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Thiel: Edgar Martinez Should Be, And Will Be, A Hall-Of-Famer

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Retired Mariners legend Edgar Martinez may have missed getting nominated to the Baseball Hall of Fame this year. But he has one more year left.

KNKX sports commentator Art Thiel talked with Morning Edition Host Kirsten Kendrick about why he thinks the man who played his entire career in Seattle will eventually make it into Cooperstown.

Thiel pointed to the big voting leap Edgar had from last year to this year: 58.6 percent to 70.4 percent.

How can he be gaining ground when he's retired?

Big Data Helping Edgar

"I call it performance-enhancing stats," Thiel said.

"He keeps getting better because people get more information about his career."

"It's the advent of big data and the creation of advanced analytics that allow more and more writers to take a more intense look at his career accomplishments."

"It's a little bit like the use of DNA in forensic cases. Edgar was a cold case and now he's a hot case."

"People have discovered that this career that he had - this 18-year career - had a lot of virtues."

"His career batting average, his career on-base percentage and his career slugging percentage is a statistic that has been used a lot more lately."

"There are only 13 players in baseball history who've had numbers better than him - at .310,. 410, and .510."

"All of them who are eligible are in the Hall of Fame except for Shoeless Joe Jackson in 1919, who was left out because he was suspended for the Black Sox scandal."

"You don't anything more to know that these statistics say that Edgar is Hall of Fame material."

Looks Good For Next Year

"In the history of this voting, there have been 29 previous cases where the eligible player has reached the 70 percent plateau and, in all 29 cases, those players have advanced into the Hall of Fame eventually by getting enough votes to reach 75 percent."

"So, there's a real history here of, once you've reached the plateau Edgar reached this week, it's almost certain that, in the next vote, you're going to get in there."

Never miss an episode again. Subscribe to Sports With Art Thiel with iTunes orGoogle Play now. You can find Art Thiel's work at Sportspress Northwest and

Kirsten Kendrick hosts Morning Edition on KNKX and the sports interview series "Going Deep," talking with folks tied to sports in our region about what drives them — as professionals and people.
Art Thiel is a co-founder and writer for the rising sports website Sportspress Northwest. In 2003 Thiel wrote the definitive book about the Seattle Mariners, “Out of Left Field,” which became a regional bestseller. In 2009, along with Steve Rudman and KJR 950 afternoon host Mike Gastineau, Thiel authored “The Great Book of Seattle Sports Lists,” a cross between and Mad Magazine that has become mandatory reading for any sports fan who has an indoor bathroom.