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HOF Profile: Alan Trammell

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Alan Trammell - Shortstop

 

Detroit Tigers 1977-1996

 

6th year on the ballot

 

Past HOF Voting Results

2002: 15.68%

2003: 14.11%

2004: 13.83%

2005: 16.86%

2006: 17.69%

 

Awards

1980 AL Gold Glove - SS

1981 AL Gold Glove - SS

1983 AL Gold Glove - SS

1984 AL Gold Glove - SS

1984 World Series MVP

 

All-Star Selections: 6 (1980, 1984, 1985, 1987, 1988, 1990)

 

League Leader

None of note

 

Career Ranks

None of note

 

Hall of Fame Stats

 

Gray Ink: Batting - 48 (505) (Average HOFer ≈ 144)

HOF Standards: Batting - 40.4 (146) (Average HOFer ≈ 50)

HOF Monitor: Batting - 118.5 (116) (Likely HOFer > 100)

 

Similar Batters in HOF: 2 (Ryne Sandberg, Pee Wee Reese)

Other Similar Batters: Barry Larkin, B.J. Surhoff, Jay Bell, Lou Whitaker, Tony Fernandez, Julio Franco, Buddy Bell, Dave Concepcion

 

Year-by-Year Win Shares & Wins Above Replacement Level (WARP3)

 

1977: 0/-0.3

1978: 14/5.5

1979: 13/3.0

1980: 21/7.0

1981: 14/8.7

1982: 16/8.0

1983: 26/10.3

1984: 29/10.5

1985: 16/7.0

1986: 26/10.2

1987: 35/13.1

1988: 23/8.3

1989: 13/6.3

1990: 29/9.7

1991: 12/4.3

1992: 4/1.7

1993: 17/6.3

1994: 3/2.5

1995: 6/1.5

1996: 1/-0.2

 

Career Win Shares: 318

Career WARP3: 123.3

 

Would he get my vote?

 

Yes. An excellent peak gives him the nod from me, the first player I've voted "yes" for. Five times he had an OPS+ of 130 or better in a full season, six if you include his 1993 season although that came in 112 games. As you see Trammell is getting little support, not even at the level of Dave Concepcion. What has hurt Trammell the most is probably the era he played in. You could make a legitimate argument that in the last 25 years we've seen seven of the top 10 to 12 greatest shortstops of all-time as we are truly in a golden age for the position. Trammell's peers included Cal Ripken, Robin Yount, Ozzie Smith, and Barry Larkin and since he retired Alex Rodriguez and Derek Jeter (maybe needs one more good year) have joined that list. When he retired Trammell was without question one of the Top 10 shortstops of all-time. He shouldn't be punished because his career numbers were dwarfed by all-time greats like Ripken and Yount nor should he be punished for the feats of players who came after him like A-Rod and Jeter.

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I believe I posted this in my own blog, but I think it is worth mentioning again.

 

Ripken: .276/.340/.447, 112 OPS+

Trammell: .285/.352/.415, 110 OPS+

 

Trammell struggles to get 15%, while Ripken will almost certainly draw 90-95% of the balloting. Ripken and Trammell were contemporaries, and while Ripken was a better player, the margin is much closer than people realize. Looking at Runs Created Above Average, Ripken scores 215 at his peak while Trammell checks in with 196. That is a difference of 19 runs over a pair of careers spanning 20 years apiece. That does not take into account defense, where Trammell enjoys an edge.

 

What really hurts Trammell is that middle infielders who contribute across the board receive little acclaim. Hall voters love big numbers they can hang their hats on. The idea of a complete ballplayer eludes them, while guys like Jim Rice continue to draw decent support.

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