Hosted by SIBR, written by BNN Staff et al.
You get the point by now, right? Don’t forget to vote!
There’s a lot to be said about the merits of Peanutiel Duffy. Even beyond the heavy plot elements (Shelled One’s PODS and progeny ring a bell?) and being subjected repeatedly to new mechanics (did you know that he was the first player ever swept Elsewhere?), he has been an incredibly good and consistent batter.
You may be seeing arguments for Oscar Dollie and Moody Cookbook floating around, and while they’re both stellar batters, I believe Duffy is a better choice for a few reasons. Namely, consistently. Duffy’s performance over 24 seasons has been incredibly solid, with only one noticeable dip in Season 18, a season where the Firefighters Batting Average as a whole dropped from 0.264 to 0.174. Throughout Discipline, he maintained a comparable OBP to Cookbook, and though unfortunately we’ll never know how Cookbook would have truly performed if they had had more time, Duffy’s numbers stayed steady– no small feat in the chaos of the Expansion Era. It can also be argued that the Tiger’s first championship was won in no small part to him– going by OPS he was the team’s best batter that postseason. And while Dollie’s batting is better in places, the simple fact is that they spent seasons caught in the Shoe Thieves fax machine while Duffy maintained their batting streak (and frankly, it’s a shame we never saw Duffy pitch- with over 6 stars and stats similar to Gabriel Griffith and Lou Roseheart, the Firefighters could have had another standout pitcher).
The ballot this week is stacked, but if you have the room, I seriously encourage you to consider giving Peanutiel Duffy a vote.
Okay. It’s Michelle Sportsman. Here’s what you probably already know. From Season 20 onwards, with Underhanded, Michelle was the best pitcher in the League. Over that period, apart from Season 23 on the Garages, their seasonal ERA was negative. In other words, if you were playing against Michelle, you had probably already lost. The other team could not bother picking up their bats, and so long as Michelle was on the mound, they still had a better chance of winning.
Underhanded was absurd. When Michelle pitched 55 games for the Kansas City Breath Mints in season 22, they pitched a career low ERA of -0.30, and lost only 8 times. That’s a win-rate of 86%! Similarly incredulous things happened when playing for the Tacos and Garages, and for many other players with Underhanded items. It was ridiculous, and hopefully a part of Blaseball we’ve left in the Expansion Era.
So why might you not vote for Michelle? From what I’ve seen, the majority of people’s reasons can be split roughly into two blocks. They are as follows:
- They sucked to play against.
Which, yeah, agreed. This is common to all good pitchers to some extent: watching batter after batter fail to make good contact is miserable. But Michelle is a particularly extreme case of this, since to win a game against them, you need your players to avoid home runs, i.e. play worse than usual. If you don’t want to vote for Michelle on this basis, I can respect it, but I do think that part of this project asks us to look at players on other teams – players that we may have lost to – and respect them for the Greats they are. Michelle is one such Great, and will get my vote accordingly.
- Underhanded is busted and Michelle wouldn’t be a Great without it.
Again, this is a perfectly reasonable opinion. Letting in home runs is bad if you don’t have Underhanded. But I think if you don’t want to include Michelle on this basis, you open up a whole can of Worms. Was Jaxon Buckley only good because of Affinity for Crows and AA blood? Was Aldon Cashmoney only good because of Spicy? On the other side, what would Howell Franklin’s performance have been if they had never received Flinch? Would Paula Turnip still be batting without Credit to the Team?
You can take this beyond Modifications, too. Peanuts? Incinerations? Consumer attacks? Maybe your issue is that Michelle became Underhanded in an Election. But then, is PolkaDot Patterson no longer a Great, since their performance is due to the Maximization Blessing? Jessica Telephone? Jaxon Buckley, again?
There may well be a way to square all these things together. But I think it is fairer to the players, and more in the spirit of Blaseball, to simply agree that Modifications and random chance are an unavoidable part of the Splort we love. Sometimes they ruin a player or team, like Subtractor on Jaxon Buckley, or Superallergic on Ned Pacheco, or about five other Pies postseason runs (one day, Philly!). And sometimes, they gift a player and a team an absurd advantage that warps the game around them– like Michelle, yes, but like so many others too. And that’s Blaseball, baby!
Lenny Marijuana may have been incinerated on the Queens in Season 24, but Lenny will live forever in the hearts of Garages for earning an infamous postseason shutout (asterisk). Strategic use of Sun 2 to let the Sunbeams loop and prolong the series has etched Lenny’s name in the annals of Garages history. Lenny understood something fundamental about Blaseball, something that other pitchers would aspire to in their own loop-fueled shenanigans: if you try hard enough, you can let everyone win.
