It’s Hall of Fame Day. This year, Ken Griffey will almost certainly get in, and Mike Piazza is pretty likely. Jeff Bagwell and Tim Raines also have shots, although it will be close.
Some other things though to watch for:
1) How does Trevor Hoffman do?
The greatest closer in the history of the National League is unlikely to get in on the first ballot, but does seem likely to eventually get on. Held back by the fact he played on some crummy teams and never gaining the postseason glory of his AL opposite number (Mariano Rivera), Hoffman is perhaps not as highly-regarded as he should be. How he does in this, his first year on the ballot, will probably be a good
2) With the balloting list purged, do the PED users and Sabermetric darlings gain?
Many voters- mainly ones who are old or have not covered baseball in a long while- had their votes taken away starting this year. Normally I’m against disenfranchising people, but it was always ridiculous that a person who hadn’t covered baseball in the slightest since 1992 could vote in the Hall of Fame. These voters tended to be older, more traditional, more hostile towards statistics, and more draconian in dealing with the PED era. With them gone, will we see PED users and favorites of the statistical community gain? I feel like we will, but by how much is a big question.
3) What player is most going to get screwed over by the fact that voters can still only vote for 10 people, and then likely fall off the ballot?
Jim Edmonds. I don’t know if he’s a Hall of Famer, but he certainly shouldn’t be falling off the ballot in his first year.
4) Will some idiot not vote for Ken Griffey Jr.?
Yes. There’s always somebody.
5) Will they be brave enough to come forward?
If they do, then they are both brave and foolish at the same time, especially if they have some sort of stupid reason and it isn’t a case of “I knew he was being inducted so I voted for Jim Edmonds to try and keep him on the ballot”. Actually, that’s a stupid reason too, but that more has to do with the Hall of Fame’s continued denial of the BBWAA’s requests to be able to vote for more than 10 people.
So, keep an eye open for the answers to these questions.