How I voted in the IBWAA Hall of Fame election, again

The National Baseball Hall of Fame and MuseumIf only the Internet Baseball Writers’ Association of America’s balloting counted for the real thing, Ken Griffey, Jr. and Mike Piazza would be joined by Edgar Martinez at the Cooperstown podium come July. The IBWAA’s annual exercise voted for Piazza two years ago and for Jeff Bagwell and Tim Raines last year, so they weren’t on this year’s IBWAA ballot.

But Griffey and Martinez were on the ballot. I’d have been very hard pressed to see my fellow IBWAA writers not vote Griffey in, though we did something the Baseball Writers Association of America couldn’t quite do for Junior—we voted him yes unanimously, after all.

Griffey, Piazza, and two ways to Cooperstown

KenGriffeyJr.Mariners

Griffey, young and delivering bigtime cred to the Mariners . . .

The only question around Ken Griffey, Jr.’s election to the Hall of Fame was not whether he’d be elected in his first year on the ballot but by how much. If injuries kept him from obliterating the career home run record he once looked like a lock to smash, they didn’t keep him from getting 99.3 percent of the vote, obliterating Tom Seaver’s record for the highest such percentage.

Junior, Trevor Time lead the Hall of Fame ballot

Ken Griffey, Jr. has arrived. On the Hall of Fame ballot, that is. And if there’s justice it ought to be Trevor Time one more time.

Griffey and Trevor Hoffman are two of fourteen new entrants on the Baseball Writers Association of America ballot, and among those they’re two who should be no-questions-asked Hall of Famers.

There are also seventeen players making return engagements, including a pair in their final year of BBWAA eligibility thanks to the rule change that shrank the eligibility period to ten years. The BBWAA also shrank the number of voters, too, casting away members who hadn’t voted on Hall of Fame ballots for ten years or better.