Bowl champ (2001), AP NFL Offensive Player of the Year (’02)

    League Leader: Rushing yards (1x), TDs (2x), yards per game (1x), yards from scrimmage (2x), total TDs (2x)

    Career: 8,172 yards, 86 TDs (94 total), 4.6 yards per carry

    Priest Holmes is one of the most adored athletes in Kansas City sports history and has always represented the way NFL players should act.

    He had one of the bets three-year stretches in NFL running back history, rushing or 56 touchdowns in a three-year span, accumulating All-Pro honors each season. He was the heart and soul of the Chiefs offense and a fantasy football God.

    What hurts him is overall numbers.

    He rushed for a little more than 8,000 yards, and beyond his incredible stretch, did not rush for more than 10 touchdowns once.

    Look for him to join the Kansas City Chiefs Hall of Fame and nothing else.


90. Peja Stojakovic

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    Resume: 12 seasons, 6 quality, 3x All-Star, second-team All-NBA (’04), European Player of the Year (3x)

    Playoffs: (95 games), 14.4 points, 4.9 rebounds, 1.0 assist

    Career: 17.0 points, 4.7 rebounds, 1.8 assists, 2x winner of three-point shootout championship (’02, ’03)

    He is potentially one of the top 10 European basketball players in NBA history and one of the top 10 shooters as well. He has made the fourth-most three-pointers in NBA history and could easy slide into the top three.

    He is kept out of the Hall of Fame for not being a major component on a championship team.

    He is an NBA champion (2011), but he could never break through with the Sacramento Kings team is regarded as one of the best never to win an NBA title.

89. Derrick Mason

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    Resume: 14 seasons, 9 quality, 2x Pro Bowler, NFL first-team All-Pro (’00), lost Super Bowl XXXIV

    Records: Most all-purpose yards in a single season (2,659)

    League Leader: Punt return yards (1x), all-purpose yards in a season (1x)

    Career: 218 games (168 starts), 924 receptions, 11,891 yards, 66 TDs (69 total)

    Mason is a possession receiver. This is not a curse or a scar on his abilities as a football player, but rarely do players like him make it to Canton, Ohio unless they are on vacation.

    He made his All-Pro team as a return man and has only one other Pro Bowl to his name otherwise. His consistency is admirable and important to the game, but at no point did people ever put Derrick Mason up with the names of Randy Moss, Terrell Owens or Marvin Harrison during his career.

88. Dwight Gooden

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    Resume: 16 seasons, 5 quality, 4x All-Star, 1985 Cy Young Award winner, 5x top 10 Cy Young Award voting (’84-’87; ‘90), 3x World Series champion (’86, ’96, ’00), 1984 NL ROY, 1 no-hitter (’96), Silver Slugger (’92)

    Records: Most strikeouts by a rookie (276), most strikeouts in three consecutive starts (43)

    League Leader: Wins (1x), ERA (1x), complete games (1x), IP (1x), strikeouts (2x)

    Playoffs: 8 series, 9 starts (0-4), 59.0 IP, 3.97 ERA, 49 Ks

    Career: 194-112, 3.51 ERA, 2,800.2 IP, 2,293 Ks

    Few pitchers have started their career in a more dominating, convincing fashion than Dwight Gooden. The former Mets ace finished in the top seven in Cy Young voting each of his first four seasons, including winning the award in 1985.

    The reason that he is not headed for Cooperstown is because of injuries (a common occurrence), drug abuse (a 1980s Mets common occurrence) and police violence.

    After 1990, he won no more than 13 games and finished his career with only 194.

87a. Bo Jackson

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    Resume: NFL (4 seasons), 1x Pro Bowler; MLB (8 seasons), 1x All-Star, 1989 ASG MVP, 1993 AL Comeback Player of the Year, top 10 MVP voting (’89)

    We can only imagine how good he could have been if he would have focused on one sport. He was a Heisman Trophy winner and an MLB All-Star game MVP. He ran over Brian Bosworth and drove in 100 runs.

    There is no Hall of Fame that takes players based on potential, but he might be an exception.

    His body of work does not translate to Hall of Fame numbers, but anyone who watched him play knows how electrifying he was.

87b. Bo Jackson

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    Bo knows.

86. Shawn Marion

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    Resume: 16 seasons, 8 quality, 4x All-Star, 2x All-NBA third team (’04-’66)

    Playoffs: 92 games, 15.3 points, 9.4 rebounds, 1.5 assists

    Career: 16.8 points, 9.3 rebounds, 1.9 assists

    Despite an awesome prime and an even more awesome nickname, Marion misses out on Springfield because he was never truly dominant. He made grabbing 10 rebounds a game look soft, and in the run-and-gun style he played, they sort of were.

    He is one of the better role players of the last 20 years, but not a star.


85. Tiki Barber

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    Resume: 10 seasons, 5 quality, 3x Pro Bowler, NFL first-team All-Pro (‘05), member of 10,000 yards club, New York Giants all-time leading rusher, New York Giants Ring of Honor

    League Leader: Yards from scrimmage (2x)

    Career: 10,449 yards, 55 TDs (67 total), 4.7 yards per carry

    He started as a third-down back and flourished into a featured All-Pro. While most running backs try to squeeze out another year or two from their career, he left in top physical shape after five consecutive 1,000-yard seasons.

    He left the New York Giants on terrible terms and is making a comeback. He broke the 10,000-yard mark, but without a few more improbably good seasons, he is not going to be a Hall of Famer.

84. Ray Guy

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    Resume: 14 seasons, 7 quality, 7x Pro Bowler, 3x NFL first-team All-Pro (’76-‘78), 3x Super Bowl champ (XI, XV, XVIII), NFL’s 75th anniversary team, NFL 1970s All-Decade team

    Records: Most career punts in postseason games (111)

    League Leader: Punting average (3x)

    Career: 207 games, 1,049 Punts, 44,493 punting yards, 42.4 punting average; only punter to be drafted in the first round of the NFL draft

    He is arguably the greatest punter of all time and is in every school and regional Hall of Fame, but he cannot get into the one he really covets: Canton.

    He was a first-round pick who changed games. Opponents feared his ability to pin them deep in their zone. Maybe you are confused as to why he is not enshrined yet?

    Can we really say he affected the game more than a quarterback? Linebacker? Kicker?

83. Corey Dillon

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    Resume: 10 seasons, 6 quality, 4x Pro Bowler, Super Bowl champ (2005), member of 10,000 yards club

    Career: 11,241 yards, 82 TDs (89 total), 4.3 yards per carry

    Dillon played on very bad Cincinnati Bengals teams and held his own. He rushed for at least 1,000 yards his first six seasons before experiencing a decline in performance. Many did not like his immaturity and desire to make team issues about him.

    The Bengals traded Dillon to the Patriots and he left on poor terms.

82. Shaun Alexander

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    Resume: 9 seasons, 5 quality, 3x Pro Bowler, 2005 AP NFL MVP, AP NFL Offensive Player of the Year, NFL first-team All-Pro (‘05), NFL 2000s All-Decade team, Seattle Seahawks 35th anniversary team

    League Leader: Rushing yards (1x), touchdowns (2x), yards per game (1x)

    Career: 9,453 yards, 100 TDs (112 total), 4.3 yards per carry

    Alexander had one of the top 10 seasons by a running back in 2005; he also had a very impressive five-year span in which he averaged 17 touchdowns a season.

    With no disrespect to Alexander, he ran behind one of the best left sides of an offensive line ever assembled with Steve Hutchinson and Walter Jones. Once Hutchinson left for Minnesota, the Seahawks running back experienced tough times.

    His accomplishments do not go unnoticed, but are not worthy of a spot in the Hall.

81. Alan Trammell

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    Resume: 20 seasons, 7 quality, 6x All-Star, World Series champ (’84), 1987 AL MVP runner-up, 4x Gold Glover (’80-’81, ’83-’84), 3x Silver Slugger (’87, ’88, ‘90), 1984 WS MVP, 1983 Comeback Player of the Year

    Playoffs: 3 series, 13 games, .333 BA, 3 HR, 11 RBI, 17 Hits

    Career: 2,293 games, .285 BA, 2,365 Hits, 185 HR, 1,003 RBI, 1,231 Runs

    I’m sure than Alan Trammell is a good guy and a great baseball man, but what makes him a Hall of Famer?

    Granted, I did not see him play in his prime, but is he worthy to go up next to names like Ruth and Mays?

    He was a great defensive shortstop and an all-around good player, but his statistics do not resonate with a player who is Hall of Fame worthy.

80. Jamal Lewis

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    Resume: 10 seasons, 5 quality, 1x Pro Bowler, first-team All-Pro (‘03), Super Bowl champion (2001), member of 10,000 yards club, AP NFL Offensive Player of the Year (’03), NFL 2000s All-Decade team

    League Leader: Rushing yards (1x), yards per game (1x)

    Career: 10,607 yards, 58 TDs (62 total), 4.3 yards per carry

    He rushed for 2,000 yards, was the youngest player to have 200 yards from scrimmage and won a Super Bowl ring his rookie season. This was a great start to a good, not great, career.

    Lewis has over 10,000 career yards and was revered as one of the hardest players to tackle in his prime (which is over). He is not an all-time great and will not make it to the Hall of Fame because there is very little to his legacy.

    Ten years from now, someone will ask you if Jamal Lewis was great, and your response will be, “I guess.”

    Not a Hall of Fame answer.

