Fame and the Hall of Fame

There is another issue which should be part of that discussion as well which is the question of the central definition and role of the Hall of Fame. According to theHall of Fame’s mission statement the Hall of Fame seeks to “Honor(ing), by enshrinement, those individuals who had exceptional careers, and recognizing others for their significant achievements.” This sounds pretty straightforward, but there is an implicit, if at first glance insignificant, conflict between this definition and the name of the institution. It is, after all, the Hall of Fame, not the Hall of Excellence. This suggests that fame should also be an important consideration for considering election to the Hall of Fame. It is this notion of fame that often makes Hall of Fame voting more complicated. It seems pretty clear to many that, for example, Dwight Evans was a more valuable player than his longtime teammate Jim Rice, but the latter was certainly more famous which helps explain why Rice is in and Evans is out.