MLB Hall of Fame: Breaking down the 2019 ballot

COOPERSTOWN, NY - JULY 29: Seats are seen at Clark Sports Center during the Baseball Hall of Fame induction ceremony on July 29, 2018 in Cooperstown, New York. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
COOPERSTOWN, NY - JULY 29: Seats are seen at Clark Sports Center during the Baseball Hall of Fame induction ceremony on July 29, 2018 in Cooperstown, New York. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Barry Chin/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
(Photo by Barry Chin/The Boston Globe via Getty Images) /

Kevin Youkilis – 1st year on ballot

Kevin Youkilis had one of the best nicknames in the history of the game, as he was called The Greek God of Walks. That excellent batting eye helped him become a key part of the Red Sox World Series winning teams at the beginning part of the decade.

He was already well known before he had his first full season in the majors in 2006. His unique nickname, as well as his prominent place in MoneyBall, made him a better known commodity than most minor league players. He certainly had some major expectations to live up to.

For the most part, Youkilis did just that. He quickly became a fan favorite in Boston, with cries of “YOOOOOOOUK!!!” echoing from the stands. Youkilis proved to be a solid player, a three time All Star who won a Gold Glove at third and twice finished in the top ten of the MVP vote. His lifetime .281/.382/.478 batting line, with 254 doubles and 150 homers, helped him live up to those expectations.

Yet, Youkilis had a very short prime. He was a solid player when healthy, but those injury issues took their toll. Youkilis was traded to the White Sox in the midst of the Red Sox disastrous 2012 campaign, and then signed with the Yankees the following year. Hoping to revive his career, he went to Japan for 2014, but the injury issues followed him overseas, leading to his retirement after just a decade in the majors.

A solid player, Kevin Youkilis earned his place as a fan favorite in Boston. Nonetheless, he has not earned a place in Cooperstown.