79. Steve McNair

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    Resume: 13 seasons, 4 quality, 3x Pro Bowler, 2003 NFL co-MVP, NFL All-Pro (2003), 1994 Walter Payton Award

    League Leader: Quarterback rating (1x)

    Playoffs: Career record (5-5), Lost Super Bowl XXXIV

    Career: 161 games (153 started), 91-62 record, 31,304 yards, 174 TDs, 119 INTs, 60.1 competition percentage, 82.8 QB rating

    A co-MVP in 2003 and a hard-nosed, tough career made him perfect to be a football coach to some, but not to make the Hall of Fame.

    He was a solid quarterback during this playing days but came up about two feet short of a Super Bowl title.

78. Tom Chambers

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    Resume: 16 seasons, 4 quality, 4x All-Star, 2x All-NBA second team (’89, ’90) 1987 ASG MVP

    Playoffs: 108 games, 15.4 points, 5.3 rebounds, 1.7 assists; best postseason ('89) 26/11/4

    Career: 18.1 points, 6.1 rebounds, 2.1 assists

    Chambers was the type of guy that could score if you needed him to score, rebound if you needed him to rebound and come off the bench if the team was in need.

    During his prime, he scored as many as 27 points per game and was the leader of the team for several years in Seattle. He took a bench role for the Suns and Jazz before retiring as one of the most “serviceable” big men in the NBA.

    Note: I like the word "serviceable." Its definition is somewhere between superstar (Duncan) and Rony Seikaly

77. Dave Parker

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    Resume: 19 seasons, 9 quality, 7x All-Star, 1978 NL MVP, 1985 NL MVP runner-up, 1979 ASG MVP, 2x World Series champ (’79, ’89), 3x Gold Glover (’77-’79), 3x Silver Slugger (’85, ’86, ’90), 1979 Home Run Derby winner

    League Leader Hits (1x), doubles (2x), RBI (1x), BA (2x), slugging percentage (2x), OPS (1x), total bases (3x)

    Playoffs: 8 series, 30 games, .234 BA, 1 HR, 11 RBI, 26 Hits

    Career: 2,466 games, .290 BA, 2,712 Hits, 339 HR, 1,493 RBI, 1,272 Runs

    Parker’s Hall of Fame clock has struck midnight. As of 2011, he is officially off the Baseball Writers Association of America ballot.

    Parker was the first player to receive a $1 million annual contract and produced on the field accordingly. His 2,712 career his, MVP award and two batting titles speak for themselves. He was part of the Pirates’ “family,” though he doesn’t appear to be joining his teammate Willie Stargell. 

76. Tracy McGrady

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    Resume: 14 seasons, 7 quality, 7x All-Star, 2x All-NBA first team (’02-’03), 3x All-NBA second team (’01, ’04, ‘07), 2x All-NBA third team (’05, ‘08), 2001 NBA Most Improved Player

    League Leader: Scoring (2x)

    Playoffs: 38 games, 28.5 points, 6.9 rebounds, 6.2 assists (never made it out of first round)

    Career: 20.4 points, 5.8 rebounds, 4.6 assists

    Can a player who has never even made it out of the first round be a Hall of Famer? Well, there are several things that need to be considered?

    1. Did he have help? The answer is…eh. Yeah, there were four other players with pulses on the court when he was in Orlando, but there is less of an excuse in Houston.

    2. How was the competition? Good, but not all-time great. He faced tougher competition in the Western Conference, but he never ran into Jordan’s Bulls.

    3. Was he a good leader? No! He spoke about the glories of getting out of the first round of the NBA playoffs while up 3-1. The Pistons then went on to win the next three games and the series

    So there you have it? Is he Hall of Fame bound? Not if people are paying attention.

75. Barry Larkin

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    Resume: 19 seasons, 11 quality, 12x All-Star, 1995 NL MVP, 3x Gold Glover (’94-’96), 9x Silver Slugger (’88-’92, ’95-‘99), World Series champion (1990)

    Playoffs: 4 series, 17 games, .338 BA, 0 HR, 3 RBI, 8 stolen bases

    Career: 2,180 games, .295 BA, 2,340 Hits, 198 HR, 960 RBI, 1,329 Runs

    Larkin is one of few players on this list that has a chance.

    He missed his first two attempts at the Hall of Fame, but a guy that played during the steroid era and is presumably clean has the upper hand on many of the other players coming through.

    Larkin was a great player who was a centerpiece of a championship team. He sits high on the list not because he is bad, but because his chances remain higher than most to get in. 

74. Orel Hershiser

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    Resume: 18 seasons, 3 quality, 3x All-Star, 1988 NL Cy Young Award winner, World Series champion (1988), Gold Glover (’88), Silver Slugger (’93), 1988 World Series MVP, NLCS MVP (’88), ALCS MVP (’95)

    Records: 59.1 consecutive scoreless innings

    League Leader: Wins (1x), complete games (1x), shutouts (2x), IP (3x)

    Playoffs: 12 series, 18 starts (8-3), 132.0 IP, 2.59 ERA, 97 K's

    Career: 204-105, 3.48 ERA, 3,130.0 IP, 2,214 K's

    The Bulldog's 1988 season remains one of the most dominant ever. He threw 15 complete games, eight for shutouts, and compiled 59.1 consecutive scoreless innings, a record that still stands.

    He tore his rotator cuff, and though he returned, Hershiser came nowhere close to the success he had before. He did not get enough Hall of Fame support to remain eligible and now watches the game from the broadcast booth.

73. Mitch Richmond

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    Resume: 14 seasons, 10 quality, 6x All-Star, 1989 NBA ROY, NBA All-Rookie first team (’89), 3x All-NBA second team (’94- ’95, ‘97), 2x All-NBA third team (’96, ‘98)

    Playoffs: 23 games, 19.5 points, 5.3 rebounds, 3.0 assists

    Career: 21.0 points, 3.9 rebounds, 3.5 assists

    Richmond is a rich man’s Jerry Stackhouse. He is quicker, scored some more points and had a slightly more successful career.

    He won only one NBA title as a tag along and consistently shot in the mid- to low-40 percent range. I think that a Hall of Fame-caliber player needs to show that he can take a team on his back when need be and be the top dog on the team.

72. Larry Walker

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    Resume: 17 seasons, 7 quality, 6x All-Star, 1997 NL MVP, 2x top 5 MVP voting (’92, ’97), 7x Gold Glover (’92-’93, ’97-’99, ’01, ‘02), 3x Silver Slugger (’92, ’97, ‘99)

    League Leader: Doubles (1x), HR (1x), batting average (3x), OBP (3x), slugging percentage (2x), OPS (2x), total bases (1x)

    Playoffs: 6 series, 28 games, .230 BA, 7 HR, 15 RBI, 51 total bases

    Career: 1,988 games .313 BA, 2,160 Hits, 383 HR, 1,311 RBI, 1,355 Runs

    Walker filled up the stat sheet night after night in Colorado, but there are skeptics out there that question the legitimacy of performance.

    Of course, there is the PED question, which Walker defends he was beyond that era and never took anything. Others think, and justifiably so, that Coors field is a launching pad and the offensive production was too great for a majority of players that played there.

    Walker can only continue to preach the good word and hope that writers do not bunch him in with the rest of those who have already been caught.

71. Tim Hardaway

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    Resume: 13 seasons, 9 quality, 5x All-Star, All-NBA first team (’97), 3x All-NBA second team (’92, ’98, ‘99), All-NBA third team (’93), 1995 ASG MVP, gold medal 1996 Atlanta Olympics (basketball)

    Playoffs: 56 games, 16.8 points, 3.3 rebounds, 8.9 assists

    Career: 17.7 points, 3.3 rebounds, 8.2 assists

    There is nothing like a good Tim Hardaway crossover. He was explosive, and during his prime, he posted seasons that closed in on 20 points and 10 assists a night.

    Like his counterpart, Mitch Richmond, his game spoke for itself. He served best alongside the likes of Alonzo Mourning and Jamal Mashburn, though he only had one deep playoff run his entire career.

    His Hall of Fame potential is further stalled by his controversial remarks

70. Boomer Esiason

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    Resume: 14 seasons, 5 quality, 4x Pro Bowler, 1988 NFL MVP, NFL first-team All-Pro (’88)

    Records: Most passes completed (2,969), TD passes (247) and passing yards (37,920) in a career by a left-handed quarterback

    Playoffs: Career record (3-2), lost Super Bowl XXIII

    Career: 187 games (173 started), 80-93 record, 37,920 yards, 247 TDs, 184 INTs, 57.0 competition percentage, 81.1 QB rating

    He was the quarterback on the last Bengals team to make it to the Super Bowl and one of the most threatening offenses of the 1980s.

    Any player with an MVP shows that they were the best player in their respective sport at one time and were able to amass the stats to prove it. Esiason will not be a Hall of Famer despite all of this, because there were may great quarterbacks to come from that era and he did not stand out.

    A Super Bowl ring would have probably changed many voters’ minds.

69. Terrell Davis

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    Resume: 7 seasons, 4 quality, 3x Pro Bowler, 1998 NFL MVP, 3x NFL first-team All-Pro (’96-’98), 2x NFL Offensive Player of the Year (’97, ’98), 2x Super Bowl champion (’98, ‘99), 1997 Super Bowl MVP, NFL 1990s All-Decade team

    Records: Consecutive 100-yard games in the postseason (7)

    League Leader: Rushing yards (1x), rushing TDs (2x), yards per carry (1x), yards per game (1x)

    Career: 7,607 yards, 60 TDs (65 total), 4.6 yards per carry

    Despite his accolades as an all-time great Super Bowl performer, there is a reason that Davis is not in the Hall of Fame yet.

