Monday, November 26, 2007

Who gets a Hall pass?

The Baseball Hall of Fame ballot was announced today. At first glance, the 2008 HOF induction ceremonies may be a very intimate affair -- if there is one at all.

There are no Tony Gwynns, no Cal Ripkens on this list. The newcomers to the ballot are the likes of Tim Raines, David Justice, Chuck Knoblauch and Todd Stottlemyre.

That's right, Todd Stottlemyre could earn a Hall of Fame vote.

The winners in this mess? The holdovers. Guys like Goose Gossage and Jim Rice.

Gossage, to me, is someone who deserves inclusion. There are those who fight the "Hall of Fame closer" title tooth and nail, but Gossage helped pave the way for today's modern closer. And he did it before the one-inning, three-run-lead save was popular.

One parting shot for the veterans committee: Please, please, please find a way to get Buck O'Neill into Cooperstown. If anyone deserves to be inducted under the auspices of an ambassador for the game, it's Buck. As a whole, baseball missed a chance to put him in while he was alive. Now, it's time to right that wrong.


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