Skip to content

Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine and Frank Thomas Elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame

Jan 8, 2014, 2:05 PM EDT

Cooperstown

The 2014 induction class of the Baseball Hall of Fame was announced Wednesday afternoon and Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine and Frank Thomas are on their way to Cooperstown.

Players must be named on 75% of the Baseball Writers Association of America’s ballots to get in. Maddux was named on 97.2%, Glavine 91.9% and Thomas 83.7%. The highest total for a non-electee went to Craig Biggio who fell just short at 74.8%. The full results can be seen here.

This summer’s induction will mark the first time since 1999 that three players were selected by the baseball writers. That year saw George Brett, Nolan Ryan and Robin Yount make the cut. The last time as many as four made it in via the writers’ ballot was 1955, when Joe DiMaggio, Gabby Hartnett, Dazzy Vance and Ted Lyons made it in.  In all, six men will be on the stage in Cooperstown, as Maddux, Glavine and Thomas will be inducted alongside Tony La Russa, Bobby Cox and Joe Torre, all of whom were unanimously selected by the Veteran’s Committee in December.

MORE: The PED Eight — players who continue to be denied induction

But while this year’s induction class will be big by historical standards, the names of the players who did not gain induction are pretty big themselves. Craig Biggio had over 3,000 hits in his career and did everything one can do on a baseball diamond, yet somehow continues to be on the outside looking in. Baseball’s all-time home run leader, Barry Bonds, is in the cold as well, as is seven-time Cy Young Award winner Roger Clemens. Mike Piazza, perhaps the greatest hitting catcher in the game’s history will have to face the voters again next winter, as will Jeff Bagwell, Tim Raines, Mike Mussina, Curt Schilling, Jeff Kent and several others who, if you go by historical standards, fit in quite well alongside current inductees and dwarf the accomplishments of a great many of them.

Of course, historical standards are no longer operative given that the players currently under consideration plied their trade during the so-called Steroids Era and thus either took performance enhancing drugs (e.g. Bonds at 34.7% and Clemens at 35.4%) or, in the case of some, are merely suspected of doing so, often based on little if any evidence other than the number of home runs they hit or the company they kept (e.g. Jeff Bagwell, at 54.3% and Piazza at 62.2%). In the case of others, such as Tim Raines (46.1%) and Mike Mussina (20.3%), the ballot logjam occasioned by so many strong candidates lingering on the ballot for many years combined with the fact that voters can only select ten players, is squeezing them out. We will be discussing the particular cases of these players and the role of PEDs in the Hall of Fame process later today at HardballTalk.

MORE: Who was BBWWA member who sold vote to Deadspin?

But better to be overlooked or squeezed out than to fall off the ballot entirely. Such is fate for Jack Morris, who received 61.5% of the vote on his fifteenth and final time up for election. Multiple other players fell short of 5% of the vote and, per Hall of Fame rules, will not be eligible for election by the baseball writers again. Of these, only Rafael Palmeiro, who received 4.4%, actually had arguable Hall of Fame credentials. Morris and the rest will now be fodder for the Veteran’s Committee in future years.

But oversights and eliminations notwithstanding, this year’s induction class is strong by any measure. And given that last year’s induction class included absolutely no one who had been alive since 1930, it looks especially strong with reference to recent precedent.

Latest Posts
  1. Hyun-Jin Ryu set to return to Dodgers’ rotation on Sunday

    Aug 29, 2014, 11:05 PM EDT

    Hyun-Jin Ryu Hyun-Jin Ryu

    Hyun-Jin Ryu will return to the Dodgers’ rotation on Sunday after recovering from a strained glute.

  2. Video: Eric Campbell steals home against the Phillies

    Aug 29, 2014, 10:30 PM EDT

    Eric Campbell, Juan Lagares Eric Campbell, Juan Lagares

    Eric Campbell stole home against the Phillies, helping the Mets improve to 12-5 against their NL East rival this season.

