I just read this piece by Jonah Keri on ESPN.com claiming that if Mike Mussina wins 20 games this year, then he's a no-doubt Hall of Famer. Help me come to terms with this and work through my feelings of doubt and revulsion.
To me Mussina seems like the very definition of good-but-not-great. He's a guy who by virtue of reliability and durability (yes, even consistency) has racked up a decent career in most of the counting stats, and by the luck of having played for some amazingly good Yankee teams will have an excellent career W-L record. Fine. But he's never been the best pitcher in his league, and only for one or two seasons has he been in the top 5, really.
Keri's argument for Mussina rests on his W-L record -- and we all know how accurate those are as indicators of a pitcher's talent -- along with a citation of the Gray Ink, HOF Monitor, and HOF Standards tests as though those were deep statistical insights, rather than toys created to predict irrational HOF voters. Is there a real solid argument that Mussina belongs in the Hall? Is Keri right in predicting that he's going to go there on the strength of his W-L record and the Yankee reality-distortion field? Say it ain't so.