For the first time since 1996, the voting membership of Baseball Hall of Fame does not elect any players. This news comes after much debate on whether a list of former superstars linked to performance enhancing drugs deserve a spot in Cooperstown. Of the first-time inductees, Craig Biggio received the most votes— 68.2% — landing him just shy of the 75% needed to be inducted into the Hall of Fame.
Former Met fan favorite, Mike Piazza was also on the list for the first time, but received only 57.8% of total votes. Only Biggio, Morris, and Bagwell received more votes than Piazza. Personally, am I upset with how the voting turned out? I’m more disappointed than upset, but while Piazza didn’t get in today, I expect him to get in the near future. To get the percentage of votes Piazza received, still speaks volume for any first-time ballot inductee. What truly upsets me is the talk surrounding the suspicion that Piazza was linked to performance enhancing drugs. Piazza’s name was rumored to be linked to the Mitchell Report that was released a few years ago, however, it was never publicly stated as a fact. Therefore, it turns my stomach to hear Piazza get the same treatment as other well-known players who indeed took steroids such as Clemens, Bonds and Sosa.
Hall of Fame Voting Results (Top 10)
1. Craig Biggio 68.2%
2. Jack Morris 67.7%
3. Jeff Bagwell 59.6%
4. Mike Piazza 57.8%
5. Tim Raines 52.2%
6. Lee Smith 47.8%
7. Curt Schilling 38.8%
8. Roger Clemens 37.6%
9. Barry Bonds 36.2%
10 Edgar Martinez 35.9%
When it comes to voting a player into the Hall of Fame, it should based on the athlete playing the game with integrity, and having a lasting impact on their respective team and on the game in general. Say what you want with rumors and beliefs that Piazza may or may not have taken steroids, it was never publicly put into the light that Piazza was a cheater, therefore, he should not be labeled as one. What do we know for sure: Piazza was the best offensive catcher the game has seen throughout his career. Short and simple. Was he robbed by not getting in today? I don’t think so, but he definitely deserves a spot in the years to come.
How do you feel about how the voters voted? Are you surprised by the number of votes Bonds and Clemens received? Feel free to leave a comment below.