Dunlap: Make Baseball HOF Voters Show Ballots

Colin Dunlap
January 22, 2020 - 2:41 pm
: Inductees (from left) Harold Baines, Lee Smith, Edgar Martinez, Mike Mussina, Mariano Rivera and Brandy Halladay, wife the late Roy Halladay, pose with their plaques

(Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

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PITTSBURGH (93.7 The Fan) - Derek Jeter got into the Baseball Hall of Fame

Good. He should have. 

Nothing will overshadow it. Nothing will be bigger than it. Nothing will sully it. 

Even if some jackwagon with a vote wanted to make it more about them and infuse themselves into the story much deeper than they ever should have. 

An anonymous jackwagon, at that. 

Yeah, as you have probably read or heard by now, someone voted against Jeter. Make no mistake, not voting for him was voting against him.

This isn’t some political election. What I’m getting at is this: Many in this country feel voting in an election for a political candidate is a right. Some feel it is a privilege. Still there are others who feel it is both a right and a privilege. 

Figure out where you stand on all of that and go with it. 

But in terms of voting for a candidate for the Baseball Hall of Fame --- it would seem there is no way to argue against the fact it is anything but a privilege. It’s a privilege extended to 397 members of the Baseball Writers’ Association of America. 

They are a haughty, arrogant and conceited bunch by nature; stuck on all things tradition and, God forbid anyone would ever want to come in and shake up the firm foothold they have as grand keepers of their grand game. I sometimes wonder if some BBWAA members think people pay money to watch them cover games as opposed to players play in them. 

Anyway, I digress … 

In this instance one person --- a singular vote --- felt it necessary to prove a point. 

Jeter got 396 of the possible 397 votes. Or, if you are the percentages type, 99.7 percent of the voters felt he should be elected. 

Know why the one person left him off? Because they felt comfortable. Because they didn’t have to disclose their name. 

Because their cowardice could be on full display without their name having to be. 

What a farce. What a mockery. What a sham. 

The name of the voter isn’t known and I doubt when additional ballots are made public early next month it will come to the surface who didn’t vote for Jeter. After all, you get a choice of a public listing or not --- and I doubt anyone who would go so far as to not vote in Jeter would have the stones to face the heat. It most likely will be the ultimate spineless hit-and-run. 

Look, I couldn’t disagree more with 93.7 The Fan host and Pittsburgh Post-Gazette columnist Ron Cook on most of this Hall of Fame stuff. 

He checked just one box. 

He only voted for Jeter because, as he put it, he will “never vote for the steroid guys.” 

That’s why he left both Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens off his ballot. 

Great, Ron. 

Let me know when you can figure out exactly which guys took steroids and which guys didn’t. And let me know throughout the history of baseball how you know which guys cheated and which guys didn’t. Then we can talk. 

That’s why it’s called The Steroid Era – because it wasn’t just a few men taking them. It was rampant.  

Anyhow, for as much as I disagree with Cook’s unwavering and staunch dismissal of certain men who played in a certain timeframe, he deserves credit. 

At least he put his name to it. 

At least Ron came out and owned his ballot. He said live on the air on Tuesday that Jeter was the lone player he cast a vote for and then explained his reasoning.

Everyone should be made to do as much. 

Or, at the very least, have their vote attached to their name. 

It should be mandatory that all votes --- and voter ballots --- be made public. 

Otherwise cowards are permitted to be, well, cowards. The veil of anonymity can be worn tightly by someone who wants to serve a personal agenda or just prove a point. 

Until everyone is made to own their ballot, the Hall of Fame votes will always have a bit of an asterisk.  ​

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