It’s that time of the year when the Hall of Fame sends out its ballots for its latest election. With Mike Piazza finally voted in last year, Mets fans have far less anxiety about the outcome. But that does not mean I cannot do my annual analysis of the ballot.
Let’s start with the first-timers:
Guerrero should get voted elected on his first attempt. He batted .318 for his career with 449 home runs. He was a nine-time All-Star and won an MVP award. There is no reason he should not get the required 75-percent of the vote.
Manny Ramirez and Ivan Rodriguez
On sheer numbers, both are first-ballot worthy. But both have PED issues. Ramirez actually tested positive twice, so there is no way he will ever get elected. PED rumors have been swirling around Rodriguez since he suddenly reported to Spring Training once testing started and he was no longer “Pudge.” There was never any definitive proof, though. Like Piazza, Rodriguez will eventually get voted in, but it will take a few years.
Posada will get plenty of support, but he will not get voted in this year. If he ever does, it will take quite a few ballots for it to happen. While he has good numbers for a catcher, they are not overwhelming in general.
Ordonez is an interesting case. He batted .309 for his career, with 2156 hits, 294 homers and 1236 RBIs. He was a six-time All-Star. His numbers compare favorably to Edgar Martinez (.312, 2247 hits, 309 homers, 1261 RBIs, seven All-Star appearances), and many people insist Martinez deserves to be enshrined. Neither likely will ever get in.
Edgar Renteria, Mike Cameron, J.D. Drew, Derrick Lee, Tim Wakefield, Pat Burrell and the rest
Nice careers, but they are never getting in.
Jeff Bagwell, Tim Raines and Trevor Hoffman
All three came close last year, and all three have very good chances to get over the hump this time. Bagwell, the victim of unfounded PED rumors, will make it on his seventh try after getting 71% last year. Raines is in his final year on the ballot and he should make it. If Hoffman does not make it this year, he’ll get in next time.
Curt Schilling and Mike Mussina
They are both slowly making strides towards possible induction, but it won’t be this year.
Lee Smith and Billy Wagner
Smith is in his last year; it’s off to the Veterans Committee for him. Wagner got a shockingly low 10% in his first year last year. He’ll get more this time around.
Once again, he will get overlooked. He deserves better.
Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens, Gary Sheffield and Sammy Sosa
You know the drill. Never getting in. Sosa will probably drop below 5% and thus fall off the ballot. Sheffield could, too.
So look for Guerrero, Bagwell and Raines on that podium in Cooperstown next summer. Hoffman could join them, too. But that’s it.