Once again, the Baseball Hall of Fame Veterans Committee proved that even Viagra wouldn't help these guys! With choices like nine-time All Star Ron Santo, 283 game-winner Jim Kaat, umpire Doug Harvey, and the late Gil Hodges who hit 370 home runs, the Veterans Committee was totally ineffectual, failing to elect ANYONE to the Hall of Fame once again.
Ron Santo came closest, falling just five votes short of the required 62 votes (75 percent). What a travesty. Ron Santo is without a doubt the greatest third baseman in Chicago Cubs' history; hitting 342 career home runs and winning five Gold Gloves. Santo played all but one
season with the Cubs, but never made it to the post-season. He hit 30
homers and batted .300 four times each, despite playing much of his
career in an era where scoring was suppressed. He paced the National
League in walks four times. He topped NL third basemen in putouts seven
times, assists seven times, and double plays four times. But he's not good enough?
"My guy was Jim Kaat, but understand other members have their guys
also," Hall member Mike Schmidt told The Associated Press. "Maybe that is the problem
when you are trying to evaluate 'bubble' players on entrance."
"The same thing happens every year. The current members want to
preserve the prestige as much as possible, and are unwilling to open
the doors," he said.
The epitome of selfishness, in my opinion. These are players that for whatever reason were overlooked when they were first eligible. Santo, for example, has about the best numbers of any third baseman in the game of baseball. The veterans committee was revamped after charges of cronyism when it
elected Bill Mazeroski in 2001. That marked the eighth straight year
the 15-member panel sent someone to Cooperstown.
the panel was expanded to include all living Hall of Famers. The new
committee votes every other year for players and every four years for
"We are disappointed that no one has been elected
in the three voting cycles," Hall chairman Jane Forbes Clark said. "We
will be evaluating this process and its trends at our next meeting,
which is March 13, and discussing whether there should be any changes."
"The board may decide that the trends are not what we thought they were
going to be. Perhaps this hasn't worked as well as some of the board
members thought it would and maybe it needs a little bit of change,"
"We're being blamed because something hasn't happened," Hall member and
vice chairman Joe Morgan said. "If you're asking me, 'Do we lower our standards
to get more people in?' my answer would be no." Lower your standards? Some of these guys have better numbers than those already enshrined in Cooperstown, they just had the bad luck of the draw. Maybe they played on a team that wasn't a powerhouse, like Santo on the Cubs. Maybe it was for some other unknown reason. Whatever it is, the Veterans Committee ought to be ashamed! Morgan said he voted for the maximum 10 players.
"I feel there are some guys out there that belong in the Hall of Fame," he
said. "The writers voted on these people for 15 years and they weren't elected.
Why are we being criticized because we haven't elected someone?" Maybe because you had a chance to right the wrongs, and you just couldn't get it together, could you?
Maury Wills, Joe Torre, Roger Maris, Luis Tiant and Bobby Bonds were among
the 27 candidates on the players ballot.
"Nobody got in? That's too bad. I'm sorry to hear that," Torre said. "I'm
not exactly sure what process they use. Don't forget, you've got the old guard
and the young guard. People with different interests."
Torre drew 32 percent of the votes based on his playing career. The New York Yankees manager -- and former NL MVP -- is expected to be elected when his time in
the dugout is considered.
"Joe Torre, when he retires and he has 8,000 wins or whatever, I think that
people would vote for him," Morgan said. You THINK?
*** Williams, Whitey Herzog, Walter O'Malley and Charlie O. Finley also
were among the 15 names on the composite ballot. Morgan said it was hard to pick
from those candidates.
"It is difficult for some of the players or me to evaluate their
performance on a Hall of Fame level. It is much easier for me to evaluate the
players," Morgan said.
Yeah, well, you didn't do a very good job of it, Mr. Morgan, did you!