Commentary

Inside the Hall of Fame Zone

Who's in? Who's out? The debate boils down to a few simple graphs.

Updated: January 5, 2010, 1:38 PM ET
By Sky Kalkman | Special to Insider

While others get riled up looking at Blyleven-less Hall of Fame ballots, I prefer to look at pretty pictures. What you see below are the careers of Edgar Martinez, Mark McGwire, Fred McGriff and Don Mattingly. Their seasonal WAR totals (wins above replacement) according to baseballprojection.com are arranged from best to worst, left to right. What I call the Hall of Fame Zone is fittingly depicted as a gray area, stretching from the 20th percentile of Hall of Famers at the bottom to the 50th percentile at the top (see a more detailed explanation here). The more seasons a player meets or exceeds that range of performance, the more favorably his career compares to current Hall of Famers.