    Like Priest Holmes, his short burst of excellence on a great team is not always what the committee is looking for. He does not even have 8,000 career yards and his time playing with John Elway does not make it easy for him to distinguish himself.

    Davis had an incredible run, but is not one of the best ever.

68. Todd Helton

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    Resume: 15 seasons, 11 quality, 5x All-Star, 3x Gold Glover (’01-’02, ’04), 4x Silver Slugger (’00-’03), 2000 NL Hank Aaron Award

    League Leader: Hits (1x), doubles (1x), RBI (1x), batting average (1x), OBP (2x), slugging percentage (1x), total bases (1x)

    Playoffs: 4 series, 15 games, .211 BA, 0 HR, 4 RBI, 11 runs

    Career: 2,010 games, .324 BA, 2323 Hits, 343 HR, 1,280 RBI, 1,308 Runs

    Helton falls just shy a true Hall of Famer. There is definitely room for interpretation as to whether he belongs or not, but the fact is that his stats are both marred by the era he played in and the field he played on.

    In addition, his 343 career home runs from a power position could be better. Time will tell if he is worthy of the Hall.

67. Maurice Cheeks

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    Resume: 15 seasons, 4 quality, 4x All-Star, second-team All-NBA (’76), NBA All-Rookie first team (1967), 4x NBA All-Defensive first team (’83-’86), NBA All-Defensive second team (’87), NBA champ (’83)

    Playoffs: 133 games, 14.4 points, 3.4 rebounds, 6.9 assist, 2.2 Steals

    Career: 11.1 points, 2.8 rebounds, 6.7 assists, 2.1 steals, No. 10 retired by Philadelphia 76ers

    At the time of his retirement in 1993, Cheeks was the all-time leader in steals and fifth in assists. Since, he has dropped to third in steals and eight in assists. He was the point guard on three NBA Finals teams and one NBA champion.

    He is highly regarded for his ability to play with a multitude of different stars throughout his career. He will remain a Hall of Fame outsider because of his lack of star power.

    There is no question that he would be a savior for a modern-day team such as the Miami Heat, but role players like him do not come along very often.

66. Drew Bledsoe

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    Resume: 15 seasons, 4 quality, 4x Pro Bowler, Super Bowl champ (2002)

    Records: Most passes completed (45) and thrown (70) in a regular season game

    League Leader: Passing yards (1x), passing yards per game (1x), completions (2x), yards per game (1x)

    Playoffs: Career record (3-3 as a starter), did not play in the Super Bowl

    Career: 194 games (193 started), 98-95 record, 44,611 yards, 251 TDs, 206 INTs, 57.2 competition percentage, 77.1 QB rating

    When Mo Lewis knocked out Drew Bledsoe, the team thought the season was over and it was time to wait for next year.

    Unluckily for Bledsoe, one of the greatest quarterbacks of all time was sitting on the bench waiting for his turn. His stats, especially his yardage, were very impressive, and at times, the best in the NFL.

    Once Tom Brady took over the reins, Bledsoe was never truly the same. He may have the statistics to be looked at for his place in Canton, but his legacy as Brady’s predecessor appears like a looming cloud.

65. Lorne Chabot

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    Resume: 11 seasons, 8 quality, Vezina Trophy winner (top goalie, ‘34-’35), 2x Stanley Cup champion (’28, ’32), NHL All-Star first team (1935)

    Playoffs: 37 games (13-17), 1.54 GAA

    Career: 25,411 minutes, 201-147-62, 2.03 GAA, 71 shutouts

    Chabot was one of the best goalies of all time and is one of the mysterious non-members of the Hockey Hall of Fame.

64. Grant Hill

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    Resume: 16 seasons, 6 quality, 7x All-Star, All NBA first team (1997), 4x All-NBA second team (’96, ’98-’00), NBA co-ROY (1995), gold medal 1996 Atlanta Olympic games (basketball)

    Playoffs: 38 games, 13.7 points, 6.2 rebounds, 3.6 assists

    Career: 17.5 points, 6.3 rebounds, 4.3 assists

    Hill has been a huge disappointment ever since his ankle injury. In his first six seasons, only LeBron James, Larry Bird and Oscar Robertson had more points, rebounds and assists than Hill.

    The injury destroyed whatever chance he had of being an all-time great. Now, he coasts as an elder-statesman role player on a mediocre team.

63. Rick Martin

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    Resume: 11 seasons, 7 quality, 7x All-Star, 2x NHL All-Star first team (’73-’75), 2x NHL All-Star second team (’75-’77)

    Playoffs: 63 games, 53 points, 24 goals, 29 assists

    Career: 685 games, 701 points, 384 goals, 317 assists, +15

    Martin holds many Buffalo Sabres team records and was one of the best players in the league. He dealt with two different freak injuries that sidelined him, including being hooked from behind, resulting in his head hitting the ice.

    He is ranked the No. 4 Sabre of all time and had his No. 7 retired by the franchise in 2011

62. Lester Hayes

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    Resume: 10 seasons, 4 quality, 5x Pro Bowler, NFL first-team All-Pro (1980), 5x NFL second-team All-Pro ('79, ’81-’84), 1980 NFL AP Defensive Player of the Year, NFL 1980s All-Decade team, 2x Super Bowl champ (XV, XVIII)

    League Leader: INTs (1x), INT yards (1x), defensive touchdowns (2x)

    Career: 149 games (134 starts); 39 INTs, 573 INT yards, 4 TDs

    Hayes was the type of player that shut down an entire side of the field. His 13 interceptions in 1980 were the best in Raiders history and showed how dominant he could be.

    He would never have a season so incredible for the rest of his career, which could explain his exclusion from the Hall of Fame.

    If you asked the guys that he covered, I think they would say otherwise.

61. Ron Santo

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    Resume: 15 seasons, 7 quality, 9x All-Star, 4x top 10 MVP voting (’63, ’64, ’67, ’69), 5x Gold Glover (’64-’68)

    League Leader: Triples (1x), BB (4x), OBP (2x)

    Career: 2,243 games, .277 BA, 2,254 hits, 342 HR, 1,331 RBI, 1,138 runs

    As it stands, it appears that Santo was a good ballplayer who had a nice career. Once the sabermetrics guys got a hand on his stat sheets, they went crazy.

    He is no longer eligible for the Hall of Fame and has passed away since his last try. He was beloved by Cubs fans for years, and is thought of as one of the best players not in Cooperstown.

60. Kerry Collins

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    Resume: 17 seasons, 4 quality, 2x Pro Bowler

    Records: New York Giants single-season passing yards (4,073)

    Playoffs: Career record (3-4), lost Super Bowl XXXV

    Career: 194 games (177 started); 81-96 record, 40,441, 206 TDs, 195 INTs, 55.8 competition percentage, 73.9 QB rating

    Surprisingly, Collins has the 11th-most passing yards of all time. He has been the type of quarterback that you mentor your young guys with and he ends up doing mop up duty for you.

    All this cleaning up adds up and starts looking like a legitimate NFL career. We were fooled, so please no Hall of Fame love for Collins…please.

59. Jeff Bagwell

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    Resume: 15 seasons, 12 quality, 4x All-Star, 1994 NL MVP, 6x top 10 MVP voting (’94-‘97, ’99-’00), 3x Silver Slugger (’94, ’97, ’99), 1994 Gold Glove winner, 1991 NL ROY

    Records: Fewest plate appearances in a season with at least 100 runs and RBI

    League Leader: Runs (3x), doubles (1x), RBI (1x), slugging percentage (1x), OPS (1x)

    Playoffs: 9 series, 33 games, .226 BA, 2 HR, 13 RBI, .364 OBP

    Career: 2,150 games, .297 BA, 2,314 Hits, 449 HR, 1,529 RBI, 1,517 Runs

    He is the victim of the time he played in. You can say there is no way that he took PEDs or you can say he absolutely did—and you wouldn’t be incorrect either way.

    Bagwell was big, compact and hit for power. Does that mean he is a cheater? Well, it is keeping him from the Hall of Fame.

58. Tony Oliva

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    Resume: 15 seasons, 9 quality, 8x All-Star, 1964 AL ROY, 2x AL MVP runner-up ('65, ’70), 3x top 5 MVP voting (’64, ’65, ’70), 1966 Gold Glove winner

    Records: Elected to All-Star game in first eight seasons

    League Leader: Runs (1x), hits (5x), doubles (4x), BA (3x), slugging percentage (1x), total bases (1x), IBB (1x)

    Playoffs: 3 series, 13 games, .314 BA, 3 HR, 5 RBI, 30 total bases

    Career: 1,676 games, .304 BA, 1,917 Hits, 202 HR, 947 RBI, 870 Runs

    Oliva was a hitting machine, leading the league five separate years in the category. His best Hall of Fame year came in 1988 when he received 47.3 percent of the vote.

    That seems about right for a guy who is was one of the best hitters of the 1960s. Injuries prevented him from reaching his full potential, leaving him on the outside looking it. 

57. Pavel Bure

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    Resume: 11 seasons, 5 quality, 6x All-Star, 1992 Calder Memorial Trophy (ROY), 2x Maurice Richard Trophy winner (top scorer, ’99-’01), 1994 NHL All-Star first team, 2x NHL All-Star second team (’99-’01)

    League Leader: Goals (3x), goals created (2x), even-strength goals (1x), power-play goals (1x), short-handed goals (1x), shots (4x)

    Playoffs: 64 games, 70 points, 35 goals, 35 assists, +8

    Career: 702 games, 779 points, 437 goals, 342 assists, +42

    Bure was one of the best pure scorers in hockey history, but was derailed by injuries. He averaged better than a point a game in his NHL career, but did not play as long as he would have liked.