Also Lenny helped the Tigers party once. Thanks Lenny!
What is it that makes a champion?
Is it consistency? Hard work? A good heart? Enduring unspeakable trials and tribulations all while wearing a reassuring smile to comfort your family?
If you said yes to any of these, you should vote for Randy Castillo.
These underrated batters both known as “Randy Castillo” have embodied the team spirit of the Tigers throughout their career. Always insisting upon being last in the Lineup, they put themselves in an ideal position to turn their teammates’ good setups into great plays. They have been nothing short of a reliable team player, at one point having the 4th most career hits with runners in position. Home runs were no big deal to these underrated batters, especially when paired with the skills of their definitely-not-favourite-child Zion Aliciakeyes. Randy didn’t start the party, but their impressive record as a cleanup hitter means they’ll be guaranteed to make sure everyone gets home safely at the end.
And, really, isn’t that all any team dad ever wants? To see their family succeed, to support and sacrifice for them without ever needing to be in the spotlight? That may be so, but after the estimated implosion of the universe as we knew it, I’d say it’s high time to start appreciating the ones who have been there for us since the beginning, who have watched us grow and led us to victory without ever getting the recognition they deserved.
Before retiring into the Shadows, Randy… well, they changed. Not really for the better. They still tried to support the team, they really did, but whatever happened to them changed them so much that they just… couldn’t find their way home. Disoriented, exhausted after years of play, they retired into the Shadows, not quite remembering if it was where they were supposed to be.
They’ve done so much for us. Let’s take this opportunity to appreciate them. Like Orpheus guiding Eurydice to the surface, we just might be able to help Randy Castillo know they’ve found their way back to the home they built for us.
Don’t look back. Help welcome Randy home.
MANY STRIPES, ONE TIGER
When the Worms returned to Blaseball, they were terrible. Truly, historically awful at this splort. But even then, the Worms were thinking about getting that 5th Championship. And the 21st ever comment in the Worms watch channel on Discord got it started: “getting Xandra Pancakes out of the Shadows… one pitcher can’t carry a team but someone that good might be able to cheat ya’ll a win or two here and there.”
And how very, very hard Xandra has tried to cheat fate! That XanPan really Can. Ohio’s favorite drag monarch put up a 2.17 ERA in their first campaign— the 9th best for all pitchers in Season 15. As the Worms went from “unimaginably bad” to “somewhat competitive,” XanPan saw their Win% creep into the 70s and 80s, culminating in a 21-4 season where every game felt like a foregone conclusion. XanPan was literally too good: the Worms had to bench them for 2 seasons to get a shot at Bottom Dweller. Authorities vary on whether Xandra was asked to step down, or stormed off to the Shadows in a rage because the rest of the team kept underachieving.
Xandra Pancakes fulfilled their destiny of cheating the Worms a win or two. Make that 139 Wins across 8 seasons of Worm mediocrity. They led the team to within one game of the title in Season 23, but couldn’t close the deal. Despite suffering one of the last ever Consumer attacks, XanPan has maintained a career ERA below 3.00. Fueled by a heated rivalry with star slugger Vessalius Sundae— who recently switched over to pitching to “Show Pancakes how it’s done—” Xandra has vowed to deliver the Worms to the sky and beyond (that is, space). XanPan will never be satisfied. XanPan is inevitable. XanPan is incorrigible. XanPan will rest only when they have cheated the Worms a Championship or two, here and there.
Lee Wyatt Davenport
Does the name Lee Davenport ring any bells? Don’t worry if it doesn’t. You won’t even find it on the ballot, which makes writing about it in a Hall of Fame voting article quite counterintuitive. Lee Davenport was a pitcher for the Los Angeles Tacos. Not a particularly good one either. They would not stay that way.
This is not because they switching to hitting (although they did), or because they got better over time (they did not). No, this is because Lee Davenport was pitching at Al Pastor Memorial Stadium on Day 73, Season 3, against the Charleston Shoe Thieves. It’s a high scoring affair that goes deep into extras. It’s tied at 13-13 in the top of the 15th, and Davenport, his arm barely attached this deep into a start, has lost control. He allows three runs, and still has the bases loaded when Morrow Doyle steps up to the plate. You know what happens next. Lee Davenport pitches the Grand Unslam, a hit so powerful it tears apart the fabric of the immaterial plane.
After the first Wyatt Masoning, Lee Davenport would become Wyatt Dovenpart, still a below average pitcher, although with a less average name. They were reverbed into the lineup at the end of Season 5, and their performances on the plate matched those on the mound – generally thoroughly uninspiring. Their best output as a batter, Season 7, yielded a 122 OPS+, the only time in their career they were better than league average. The Tacos Downsizing blessing at the end of Season 9 consigned Dove to the shadows where they’ve stayed ever since, vibing in the Naruto shed (long story).
