Let’s hear it for Jay Buhner. He got one vote. Buhner never expected to be on the ballot let alone get any votes. He certainly had the right perspective on the whole matter:
“I didn’t even know I was on the ballot until someone sent it to me on an e-mail two weeks ago,” he said. “Truthfully, it’s flattering to be even mentioned with the names on there, for God’s sakes.”
The HOF voting can be found here.
Ripken’s 98.53% was the third highest in history and highest by position player. A lot has been made of this but I think the voting percentage issue has been overblown by the media.
Tony Gwynn wasn’t far behind with 97.6%. I’ve always felt Tony belonged but never saw him on the same level as Ripken. Then Teddy Ballgame pointed out to me that among those with 3000 hits, Gwynn has the 4th highest batting average. I have to admire the combination of longevity and statistical excellence.
Of course, Mark McGwire didn’t make it. I didn’t think he would. There are still those detractors out there who insist that despite the fact he was 17 homeruns shy of 600 and played on 12 All-Star teams, they voted purely on his stats. I call shenanigans. If you let the cloud of steroids affect your vote, just admit it.
Mac’s 23.5% will keep him on the ballot. The only other first-timer who will stay on will be Harold Baines who snuck by with 5.3.% of the vote.
Goose Gossage didn’t make it but I believe his 71.2% showing will bode well for a 2008 performance. It was a crowded field this year and his good showing now may pave the way for the Hall for the Goose in 08.
One more thing. All this talk about McGwire and alleged (let’s not forget nothing has been proved… yet) steroid use hurting his chances… who were the two jokers who voted for Ken Caminiti, a known, admitted user of steroids which more than likely contributed to his death?
cal ripken, goose gossage, Hall of Fame, jay buhner, mark mcgwire