I would first like to acknowledge that I think it is funny MLB Network had 8+ hour coverage on this and nobody went in. What a day for those folks. It’d be like being told as a child if you do all your chores during the day you can go to the game that night, and then it gets rained out.
ANYWAYS, for just the seventh time since the inaugural class of 1936, the National Baseball Hall of Fame will have no new members receiving a plaque in 2021….* Cause of course there’s a *. The members elected in 2020 will have their ceremony this summer because of COVID canceling every event ever last year.
Needing 75% of returned ballots for a player to be elected into the Hall of Fame, here is how the voting shaped out this year, per mlb.com:
Curt Schilling: 285 votes, 71.1% (70.0% in 2020)
Barry Bonds: 248, 61.8% (60.7%)
Roger Clemens: 247, 61.6% (61.0%)
Scott Rolen: 212, 52.9% (35.3%)
Omar Vizquel: 197, 49.1% (52.6%)
Billy Wagner: 186, 46.4% (31.7%)
Todd Helton: 180, 44.9% (29.2%)
Gary Sheffield: 163, 40.6% (30.5%)
Andruw Jones: 136, 33.9% (19.4%)
Jeff Kent: 130, 32.4% (27.5%)
Manny Ramirez: 113, 28.2% (28.2%)
Sammy Sosa: 68, 17.0% (13.9%)
Andy Pettitte: 55, 13.7% (11.3%)
Mark Buehrle: 44, 11.0% (1st-timer)
Torii Hunter: 38, 9.5% (1st-timer)
Bobby Abreu: 35, 8.7% (5.5%)
Tim Hudson: 21, 5.2% (1st-timer)
Players receiving less that 5% of the vote and not returning to the ballot: Aramis Ramírez, LaTroy Hawkins, Barry Zito, A.J. Burnett, Michael Cuddyer, Dan Haren, Nick Swisher, and Shane Victorino.
Oh, also, 14 ballots came back blank. The disrespect.
There are SO many people who are SO mad about the writers getting votes, saying they know nothing and their just old logs trying to play god with a civilization equaling less than .5% of the world. But, the argument can be made that these old farts just love the game of baseball, and they still consider “integrity” as a qualification. Makes sense to me.
The juicer era is here and so far, the Hall has made it clear how they feel about people either admitting to taking steroids or accused of it. Barry Bonds hit the most home runs in MLB history (*) and he facing his final year of eligibility. Mark McGwire is not in the Hall of Fame. Sammy Sosa only received 17% of the vote this year. Roger Clemens, Gary Sheffield, Manny Ramirez, all historic names still on the outside looking in.
Curt Shilling has already asked to be taken off the ballot for his final year of eligibility. Yikes.
And, I’m sorry, call me old and grumpy or whatever, but I’m pretty okay with it. Yes, it was great to watch all of those guys do amazing things, but they cheated to do it. You should not be awarded for that. The Hall of Fame is a prestigious place where players who not only played the game at the highest level but also played the game right, are honored and commemorated for abilities and passion for the game, the good of the game.
Had Ken Griffey Jr. cheated, he probably would have been able to escape injury and maybe hit 800+ home runs. But he didn’t cheat, and he still is in the Hall, almost unanimously.
It is very likely Barry Bonds could have made it into the Hall NOT juicing. He was an incredible ball player who didn’t need to cheat. But he did. That’s why he was hated in every ball park.
It is about to get very interesting in Cooperstown, however. Here are some names eligible next year to be elected into the hall: David Ortiz (linked to steroids), Alex Rodriguez (suspended for steroids), Mark Teixeira (linked)…
Don’t be shocked next year if/when they are overlooked and Bonds is out of years. The writers who have a vote do not seem to be budging on their stance.