  3. Rangers tie a major league record, use their 59th player of the season

    Aug 29, 2014, 9:42 PM EDT

    rangers logo

    The injury-ravaged Rangers managed to tie a major league record for all the wrong reasons when they called up Ryan Rua from Triple-A on Friday.

  4. Royals designate Bruce Chen for assignment

    Aug 29, 2014, 8:15 PM EDT

    Bruce Chen Bruce Chen

    A day after Bruce Chen allowed six runs in the 10th inning of the Royals’ loss to the Twins on Thursday, the Royals designated the lefty for assignment.

  5. Mariners end Jesus Montero’s season

    Aug 29, 2014, 7:22 PM EDT

    Jesus Montero Getty Getty Images

    The Mariners have ended Jesus Montero’s season so he can address his “non-baseball issues”, a day after he went after a scout who was heckling him.

  6. Daniel Murphy could miss most or all of the rest of the season

    Aug 29, 2014, 7:15 PM EDT

    Daniel Murphy Getty Getty Images

    The Mets could be without Daniel Murphy for most or all of the rest of the season, as the second baseman deals with a strained right calf.

  7. Joey Votto is still feeling discomfort in his quad

    Aug 29, 2014, 6:25 PM EDT

    Votto Getty Getty Images

    Joey Votto hasn’t been progressing as well from his quad injury as the Reds would have liked.

  8. The Cardinals activate Yadier Molina

    Aug 29, 2014, 5:38 PM EDT

    yadier molina getty Getty Images

    He’s in the lineup tonight, batting sixth against the Cubs.

  9. Troy Tulowitzki says he’ll retire before he switches positions

    Aug 29, 2014, 5:17 PM EDT

    Troy Tulowitzki Troy Tulowitzki

    Whether this will turn into a Michael Young situation or a Derek Jeter situation is an open question.

  10. Masahiro Tanaka experiencing “general arm soreness”

    Aug 29, 2014, 4:42 PM EDT

    Masahiro Tanaka AP

    No doctor appointments are scheduled as a result, but soreness is not great news.

  11. Mike Trout is the best MVP choice, but . . .

    Aug 29, 2014, 4:17 PM EDT

    mike trout getty Getty Images

    If you’re going to make the same arguments for him you did the past two years, you may want to re-think things.

  12. The Indians sign Russell Branyan to a minor league deal

    Aug 29, 2014, 3:27 PM EDT

    Oakland Athletics v Detroit Tigers Getty Images

    There can be only THREE!! True outcomes, that is.

  13. Baseball is dying, you guys, because no one would recognize Mike Trout in a bar

    Aug 29, 2014, 2:24 PM EDT

    Mike Trout Mike Trout

    Never mind that the dude has only been legally allowed inside a bar for about two years.

  14. Alleged ice-cream-sandwich-ordering Mariners scout says everyone’s got the story all wrong

    Aug 29, 2014, 1:53 PM EDT

    Ice Cream Sandwich

    The plot thickens. And becomes creamier. And is spread nicely between some two thin, chocolate cakes.

  15. Report: there is some major tension between Astros manager Bo Porter and GM Jeff Luhnow

    Aug 29, 2014, 12:26 PM EDT

    astros logo

    Could one or both of them be gone before the 2015 season begins?

  16. Video: Watch a Japanese batter try to hit a 186 m.p.h. fastball

    Aug 29, 2014, 12:00 PM EDT

    Video camera

    Afterwards, the pitching machine talked about wanting to work on his offspeed stuff because all big league hitters can turn on a fastball.

Featured video

Who are the favorites for Rookie of the Year?
Top 10 MLB Player Searches
  1. J. Soler (3318)
  2. Y. Molina (3266)
  3. R. Castillo (2852)
  4. D. Wright (2236)
  5. D. Murphy (2084)
  1. B. Colon (2067)
  2. S. Doolittle (2065)
  3. D. Ortiz (2034)
  4. T. Lincecum (1976)
  5. R. Cano (1950)