Commentary

The case for Edgar Martinez

Paul Molitor got to Cooperstown off DH work, and Edgar Martinez should too

Originally Published: December 30, 2010
By Jay Jaffe | Baseball Prospectus
Getty ImagesEdgar Martinez cleared 36 percent the first time he appeared on the ballot.

Edgar Martinez could flat-out rake. A high-average, high-OBP hitting machine with plenty of power, he played a key role in putting the Seattle Mariners on the map as an AL West powerhouse -- and emerged as a folk hero to a fan base that watched Ken Griffey Jr., Randy Johnson and Alex Rodriguez lead the Mariners' charge to relevancy, only to force their way out of town over contract issues.

JAWS (Jaffe WARP Score) is a measure I developed to compare Hall of Fame candidates against those of the average enshrined player at their positions using career and peak Wins Above Replacement Player (WARP) totals. WARP measures each player's hitting, pitching and fielding contributions relative to those of a freely available reserve or minor league call-up, incorporating park and league contexts to compare players from different eras or scoring environments. Peak is defined as a player's best seven seasons, and JAWS is the average of career and peak totals.

Last year, when Martinez first was on a Cooperstown ballot, we compared him to other third basemen, since he played over 550 games there before becoming primarily a DH.