3 Mets whose Hall of Fame path was derailed due to injury

New York Mets
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I’ve always wondered how some players were elected to the Hall of Fame…players like Bill Mazeroski, Elston Howard, and Phil Rizzuto. And I’ve also wondered how some players were snubbed by the HOF voters…players like Dick Allen, Dale Murphy, and Omar Vizquel. If you really break it all down, there is no rhyme or reason as to how, or why, members are chosen…and that especially goes for three New York Mets.

Keith Hernandez should be a sure thing Hall of Famer

He was to first base what Ozzie Smith was to shortstop…frankly…the best fielding first baseman ever to play the game, winning 11 Gold Glove Awards good for tops of any first baseman. And he could obviously hit too. Hernandez hit .296 for his career, finishing with 2,182 hits. He received over 1,000 free passes, sporting a high on base percentage of .384.

Hernandez didn’t reach some of the numbers that are considered “automatics” for inductees (500 home runs or 3,000 hits), but, apparently, neither did some other first basemen who are in the Hall – guys like Frank Chance, George “High Pockets” Kelly, and George Sisler.

Hernandez began losing productivity during his last couple of years with the Mets, beginning at age 33 with a bad back. The injury limited his time on the field to less than 100 games for two straight seasons and zapped his strength and reflexes. Perhaps had he been healthy and been able to play on a somewhat productive level for another few years, his numbers would be more appealing to the voters?

And even with his career cut somewhat short, why should a middle infielder like Ozzie be considered so much for his fielding, but not a first baseman like Keith?

Hernandez was on the ballot for nine years and received less than 5% in that ninth year dropping him from eligibility.