Jamie Moyer delivered a big performance tonight, pitching 8 strong innings and helping the Phillies defeat the Yankees on the road, 6-3. It was a win they badly needed, and it was refreshing to see Moyer rebound from an awful outing in Boston this past weekend (1 IP, 9 ER).
I know the subject of this post sounds crazy, but here me out on the issue of Jamie Moyer and the Hall of Fame. No eligible 300-game winner has ever been denied induction into Cooperstown --- we'll see what happens with Roger Clemens in a few years, but that is obviously a special circumstance. Moyer currently has 265 wins. I would still bet on him coming up a bit short, but I didn't exactly predict that he'd be around this long.
If Moyer reaches 300 wins, he would easily have the highest career ERA among those who have reached the milestone. His ERA is currently 4.23, more than a 1/2 run higher than anyone in the 300-win club.
That said, Moyer pitched much of his career in a hitters' era known for steroids and small ballparks. In terms of ERA+, which accounts for era and ballpark factors, Moyer's numbers are a bit more comparable to some recent Hall-of-Famers.
Jamie Moyer - 104
Don Sutton - 108 (324 wins)
Phil Niekro - 115 (318 wins)
Gaylord Perry - 117 (314 wins)
Moyer would still have the lowest ERA+ among 300-game winners from the modern era. In addition, he would enter the Hall with less than 3,000 strikeouts, something each of the above three pitchers accomplished with hundreds to spare.
Accepting that it would be a unique historical case, should the Hall accept Moyer if he can rack up 35 more wins?