The hall of fame ballot for 2020 was released yesterday. New to the ballot were a lot of players from the 1990s and 2000s, from the time I first became a baseball fan. 75% from voters is needed to be elected. Each voter is allowed a maximum of 10 players per ballot.
Hall of Fame ballot for class of 2020 (name, year on ballot, and % from last year)
Curt Schilling 8th 60.9%
Roger Clemens 8th 59.5%
Barry Bonds 8th 59.1%
Larry Walker 10th 54.6%
Omar Vizquel 3rd 42.8 %
Manny Ramirez 4th 22.8%
Jeff Kent 7th 18.1%
Scott Rolen 3rd 17.2%
Billy Wagner 5th 16.7%
Todd Helton 2nd 16.5%
Gary Sheffield 6th 13.6%
Andy Pettitte 2nd 9.9%
Sammy Sosa 8th 8.5%
Andruw Jones 3rd 7.5%
Bobby Abreu 1st
Josh Beckett 1st
Heath Bell 1st
Eric Chavez 1st
Adam Dunn 1st
Chone Figgins 1st
Rafael Furcal 1st
Jason Giambi 1st
Raúl Ibañez 1st
Derek Jeter 1st
Paul Konerko 1st
Cliff Lee 1st
Carlos Peña 1st
J. J. Putz 1st
Brian Roberts 1st
Alfonso Soriano 1st
José Valverde 1st
Some people are "big hall," or very open to many good players making it in. Some are "smaller hall," and more exclusive. Only the best of the best get in. I'm in between. I feel like the HOF has been too exclusive over the years, ignoring some great players for far too long. I'm not a fan of keeping anyone accused of steroids out either. Here's my ballot:
-Schilling: The 216-146 record and 3.46 ERA is a bit middling compared to other HOFers, but he's 15th all time on the career strikeout list, one behind Bob Gibson.
-Bonds: He put up HOF worthy numbers prior to his late career power boom. He belongs.
-Clemens: One of the best pitchers of the generation. 3rd all time in strikeouts, 9th in wins. Most Cy Youngs. steroids or not, that should be enough to go in.
-Jeter: 3,000 hits and being the face of baseball's biggest franchise and last true dynasty make him a shoe in.
-Ramirez: He had a career OPS close to 1.000, and 555 home runs. One of the best hitters I've ever seen.
-Sheffield: The 509 home runs gets him in for me. He was a great hitter for such a long time. Rarely in serious MVP consideration though.
-Sosa: My favorite player gets in. Even if you take the alleged juice away, He's got too many home runs to ignore.
-Rolen: A lot of offense and a lot of gold gloves. He rarely peaked beyond other players, but was quietly very good for a long time.
-Larry Walker: I just don't see his career stats being that good to outweigh the coors effect. He belongs in the hall of very good, to me.
-Omar Vizquel: A very long lasting player, but was rarely among the best of that generation.
-Jeff Kent: He had a great peak, but his career numbers put in in good territory, not great.
-Jason Giambi: A solid player, but missed out on some major milestones despite being a steroid guy. If I'm voting for steroid guys, it'll be the ones that hit milestones.
-Paul Kornerko: A solid player but just not enough eye popping numbers to overcome others more deserving.
Jeter gets in for sure, and is the only one. Maybe. The hall has surprising made some very valid players wait.
Other possibilities include Schilling, Clemens, Bonds, Walker. As they approach the 10 year line of being dropped off the ballot, maybe they get a bump to get over the hump. Maybe.