In baseball, they say “It’s not over ‘til it’s over.” But for those hoping to be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2013, it’s over.
Apparently, Cooperstown isn’t willing to fit another inductee into the shrine this year. The National Baseball Hall of Fame announced today that no one was voted into the club in 2013 after the players on the ballot all failed to attract the 75 percent portion of votes required to receive the honor.
Victims of what the Hall of Fame is calling a shutout include former San Francisco Giants left fielder Barry Bonds, former Mets catcher Mike Piazza, and former New York Yankees pitcher (and seven-time Cy Young Award winner) Roger Clemens. The only players to come close to nabbing the vote were Craig Biggio from the Houston Astros and Jack Morris, former pitcher for the Minnesota Twins, with 68 and 67 percent, respectively.
While many fans are surely staring wide-eyed and saying “Goll-eee, gee-wiz” right about now, Clemens tweeted that he wasn’t shocked he didn’t make the cut. “After what has been written and said over the last few years, I’m not overly surprised. Thanks to all the teams I’ve worked with and to fans and friends for all the fantastic letters, voice mails and texts of support over the last few years. To those who did take the time to look at the facts … we very much appreciate it,” said Clemens via a photo posted on Twitter.
Votes for new Hall of Famers are cast by the members of the Baseball Writers Association of America, comprised of 569 voters in 2013 (increased by over a 100 since last year) and in order to qualify for induction into the Hall of Fame, players needed to pick up 427 votes. Unfortunately for all involved, this game doesn’t have the option of extra innings.
It makes sense that folks like Bonds and Clemens, both of whom were embroiled in steroids scandals in the late 2000s, would be left out of the honorable Hall. But in fact, it’s not even as shocking as it should be that the voters came up with nothing… again. This is the eighth year with no inductee since 1996.
”The standards for earning election to the Hall of Fame have been very high ever since the rules were created in 1936. We realize the challenges voters are faced with in this era. The Hall of Fame has always entrusted the exclusive voting privilege to the Baseball Writers’ Association of America. We remain pleased with their role in evaluating candidates based on the criteria we provide,” says Hall of Fame president Jeff Idelson in a press release.
Tyler Kepner, a 15-year veteran of the BWAA, says in an article for The New York Times that the issue might be the oversaturation of the voting pool among BWAA members, and calls for diversification of the voters in order to level the playing field.
Still, with or without the honor of earning a spot in the Hall of Fame, at least folks like Bonds and Clemens will see their legacies live on in their own ways… in the pages of celebrity gossip history.
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[Photo Credit: Justin SullivanGetty Images]