As I'm sure you know by now, Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine and Frank Thomas were all elected to the Hall of Fame Wednesday.
Needing 75% of the votes for inclusion, Maddux was named on 97.2% of the ballots, with Glavine garnering 91.9% and Thomas with 83.7%. Both Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens' percentages fell in their second year on the ballot, with each finishing below 36%. The biggest upsets of the day were in Craig Biggio, who was only two votes short at 74.8%, and Jack Morris, who finished with 61.5% in his final year on the ballot. (For a full list of all the nominees' finishing percentages, Tyler Kepner provided a nice recap for the New York Times.)
Thomas, the AL MVP in both 1993 and 1994, was admittedly happy, noting Bonds and Clemens and saying,
"I know the type of players they were," Thomas said on a conference call with reporters. "As for what they did, I don't think any of us will ever really know. But I can just tell you, what I did was real, and that's why I've got this smile on my face right now, because the writers, they definitely got it right."
Glavine noted how the success of both himself and Maddux (Glavine was the NL Cy Young winner in 1991 and 1998, Maddux 1992-1995) through "precision and savvy" can act as an inspiration,
"When you see guys like myself and Greg being able to have the success we had - not only not being imposing figures physically, but certainly not imposing in terms of our velocity - I think it gives hope to kids that ‘Hey, I have a chance, even though I may not be the hardest-throwing kid on my team.' "
Tweet of the Day?
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>Frank suggests his production might have led players to use PEDs.</p>— Doug Padilla (@ESPNChiSox) <a href="https://twitter.com/ESPNChiSox/statuses/421030339679883264">January 8, 2014</a></blockquote><script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>
(.301/.419/.555) caused ALL THE STEROIDS.
- Great, great piece from The Washington Post about Maddux's approach to the game and the success it garnered him.
Maddux left hitters with an "I-am-stupid, kick-me" sign on their backs. He pitched complete games in much less than two hours without ever throwing one eye-popping pitch. Hundreds of pitchers could do it - in theory. No one else ever has. The sequence, the mind, the command, the intuition, the hauteur was all.
[Editor's Note: Bring us all the Maddux stories you find, and share them in the comments. I can't get enough of them! - DR]
- Jayson Stark took a stark look (ba-dum-ch) at the reality that is PEDs and the Hall of Fame going forward, asking what resolve will occur for players such as Bonds, Clemens, Mike Piazza, and others. He also noted how ballot gridlock is affecting more than just "the sport's favorite outcasts," mentioning Fred McGriff and Edgar Martinez. Solid read.
- The PED Eight: those players most notably missing from the Hall - deserved or not?
- So, who gave their vote to Deadspin? It was Dan Le Betard, longtime ESPN contributor and Miami Herald columnist, and he provided his reasoning yesterday; which was pretty good. While Deadspin was offering to pay for the rights to the ballot, Le Betard offered his up for free.
The Deadspin ballot was based on yes/no votes from their community, and read as follows: Greg Maddux, Frank Thomas, Tom Glavine, Mike Piazza, Craig Biggio, Edgar Martínez, Jeff Bagwell, Roger Clemens, Barry Bonds, and Curt Schilling.
- Grantland provided a portrait of MLB writers during the Steroid Era, looking at the relationship between reporter and players between 1988 and 2010. Really interesting piece.
- Missed this earlier this week, but Beyond the Box Score took a look at which current player most closely resembles Maddux, with Doug Fister appearing to be the most likely candidate, "doing more with less."