The following article is part of Jay Jaffe’s ongoing look at the candidates on the BBWAA 2020 Hall of Fame ballot. Originally written for the 2013 election at SI.com, it has been updated to reflect recent voting results as well as additional research, and was expanded for inclusion in The Cooperstown Casebook, published in 2017 by Thomas Dunne Books. For a detailed introduction to this year’s ballot, and other candidates in the series, use the tool above; an introduction to JAWS can be found here. All WAR figures refer to the Baseball-Reference version unless otherwise indicated.
A three-time batting champion, five-time All-Star, and seven-time Gold Glove winner — not to mention an excellent base runner — Larry Walker could do it all on the diamond. Had he done it for longer, there’s little question that he’d already have a plaque in the Hall of Fame, but his 17 seasons in the majors were marred by numerous injuries as well as the 1994–95 players’ strike, all of which cut into his career totals.