Three Former Red Sox Players Hall of Fame Eligible in 2023

Red Sox
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The 2023 Hall of Fame Ballot Includes Some Familiar Red Sox Names.

The ballot for the Baseball Hall of Fame was just announced for voting for 2023. This list includes many notable names like Jimmy Rollins and Gary Sheffield. But for Red Sox fans, there are some rather familiar names in their first year on the ballot. The three former Red Sox greats making their ballot debuts are: Jacoby Ellsbury, John Lackey, and Mike Napoli. All three of these names were all huge pieces of the 2013 Red Sox team that won the World Series. But let’s take a look at the cases for each of these candidates.

Jacoby Ellsbury

Jacoby Ellsbury made his debut in 2007 and was also a piece in that World Series season, as well. In 2008, he finished 3rd in Rookie of the Year voting after he led the league in stolen bases with 50. A year later, he led the league again, but this time he collected 70 stolen bases. 2011 was Ellsbury’s best career season as he came in 2nd in MVP votes. In 2011, he hit .321/.376/.552 and led the league with 364 total bases. In his career with the Red Sox, Ellsbury hit .297 with 241 stolen bases.

After winning his second World Series ring with the Red Sox in 2013, Jacoby Ellsbury joined the other side of the rivalry and signed with the New York Yankees. After leaving Boston, injuries triggered Ellsbury’s decline. Despite signing a 7 year deal with the Yankees, he only managed to play in 520 games with his last appearance being in 2017. Jacoby Ellsbury finished his career with a WAR of 31.2, so his chances of getting in are slim. However, he still put up a great career in Boston and gave us some memorable plays in his tenure. One of the most memorable being when he stole home in 2009 off of Yankees pitcher, Andy Pettitte.

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John Lackey

John Lackey put together a solid 15 year career with the majority of it being a part of the Los Angeles Angels. With the Angels, Lackey put up a 3.81 ERA and came in third in Cy Young voting in 2007. Lackey was another key piece of the 2013 Red Sox season. While struggling in his first couple of years in Boston, and missing 2012 as a whole due to injuries, Lackey made up for it with a solid 2013 season. In 2013, Lackey started 29 games and finished with 3.52 ERA. 

John Lackey finished his career with a career ERA of 3.92 and a total of 2294 strikeouts. He has a career WAR of 37.3, so his chances are also slim. But his tenure with the Red Sox will always be remembered for his dominance in the Game 6 of the 2013 World Series where he went 6.2 innings with only one run given up. The Red Sox went on to clinch the World Series in this game.

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Mike Napoli

Mike Napoli put together a very good career over his 12 years in the majors. He made his debut with the Angels in 2006 and later became an all star in 2012 with the Texas Rangers. Mike Napoli is also mostly remembered in Boston for his part of the 2013 World Series season. However, while he produced on the field, he also was the face of the bearded brothers who refused to shave for the duration of the 2013 season.

In his career, Mike Napoli batted .246/.346/.475 with 267 career home runs. Out of the three former Red Sox players, Napoli has the lowest WAR with 26.3. This makes his chances more than slim. Red Sox nation will always remember his bearded moments in 2013. One of the most memorable being his home run in Game 3 of the 2013 ALCS off of Justin Verlander.

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