The Baseball Hall of Fame will announce their Class of 2016 on Wednesday at 6 PM ET, if you're into that sort of thing. My brain's relationship with the baseball HoF has morphed over the years, and while I can't say I'm any less interested in what they have to say at this point every year, why I'm interested has become a different beast altogether. Neither the best hitter I ever watched play nor the most decorated pitcher of all time are in despite being eligible, and the BBWAA's collective insistence on post-facto legislation through voting seems as petty and ineffective as a Yelp review. The HoF had a rebellious son, and rather than sitting him down and smacking some sense into him when they had the chance, they've caved to blaming every girl he kissed and every buddy he drank a beer with for his very public foibles.
I'm on the wrong side of thirty these days, and through those years I've watched a decent bit of baseball. I watched Barry Bonds be the absolute best player I've ever seen, and I watched the very same BBWAA that won't vote him into the HoF vote him as the National League MVP a record seven times. You won't see him elected on Wednesday, though, because YELP REVIEW. Possibly the second best player of that generation will undoubtedly be elected, though, as former Cincinnati Reds legend Ken Griffey Jr. is poised to perhaps be the first unanimous electee in the history of the HoF. If you're on Twitter and give a dang about any of this, Ryan Thibs is a must-follow, as he's sifted through every public ballot from BBWAA voters to keep tabs on which players are getting what votes, and so far Junior's been on each and every one of the 143 ballots he's seen. Whether or not he's listed on every ballot, he's a lock to clear the 75% needed to be elected, and he's almost assuredly going to test the record 98.8% of ballots that listed former Red Tom Seaver when he was elected back in 1992.
In search of a perfect segue from Reds Hall of Fame electees to the current team, I submit to you this great piece from Mike Petriello, which breaks down the number of Hall of Famers that fans have been able to watch on the field through the years. Of note: there's a certain current Red on the list you may have heard of before.
Other current Reds news of interest: Yorman Rodriguez will get every chance to show he's able to be a regular OF on the 2016 Reds, according to MLB.com's Mark Sheldon. That's a good thing, I suppose, since the out-of-options and enigmatic prospect will have a no-stress season on his plate in which he'll have one last time to impress. A cursory glance at Yorman's MiLB numbers won't show you much of anything that says he's ready to shine with the bat, but it's worth keeping in mind a trio of things as caveats. First, he's been so, so young at every level throughout his development, and is still just 23 years old. Second, while his bat hasn't yet shown the promise it had when he was signed at 16, he's still considered a plus defender who can cover CF and has a solid throwing arm. And thirdly, Tony Jaramillo likes the kid's chances, and I'm not one to out and out disagree with him. I'm also irrationally optimistic that something unexpectedly good is going to finally happen for the Reds, and Yorman proving to be big league ready fits that notion to a tee should it materialize.
I mentioned that Yorman's out of options, which means that if the Reds don't keep him on the 25-man roster, they can't simply send him back to AAA again like they've done before, and other teams will have the chance to pluck him off the team's roster. Friend of the blog Doug Gray put together a great resource at his redsminorleagues.com, detailing how many options each of the top names on the Reds' farm have at their disposal as we enter 2016. Bookmark that for future usage.
Finally, former stalwart pitcher Dan Haren has been tweeting all about his time on the mound today, and Craig Calcaterra highlighted some of the hilarious quirks behind his game. Yet another reminder that players aren't robots, and pitchers are strange, strange birds.