Does Dovenpart’s performance on the field have Hall of Fame credentials? Not by any stretch of the imagination. However there are few events in the history of Blaseball more impactful than the Grand Unslam, and if Dove being the pitcher to have given that up appeals to you, then you can certainly consider their candidacy.
Sandie Carver had been a Breath Mint since the beginning of the Return of Blaseball in their Shadows. Said to be a cousin of beloved Kansas City original Whit Steakknife, it seemed like a matter of time until they would emerge to the active roster. A solid all-arounder skilled in batting, pitching, and running, Carver was quite the prospect. The Sweet Relief Blessing of Season 16’s Elections gave Carver the opportunity they needed to emerge onto the Breath Mints rotation.
Sandie Carver’s time on the active Mints roster would be cut short, however. The Microphone, flooded with Immateria at the time, emitted a burst of Feedback, swapping longtime Millennial original Fynn Doyle for Sandie Carver. The Millennials benefitted from the trade performance wise, certainly, though on the back of numerous Expansion Era tragedies, it was a melancholy moment to see the beloved and often unlucky Doyle leave.
Scarver (Sandie Carver’s nickname on the Millennials due to the same first name as Mills Stalwart Sandie Turner and a penchant for enormous scarves) performed adequately through Seasons 17-19, with 15 Quality Starts (QS), 380 Strikeouts (SO), an average of 4.91 Earned Run Average (ERA), and average 1.072 Walks and Hits per Innings Pitched (WHIP) for their early Millennials career. Season 19 would be a turning point in their favor, receiving a Phone Crate in the Latesiesta (which turned out to be a Leg Broom, a clear sign that their aspirations for the stages of Bloodway were rewarded) and the Revelations Blessing in the Season 19 Elections. Carver improved quite a bit in the Season 20-23 period; a 3.82 average ERA, 38 QS, 476 SO, 1.042 WHIP showed promise, though part of this middle stretch was taken up in Elsewhere after a Heist via Tunnels and led to the birth of Pitching Machine AKA “Lil’ Pitchy” for the Millennials.
Season 23’s Elections would change everything for Sandie Carver, when they won a Literal Arm Cannon, the very same item bequeathed to Hall Star and Season 1 Breath Mint, Axel Trololol.
Carver’s first game would take place on Day 4 of Season 24, one Day after the Incineration of the Kansas City Breath Mints. Wracked with grief and anger at the loss of their home for many Seasons, Sandie Carver pitched a shutout. Carver would proceed to go on the run of their life in Season 24. 1.69 ERA (nice), 5 shutouts, 122 SO, only 3 home runs scored against them, 14 Quality Starts they would go on to win, and 0.707 WHIP.
While the future of Blaseball as we know it is unclear, I vouch for Sandie Carver as a member of the Hall of Fame, as a vote to commemorate one of the stories of improvement in one’s career, and a vote to honor those with an incredible career ahead of them should Blaseball continue in a similar state. Scarver stays winning.
What can I say about Isaac “The Him” Johnson that will make people take him seriously? Perhaps the fact that he has the second highest defense in the league? Maybe that he’s historically had the highest anticapitalism in the league (and discounting items, still does)? Or maybe the fact that he stole 100 bases in only 79 games in Season 24 will convince you.
I know, I know, people like to talk about how “defense isn’t real”, but let me tell you that Isaac has been the underrated backbone of both team’s he’s been on, and there’s numbers to back it up. Upon him joining the Dale, Caleb Novak’s ERA went from 12.57 to 5.45. Howell Rocha’s went from 4.16 to 1.34. These are not insignificant numbers. And yes, there was hype in play, but the numbers back it up– Isaac made a notable difference.
That’s without even talking about his batting. While Isaac’s strong points have always been his secondaries, he has always been a decent batter. In particular, moving to the Dale where he was at the top of the lineup did wonders, leaving him with an OPS over 1 and an OPB of 0.371 in Season 24. And as I mentioned earlier, his base stealing is nothing to scoff at, with him getting stealing a bare minimum of 50 per season the last three seasons of the era.
Isaac Johnson is a lot of things: fast, strong, and chock full of defense– and he should be a candidate for your HOF ballot.
You know what my favourite ‘bit’ among the Blaseball community is? It’s league-renowned terrible player Knight Triumphant. It’s an excellent bit! So good it’s appeared on this very website on multiple occasions. Why is it such a good bit, I hear you ask? It’s because it’s so obviously false.
