There is no denying what an honor it is for a baseball player to be named into the Hall of Fame and there is probably no feeling like it. However, some players who think they deserve to be in Cooperstown will never experience that feeling and that is due to the outdated voting procedures and writers holding grudges. A player who is a victim of this is one of the Philadelphia Phillies’ greatest and misunderstood players, Dick Allen.
Allen first appeared on the Hall of Fame ballot in 2014 as a candidate on the National Baseball Hall of Fame’s Golden ERA Committee election ballot for possible Hall of Fame consideration in 2015. None of the 10 candidates were selected by the committee and Dick Allen ended up being one short of the 12 required votes needed for election. As a result of this, his chances of ever being a Hall of Famer grow ever slimmer and it shouldn’t be that way, especially when he’s got the numbers to get in.
In the National Baseball of Fame’s 80 years of existence, 15 third basemen have been inducted into the Hall of Fame, such as Mike Schmidt, George Brett, Brooks Robinson, Wade Boggs, and Eddie Mathews. One thing that jumps out comparing Dick Allen to these 15 Hall of Famers is Allen has a better career slugging percentage than all of them at .534 and the only one close to him is Mike Schmidt with a .527 slugging percentage.
Allen also ranks third in home runs with 351 among the third basemen in the Hall of Fame. Another interesting stat is if you take a look at the list of players over the last 136 years who led their decade(s) in OPS+, all of them are in the Hall of Fame except for Dick Allen. Dick Allen not only led his decade in OPS+. but his .912 OPS+ is better than any third basemen in the Hall of Fame.
If you’re looking at Dick Allen’s 351 career home runs and thinking that’s not that impressive, then here’s something that is. Throughout his career, Dick Allen crushed twenty home runs over 500 feet and there was a study conducted from 2000 to 2013 where only one player in that span hit a homerun over 500 feet. Allen’s power capabilities were off the charts and fans would stay to see him bat even if the Phillies were losing because there was always a possibility of him doing something special.
Bill Jenkinson, a baseball historian, wrote a book called Baseball’s Ultimate Power: Ranking The All-Time Greatest Distance home Run Hitters. In the book, Jenkinson ranked Dick Allen as the fourth best all-time home run hitter behind Jimmie Foxx, Mickey Mantle, and Babe Ruth. Also after extensive research, Jenkinson has concluded that Dick Allen is second only to Babe Ruth as a slugger in the history of baseball, which is some pretty good company to be in.
There has been a lot of things said about Dick Allen throughout his career and even now as Allen is rated one of the most controversial players in baseball history. There existed a notion that Dick Allen was a terrible teammate and he divided the clubhouse along racial lines, which was simply not true at all. Dick Allen was a great teammate who played every game like it was his last and took the young players under his wing and looked out for them.
One of those young players was Hall of Famer Mike Schmidt, who Dick Allen mentored and Schmidt even credited Dick Allen in his book Clearing the Bases as a thanks for being there for him all those years. Dick Allen’s bad reputation also comes from the fact he didn’t get along with the media and rarely wanted to talk to them because he dealt with a lot on the field with all the cursing he listened to each game and objects being thrown at him, he just didn’t want to draw more attention to himself.
Allen not talking to the media is also one of the things that made him more comfortable on a day-to-day basis in the time he was in and when Dick Allen was comfortable, balls left the yard. Dick Allen’s bad relationship with baseball writers is probably one of the driving forces keeping him out of Cooperstown because some of those writers from his day vote on who gets into the Hall of Fame and writers do hold grudges.
There is no doubt Dick Allen belongs in the Hall of Fame and what he accomplished and did for Philadelphia should not be forgotten and it won’t be. People have been becoming more and more aware of Dick Allen’s situation and a main contributor to that is Mark “Froggy” Carfagno.
Carfagno is the campaign manager for Dick Allen belongs in the Hall of Fame and you can follow him on twitter @markcarf. He has worked tirelessly along with Dick Allen Jr. to find a way to get Dick Allen into the Hall of Fame, collecting all sorts of stats and information. If you feel Dick Allen belongs in the Hall of Fame, join the Dick Allen Belongs in the Hall of Fame group on Facebook and check out https://dickallenbelongs.wordpress.com/ for other information on his Hall of Fame case.