Last year the baseball writers saw fit to elect three very worthy men to the Hall of Fame. This year, in an almost unfathomable gesture of generosity, they elected four very worthy men, the first time they have elected four players in 60 years. Bravo, BBWAA, bra-fucking-vo.
The Big Unit got 97.3% of the vote - more than Maddux!
Johnson is, was, and always will be a freak of nature, equal parts Steve Carlton, Nolan Ryan, Wilt Chamberlain, and spider monkey. I think John Kruk said it all without saying a thing about what it was like to hit against him.
Petey got 91.1% of the vote. I know there are always dumbasses who don't vote for first year players, which is why someone like Randy Johnson "only" gets 97.3% of the vote, but that nonsense is to be expected. I know it is picking nits to a pathetic degree, but I find the percentage Pedro got to be more insulting. I would like to interview the 49 men who thought he wasn't all Hall of Famer with these numbers during the steroid era. I could and will argue that Pedro's 1999-2000 are the two best back-to-back pitching seasons ever. Bar none.
Martinez is the polar opposite of Randy Johnson in terms of personality and body type but I find it very satisfying that they are going into the Hall together. No two pitchers laughed in the face of the cartoon inflated offensive statistics of the 90s and aughts with more aplomb than Pedro and Randy.
Craig Biggio (finally!) got in with 82.7% of the vote. I guess he had a really good year last year which propelled him over the top, right? That's how it works? Hello? Is this thing on?
I wrote very long and passionately about Biggio last year when he missed being elected by two freaking votes. I suggest going back to read that post if you haven't already because it is one of the finest things I have ever written on this blog.
Smoltz got in with 82.9% of the vote. I broke from numerical protocol in listing the four new members and went with, what is in my eyes, overall worthiness. John Smoltz was, I'll admit even as a Mets fan, a great pitcher for a long time. His career is sort of a photo negative of Dennis Eckersley's and Eck went in on the first ballot too. But I pause when Smoltz gets in on the first ballot when Mike Mussina and Curt Schilling, two pitchers who are both contemporaries and statistically superior, are on the outside looking in. This is sort of where the writers lost their way in this vote.
Oh, you might ask, where else did they go awry? Well, there is one glaring omission once again this year - and for the third year in a row. I ranted about Biggio (amongst other things) last year, but was so mad about the Mike Piazza thing that I couldn't bring myself to actually condense into words their failings at not electing him. And yes, I am aware that it is almost impossible that he won't get in next year. But believe me my friends, my thoughts about Mike Piazza are going to come fast and furious and soon. I know I haven't posted much in the last couple months (for a variety of reasons), but leave it to the baseball writers to wake the sleeping bear.