    They called him the “Russian Rocket” because nobody could top his speed and sharp-shooter mentality. 

56. Ron Guidry

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    Resume: 14 seasons, 7 quality, 4x All-Star, Cy Young Award winner (’78), 6x top 10 Cy Young Award voting (’77-’79, ’81, ’83, ‘85), 1978 AL MVP runner-up, 2x World Series champ (’77, ’78)

    League Leader: Wins (2x), winning percentage (2x), ERA (2x), complete games (1x), shutouts (1x)

    Playoffs: 7 series, 10 starts (5-2), 62.2 IP, 3.02 ERA, 51 K's

    Career: 170-91, 3.29 ERA, 2,392.0 IP, 1,178 K's, No. 49 retired by New York Yankees

    Guidry’s career numbers are impressive, but short-lived—170 career wins will not even get you free parking at a Hall of Fame induction ceremony.

    He was an ace for two championship teams and a Cy Young Award winner who at times was the best pitcher in baseball.

55. Jason Giambi

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    Resume: 17 seasons, 7 quality, 5x All-Star, 2000 AL MVP, 2001 AL MVP runner-up, 3x top 5 MVP voting (’00-’02), 2005 Comeback Player of the Year, 2x Silver Slugger (’01-’02), 2002 Home Run Derby winner

    League Leader: Doubles (1x), BB (4x), OBP (3x), slugging percentage (1x), OPS (1x)

    Playoffs: 10 series, 45 games, .290 BA, 7 HR, 19 RBI, 67 total bases

    Career: 2,082 games, .281 BA, 1,937 hits, 424 HR, 1,387 RBI, 1191 runs

    We know Giambi took steroids, because he told us. All is forgiven (for the most part), and we have all moved on with our lives.

    His career numbers are definitely worth a look from the baseball writers, but unless he can fire up the Delorean and go back in time, he dug his own grave and he will have to live with it.

54. Adam Oates

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    Resume: 19 seasons, 5 quality, 5x All-Star, 1991 NHL All-Star second team

    League Leader: Assists (3x) game-winning goals (1x)

    Playoffs: 163 games, 156 points, 42 goals, 114 assists, -12

    Career: 1,337 games, 1,420 points, 341 goals, 1,079 assists, +35, most points for a player not in the Hall of Fame

    His absence from the Hockey Hall of Fame is beyond me. He was creative, shifty and made everyone around him better. 

53. Jerry Kramer

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    Resume: 11 seasons, 5 quality, 3x Pro Bowler, 5x NFL first-team All-Pro (’60, ’62, ’63, ’66, ’67), NFL second-team All-Pro (’68), 5x NFL champ (’61, ’62, ’65-‘67), 2x Super Bowl champ (I, II), NFL 1960s All-Decade team, NFL 50th anniversary team, Green Bay Packers Hall of Fame

    League Leader: Field-goal percentage (1x)

    Career: 130 games (14 started), 29-for-54 FGM

    Kramer is a legend for the most storied franchise in football history, yet he has not been inducted into the Hall of Fame yet. For a man that retired over 50 years ago, I think it is safe to say that he will probably end up being the all-time greatest snub.

    He was part of a legendary offensive line that won seven NFL titles.

52. Lee Smith

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    Resume: 18 seasons, 13 quality, 7x All-Star, Cy Young Award runner-up (’91), 4x top 10 Cy Young Award voting (’83, ’91, ’92, ‘94), 2x NL Rolaids Relief winner (’91, ’92), AL Rolaids Relief winner (’94)

    Record: Most games finished (802)

    League Leader: Games finished (3x), saves (4x)

    Playoffs: 2 series, 4 games, 5.1 IP, 8.44 ERA, 7 K's, 1 save

    Career: 1,022 games, 71-92, 3.03 ERA, 478 Saves, 1,251 K's

    The only argument I can think of for Lee’s absence from the Hall of Fame is his lack of dominance you look for in a Hall of Fame closer (i.e. Dennis Eckersley).

    Other than that, he was a Cy Young runner-up, a seven-time All-Star, and was the all-time saves leader until being moved aside by Trevor Hoffman, who many believe is a Hall of Fame player.

    He is hovering around 45 percent of the vote, which never bodes well.

51. Shawn Kemp

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    Resume: 14 seasons, 10 quality, 6x All-Star, 2x All-NBA second team (’94-’96)

    Playoffs: 88 games, 17.3 points, 9.7 rebounds, 1.8 assists; during Seattle’s best playoff run he averaged 21/10/.570

    Career: 14.6 points, 8.4 rebounds, 1.6 assists

    Kemp was one of the most athletic players to ever play the game. He was fierce, dynamic, and well…whatever this is.

    What plagued him was immaturity, feuds with ownership and weight problems (which became the biggest issue). He would never return to his ’95-’96 form and faded into relative obscurity.

    Despite being a troublemaker, he was an incredible player during his reign at the top.

50. Henry Ellard

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    Resume: 17 seasons, 7 quality, 3x Pro Bowler, 2x NFL first-team All-Pro (’84, ’86)

    League Leader: Yards (1x), yards per game (2x), yards per reception (1x)

    Career: 228 games (199 started), 814 receptions, 13,777 yards, 65 TDs, 60.4 yards per game

    He held every Rams receiving record until Isaac Bruce and Tory Holt changed that. He played in the shadow of Jerry Rice (who didn’t) for most of his career despite being an exceptional receiver. 

49. Penny Hardaway

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    Resume: 14 seasons, 5 quality, 4x All-Star, 2x All-NBA first team (’95-’96), All-NBA third team (’97)… NBA All-Rookie first team (‘94), NBA Rookie game MVP (2004), gold medal 1996 Atlanta Olympics (basketball)

    Playoffs: 64 games, 20.4 points, 4.7 rebounds, 6.2 assists

    Career: 15.2 points, 4.5 rebounds, 5.0 assists

    Both he and Grant Hill fall into the same category of early excellence with a subsequent fall. He was supposed to be what Scottie Pippen was—a big guard who could rebound, control the ball and score.

    Teaming up with Shaquille O'Neal, his trip to the finals proved that he was worthy of the praise. But, because he was Penny Hardaway and not Scottie Pippen, he makes this list instead.

48. Plaxico Burress

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    Resume: 8 seasons, 5 quality, no Pro Bowls, Super Bowl champion (’08), game winning catch in the Super Bowl

    Career: 128 games (121 started), 505 receptions, 7,845 yards, 55 TDs, 61.3 yards per game

    I was as surprised as anyone to find out that Burress has zero Pro Bowls under his belt. Many put him in the same class as many of the other top receivers in the league, but he has still not even made an All-Star team (and think about how many people drop out each year).

    His time in jail will make it nearly impossible to make the Hall of Fame, as he lost years of his prime and faith with the voters.

47. Gilbert Arenas

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    Resume: 10 seasons, 5 quality, 3x All-Star, 2003 NBA Most Improved Player, All-NBA second team (’07), 2x All-NBA third team (’05, ‘06)

    Records: Most points in an overtime period (16), most points less than 30 minutes played (46)

    Playoffs: 25 games, 21.0 points, 4.2 rebounds, 4.7 assists

    Career: 21.3 points, 4.0 rebounds, 5.4 assists

    Gilbert was one of the premier scorers in the NBA before his knees went to shreds. He then returned to an excited crowd ready for his epic return only to disappoint them once more by getting suspended for an entire season due to gun issues.

    I know it is difficult to maintain a near 30-point scoring average in the NBA, but Arenas is not even half the player he used to be. His chances of making the Hall of Fame were weakened by injuries and solidified with his suspension. 

46. Ben Wallace

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    Resume: 15 seasons, 7 quality, 4x All-Star, NBA champ (’04), 3x All-NBA second team (’03, ’04, ‘06), 2x All-NBA third team(’02, ’05), 4x NBA Defensive Player of the Year (’02, ’03, ’05, ’06), 5x NBA All-Defensive first team (’02-’06), NBA All-Defensive second team (’07)

    Records: 4-time defensive player of the year (tied)

    Playoffs: 130 games, 7.2 points, 11.2 rebounds, 1.9 blocks

    Career: 6.0 points, 10.0 rebounds, 2.0 blocks

    Wallace was the muscle of the Detroit Pistons dynasty and one of the most imposing forces in the NBA.

    Some compare him to Dennis Rodman and think that if Rodman can get in, then so can Wallace. The difference is that Rodman won five titles and averaged three more rebounds per game over the length of his career.

45. Don Mattingly

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    Resume: 14 seasons, 8 quality, 6x All-Star, 1985 AL MVP, 1986 AL MVP runner-up, 4x top 5 MVP voting (’84-’87), 9x Gold Glover (’85-’89, ’91-’94), 3x Silver Slugger (’85-’87), NY Yankees captain (’91-’95)

    Records: 8 consecutive games with a home run (tied with two others), 6 grand slams in one season

    League Leader: Hits (2x), doubles (3x), RBI (1x), batting average (1x), slugging percentage (1x), OPS (1x), total bases (2x)

    Playoffs: 5 games, .417 BA, 1 HR, 6 RBI, 17 total bases

    Career: 1,785 games, .307 BA, 2,153 Hits, 222 HR, 1,099 RBI, 1007 Runs

    He deserves a plaque in Cooperstown for playing with the Yankees after they won the World Series in ’79 until right before they won it in ’96. He is a bit of a legend for the Yankees not always for his performance, but his eight consecutive games with a home run or for the 1995 playoffs.

