This is a confusing one here. I don’t know exactly where I stand on this one.
Why he belongs…
We have some impressive career numbers here.
2456 games (#62 on All-time list), #14 in appearances as a catcher
8680 At Bats (#87 on All-time list)
2472 Hits (#96) That’s more than Mickey Mantle, Lloyd Waner & Eddie Mathews
483 Doubles (#68) More than Brooks Robinson, Reggie Jackson & Joe Morgan
1389 RBI’s (#71) More than Johnny Bench, Duke Snider & Roberto Clemente
8 All-Star Games
Finished in the MVP Balloting 7 times
Those are some impressive numbers. He had some good seasons. 100 RBI’s 3 times. .300 average 8 times.
Top 10 in Batting Average 6 times
Top 10 in Hits 4 times
Top 10 in Doubles 8 times
Top 10 in Doubles 6 times
Baseball-reference.com lists similar players as Carlton Fisk, Gary Carter, Joe Cronin, Yogi Berra & Ryne Sandberg, all Hall-of-Famers.
Why he doesn’t belong…
Manny Sanguillen, Johnny Bench, Carlton Fisk. Out of the 7 years, Ted Simmons was on the MVP ballot, Simmons’ highest finish was 6th place. Not only that, only in one year (1977) was he the highest catcher in the ballot. Not only was he not considered one of the top players, he wasn’t even the top at his position. He was the highest player on his team 3 out of 7 ballots.
While he had good seasons, the categories he ever led the league in was Intentional Walks in ’76 & ’77 and Grounding Into Double Plays in 1973.
The only year Simmons was on the HOF ballot was 1994. That year he was in 26th place for the voting, good enough for 3.7%.
Simmons has one thing going for him. He was a catcher. But even then, he wasn’t the greatest catcher of his era. My vote is a no.