Following yesterday’s news announcing the five candidates for the 2014 Reds Hall of Fame induction, my Twitter timeline blew up with discussion and debate regarding the five finalists.

Normally, I’m detached and inattentive to the opinions and “criteria” invented to justify who is and isn’t a “hall of famer.”  In my view, being a “hall of famer” is simply another one of those things in baseball that can’t be neatly wrapped up with a number (no matter how hard we try).

Most of you reading this are Reds fans familiar with the five candidates.

All of them will get votes for many different reasons.  Brantley will get lots of votes because of his popularity as a current Reds broadcaster.  Ken Griffey Jr. will get lots of votes because many of the voters had his poster (as a Mariner) in their rooms.  John Franco will get lots of votes simply because he was the Reds’ first modern-day closer.  Reggie Sanders will get lots of votes just from the fans who had season-tickets in 1995.

All of them will probably get votes because they may have said “hi” to you once in a restaurant or signed your baseball card before a game.  And I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that.  If some can base the qualifications on stats, why can’t others base it on likability?

And that’s my point, there is no checklist on what determines a “hall of famer.”  It’s how YOU perceived the player and how HE made his mark in Reds lore.

You can go through the Reds Hall of Fame and Museum today and see names of guys you’ve never heard of with stats that you wouldn’t think are plaque-worthy.  But again, that’s the beauty of it.  It’s exactly why I love that fans get to vote for All-Stars.

What makes up a “hall of famer?”  Is it stats?  Sure.  Is it how he conducted himself on the field?  Sure.  Off the field?  Why not.  He shared your birthday?  Perfect.  He led the team in saves?  Absolutely.  All of it matters, but then again, maybe it doesn’t.  I guess it depends on who’s voting….and that’s just the way I like it.

All of the five finalists are “worthy.”  They’ve all left their footprint on the history of this franchise and with Reds fans.  If it were up to me, we’d put them all in….and a few more who aren’t on the list.

– Jamie

GO HERE to vote.

Hall of fame

1 Comment

Well-written. I loved Reggie Sanders as a Red, but I am guessing that Griffey will lead the fan votes. But this is a good group and arguments can be made for any of them.

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