The Hall of Fame ballots went out this week to the 575 writers who have been members of the BBWAA for 10 years. The results will be announced on Jan. 8. A player must be on 75 percent of the ballots to gain induction.
Voters can select up to 10 players or nobody at all.
How are players evaluated? Here is what the BBWAA rule says:
Voting shall be based upon the player’s record, playing ability, integrity, sportsmanship, character, and contributions to the team(s) on which the player played.
Rich â€œGooseâ€ Gossage
I have three years left before I am eligible to vote. If I had a vote this season, I would select these players:
And that’s it. I wavered on Lee Smith. But I plan to be conservative with my selections once I get to vote and I don’t plan on making any statistical plateau such as 500 home runs an “automatic” reason to pick somebody. I also don’t subscribe to the idea that certain players need to wait to get in. You’re either a Hall of Famer or not.
As for Mark McGwire, I’m not sure he would get my vote regardless of his involvement with performance-enhancing drugs. But the rule does mention integrity, sportsmanship and character.
Who would you select?