Andy Pettitte has decided to retire, and an ESPN Stats article suggests he might be a Hall of Famer:

[I]f he wants to be enshrined, he may have to get in line behind Jack Morris (who received 53.5 percent of votes in 2010 and was not elected in his 12th year of eligibility). But when you use ERA+, a stat designed to adjust ERA for ballpark and league average, it shows that Pettitte was superior to Morris and nearly identical to future inductee Bert Blyleven (ERA+ comes from Baseball Reference).

ERA+ is a great stat. But it’s not the only stat. And it’s a little silly to suggest Pettitte and Blyleven were equals. Blyleven had a career WAR of nearly 90, while Pettitte was around 50. Also, Blyleven had over 3700 Ks, while Pettitte only had 2200.

Jayson Stark, as only he can do, recently looked at a ton of stats and came to the same conclusion I did — Pettitte was very good, but not Hall-worthy.

Of course, that doesn’t mean Pettitte won’t make it in. There is a long and hallowed tradition of electing Yankees to the Hall of Fame who were pretty okay and won a lot of championships because their teammates were great. Guys like Tony Lazzeri and Phil Rizzuto.  So I’m not going to count Pettitte out. But if they do elect him they might as well rename it “The Hall of Great Players and Yankee Players Who Were Pretty Good.”

*Nick Kapur contributed to this post.

2 Responses to “Pettitte not quite Hall-worthy”

  1. Well, it’s called the Hall of Fame, not the Hall of Objective Greatness. He’s a True Yankee, dammit!

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