Monday, January 9, 2012

Morris falls short of induction

The 2012 Hall of Fame announcement was made earlier today and the only man to be selected by the Baseball Writers Association of America was Barry Larkin. The second place finisher is a familiar name to fans of the Twins, Jack Morris. The St. Paul native finished 48 votes shy of getting the ultimate honor in baseball. He received 66.7% of the vote and a player needs to receive 75% to get their plaque up with the other greats of the game.

For supporters of Morris, this year was a great accomplishment as he got closer than he has ever been to the Hall. There are some stumbling blocks on the horizon with Morris only having two years left of eligibility on the ballot. The next two years there will be plenty of candidates who could garner support over a player like Morris.

First Year of Eligibility for the Hall
2013
Barry Bonds
Roger Clemens
Sammy Sosa
Mike Piazza
Curt Schilling
Craig Biggio

2014
Tom Glavine
Greg Maddux
Frank Thomas
Jeff Kent

This could be the high point for Morris during his time on the ballot. As I wrote about in the middle of last month, 2012 might have been his last best chance to get the nod for Cooperstown. The PED players still on the ballot and the new names added to the voting for next year could take away some votes from Morris. The writers can only vote for ten players on each ballot and there might be ten players who are better than Morris during next year's voting. 

In putting together my ballot for the Baseball Bloggers Alliance in the last two years, I have included Morris on both occasions (2011 ballot, 2012 ballot). With the new players added to the mix next year, there is a good chance I won't have room to include him. Without spending too much time deciding who to vote for, I would have these players on my ballot for next year:

Returning Players:
1. Jeff Bagwell
2. Edgar Martinez
3. Mark McGwire
4. Rafael Palmerio
First Year Eligible Players:
5. Barry Bonds
6. Roger Clemens
7. Sammy Sosa
8. Mike Piazza
9. Curt Schilling
10. Craig Biggio

I might try and find a way to squeeze one of those players out and fit Morris on as a last-ditch effort to get him elected. But either way, the ballots are going to be tough for writers to decide and it will be tough for Morris to get elected in his last two years of eligibility.

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