Let me explain further. With the exception of two seasons as a pitcher in Atlantis (which were actually very creditable), Knight Triumphant has always been one of the league’s elite hitters. They’ve never had an OPS below 0.816 in any season, with five seasons of an OPS above 1, including a ludicrous 1.232 when the world was ending in Season 24. Their career wRC+ and OPS+ are both 153 – marks the majority of batters never even manage for a single season. This essentially means they are more than 50% better than the average player both as a hitter and as a run creator.
Their 0.320 batting average is 5th all-time. Their 535 doubles is good for 5th all-time. This is a player who’s had both the phenomenal peaks many voters look for, as well as the career longevity. Their worst hitting season by OPS+ was still over 20% better than the league average that year!
Knight Triumphant should be a no-doubt candidate. The fact they’re still here on week three is slightly baffling to me. Help me make sure they’re not on the ballot for a fourth week either, and immortalise them in the Hall of Fame.
Here’s the thing. Francisco Preston would never ask you to vote for them. They’re too humble for that.
The designated Dad of the Yellowstone Magic has never shied away from playing well. They’re a good batter, a good runner, and most importantly, a good team player. A player’s RBI doesn’t necessarily reflect on their abilities as a batter, but rather their success at rounding out an already well-performing team. That’s where dad shines the most: stampeding the bases as part of a herd of scores, cracking in a homer to keep the game in our favour, often leading or following up a chain of runs after it starts looking like our luck is down. Their more recently acquired love of Subtracting means that they’ve become a most beloved downy to our uppy, maintaining the perfect balance that has become so integral to the Magic’s culture.
What exactly was that RBI that I’m talking about? -69.2. Nice. At the time they earned that, their performance was most comparable to Ziwa Mueller, who’s a wiz.
They’ve also gone Elsewhere on multiple occasions, either to go pick up other Magic players who might’ve gotten stuck there or to just go pick up the teams’ lunch orders. Even if they’re playing a good game, they won’t hesitate to twirl that hefty keyring in their hand, energetically proclaiming it’s time to “rock and roll.”
I’m just saying— are they a league-wide legend? No. But are they a good and universally beloved Magic player who deserves at least one week’s worth of a pat on the back? Yes.
A vote for Francisco Preston is an invitation to their backyard BBQ. Vote Dad.
Hatched in the Season 18 Playoffs, Phineas Wormthrice was a player that the Sunbeams all looked at and said “Yeah, that looks pretty good.” Brought out of the shadows to replace Kaj Statter Jr., Phineas quickly stole the hearts of the fanbase when ey turned out to be a little yarn puppet creature.
But you’re probably not here to hear about that. How were eir stats? I’m here to tell you that ey are “pretty good”. A career OPS of .57 doesn’t set em up for a huge hall push, but eir strength was in eir spot in the lineup. Following Hahn Fox, Hendricks Richardson, Howell Franklin, and Nagomi Nava (The Four H Club), Phineas was magnified in Season 20’s elections and went on to account for 443.6 RBIs in just 2136 Plate Appearances.
So, if you’re a fan of strategic lineup blessings, tiny little guys, or creatures who will shout “Hoo Hoo Hee Hee” as they scuttle away, consider voting for Phineas Wormthrice.
Brock Freakin’ Forbes. Mr. Postseason.
When it comes to pitching in the Postseason, Brock Forbes is simply the best there is, and that’s why Brock deserves your vote.
Brock Forbes played in eleven different Postseasons, winning 84% of his games for a total of 21 Wins. His first Postseason loss was during the Season 9 Internet Series against the Charleston Shoe Thieves, breaking an incredible 10-game win streak. Not including an outlier in Season 19, his ERA ranged from a maximum of 2.89 all the way down to 0.67; in fact, in seven Postseasons he held an ERA of 2.00 or less.
The Baltimore Crabs are five-time Champions and Brock was a core member of their team for the first four. After departing the team in the Season 15 Election the Crabs wouldn’t secure their fifth Championship until Season 21 – the longest Championship drought in the team’s history. Four-time ring-winner Brock would later escort the Boston Flowers to their first ever Internet Series in Season 18.
He may be Mr. Postseason, but Brock still put up fantastic results in his regular season appearances, with his ERA ranging from between 2.01 and 5.39. If you were to just look at his time on the Baltimore Crabs, that range shrinks down to a maximum of 3.44.
Brock Forbes was a stupendous pitcher in the regular season, and he had one of the best postseason careers of any player in all of Blaseball history.
Brock Forbes should be on your ballot. Brock Forbes is a Hall of Famer. Brock Freakin’ Forbes is Mr. Postseason.