    He was a true Yankee who played his whole career for the team but just could not get over the hump. His stats are not good enough to overcome his lack of wins. 

44. Herman Moore

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    Resume: 12 seasons, 4 quality, 4x Pro Bowler, 3x NFL first-team All-Pro (’95-’97), NFL second-team All-Pro (’94)

    League Leader: Receptions (2x)

    Career: 146 games (123 started), 670 receptions, 9,174 yards, 62 TDs, 62.8 yards per game

    Moore held the single-season catch record before Marvin Harrison shattered it. He was a part of one of the more successful times in Lions history, including two division titles.

    He still gets left out of the Hall of Fame for only having a short window of dominance.  

43. Edgar Martinez

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    Resume: 18 seasons, 7 quality, 7x All-Star, 2x top 10 MVP voting (’95, ’00) 5x Silver Slugger (’92, ’95, ’97, ’01, ‘03), Seattle Mariners Hall of Fame inductee (2007)

    League Leader: Runs (1x), doubles (2x), RBI (1x), BA (2x), OBP (3x), OPS (1x)

    Playoffs: 7 series, 34 games, .266 BA, 8 HR, 24 RBI, .365 OBP; 1995 ALDS: .571/2/10

    Career: 2,055 games, .312 BA, 2,247 Hits, 309 HR, 1261 RBI, 1,219 runs

    There are two different reasons voters can give for keeping Martinez out.

    First, they can argue that he was a designated hitter. It is not his fault that the Mariners chose to play him there every day, but for better or worse, that was his “position.”

    Second, if all he was doing was hitting, his numbers need to be a bit healthier, as 309 career home runs for a power, middle-of-the-order guy is good, but not incredible.

    People lose sight of what the Hall of Fame is sometimes. It is for the best of the best. Martinez was just OK.

42. Dave Krieg

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    Resume: 19 seasons, 6 quality, 3x Pro Bowler

    Record: Most games with five or more touchdown passes (5)

    League Leader: Competition percentage (1x)

    Playoffs: Career record (3-6), no Super Bowl appearances

    Career: 213 games (175 started), 98-77 record, 38,147 yards, 261 TDs, 199 INTs, 58.5 competition percentage, 81.5 QB rating

    Krieg was the kind of quarterback that just exists. He is always rotating with somebody else, has a couple of good games and then finds a way to finish out the season.

    Once in a while, he had a very good game or a good stretch, but he is not the type of quarterback that gets seriously looked at for a place in the Hall of Fame.

41. Fred Taylor

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    Resume: 13 seasons, 7 quality, 1 Pro Bowl, 2007 NFL All-Pro, 2007 FedEx Ground Player of the Year

    League Leader: Yards per game (1x)

    Career: 11,5695 yards, 66 TDs (74 total), 4.6 yards per carry

    His most telling stat is that he has 11,000 yards and only one Pro Bowl. Many people devalue the Pro Bowl, but in all of his time in the NFL, only once was he recognized as one of the best running backs in the game.

    He is a high-character guy, which helps his case, but his lack of championship pedigree hurts.

40. Rasheed Wallace

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    Resume: 15 seasons, 5 quality, 4x All-Star, NBA All-Rookie second team (’95-’96), NBA champion (’04)

    Records: 40 technical fouls in one season, 304 technical fouls in a career

    Playoffs: 177 games, 13.5 points, 6.2 rebounds, 1.5 assists

    Career: 14.6 points, 6. 7 rebounds, 1.8 assists

    Imagine if Wallace was in his prime in 2011. He would not be able to stay on the court after all the technical fouls called on him.

    He had flashes of being in the top-five power forward category and then reminded everyone how getting inside his head was as simple as flashing him a dirty look. It still surprises me that he was the calm one during the fight at Auburn Hills.

39. Rich Gannon

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    Resume: 17 seasons, 4 quality, 4x Pro Bowler, 2002 NFL MVP, 2x NFL All-Pro (’00, ‘04), 1994 Walter Payton Award winner

    League Leader: Most 300-plus yard passing games in a season (10), most consecutive 300-plus-yard games in a season (6), most competitions in non-overtime game (43)

    Playoffs: Career record (4-3), lost Super Bowl XXXVII

    Career: 157 games (132 started), 76-56 record, 28,743 yards, 180 TDs, 104 INTs, 60.2 competition percentage, 84.7 QB rating

    Gannon had one of the most dominant seasons in the last decade in the NFL. He had more 300-plus-yard in one season than anyone else.

    With all that in consideration, he was throwing to Tim Brown and Jerry Rice at the time.

38. Robert Horry

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    Resume: 16 seasons, none quality, never an All-Star, 7x NBA champ (’94-’95, ’00-’02, ’05, ‘07), NBA All-Rookie second team (1993)

    Records: Most steals in an NBA Finals game (7), most playoff games played (244), three-pointers in the NBA Finals (53),

    Playoffs: 244 games, 7.9 points, 5.6 rebounds, 2.4 assists

    Career: 7.0 points, 4.8 rebounds, 2.1 assists; one of nine players in history with seven or more championships who did not play for the 1960s Boston Celtics

    Does the greatest role player of all time have a spot in the Hall of Fame?

    He would be in a category all his own. There are guys that hustle and those that play defense, but can the committee really give entry to a guy who ONLY hits big three-pointers?

    I think not.

37. David Ortiz

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    Resume: 15 seasons, 6 quality, 7x All-Star, 2005 AL MVP runner-up, 4x Silver Slugger (’04-‘07), 2010 Home Run Derby winner, 2x World Series champion (’04, ’07)

    Records: Most home runs by a DH (323), most RBI by a DH (1,065)

    League Leader HR (1x), RBI (2x), BB (2x), OBP (1x), total bases (1x)

    Playoffs: 14 series, 66 games, .283 BA, 12 HR, 47 RBI, 69 hits; three walk-off hits in 2004 playoffs

    Career: 1,683 games, .282 BA, 1,690 hits, 368 HR, 1,225 RBI, 1,027 runs

    How juiced were the 2003 and 2004 Boston Red Sox? We know that Ortiz and Ramirez were both taking some form of performance-enhancing drug, but only a few individuals know to what extent.

    Ortiz’s Cooperstown chances looked bleak in 2009 when we first learned of his misconduct, but as time has progressed, he may again have a chance. He came forward in a humble fashion and has continues to perform in a post-steroid era.

    That being said, he is one of the best that will not make it to the Hall of Fame because the steroid mountain is too great to overcome.

36. Eric Lindros

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    Resume: 13 seasons, 6 quality, 6x All-Star, 1994-1995 Hart Memorial Trophy (MVP), 1994-1995 Ted Lindsay Trophy (Most Outstanding Player), 1995 NHL All-Star first team, 1996 NHL All-Star second team

    League Leader: Points (1x), even-strength goals (1x)

    Playoffs: 53 games, 57 points, 24 goals, 33 assists, +8; 1997 Playoffs: 19 games, 26 points, 10 goals created

    Career: 760 games, 865 points, 372 goals, 493 assists, +215

    Some athletes cannot get out of their head and perform under clutch circumstances. Others get hit in the head too often and can’t play at all. For Eric Lindros, concussions were his downfall and what prevented him from greatness.

    When healthy, he was perennially one of the best players in the world.

35. Mark Jackson

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    Resume: 17 seasons, 7 quality, 1x All-Star, ’87-’88 Rookie of the Year, ’87-’88 NBA first-team All-Rookie

    League Leader: Assists (1x)

    Playoffs: 131 games, 9 points, 6.9 assists, 3.6 rebounds, 1 NBA Finals appearance (loss)

    Career: 9.6 points, 8.0 assists, 3.8 rebounds, top-10 assists leader 10 times, third-most assists in NBA history (10,334)

    Jackson was always the coach type when he played. He was a great distributor and he wanted to get his teammates involved before he took his shots.

    He is the type of player that is smart on the basketball court to the point where he knows what is going to happen next. I see him getting very frustrated with Monta Ellis at some point, for this is not his game.

34. Vida Pinson

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    Resume: 18 seasons, 10 quality, 4x All-Star, 2x top 10 MVP voting (’61, ’63), Gold Glover (1961)

    League Leader: Runs (1x), hits (2x), doubles (2x), triples (2x)

    Playoffs: 1 series, 5 games, .091 BA, 0 HR, 0 RBI

    Career: 2,469 games, .286 BA, 2,757 hits, 256 HR, 1,170 RBI

    A well-respected and well-liked man, Pinson was center fielder that came within a few seasons of 3,000 hits.

    He never got more than 16 percent of the Hall of Fame vote and went on to coach after he retired. Pinson was highly effective player during his day but was never seriously considered for the Hall of Fame.

33. Ricky Williams

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    Resume: 10 seasons, 5 quality, 1 Pro Bowl, 2002 Pro Bowl MVP, 2002 NFL first-team All-Pro; best two-year prime: 338 attempts, 1,613 yards, 13 TDs

    League Leader: Attempts (2x), yards (1x), yards per game (1x)

    Career: 9,565 yards, 64 TDs (72 total), 4.1 yards per carry

    They told him to run, so he ran right out of the league. Williams was one of the best and most hyped running backs in league history, to no doing of his own.

    When he was on the field, he was one of the best runners the league had ever seen. His problem was that he found something other than football to care about in life.

    They tend to discourage that in the NFL.

