Monday afternoon will bring us the latest player(s) voted into the Baseball Hall of Fame. The merits of many of the eligible candidates for enshrinement have been bandied about by writers and fans. But what do the anagrams say? Yes, I suggest that you can determine the merits of a player’s candidacy through the anagramming of their name (or some variation of it).
First up we have longtime Cincinnati Red Barry Larkin. It looks good for the heady Larkin to get the call, as “Barry Larkin Hall of Fame Shortstop” anagrams to “Hoorah! Nifty sparkler of smartball!”
Jeff Bagwell is making his first appearance on the ballot. There has been some scuttlebutt regarding the suspicion that Bagwell used PEDs during his career, despite no positive tests. To his detractors, the anagram of “Jeff Bagwell Houston Astros” humorously pokes fun by proclaiming “Jestful! Bat glows! Safe honor.”
Top-notch reliever Lee Smith is still seeking enshrinement in his 11th year on the ballot and given the recent influx of closers to the Hall, there is hope he can make it. There is some advice to those casting a “yea” or “nay” on Smith, as “Lee Smith Cooperstown” rearranges to “Whoops . . . elect on merits!”
Tim Raines played in the shadow of Rickey Henderson for quite some time, and now that Henderson is in the Hall, pundits are wondering if the similarly-skilled Raines will make it also. If you ask “Is Tim Raines a Hall of Famer”, Raines himself might respond with the anagram “O man! I am a stiff hell-raiser!”
Edgar Martinez is trying to get into the Hall largely on the basis of his extraordinary production as a DH. Does a guy who didn’t play a defensive position for most of his career deserve a plaque in the most hallowed of halls? The anagram suggests ‘yes’ as “Edgar Martinez Designated Hitter” turns into “Merited giant-sized, grand theater.”
Last but not least we have Jack Morris, the ace of the Detroit Tigers staff during the 1980s. It doesn’t look good for the Motown hurler, as to those touting his case, one might state that his name rearranges to “Jam cork, sir!”
When in doubt . . . trust an anagram!