Poll: Is Curt Schilling a Hall of Famer?

Poll: Is Curt Schilling a Hall of Famer?

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The 2013 Baseball Writers’ Hall of Fame ballot was released
on Wednesday, and among the first-year candidates making their debut, the most
prevalent player to do a stretch with the Phillies would be none other than
Curt Schilling.

Schilling spent parts of 20 seasons in the big leagues, nine
of those with Philadelphia, though he’s more famous now for stints in Arizona
and Boston, stops where he accumulated three rings along the way. A six-time
All Star, Schilling twice led the league in strikeouts and wins, and was named
World Series MVP for the Diamondbacks in ’01. While he never won the Cy Young
Award, he finished as the runner-up three times.

Of course, the Hall is about more than accolades to a
certain extent, but also one’s place in history. Schilling was one of the most
dominant power pitchers in baseball for the better part of a decade. Once he
started coming into his own with the Phils, Schilling became an efficient
workhorse, piling up innings and finishing games. He seldom walked batters, but
fanned many, finishing 15th all-time with 3,116 strikeouts. His K/BB
ratio is second-best in Major League history at 4.38.

Whether Schilling has the raw numbers however will likely be
at the heart of the debate. At 216 wins, he falls far short of the 300 mark,
but the game has changed in many respects, and the days of the 300-game winner
are probably over. However, what’s notable is every pitcher to reach 3,000
strikeouts who has already been eligible for the Hall is enshrined.

Finally, Schilling made his mark in the postseason,
especially later in his career. He posted an 11-2 record with a 2.23 ERA in 19
playoff starts, was the NLCS MVP for the Phillies in ’93, and then there is the
notorious “bloody sock” game for the Red Sox in ’04.

We realize it’s a touchy subject to some. A floundering
Phillies organization traded a then-32-year-old Schilling midway through the
2000 season for Vincente Padilla, Travis Lee, Omar Daal, and Nelson Figueroa –
not exactly some great haul. Plus, the dude is kind of annoying, which is
probably putting it mildly.

Schilling is definitely in the conversation though. Maybe he’s
not a first-ballot guy – after all, there is some stiff competition this year
names like Roger Clemens and Barry Bonds on the list – but he has a shot,
especially with some stars blanketed in controversy.

We leave it to you, the reader. Should Schilling get in this
year, eventually, or not at all?

>> 2013 BBWAA Candidates [National Baseball Hall of
Fame]
>> Curt Schilling Statistics and History [Baseball-Reference]

Best of MLB: Hyun Soo Kim's pinch HR gives Orioles win

Best of MLB: Hyun Soo Kim's pinch HR gives Orioles win

TORONTO -- Hyun Soo Kim hit a pinch-hit, two-run homer in the ninth inning off Roberto Osuna, and the Baltimore Orioles beat Toronto 3-2 on Wednesday night to move within one game of the AL wild card-leading Blue Jays.

With Toronto ahead 2-1, Jonathan Schoop singled with one out, pinch-runner Michael Bourn stole second and Kim homered on a 3-2 pitch into the visiting bullpen in right, causing the Orioles relievers to jump in celebration.

Osuna (3-3) has five blown save chances, including two in his last three appearances.

Mark Trumbo hit his major league-leading 46th home run, a solo drive off Jason Grilli in the eighth.

Brian Duensing (1-0) got one out, and Zach Britton finished for his 47th save in as many tries (see full recap).

Mets win to keep grip on wild-card spot
MIAMI -- The Marlins walked half a block alongside a hearse carrying their ace away from Marlins Park at the start of a funeral motorcade Wednesday, and then peeled away with watery eyes to go back inside and play a game.

Drained by four days of grieving, they didn't have much left for the New York Mets.

Jay Bruce hit his 32nd home run, James Loney also homered and the Mets helped their NL wild-card chances by beating Miami 5-2.

New York began the night leading the Giants by half a game and the Cardinals by 1 1/2 games in the race for the two wild-card spots. The Mets conclude the regular season with three games at Philadelphia starting Friday.

The Marlins' loss in their home finale eliminated them from playoff contention. Despite high hopes this year, they still haven't been to the postseason since 2003.

Set Lugo (5-2) went 5 1/3 innings and allowed two runs.

Jose Urena (4-9) allowed five runs in five innings (see full recap).

Cano's HR boosts Mariners' playoff hopes
HOUSTON -- Robinson Cano hit a three-run homer in the first inning, and the Seattle Mariners beat the Houston Astros 12-4 Wednesday to keep pressure on the other AL wild-card contenders.

Kyle Seager added another three-run drive in the eighth, his 30th home run this season, as Seattle pulled within 1 games of Baltimore for the second AL wild card. Houston dropped three games back as its magic number for elimination was cut to two. The Orioles were at Toronto on Wednesday night.

Cano's career-best 36th home run, a drive off Doug Fister (12-13), landed in the first row of the Crawford Boxes in left field. Cano has nine homers and 25 RBIs in 19 games against Houston this season (see full recap).

Instant Replay: Braves 12, Phillies 2

Instant Replay: Braves 12, Phillies 2

BOX SCORE

ATLANTA – The Phillies continued to stumble toward the season’s finish line on Wednesday night. They were hammered, 12-2, by the Atlanta Braves at Turner Field.

Adam Morgan was bruised for 10 hits and nine runs in five innings.

The Phils have lost five of their last six games. They have given up 63 runs over that span.

The Phils have lost six straight to the Braves and are 16-35 in their last 51 games against the NL East.

With four games to play, the Phils are 70-88.

Starting pitching report
Morgan was hit hard early but had to give the Phils some innings as the bullpen has carried a heavy load lately. He finished the season 2-11 with a 6.04 ERA in 23 games, 21 of which were starts.

Atlanta’s Mike Foltynewicz picked up the win. He gave up just one run over five innings.

At the plate
The Phillies had just four hits. They have scored 599 runs this season. They are the only team in the majors not to reach 600.

The Braves had 13 hits, including six for extra bases. They were 5 for 11 with runners in scoring position.

Matt Kemp doubled and homered for the Braves.

Atlanta’s Freddie Freeman extended his hitting streak to 30 games. He has reached base safely in 46 straight games, tying Washington’s Jayson Werth for most this season.

ICYMI
Like Pete Mackanin, GM Matt Klentak sees a need for offense, but he remains committed to the team’s rebuild (see story).

Health check
Roman Quinn is likely done for the season. Aaron Nola is throwing in Florida (see story).

Up next
The series concludes on Thursday night. Jeremy Hellickson (12-10, 3.78) will make his final start of the season (and likely his final with the Phillies) against Atlanta right-hander Josh Collmenter (3-0, 4.19).

It will be the Phillies’ final appearance in Turner Field. The Braves move into a new park next season.

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