32. Thurman Munson

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    Resume: 11 seasons, 5 quality, 7x All-Star, 1976 AL MVP, 1970 AL ROY, 3x top 10 MVP voting (’75-’77), 3x Gold Glover (’73-’75), NY Yankees captain (’76-’79), 2x World Series champ (’77, ’78)

    Records: 6 consecutive hits in the World Series (tied)

    League Leader: Hits (2x), doubles (3x), RBI (1x), batting average (1x), slugging percentage (1x), OPS (1x), total bases (2x)

    Career: 1,423 games, .292 BA, 1,558 Hits, 113 HR, 701 RBI

    Munson was a man who died well before he was supposed to and contributed to the Yankees both on and off the field.

    While there have been writers compelled to vote for Munson in the past, he will not be a Hall of Fame player despite the prevailing thought that he might have been if not for his early death.

31. Mel Daniels

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    Resume: 9 seasons, 7 quality, 7x All-Star (All-ABA), 2x ABA MVP (’69, ’71), 4x All-ABA first team (’68-’71), All-ABA second team ('72-’73), All-NBA second team (’76-’77), ABA all-time team, ABA Champion (’70, ’72, ’73), 1968 ABA ROY, 1969 ABA ASG MVP

    League Leader: Rebounds (3x)

    Playoffs: 109 games, 17.4 points, 14.8 rebounds, 1.5 assists; 1971 playoffs: 21.4 points, 19.2 rebounds, 1.5 assists

    Career: 18.4 points, 14.9 rebounds, 1.8 assists, No. 34 retired by Indiana Pacers

    Anyone who says the ABA was an inferior league needs to look at the tale of the tape. Players like George Gervin, Rick Barry and Mel Daniels all played there before coming and dominating the NBA game.

    Daniels’ time has passed to get any Hall of Fame love, even though he is only one a few ABA MVPs to not get into the Hall.

30. Jose Canseco

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    Resume: 17 seasons, 9 quality, 6x All-Star, 2x World Series champ (’89, ’00), 1988 AL MVP, 2x top 5 MVP voting ('88, ’91) 4x Silver Slugger (’88, ’90, ’91, ’98), 1988 AL ROY

    League Leader: HR (2x), RBI (1x), slugging percentage (1x)

    Playoffs: 8 series, 30 games, .184 BA, 7 HR, 18 RBI

    Career: 1,887 games, .266 BA, 1,877 hits, 462 HR, 1,407 RBI

    Canseco was juiced and then he was vindicated and now he is fighting somewhere.

    Canseco is an admitted steroid user and encourager. He outed everyone in the league, making his chances of making the Hall of Fame zero.

    Say what you will about the man, but he has done something that nobody had the guts to do before him and few have the guts to do now.

29. Chauncey Billups

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    Resume: 14 seasons, 8 quality, 5x All-Star, NBA champ (’04), ’04 NBA Finals MVP, All-NBA second team ('06), 2x All-NBA third team (’07, ‘09), 2x NBA All-Defensive team (’05, ‘06)

    Playoffs: 140 games, 17.8 points, 3.4 rebounds, 5.9 assists

    Career: 15.5 points, 2.9 rebounds, 5.6 assists

    The reason that he gets consideration is because he has something that few other athletes in the world have—a knack for being clutch.

    He is an amazing leader and turned his shooting from a weakness into his biggest strength. The 2004 Pistons all have very specific roles and he filled his perfectly as the floor general and sharp shooter.

28. Sammy Sosa

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    Resume: 18 seasons, 9 quality, 7x All-Star, 6x Silver Slugger (’95, ’98-’02), 2000 Home Run Derby winner, 1999 NL Hank Aaron Award

    Records: Most home runs hit in a month (20), Chicago Cubs: Home runs in a season (66)

    League Leader: Runs (3x), HR (4x), RBI (2x), total bases (3x), IBB (1x)

    Playoffs: 3 series, 15 games, .245 BA, 2 HR, 7 RBI

    Career: 2,354 games, .273 BA, 2,408 Hits, 609 HR, 1,667 RBI

    Sosa was another guy who tested positive in 2003, right under our noses. The pumped up version of Sosa was great, though.

    The summer of 1998 was exciting and he took the baseball world by storm. Little did we know he was taking us for everything we were worth.

27. Mark McGwire

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    Resume: 16 seasons, 8 quality, 12x All-Star, World Series champion (’89), Gold Glover (’90), 3x Silver Slugger (’92, ’96, ’98), 1987 AL ROY, 1992 Home Run Derby winner, MLB All-Century Team, silver medal 1984 Los Angeles Olympics (baseball)

    Records: 49 home runs rookie season, 10.61 at-bats-per-home run ratio

    League Leader: HR (4x), RBI (1x), BB (2x), OBP (2x), slugging percentage (4x), OPS (2x), IBB (1x)

    Playoffs: 10 series, 42 games, .217 BA, 5 HR, 14 RBI

    Career: 1,874 games, .263 BA, 1,626 Hits, 583 HR, 1,414 RBI

    We know, Mark, but thanks for letting us know anyway.

    A former MVP and Home Run Derby champ, McGwire sold us even harder than Sosa did with the bottle of andro that he left in his locker.

    Many believe that early in his career he truly was a great baseball player.

26. George Foster

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    Resume: 18 seasons, 7 quality, 5x All-Star, 1977 NL MVP, 1976 NL MVP runner-up, 3x top 5 MVP voting (’76, ’77, ’81), 1976 ASG MVP, Silver Slugger (’81)

    League Leader: Runs (1x), HR (2x), RBI (3x), slugging percentage (1x), OPS (1x)

    Playoffs: 7 series, 23 games, .289 BA, 3 HR, 12 RBI, 11 runs

    Career: 1,977 games, .274BA, 1,925 hits, 348 HR, 1,239 RBI

    He was the left fielder on the “Big Red Machine” Cincinnati Reds ballclub that won the World Series in 1975 and 1976.

    Foster was a big-time bat in the middle of the lineup and an important piece to the success of the team.

    Unluckily for him, his name was never called for the Hall of Fame.

25. Jo Jo White

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    Resume: 12 seasons, 7 quality, 3x All-Star, 2x NBA champion (’74, ’76), NBA Finals MVP (1976), 2x All-NBA second team (’75-’77), NBA All-Rookie first team (1970)

    League Leader: Free throws made (1x), scoring (1x)

    Playoffs: 80 games, 21.5 points, 4.4 rebounds, 5.7 assists

    Career: 17.2 points, 4.0 rebounds, 4.9 assists, No. 10 retired by Boston Celtics

    White walked into a Boston Celtics locker room that had just watched Bill Russell retire and was replacing many of its major components. White would prove to not only be a good enough add on, but a valued Celtic for a decade.

    He was an NBA Finals MVP and two-time champion who played every day and was an underrated aspect of the championship teams.

24. Dale Murphy

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    Resume: 18 seasons, 5 quality, 7x All-Star, 2x NL MVP (’82, ’83), 5x Gold Glover (’82-’86), 4x Silver Slugger (’82-’85), member of the 30/30 club

    League Leader: Runs (1x), HR (2x), RBI (2x), BB (1x), slugging percentage (2x), OPS (1x), total bases (1x)

    Playoffs: 1 series, 3 games, .273 BA, 0 HR, 0 RBI

    Career: 2,180 games, .265 BA, 2,111 hits, 398 HR, 1,266 RBI, 1,197 runs

    What does a guy have to do out here to get in the Hall of Fame?

    If two MVPs, seven All-Star seasons and five Gold Gloves are not enough, then I don’t know what is.

    Murphy could have padded his stats a tad more and gotten that extra bump. Looks like he is just like the rest of us…

23. Fred Lynn

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    Resume: 17 seasons, 6 quality, 9x All-Star, 1975 AL MVP, 1975 ROY, 2x top 5 MVP voting (’75, ’79), 4x Gold Glover (’75,’78-’80), 1983 ASG MVP, 1982 ALCS MVP

    League Leader: Runs (1x), doubles (1x), BA (1x), OBP (1x), slugging percentage (1x), OPS (1x)

    Playoffs: 3 series, 15 games, .407 BA, 2 HR, 13 RBI

    Career: 1969 games, .283 BA, 1960 hits, 306 HR, 1,111 RBI, 1,063 runs

    Lynn had one of, if not the most successful rookie season of all time. He was not able to continue his success due to reckless and nagging injuries that sidelined him.

    He ended up participating in nine All-Star games and finished fourth in the MVP voting in 1979. His numbers are good, but not Hall of Fame criteria.

22. Yao Ming

81 of 102

    Resume: 8 seasons, 6 quality, 8x All-Star, 2x All-NBA second team (’07, ’09), 3x All-NBA third team (’04, ’06, ‘08), NBA All-Rookie team (2003)

    Records: Most All-Star votes (2.6 million)

    Playoffs: 28 games, 19.8 points, 9.3 rebounds, 1.0 assists

    Career: 19.0 points, 9.2 rebounds, 1.9 blocks

    Ming is a cultural icon who changed the global dynamic of the game forever.

    That being said, he is not a Hall of Fame player. He is set to officially retire in the coming weeks, and much has been discussed about why he should be there.

    He was a good rebounder and good post man, but wouldn’t you expect that from a No. 1 overall pick? His career has been too short to deem Hall of Fame worthy. He never made an All-NBA first team and never made it past the second round of the playoffs.

    He is a very good player who was on good teams, but not a Hall of Fame player. 

