Jim Bunning is Super Mad that Dick Allen isn’t in the Hall of Fame

Or: Old Man Yells at Old Man About Other Old Men.

Back in December, former Phillie Dick Allen missed making the baseball Hall of Fame by one vote on the Golden Era Ballot. The 16-man committee that voted on the ballot included Allen’s former Phillies teammate Jim Bunning, and Bunning was not happy about it. Stan Hochman described Bunning’s sentiment:

“‘I felt useless,’ Bunning seethed the other day, his voice crackling with anger. ‘It was the most disappointing 3 days I’ve ever spent in my life!'”

And he didn’t stop there. A furious Bunning told Hochman that the whole thing is a flawed system. Hochman asked: Pat Gillick was there to vote too, shouldn’t that have helped Allen? “I’m not sure Pat thought of himself as a Phillies guy,” Bunning told Hochman*, as he clanked loudly on his typewriter. “He just sat there, saying nothing.” But his gripe is not with Gillick … mostly, it’s with the baseball writers in the room. And it’s not that Bunning doesn’t think the writers voted correctly, he doesn’t think they should be in the room at all. And yeah, he’s mad about that too:

“I don’t think writers should be voting on Golden Era players. Let it be their peers, guys already in the Hall of Fame. And I intend to tell that to the Hall of Fame people. And I’m going to tell them they ought to narrow the list, cut it back from 10 names … To me, it was a wasted weekend. We were there to pick someone for the Hall of Fame. We didn’t accomplish anything. OK, maybe Allen and Oliva will be at the top of the list in 3 years when they come up again. But who will be on the committee of voters? What will the rules be? Things have to change!”

Maybe things should change. Any time a committee is tasked with deciding who should make the hall of fame from a list of a bunch of people, and then they decide that no one makes the hall of fame, that committee probably failed. But one thing is for sure, Jim Bunning is so goddamn mad, and he’s ready to call Pat Gillick out on it.

*I’d be surprised if “Bunning told Hochman” didn’t appear exactly as written in many wire stories from the ’60s.

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8 Responses

  1. There’s a decent chance that Bunning followed his rant by trying to eat a chalkboard eraser and pissing into a ficus plant, but at least his heart is in the right place on this.

  2. For the past 25 years I heard every local homer complain that Dick Allen isn’t in the HOF. All their bitching in the world isn’t going to change these facts: Terrible fielder, not enough HRs, hits or any other stat to distinguish him from anything other than being a decent player. He played 15 years and had only 1800 hits. Are you joking me? And he sucked with the glove. But these chumps with local connections like Bunning come out every year and piss and moan that Allen should be in the Hall. Enough. He doesn’t warranted it and he will never be elected.

    1. Allen will be elected, and this isn’t coming from a homer, it’s a guy from Oregon. Did you know his OPS is the SAME as WIllie Mays’ and one point HIGHER than Aaron’s? Raw numbers don’t tell you this man’s career overlapped with the second dead ball era. In the context of the times, his numbers were huge. And maybe his fielding numbers would have been better if any of his teams would have let him settle down in one place, instead of shuffling him from third to first to the outfield and back.

  3. “…the most disappointing 3 days I’ve ever spent in my life”

    Far be it from me to question a HOF’er, but he’d seriously put those 3 days over the last 3 days of the ’64 season???

  4. As a12 year old fan, my dad and I were once seated behind home plate in Connie Mac circa 1967. I am one of the remaining living person to see Allen actually hit one of his towering shots over the left field roof. Better than McGuires four he hit in 98 at the Vet and Dick’s were absent steroids. If you’re a golfer, it was like one of the pro tracers they put on drives on T.V. Awesome. That being said, Dick Allen does not belong in the HOF. In fact one of the few things I agree with Eskin is one third of the current HOF members are frauds such as Tinkers, Chance, Phil Rizutto and the Phil’s contingent would include Ashburn and yes……Jim Bunning.

  5. One thing great about a blog is how timely the posts are. Writing a blog post about a story that appeared in the Philadelphia Daily News a few days ago that actually was previously reported to a lesser extent in the Delco Times a month ago is the opposite. Save the throwback Thursday stuff for Twitter.

  6. Bunning can be “super mad” and still be wrong.. Dick Allen does not deserve to be in the HOF.. The guy doesn’t even deserve to be talked about and thought of in a positive way. He was a bitter player- always angry, very surly, barely showed any respect for the organization and fans in his playing days.. Dick Allen was the 1960s version of Manny Ramirez and may both rot outside the HOF

  7. dick allen is the greatest ever tyler u can go f urself ok u mongoloid allen is the games most feared slugger ever king of the 500 footer allen dominated MLB FROM 64-74 HIGHEST PAID FASTEST STRONGEST. URA SHMUCK ALLEN AND MAYS SAME OPS R U AWAKE OR A SHEEP

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