In this his 12th year of eligibility, former Major League Baseball pitcher Bert Blyleven was once again denied enshrinement in the baseball Hall of Fame.
I'm not sure what the arguments are against Blyleven's selection but his solid pitching stats over a 22-year career can hardly be argued.
Here is Blyleven by the numbers:
-Has 287 career wins, which is 27th all time. Bobby Matthews (297 wins) and Tommy John (288) are the only Hall of Fame eligible players ahead of Blyleven who have not been enshrined.
-Is fifth all time in career strikeouts with 3,701. Ahead of him are Nolan Ryan (Hall of Famer), Randy Johnson (still active but seems to be a shoe-in for the HOF), Roger Clemens (sure Hall of Famer until the steroids allegations) and Steve Carlton (Hall of Famer).
-Is ninth all time in career shutouts with 60. The eight players ahead of him are all Hall of Famers. In fact, thirteen players immediately behind Blyleven on the career shutouts list are also in the Hall.
-Is fourteenth all time in innings pitched with 4,970. Twelve of the thirteen players ahead of him are in the Hall. The only one who isn’t? Greg Maddux, who just retired last month. Any doubt Maddux will be selected his first year of eligibility?
-Was a key member of two World Series winning teams (1979 Pittsburgh Pirates and 1987 Minnesota Twins). In those two series (covering four appearances) he was 2-1 with a 2.35 ERA.
Again, it's difficult to argue his enshrinement from a shear numbers standpoint, which leads me to ask what is keeping Blyleven out of the Hall?