Rum Bunter Staff Mock Hall of Fame Ballot: Noah Wright

If I had a ballot, this is who I would vote for the Hall of Fame.

2023 National Baseball Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony
2023 National Baseball Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony / Jim McIsaac/GettyImages
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Andruw Jones

Andruw Jones was an all-star center fielder most famous for his stretch from 1996 through 2007 with the Atlanta Braves. Jones is in his seventh year on the ballot and has gained some traction as of recently. But there have been a few factors that have held him back from reaching the Hall of Fame.

Jones was a solid hitter throughout his career, posting a career .254/.337/.468 line with a 111 OPS+. But he was one of the best power hitters in the sport from the late 1990s through the early 2000s. He hit a career 434 home runs. He has the 11th most home runs from his debut in 1996 up through his final game in 2012. 

Jones was a good hitter, but he is the best defensive center fielder of all-time. He racked up +24.4 defensive WAR, the most by any center fielder. With +253 total zone runs, only Brooks Robinson surpasses Jones. He won ten straight Gold Glove awards from 1998 through 2007. Even though defensive runs saved wouldn’t be created until his eight big league season, he still ended his MLB career with +65 DRS in the outfield. Only three players all-time have hit 400+ home runs and racked up +20 defensive WAR. That trio is Jones, Beltre, and Cal Ripken Jr. 

There are two major reasons why voters have been hesitant to vote for him. The first reason is his relatively short career. Jones played more than 100 games just one time after his age-30 season. He was out of MLB after 2012 when he was only 35. The second, arguably more valid reason why voters haven’t included him on their ballot is because of his domestic violence charge in December of 2012.

If someone left Jones off their ballot because of the domestic violence issue, that’s fine and I’m not going to judge that. What he did was not good, but this isn’t a Hall of Morals mock ballot. He did not beat his wife to a pulp, nor did he commit any sort of sexual assault/harassment. Sure, I think there’s a certain line, but I don’t think Jones crossed it.