Disappointed In Hall Balloting; Biggio Snubbed

I am not surprised at the voting numbers for Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens and Sammy Sosa, but I am stunned at there being a total shutout and disappointed at the reasoning of some writers.

For just the second time in four decades none of the candidates were elected, and that is wrong. Craig Biggio, who was on my ballot, had 3,000, which had been an automatic ticket – save PED user Rafael Palmeiro – to Cooperstown.

One explanation I heard, which I vehemently disagree with was this reporter made it a policy to never vote for somebody on the first ballot that is totally off-base. It is a responsibility to vote, and I believe it is irresponsible and an abuse of power to exercise that logic.

Every player’s case should be judged on its own merits and not voting for a player on the first ballot penalizes him as it disregards what he did on the field. Biggio deserves to be in regardless of whom else appeared on the ballot.

I left off Bonds, Clemens and Sosa, and had my reasons for voting for Mike Piazza, Jack Morris, Fred McGriff and Edgar Martinez.

For Piazza, he failed no drug test, did not appear on the Mitchell Report and was never accused on the record. His only linkage to steroids was rumors.

I do not understand how a writer can leave off Bonds, Clemens and Sosa this year as a punishment, but vote for them next time. It is our responsibility as a voter to vote with our conscience, but it becomes abusive to say, “I’m punishing him for this year.’’ You are either against a player using PEDs or not.

I would change my thinking if a player’s steroid-aided statistics were denoted with an asterisk and his plaque mentioned his use of PEDs.

4 thoughts on “Disappointed In Hall Balloting; Biggio Snubbed

  1. One of the earliest HOF voting that I remember happening was the 1971 ballot. No one got elected with Yogi, Wynn and Kiner finishing 1-2-3. A total of 15 guys were later inducted.

    I never understood why Biggio gets so slighted. Maybe going 1-8 in NLDS while hitting poorly does it.
    But he was loyal to his team, never leaving to go back to his New York home. Started at catcher, moved to second and later on played center…three difficult defensive positions. Had power although probably not freakish amount and speed. Maybe there is more suspicion about him and Bagwell but
    still……

    • Dan: Biggio was the first player I marked on my ballot. To me there’s something special about 3,000 hits. Some people say he was a compiler, but isn’t that true about every career stat? You have to be pretty good to stay around long enough to get 3,000 hits.-JD

  2. The fact that Piazza and Biggio did not get in is a joke.
    And to those writers, like BIll Madden, who told critics to “shut up”, give me a break. He didn’t vote for Piazza because he “needs more information”. What more information does this hack want? Are Mike’s numbers suddenly going to get better? Oh, that’s write, he wonders “why he postponed the publication date of his autobiography until after the Hall of Fame election”. Um, the date has been February for as long as the story about the book coming out has been around. As for Biggio, some have called him a “compiler”. So? Other players in the HoF were compilers. Don Sutton anyone? You think people really thought of Sutton as an all-time great of the game? I grew up when he pitched, he wasn’t. You don’t get to 3,000 hits without playing for a long time. Think about it, even with 200 hits a year, you need to play 15 seasons. That is a long time.

    I understand why writers aren’t voting for Bonds (who admitted using, though he “didn’t know” which is of course bull) and Clemens (who there is daning evidence against, despite his winning the court case, which was a joke to begin with). As for Sosa, frankly, he was a 1 trick pony, not an all-around star (same as McGwire imnsho), so no Hall for him. If a voter chooses to not vote for a player where there is EVIDENCE have that right. Though I do wonder where some of these writers were back in the day if they heard the rumors and didn’t investigate. Isn’t that what reporters do, investigate? I’m not talking about who a player is sleeping with here, I am talking about if they are doing something against the rules (or spirit thereof) of the game.

    Piazza and Biggio will probably get in. Eventually. It is just a shame that some writers are using a broad brush to punish guys against whom there is no proof of PED use.
    Not to mention the number of players in the HoF who used amphetamines during their career, which most certainly helped them play better. So spare us the BS BBWAA. Stop with the broad brush and vote for deserving players.

    • Ed: Thanks so much for your comments. I am on board with all you say. As far as waiting for more information, that is absurd. His numbers aren’t going to change and he’d not going to admit to anything. Piazza’s career is what it is, and that is as the greatest hitting catcher in history. Never failed a drug test, never appeared on the Mitchell Report and was never accused on the record. Some writers are suspicious because of his back acne. Circumstantial. Bonds admitted using but said he didn’t know what he was doing, which is a lie. And, you’re right about the media. There was the andro issue with McGwire. But, McGwire and Sosa and the steroid era was given tacit approval by Bud Selig and the owners, who needed the “home runs,” tainted as they were, to get people back after the lockout that killed the 1994 World Series.-JD