3 Cleveland Indians snubbed from Hall of Fame
With Major League Baseball hosting the induction ceremonies for the Hall of Fame, it got us thinking about the history of the Cleveland Indians and what players have been snubbed from the Hall. Every sport has players that fans believe should be in that aren’t, but baseball’s list seems to be much longer and Cleveland is no stranger to it.
Plenty of Cleveland greats have their name in the Hall, from Bob Feller to Jim Thome. However, that doesn’t mean that everyone that should be in has been selected. There’s a slew of players across the game that have passed the eye test, but their stats apparently aren’t strong enough to get into the elite group.
For this list we strayed away from any recent controversies. We avoided the steroid era or major off the field concerns from the last 50 years. These players played by the rules and put up stats that should qualify them for the Hall, but for whatever reason they just couldn’t get the votes.
Kenny Lofton, OF, Cleveland Indians 1992-1996, 1998-2001, 2007
Over three different stints with Cleveland, along with 10 other teams, Kenny Lofton put up stats that are clearly Hall of Fame worthy. So much so that he got his own article not too long ago. Playing a total of 17 major league seasons, Lofton was one of the best baserunners in the history of the game, not to mention his unmatchable prowess in the field.
Over the entirety of Lofton’s first stay in Cleveland, spanning from 1992 until 1996, he was able to lead at least the American League in stolen bases and led all of baseball with 70+ twice. The 1995 season saw Lofton tally an MLB-high 13 triples while he paced the American League in hits during the 1994 season with 160.
For his career, Lofton was just as impressive. He slashed .299/.372/.423 with 622 stolen bases, good for 15th all-time, and 116 triples. With numbers like that and considering how long he sustained that level of production, it’s hard to understand how Lofton didn’t even advance to a second ballot.