Every January the Baseball Writers Association of America’s members tally their votes for the new inductees into the hall of fame in Cooperstown, NY. In order to earn a place in baseball immortality a player must meet certain criteria and also must gain votes on 75% of the ballots cast. This year there are 34 players on the ballot, 15 returning nominees and 18 first timers. Last year catcher Mike Piazza and outfielder Ken Griffey Jr earned their spot, who will join them this year?
John Schuerholz has been in a MLB front office since he joined the Kansas City Royals organization in 1981. He served as the Royals general manager from 1982-1990 and in 1990 moved on to be the general manager of the Atlanta Braves. Today Schuerholz is still with the Braves organization serving as the team’s president. Among his greatest achievements 16 division titles and a World Series win.
Bud Selig was the 9th commissioner of baseball in the MLB and held the seat from July 1998 to January 2015. Prior to becoming the commissioner he was the owner and president of the Milwaukee Brewers and is credited with keeping baseball in the city. Selig will also be remembered as the commissioner that testified in front of congress in 2006 about steroid use in the MLB.
Jeff Bagwell played from 1991 to 2005 and spent his entire career with the Houston Astros. His most notable accolades are 1991 Rookie of the Year and 1994 NL MVP. Additionally he won 3 Silver Sluggers, a Gold Glove, and a 4 time All Star. Throughout his 15 year career Bagwell held a BA/OBP/OPS of .297/.408/.948.
Tim Raines played in the league for 18 years from his rookie season in 1981 to his last 1999. 12 of those years he spent in Montreal on the now defunct Expos. Raines finished 2nd in the Rookie of the Year voting as well as being an All Star and 19th in the MVP. The first 7 years of his career were his best being voted on to the All Star team and finishing in the top 20 of the MVP vote from 1981 to 1987. Throughout his 20 year career Raines held a BA/OBP/OPS of .294/.385/.810.
Ivan Rodriguez was the only first ballot player this season to make it to the Hall of Fame. Pudge, as he was known, played in the league for 20 years from 1991 to 2011. Of the class of 2017 Pudge by far has the most accolades. He was a 14 year All Star, has 13 Gold Gloves, 7 Silver Sluggers, and was the 1999 MVP. Although Pudge played for many teams, he is best known for is time with the Texas Rangers, the team that signed him when he was only 16 years old. Ivan Rodriguez is ranked in the top 10 catchers of all time and with career stats of .296/.334/.798.
Welcome to Cooperstown class of 2017!