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Ben Lindbergh and Jeff Sullivan analyze the Hall of Fame voting results and extend their unlikely Lenny Harris discussion streak, then answer listener emails about restructuring the BBWAA ballot, restructuring Mike Trout, unbreakable records, eclipses, parity, and more.


  • Gary Sheffield's Hall of Fame case
  • Changing the Hall of Fame voting structure
  • Extreme parity in baseball
  • Extra base hits and infield flyouts
  • Heavy Mike Trout hypotheticals
  • Unbreakable playoff and All-Star game records
  • Baseball during an eclipse


  • Tim Raines, Jeff Bagwell, and Ivan Rodriguez were elected to the Hall of Fame.
  • Ben and Jeff discuss Jonah Keri's efforts to get Tim Raines elected.
  • Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens did not receive as big of a voting bump this year as had been expected.

Email Questions[]

  • Eric (Philadelphia, PA): "Why is Gary Sheffield getting almost no support for the Hall of Fame? He was a terrifying hitter and has similar and slightly better statistics than Fred McGriff."
  • Sarat: "What if voters could vote for a Hall of Fame candidate extra hard? So currently Hall of Fame voters can vote for up to 10 players per year. What if voters could allocate their ten votes however they wanted?"
  • Sam: "Imagine a reality where over the next 30 years each team wins a World Series. If expansion teams are added, the number of years is extended and they all win World Series too. How good would this be for baseball? Would it be more beneficial for baseball as a sport for dynasties? Also how quickly would we notice this was happening?"
  • Brett: "How much weight would Mike Trout have to be carrying for you to beat him in a footrace? I'm thinking some sort of weighted vest."
  • Dennis: "I'm wondering whether Mike Trout, currently listed at 6' 2" 235 would still be an All-Star level player in 2017 if he gained 65 pounds over the course of the offseason."
  • Carl: "How likely will Derek Jeter's postseason records last?"
  • Jacob: "Since the All-Star Game became a thing Tony Phillips has the highest career bWAR (almost 51) without ever being selected to an All-Star team. Is that an unbreakable record?"
  • Michael: "On Monday, August 21st there will be a total solar eclipse visible across all of North America. There are some minor league games on the docket and that raises some interesting concerns. The eclipse would certainly be distracting for the fans but how do you think it would affect the players and umpires. Can these games even be played without giving everyone in the park special eye protection? Is this the coolest possible condition under which a baseball game can be played?

Stat Blast[]

  • Jeff uses FanGraphs data to see which players have the best and worst ratios of extra base hits to infield fly balls (going back to 2002).
  • In 2013 2013 Chris Davis had 7 pop-ups with 96 extra base hits.
  • In 2013 Luis Cruz had 22 infield flyouts and 4 extra base hits.


  • Listener Nathan wrote in a story about Lenny Harris, continuing the streak of discussing him on episodes where Jeff is a co-host.
  • Gary Sheffield was worth close to -30 wins as a defensive player.
  • Jeff, Rob Neyer, and Matthew Kory once timed themselves running to see if they could be faster than David Ortiz. They were slower than Ortiz running from home to third but barely beat his home to first time.
  • Jeff thinks that Mike Trout could gain 100 pounds and still be above replacement level.
  • Derek Jeter has 650 postseason at-bats.
  • The Spokane Indians once had a game that was 'ashed out' due to excessive volcano ash.


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