"America's Pastime" is on the steady decline. The work of the Baseball Writers' Association of America and their results of today's Hall of Fame ballot did not help the game's case. For the first time since 1960, the National Hall of Fame will not enter a single player in. Not one ballplayer reached the 75% threshold needed for enshrinement in Cooperstown. What an absolute insult to the game. How does this happen? Nine years on the ballot and MLB legends Curt Schilling, Barry Bonds, and Roger Clemens fall short yet again. They probably are the most deserving candidates. The same goes for Scot Rollen, Samy Sosa, and even Gary Sheffield. What was even more disturbing was the fact that 14 writers left their ballots empty. FOURTEEN?! Why even have the privilege to vote. These are probably some of the same people that felt Derek Jeter wasn't a unanimous pick for the Hall.
Something needs to change. Swap out the voters. Rethink the minds. Review the tape. Something! What these players have for the game, and what they accomplished on the field, should provide enough insight on why they deserve the prestigious honor. Take the personal feelings and bias away, and stick to the facts.
Curt Schilling is a 6x All-Star, 3x World Series Champ, 2x MLB Wins Leader, and has over 3,000 strikeouts. He is one of the most prolific postseason pitchers in history, compiling an 11-2 record in 19 starts, including a 4-1 mark and 2.06 ERA in seven World Series starts. Barry Bonds put people in seats during his entire career. He clobbered over 700 home runs, winning 7 MVP's and 12 silver slugger awards, and that is just a small part of his impressive resume. Roger Clemens has 7 CY Young awards, on top of 2 triple crowns and two world series rings.
You're telling me none of these guys deserve it? Reality check, the steroid era was a huge part of baseball. Not to say that it was good for the integrity of the game, but it brought the MLB out of the demise it was heading to. Another thing to mention, are players not allowed to have outside opinions? Are they not allowed to exercise their freedom of speech? The voters surely think so, because they take into account what the former players are doing post-retirement, and use that as a disadvantage for their candidacy.
What seems to be forgotten about the HOF is that is a museum. A time capsule to showcase the greats that revolutionized and improved the game. It provides the common fan the opportunity to step back in time and see first hand how these former players molded what the MLB looks like today. Before the nifty internet, traveling to Cooperstown was a special treat. That childhood fun is meaningless now that you can just look up the stats of these talented players on google, or take an image search of their memorabilia. The youth doesn't have a strong issue, because the fun of the game is being taken away. Museums and textbooks still showcase all of the good, the bad, and the ugly. The Hall of Fame should not be any different.
It has been happening for years. This past summer, in one of the most difficult seasons for the MLB where they claimed to "let the kids play", brought out the true colors of how "purists" want to keep baseball stuck in a stagnant. They ridiculed Fernando Tatis Jr. for his bat flips and electric grand slams. Viewers are captivated by the Jared Carrabis's, Jomboy's, and Trevor Bauer's of the world. They bring a new form of life and entertainment to the sport. My personal opinion is that it is time to clean house and build from the bottom. The new regime of journalists needs to take over and do what it takes to save the game. The actions that took place today brought the MLB down a slippery slope. Next year's ballot will include sluggers Alex Rodriguez and David Ortiz, two icons of recent time. Will their pasts blockade their enshrinement?