Home runs bring a different type of excitement to baseball.  Fan of the team or not, when hitters like Barry Bonds (762), Hank Aaron (755), Babe Ruth (714), Alex Rodriguez, (696), Willie Mays (660), or Ken Griffey Jr. (630) came to the plate, people dropped what they were doing to watch or listen, because they knew something big could happen.  Some of the numbers above are frowned upon or listed with an asterisk because of the introduction of performance enhancing substances that likely played a part in some of the added power.  For example, one of my favorite seasons of all time growing up was the 1998 season where Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa duked it out to catch Roger Maris’s record 61-home run season.  They both caught that record and everyone wondered how many more they would hit by the end of the season.  McGwire finished with 70 and Sosa with 66.  Not long after, Barry Bonds surpassed McGwire’s record with 73 home runs in 2001.  Looking back at all of those records broken can be looked at with a grain of salt knowing that all three were involved in the steroid controversy, whether they admitted it or “didn’t understand the questions” (cough Sosa cough).  Low and behold, the home run ball is back and better than ever.  According to statistics from Baseball-Almanac, home run totals by season have steadily increased over the last century.  2017 saw the most home runs in a season with 6,105 homers.  To put that number into perspective, that record-breaking season in 1998 saw 5,064 home runs.  Will we see another uptick in the 2018 season, or was last year just a fluke?  Let’s take a look at the potential top-ten home run hitters for 2018.  Included is Razzball’s own preseason overall rankings, and FantasyPros ADP. Please feel free to follow up in the comments with your own opinions!

The 2018 Razzball Commenter Leagues are now open! Free to join with prizes! All the exclamation points!

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Razzball is psyched to being taking part in the BBWAA Hall of Fame vote.  As the chief stat geek at Razzball, I take this responsibility very seriously.  I admit there are obstacles – e.g., determining the right paper size and stock for fashioning a  ballot (ours always gets lost in the mail), writing all the eligible players’ names, tracking down the BBWAA address, buying a stamp,  ignoring the ‘return to sender’ and ‘cease and desist’ letters from BBWAA, etc – but how best to honor the nominees’ perseverance than to show a little of my own, right?

Below is my 2014 Hall of Fame ballot  as well as some commentary on the Veterans ballot.  As you can surmise by my votes, I’m a PED realist (vs. moralist) with a slight bias towards hitters (particularly well-rounded 2B/SS/CF) vs pitchers.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Can you believe that the BBWAA gave our blog voting rights for this year’s MLB Hall of Fame ballot?

Just kidding.  They haven’t made a decision that ill-informed since, um, electing Jim Rice and Andre Dawson.  But I’m going to pretend we have a vote this year and explain the decisions on our ballot. Please, blog, may I have some more?

Please, blog, may I have some more?

This is the 5th post in a series on the 2011 Hall of Fame ballot.  My first post on Jeff Bagwell covered the criteria I am using for analyzing HOF players.  The next three posts covered Bert Blyleven, the middle infielder trio of Alan Trammell, Barry Larkin, and Roberto Alomar, and Edgar Martinez. Please, blog, may I have some more?

Please, blog, may I have some more?