MLB Hall of Fame: Breaking down the 2020 ballot

PHILADELPHIA - NOVEMBER 02: Derek Jeter #2 of the New York Yankees field a ball against the Philadelphia Phillies in Game Five of the 2009 MLB World Series at Citizens Bank Park on November 2, 2009 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images)
PHILADELPHIA - NOVEMBER 02: Derek Jeter #2 of the New York Yankees field a ball against the Philadelphia Phillies in Game Five of the 2009 MLB World Series at Citizens Bank Park on November 2, 2009 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images) /
facebooktwitterreddit
Prev
10 of 33
Next
(Photo credit should read JOHN G. MABANGLO/AFP via Getty Images)
(Photo credit should read JOHN G. MABANGLO/AFP via Getty Images) /

Rafael Furcal – first year on ballot

For a time, Rafael Furcal looked like a possible candidate for the MLB Hall of Fame.

An exciting speedster for the Atlanta Braves, Furcal was a key piece to their success throughout the first decade of the 2000s. He set the table atop the lineup, causing havoc on the basepaths while playing Gold Glove quality defense at short. Unfortunately, injuries hampered what could have been a special career.

As it was, Furcal was still a solid player. A three time All Star and the 2000 NL Rookie of the Year, he posted a .281/.346/.402 batting line, hitting 311 doubles, 113 homers, and stealing 314 bases. He led the league in triples in 2003, and stole over 20 bases nine times, finishing in the top ten in the NL five times.

However, his career fell off in the middle of his hypothetical prime. After turning 30, Furcal only appeared in 100 or more games twice, playing in a total of 500 games over his final six seasons. Those injuries, from back issues to needing Tommy Joh surgery, ruined what had been a strong career arc.

Injuries derailed what could have been a special career for Rafael Furcal. While he may get a few votes, it likely will not be enough to keep him on the MLB Hall of Fame ballot moving forward.