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So apparently Hall of Fame voters have a “sacred responsibility” to keep the place “clean and pure”

Jan 18, 2011, 6:07 AM EDT

cooperstown

Jim Reeves of ESPN Dallas would like to let you know how important his Hall of Fame vote is:

Judge and jury? Moral compasses? Gatekeepers? Yeah, maybe so, because that’s the responsibility we accept when we qualify to become a Hall of Fame voter. Because of the steroids issue, it’s a responsibility that has become so charged with controversy, I have even considered rejecting that honor and asking that my name be taken off the rolls as an active voter. It was a difficult and often agonizing challenge before the steroids era descended upon us. You can only imagine what it’s like now.

But I haven’t quit as a voter—not yet, anyway—because I consider it a sacred responsibility to the great players of the past to keep their exclusive club as clean and pure as possible. And yes, I say that with full knowledge that there are already a few in there with questionable credentials and backgrounds. All I can do is the best that I can. I owe that to late greats such as Joe DiMaggio and Lou Gehrig, Eddie Matthews and Roberto Clemente. I owe it to Nolan Ryan and Fergie Jenkins, to Alomar and Blyleven.

That would be the same Fergie Jenkins who got busted for trying to get cocaine, hashish, and marijuana through Canadian customs in 1980, so like, whatever.

I guess I’d rather have someone with a Hall of Fame vote err on the side of taking it a bit too seriously than to believe that it’s a joke or a goof. But come on. “Sacred responsibility?” “Clean and pure?” You know that you’re dealing with mission creep of the first order when that kind of rhetoric is being tossed around about baseball.

  1. PanchoHerreraFanClub - Jan 18, 2011 at 7:59 AM

    It is very sad that sportswriters think they are our moral compasses. Sportswriters clean up your act first and then I might listen.

  2. bobwsc - Jan 18, 2011 at 9:27 AM

    ‘judge and jury’ yet they have all of their unwritten rules and biases. how are they the St. Peter’s of the HOF when they have their own shortcomings? the HOF voting should be taken from the writers. set up a committee of players and coaches to vote these guys in. it’s a shame that someone just assumes that Bagwell is dirty because guys of his era were, and it hurts his HOF induction. those writers need to be knocked off their perch.

  3. BC - Jan 18, 2011 at 9:43 AM

    Great, then throw Ty Cobb, Mickey Mantle, Whitey Ford and Fergie Jenkins out. Whoops, Wade Boggs cheated on his wife, throw him out. Wait a minute, Craig Biggio picked his nose once, so he can’t be considered.
    C’mon, idiots, where do you stop?
    God’s honest – and Craig C. I don’t know if you have a vote, and am not dissing you – but PLEASE take the vote away from the writers. And 86 the Veterans Committee. And put the vote in the hands of ex-players, coaches and managers. If one of them is up for consideration, they recuse themself from the vote. Simple enough.
    It’s gone beyond ridiculous to just plain stupid now.

  4. BC - Jan 18, 2011 at 9:51 AM

    Hey, wait a minute. Jim Reeves from Dallas? Wasn’t there a televangelist named Jim Reeves that was based in Texas? Or was he a gospel singer? Anyone chime in….

  5. Jonny 5 - Jan 18, 2011 at 10:09 AM

    This is what happens, and is to be expected, when there is a morality clause in voting guidelines. Also it’s voting, up to personal preferences. What if the guy hated bushy mustaches? He could exclude all in his voting if he wished. There isn’t much you can do about it.

  6. leez34 - Jan 18, 2011 at 10:09 AM

    Can’t we just let Joe Posnanski pick the Hall of Fame by himself? I mean, even the blowhard sportswriters who think they are accurate arbiters of write and wrong love Joe. And why wouldn’t they? He’s thoughtful, relentlessly positive, and totally devoid of hate.

    • leez34 - Jan 18, 2011 at 10:14 AM

      *right

      • paperlions - Jan 18, 2011 at 10:50 AM

        I think “write and wrong” is right though, in this context. :-)

  7. aaronmoreno - Jan 18, 2011 at 11:20 AM

    Are any of these guys still rooting for the Hit King and Shoeless Joe?

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