Jorge Posada and the Hall of Fame

YANKEE STADIUM PROMONADEJorge Posada did not make the Hall of Fame in his first ballot. Sadly, he only received 3.8 percent of the vote and will not be on any ballots going forward (5 percent is needed to remain on the ballot).

Many Yankees fans believe Posada should be in the Hall of Fame and were surprised that he was not a first-ballot Hall of Famer.

In my personal opinion, I do not believe Posada is a Hall of Famer, however, I do believe that he should have received enough votes to remain on the ballot for many years to come because his case is interesting. Posada fell into the same class as players such as Lou Whitaker and Kenny Lofton – players that for whatever reason, didn’t receive 5 percent and fell off the ballot, but they should have at least remained on the ballot for several years to have their cases discussed.

Posada did not have the glove defensively of a Johnny Bench or Ivan Rodriguez. While he was great with the bat for several seasons, he simply did not have the offensive career of Mike Piazza. Posada was the starting catcher on four Yankees World Series winners and provided the fire many of those teams needed, but the Hall of Fame is not about about how much fire a player had, otherwise Paul O’Neill would have been a first-ballot Hall of Famer.

In Yankees history, I believe Jorge Posada ranks behind Yogi Berra, Bill Dickey, Thurman Munson, and Elston Howard for Yankees catchers. Berra and Dickey are amongst the greatest catchers the game has ever seen. Munson and Howard are not in the Hall of Fame, however, cases can be made for each of them (but this is not the place for that and I have done that several times over for other websites). So if Posada is behind two non-Hall of Famers at his position for his own team, that means he is not a Hall of Famer for all of baseball.

In the future, Posada may be elected to the Hall of Fame by the “Today’s Game” portion of the Veteran’s Committee and I will not lose any sleep over it. Posada in the Hall of Fame does not lessen the Hall of Fame and he was one of the best catchers in MLB during a couple season span, but if not, he will simply have to live with the fact that he is a Yankees great and a member of the “Core Four” that brought many championships back the Yankees and their great fans.

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