Huge jump for Morris in Hall voting

UPDATED with quotes from Morris …

The wait for the Hall of Fame goes on for Jack Morris, but with a lot more hope. And like his World Series duel with John Smoltz in 1991, it’s going to come down to the end.

“The older I get, the more I realize the process,” Morris told MLB.com Monday in a phone conversation. “Maybe my day will come, maybe it won’t.”

Morris received 382 votes out of 573 ballots cast for the Hall of Fame this year by members of the Baseball Writers Association of America. He didn’t get the 75 percent of votes required for induction, but he got his 11th consecutive year with a bump up from the previous ballot. This jump was his biggest yet, from 53.5 percent last year to 66.7 percent this time.

“That’s got to be a good sign for me,” Morris said. “Today, as we talk, that’s an encouraging thing for me. I have to thank the guys who jumped on board and voted for me and the guys who continue to vote for me and help this along.”

He’ll head into next year with the highest vote total of anyone still on the ballot. The challenge will be to try to keep the attention going into next year, when so many prominent players join the ballot for the first time.

Craig Biggio, Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens, Mike Piazza, Sammy Sosa and Curt Schilling, to name a handful, become eligible for consideration next year. Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine, Mike Mussina, Frank Thomas and Jeff Kent become eligible the following year.

With just two more years of eligibility on the ballot, the urgency for Morris kicks in now. But at just over eight percent shy of induction, the goal is in sight.

“It’s like life: Every day, there’s a new set of circumstances,” Morris said. “Obviously the steroid [era] guys are coming in and the big controversy, and you guys are going to have more conversations amongst each other than ever before.

“The truth is, I don’t assume a thing. Trust me, I don’t assume that since my numbers have come to this level that I’m going to get in.”

Percentagewise, Morris’ jump was the third largest of anyone on this year’s ballot, trailing just Larkin’s 20 percent leap and Jeff Bagwell bump. Morris’ Tigers teammate, Alan Trammell, had the next-highest jump, from 24.3 percent last year to 36.8 percent now, a carryover from the momentum on Larkin.

Former Tiger Juan Gonzalez was selected on just 23 ballots (four percent), seven short of the five-percent total he needed to remain on the ballot. The other ex-Tigers on the ballot, Phil Nevin and Ruben Sierra, did not receive a vote.

More quotes from Morris …

On the debate surrounding his career: “It’s not necessarily an easy vote. Obviously the guys that are into the number thing and the ERA got their point to make. It is what it is, and the process does what it does. I’m just grateful for the process because if it was just a one-year deal, and you either got in or you didn’t, it would be over.”

On Larkin: “It’s his day, and he deserves it. He’s a class guy and he had a great career. He’s endured a little bit being in his third year, but at least he’s been through a little bit of the process. I met Barry years and years ago when I was working out at the University of Michigan when I was playing for Detroit in the early years and he was a freshman at Michigan. I knew early on watching him and hearing the guys talk about him that he was a Major Leaguer.”

14 Comments

Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens are the only among them deserving a first year election. But they wont be elected. Schilling is more or less in the Morris level. So it will be next year or the veterans comitte

Morris and Trammel. Their day will come!

As I’ve said before, there are lesser players in the Hall than Morris and Trammel.
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And the Matt Garza rumors persist……….

Holy smokes, you’re not kiddin. “Up the road.”

“down the road” is what the reporter wrote. Sorry about that. I’m going to still take this with a grain of salt because at this point we only know the Tigers are talking with the Cubs. Before, Mr. D said he never initiated any conversations with that team. Turner’s name was thrown out there possibly as bait to see what the interest was. We knew the Yankees wouldn’t do a trade because the Cubs wanted their best 3 prospects. And, it sounds like the Cubs want a lot for Garza. Not sure if Mr. D will give them all that they want.

idk what to think about the rumors….if it involves much more (read: the 3B prospect) than turner i’d have to say no thanks. However, if we get Garza, then we really need Smyly, Oliver and Turner (again, i’m assuming Below to be the long man in the pen)? I guess we would if any of the starters got hurt…

…then DO we need…

and his AL numbers aren’t as good as his NL numbers

I suppose if a club official passes something along to a reporter, the reporter is obliged to report it. Who knows what motivations lie behind these rumors.
Personally, I’d rather see Turner develop in Detroit. Keep him. That’s my two cents.

I think letting the young guns see what they can do in spring training is not an inferior alternative to Garza. Garza is OK but to give up prospects they need to fill the rotational need with a jaw dropping LHP—not another righty.
Now would I take Garza if the names were more like Oliver and Crosby? Yes, i would but the Cubs are going to go for Turner minimum. There has been so many positive comments from good baseball people on Turner that I think he almost has to have potential worth looking into. I must say he did not turn my crank in the brief exposure he has been given.

really all i know about Turner is that he had a solid statistical AA season at age 20, had a few solid starts at AAA, and proved to not be ready for a regular rotation turn at the major league level. for him to have some success at AAA, in limited exposure, at his age seems like a good sign for his future.
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what matters more though, is how the Tigers’ development people view his performance ceiling and work ethic. it would be interesting to hear a scout’s assessment of him…does he have the potential to be another Jurrjens? Bonderman? Garza? how likely is he to be a bust like Andrew Miller? is he the best Tiger pitching prospect in the last decade not named Verlander? is his ceiling higher than Porcello’s? these are only questions that someone who’s been observing or instructing players in the farm system for a long time can answer. those answers will determine whether he stays or goes.

good point about andrew miller being a bust. At least in 2011 he was awful

Let’s bear in mind that the final start by Turner last season was after weeks of inactivity. It should be disregarded entirely when assessing his potential. I had the opportunity to see Turner pitch from some very good seats last spring in Dunedin and came away very impressed, much as I did Porcello in similar circumstances in 2008. That everyone wants him should tell us what scouts think of him. Jacob is about as similar to Andrew Miller as he is to Charlie Brown. Miller=Dontrelle Willis. Turner has solid mechanics, unlike our own Max Scherzer, and should become a dependable starter.
Like DD, I’d trade anyone in the right package, but straight up for Garza isn’t it, IMO.

And let’s not forget the long term financial advantage in having Turner over Garza.

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