21. Joe Carter

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    Resume: 16 seasons, 5 quality, 5x All-Star, 2x World Series champion (’92, ’93), 2x Silver Slugger (’91, ’92), Blue Jays Level of Excellence, 4x top 10 MVP voting (’86, ’91, ’92, ’94), 2x top 5 MVP voting (’91, ’92)

    Records: Only player to record the final out of a World Series and hit a game-winning home run to win a World Series

    League Leader: At-bats (2x), RBI (1x)

    Playoffs: 5 series, 29 games, .252 BA, 6 HR, 20 RBI; 1993 WS (6 games): .280 BA, 2 HR, 8 RBI

    Career: (2,189 games): .259 BA, 2,184 Hits, 396 HR, 1,445 RBIs

    Carter’s 396 home runs have not been good enough to push him through to Cooperstown. He had a very good career, but he is marred by a low batting average and few quality seasons.

    The Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame has inducted to the slugger. That’s kind of the same, right?

20. Ricky Watters

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    Resume: 10 seasons, 8 quality, 5x Pro Bowler, 3x NFL second-team All-Pro (’94-’96), Super Bowl champion (’95), member of 10,000 yards club

    League Leader: Attempts (1x), yards from scrimmage (1x),

    Career: 10,643 yards, 78 TDs (91 total), 4.1 yards per carry

    What was his best attribute was also his downfall. Ricky Watters played the game with emotion, but could not shut his mouth.

    He has more rushing yards then many players in the Hall of Fame today, yet still gets little respect because of the way that he acted the majority of his career.

19. Harold Baines

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    Resume: 22 seasons, 10 quality, 6x All-Star, World Series champ (2005), Silver Slugger (’89), 2x top 10 MVP voting (’83, ’85)

    Records: Chicago White Sox: Home runs for left-handed hitter (221), RBI (981), extra-base hits (585)

    League Leader: Slugging percentage (1x)

    Playoffs: 8 series, 31 games, .324 BA, 5 HR, 16 RBI

    Career: 2,830 games, .289 BA, 2,866 hits, 384 HR, 1,628 RBI;  Most RBI by a player not in the Hall of Fame, No. 3 retired by Chicago White Sox

    Baines has almost 3,000 hits and has the most RBI for a player not in the Hall of Fame. He has no connection to performance-enhancing drugs and was a stand-up guy during his time on six different teams.

    He has been dropped from the ballot for not getting enough votes in 2011.

18. Jim Kaat

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    Resume: 25 seasons, 9 quality, 3x All-Star, World Series champ ('82), 1966 AL TSN Pitcher of the Year, 16x Gold Glover (’62-’77)

    League Leader: Wins (1x), games started (2x), complete games (1x), shutouts (1x), IP (1x)

    Playoffs: 4 series, 9 games (5 started), 1-3, 4.01 ERA, 10K's, 24.2 IP

    Career: 898 games (625 starts), 283-237, 3.45 ERA, 2,461 K's, 4,530.1 IP

    Kaat is the type of pitcher that you call old reliable. He goes out there and just pitches. He may not always win, but he is going to give you innings and keep you in the game.

    He was successful at this 283 times.

    This may be impressive to may people, but the baseball writers have very stingy criteria for the hallowed halls.

17. Fred McGriff

86 of 102

    Resume: 19 seasons, 14 quality, 5x All-Star, WS champion (1995), 1994 All-Star MVP, 3x Silver Slugger (’89, ’92, ’93), 6x top 10 MVP voting (’89, ’90, ’91, ’92, ’93, ’94), 1994 Home Run Derby runner-up

    League Leader: HR (2x), OPS (1x)

    Playoffs: 10 series (50 games), .303 BA, 10 HR, 37 RBI

    Career: .284 BA, 493 HR, 1,550 RBI

    The “Crime Dog” has been looking for the Hall of Fame invite for quite some time now, and we are getting closer and closer to talking about it not showing up.

    Being only seven home runs shy of 500 should propel you to the top of the ballot with all of the steroid users that he played with. He was consistently good and proved that slow and steady gets you almost in the Hall. 

16. Randall Cunningham

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    Resume: 16 seasons, 6 quality, 4x Pro Bowler, 1990 NFL MVP, 3x Bert Bell Award winner (’88, ’90, '98), 4x NFL All-Pro (’89, ‘90, '92, '98), 1988 Pro Bowl MVP, 1992 NFL Comeback Player of the Year

    Record: All-time leader in rushing yards and attempts by a quarterback

    Playoffs: Career record: 3-6, never reached the Super Bowl

    Career: 161 games (135 started), 82-52-1 record, 29,979 yards, 207 TDs, 134 INTs, 56.6 competition percentage, 81.5 QB rating

    He was Michael Vick before Michael Vick. He had the legs to run and avoid linemen and a gun for an arm.

    What hurts his stock is that he never won a Super Bowl and underachieved many times.

15. George McGinnis

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    Resume: 11 seasons, 9 quality, 6x All-Star (3 ABA, 3 NBA), ’74-’75 ABA MVP, 2x All-ABA first team (’73-’75), All-NBA first team (’75-’76), All-ABA second team (’72-’73), All-NBA second team (’76-’77), 2x ABA champ (’72,’73), ABA All-Time team

    League Leader: ABA: Free throws made (1x), scoring (1x)

    Playoffs: ABA: 70 games, 23.7 points, 12.9 rebounds, 4.1 assists; NBA: 34 games, 14.6 points, 9.6 rebounds, 3.5 assists; 1975 playoffs: 32.3 points, 15.9 rebounds, 8.2 assists

    Career: 20.2 points, 11.0 rebounds, 3.7 assists, No. 30 retired by Indiana Pacers

    McGinnis was one of the many ballplayers that seamlessly transitioned from the ABA to the NBA. He was a first-team All-ABA and All-NBA including an ABA MVP award in 1975.

    His exclusion from the basketball Hall of Fame is somewhat baffling considering his contributions to both leagues.

14. Manny Ramirez

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    Resume: 19 seasons, 13 quality, 12x All-Star, 2x WS champ (’04, ’07), 2004 WS MVP, 9x Silver Slugger (’95, ’99, ’00-’06), 2x Hank Aaron Award winner (’99, ’04), 9x top 10 MVP voting (’98-’05, ’08), 4x top 5 MVP voting (’99, ’04, ’05, ’08)

    Records: Cleveland Indians' single-season RBI leader (164)

    League Leader: HR (1x), RBI (1x), BA (1x), OBP (3x), SLG (3x), OPS (3x), IBB (2x)

    Playoffs: 23 series (111 games), .285 BA, 29 HR, 78 RBI; 2008 playoffs: .517 BA, 4 HR, 10 RBI, 11 BB, 9 runs

    Career: 2302 games, .312 BA, 2,574 hits, 555 HR, 1,831 RBI, 1,329 BB

    Manny is, to be blunt, an embarrassment.

    He tested positive for a banned substance in 2003 and then went and did again and again. Not only is that the final nail in the coffin towards his Hall of Fame campaign, but it is disrespectful to the game.

    In his prime, he was amazing. Now, he is a disgrace.  

13. Vince Carter

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    Resume: 13 seasons, 7 quality, 8x All-Star, ’98-’99 NBA Rookie of the Year, 3x Eastern Conference Player of the Month, ’98-’99 NBA All-Rookie first team, ’99-’00 third-team All-NBA, ’00-’01 second-team All-NBA

    Records: Most three-pointers in a playoff game (9), most three pointers made in one half during a playoff game (8)

    Playoffs: 56 games, 23.3 points, 6.2 rebounds, 4.5 assists

    Career: 22.0 points, 5.1 rebounds, 4.0 assists; winner of 2000 Slam Dunk Contest, gold medal at the 2000 Sydney Olympics

    News to anyone who is not a fan of the Raptors, Nets, Magic or Suns: Vince Carter will one day just stop playing and not even try to hide it. It will be annoying, frustrating and you will want to punch him in the face.

    Carter is great, when motivated, but this is not the first grade and there is nobody to hold your hand in the NBA.

    He was never an amazing player, he just did amazing things. The difference is that I'd rather have the guy who can hit a layup and not the guy who can shoot it from behind the backboard.

    They count the same.

12. Rogie Vachon

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    Resume: 16 seasons, 9 quality, 3x All-Star, ’67-’68 Vezina Trophy winner (top goalie), 2x Stanley Cup Champion (’68, ’69)

    Records: Los Angeles Kings: Most game played at goalie (389), most minutes played (22,922), most career wins (171), most career shutouts (62), most shutouts in a season (8)

    Playoffs: 48 games, 23-23, 2.77 GAA; 1969 Stanley Cup Playoffs: 7-1, 1.42 GAA

    Career: 46,298 minutes, 355-291-127, 2.99 GAA, 47 shutouts; gold medal at 1976 Canada Cup

    Vachon was a top netminder that was the best at his position during the ’67-’68 season.

    I am of the thought that if you show that you have risen above your competition all year long, you deserve a good hard look from the selection committee.

11. Roger Maris

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    Resume: 12 seasons, 3 quality, 7x All-Star, 3x World Series champion, 1961 Sports News ML Player of the Year, 2x AL MVP (’60, ’61), Gold Glover (’60)

    League Leader: Runs (1x), HRs (1x), RBI (2x)

    Playoffs: 41 games, .217 BA, 6 HR, 18 RBI

    Career: .260 BA, 275 HR, 850 RBI, No. 9 Retired by New York Yankees; Held single season HR record (61) for 37 years

    Maris always took a backseat to Mickey Mantle in New York. Mantle was the God while Maris was the guy whom nobody wanted to beat Ruth. He is one of two eligible players with back-to-back MVP awards that is not in the Hall of Fame.

    He held the home run crown for so many years and his contribution to baseball probably should have given him what he needed for the call to Cooperstown. 

10. Kevin Johnson

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    Resume: 12 seasons, 7 quality, 3x All-Star, NBA Most Improved Player (1989), 4x All-NBA second team (’89-’91, ‘94), All-NBA third team (’92)

    Records: Most minutes played in an NBA Finals game (62), Phoenix Suns' all-time leader in free throws made, free throws attempted and assists

    Playoffs: 105 games, 19.3 points, 3.3 rebounds, 8.9 assists; Only team to beat Magic Johnson and John Stockton in the same postseason

    Career: 17.9 points, 3.3 rebounds, 9.1 assists, No. 7 retired by Phoenix Suns and member of Ring of Honor

    Johnson is one of the most deserving non-Hall of Famers on the list. He was the leader of the Phoenix Suns team that made it to the NBA Finals (sorry, Chuck) against the Chicago Bulls.

    Jordan has made it so hard to see who deserves the Hall of Fame because they all lost to him at different points.

9. Rafael Palmeiro

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    Resume: 20 seasons, 12 quality, 4x All-Star, 3x top 10 MVP voting (’93, ’96, ’99), 1999 Major League Player of the Year, 3x Gold Glover, 2x Silver Slugger

    League Leader: Runs (1x), hits (1x), doubles (1x)

    Playoffs: 5 series (22 games), .244 BA, 4 HR, 8 RBI

    Career: .288 BA, 3,020 hits, 569 HR, 1,835 RBI; member of the 500-HR and 3,000-hit club, one of four members of both

    After swearing he did not take steroids, he apparently did. Palmeiro was sneaky, though; he was very good for a long time and never made a lot of noise. He got to 3,000 hits and 500 home runs and was still very sneaky.

    I was just as surprised as anyone to learn that he had tested positive. The news was crushing to his legacy and ended any chance of celebrating one the best statically important careers ever.

8. Tommy John

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    Resume: 26 seasons, 10 quality, 4x All-Star, 2x Cy Young Award runner-up (’77, ’79), 4x top 10 Cy Young Award voting (’77-’80), 1976 Hutch Award winner

    League Leader: Winning percentage (2x), shutouts (3x)

    Playoffs: 9 series, 13 starts (6-3), 88.1 IP, 2.65 ERA, 48 K's

    Career: 288-231, 3.34 ERA, 4,710.1 IP, 2,245 K's; second-most wins for pitcher not in the Hall of Fame (288), known for surgery that helps pitchers with damaged ligaments in pitching arms

    John has almost 300 wins, a feat that looks more and more difficult as the years go on. He was a pitcher with a marathon career that started strong and had a Jamie Moyer-type cruise to it for the remainder of his career.

    People most associated his name with the surgery, but he had a good career that is Hall of Fame worthy.

7. Alex Karras

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    Resume: 12 seasons, 4 quality, 4x Pro Bowler, 3x NFL first-team All-Pro ('60, ’61, ‘65), NFL 1960s All-Decade team, 1957 Outland Trophy (best interior lineman)

    Career: 161 games, 4 INTs, 16 Fumble recoveries, 3 TDs

    There are so few stats on the man that it is difficult to put him in a historical context. He was mean, fast and got to quarterback in ways that many pros today cannot fathom.

    Some call him one of the best interior linemen of all time, and by the sound of this footage, he certainly is. He has faced controversy over his one-year suspension for his relation with gamblers and betting on NFL games.

    Many believe he belongs, but this dark cloud over him looks to have closed that door.

6. "Shoeless" Joe Jackson

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    Resume: 13 seasons, 12 quality, 1913 MVP runner-up, WS champ (1917)

    Records: Rookie batting average (.408)

    League Leader: Hits (2x), doubles (1x), triples (3x), OBP (1x), total bases (2x)

    Playoffs: 14 games, .345, 1 HR, 8 RBI; batted .375 with 1 HR and 6 RBI during 1919 WS (Black Sox scandal)

    Career: .356 (third-highest average ever), 54 HR, 785 RBI, 1,722 hits

    If you are unaware of the Chicago Black Sox scandal, well then you do not know much about baseball history.

    That is fine—I am not here to judge, only to educate.

    He was banned from baseball for life, and while he boasts the third-best batting average ever, he will forever be known as one of the greats who has to sit out when the ghosts play in Iowa.

5. Bernard King

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    Resume: 14 seasons, 10 quality, 4x All-Star, 2x All-NBA first team (’83-’85), All-NBA second team (’81-’82), All-NBA third team (’90-’91), MVP runner-up (’84)

    League Leader: Scoring (1x)

    Playoffs: 28 games), 24.5 points, 4.3 rebounds, 2.3 assists; played for six teams in 14 years

    King is the old-school version of Carmelo Anthony.

    He can light up the scoreboard, but do little else.

    People generally overrate players of this caliber because scoring is the most important thing to the casual fan.

    I am not saying that he has no place in the Hall of Fame, but like Carmelo, I am not surprised that he has to sit on the couch year after year and watch others receive the prestigious honor.

4. Roger Clemens

99 of 102

    Resume: 24 seasons, 15 quality, 11x All-Star, 2x WS champ (’99, ’00), 1986 AL MVP, 6x top 10 MVP voting (’86, ’90, ‘91’, ’97, ’01, ’04), 1986 All-Star MVP, 7x Cy Young Award winner (’86, ’87, ‘91’, ’97, ’98, ’01, ’04 (NL)), 5x TSN Pitcher of the Year

    Records: Most Cy Young Awards (7), most strikeouts in a single game (T20)

    Leader: Wins (5x), ERA (7x), CG (3x), shutouts (6x), strikeouts (5x)

    Playoffs: 24 series, 34 starts (12-8), 199.0 IP, 3.75 ERA, 173 K's

    Career: 354-184, 3.12 ERA, 4,672 K's; 300-win club and 4,000-strikeout club (one of four members of both), MLB All-Century team 

    Did Roger Clemens take performance-enhancing drugs? There are only a couple people in the world that know the answer to that.

    Was he dominant beyond belief during his career? Absolutely.

    Clemens was mentioned on the Mitchell Report several times, leaving it up to us to decide for ourselves. The writers will most probably bunch Clemens in with the rest of the players in the steroid era, but we will have to wait and see. 

3. Ken Stabler

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    Resume: 15 seasons, 4 quality, 4x Pro Bowler, 1974 NFL MVP, 1974 Offensive Player of the Year, NFL All-Pro (1974), 1976 NFL Bert Bell Award (Player of the Year)

    League Leader: Passing TDs (2x), passer rating (1x), completion percentage (2x), yards per game (1x)

    Playoffs: Career record: 7-5, Super Bowl XI champion

    Career: 184 games (146 started), 96-49-1 record, 27,938 yards, 194 TDs, 222 INTs, 59.8 competition percentage, 75.3 QB rating; NFL 1970s All-Decade team

    Stabler has a great winning percentage as a starting quarterback, but his touchdown-to-interception ratio is poor. He holds one MVP award and led the NFL twice in passing touchdowns.

    I think that people need to get off of the idea that he is an all-time great quarterback. There is something to be said for persona and what people look for in a leader and a Hall of Famer.

    A lot of people enjoyed his playing career and think he deserves to be there when it is questionable, at best.

2. Barry Bonds

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    Resume: 22 seasons, 15 quality, 14x All-Star, 7x NL MVP (’90, ’92, ’93, ’01, ’02, ’03, ’04), 2x MVP runner-up (’91, ’00), 8x Gold Glover (’90-‘94, ’96-’98), 12x Silver Slugger (’90-’94, ’96-’97, ’00-’04), 3x NL Hank Aaron Award winner (’01, ’02, ’04)

    Records: Career HR (762), single-season HR (73), career walks (2,558), career intentional walks (688)

    League Leader: Runs (1x), HR (2x), RBI (1x), BB (12x), BA (2x), OBP (10x), SLG (7x), OPS (9x)

    Playoffs: 48 games, .245 BA, 9 HR, 24 RBI, 1 World Series

    Career: .298 BA, 762 HR, 1996 RBI; 700-HR Club (one of three members), only member of 500/500 club (HR/stolen bases)

    Barry Lamar Bonds is another example of an all-time legendary player who is part of the steroid world. He faced perjury charges that do not correspond with other evidence that he took performance-enhancing drugs.

    He is out of the game now and no longer needs to surround himself with the tumultuous world of steroids.

    Unfortunately, his past is following him. He is the home run king. Nobody can take that away from him (yet). He proved everything he needs to prove on the field to earn a spot in the Baseball Hall of Fame.

    The question remains, who is bold enough to open the gate?

1. Pete Rose

102 of 102

    Resume: 24 seasons, 18 quality, 17x All-Star (5 positions), 3x World Series champion, 1963 ROY,  1968 ML Hutch Award (fighting spirit), 1973 NL MVP, 1975 WS MVP, 10x top-10 NL MVP voting (’65, ’66, ’67, ’68, ’69, ’70, 73’, ’75, ’76, ’81),  2x Gold Glover (’69, ’70; OF)

    Records: Regular season games played (3,562), plate appearances (15,861), at-bats (14,053), hits (4,256)

    League Leader: Runs (4x), hits (7x), doubles (5x), batting (3x)

    Playoffs: 67 games, .321 BA, 5 HR, 22 RBI

    Career: .303 BA, 160 HR, 1,314 RBI; 4,000-hit club (one of two members), MLB All-Century team

    Pete Rose is banned from baseball. This is a fact that nobody can dispute because he bet on the Reds when he managed them.

    Rose is the type of guy that every baseball fan loves. He is tough, plays the game the right way and comes to work ready to play, rain or shine.

    He is the all-time hits leader and a player that many people would like to see in the Hall of Fame.

    Unfortunately, no commissioner seems to want to oblige.   

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