No former Baltimore Orioles will join the MLB Hall of Fame in 2020.
Two more former Major League Baseball players can wake up today and call themselves an MLB Hall of Famer after yesterday’s vote reveal, former New York Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter and former Colorado Rockies outfielder Larry Walker. Not surprisingly, no former Baltimore Orioles players crossed the 75% threshold required to enter the Hall of Fame.
Personally, I don’t care for the Hall of Fame debates and getting worked up over who votes for which players, it just doesn’t interest me very much. However, I am very happy that Larry Walker will finally take his rightful place in the Hall and I have nothing but respect for Jeter’s career, even if it was in Pinstripes.
Does it really matter that one person didn’t vote for him? Jeter received a vote on 99.7% of the ballots this year, falling one vote shy of joining fellow teammate Mariano Rivera as the only players to be unanimously elected. If Ken Griffey Jr.can’t get in with 100% of the vote, no way Jeter deserves it.
But at the end of the day, the final vote total doesn’t matter, as long you get your 75% and can now forever call yourself a Hall of Famer. Congratulations to both deserving players.
The Orioles had one notable name on the ballot, former infielder and current broadcaster Brian Roberts. While Brad Penny received one vote, Roberts did not receive a single vote among the 397 ballots submitted. All players earning less than 5% of the vote are removed from consideration on future ballots.
Regardless, Roberts will forever be a beloved member of Birdland and his ability to mix in advanced analytics with his experience as a former player, all while keeping the discussion simple and easy to understand for all fans, is just a small part of what makes his broadcast so much fun to listen to.
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Josh Beckett, Chone Figgins, Jose Valverde, Rafael Furcal, Heath Bell, and Carlos Pena were the other first-timers who did not receive a single vote, while Adam Dunn (1st year), Penny (1st), J.J. Putz (1st), Raul Ibanez (1st), Cliff Lee (2nd), Eric Chavez (2nd), Alfonso Soriano (6th), Jason Giambi (6th), and Paul Konerko (10th) received at least one vote but did not earn 5% and have also been removed from the ballot.
Technically you can count Sammy Sosa as a former Oriole, but after getting just 13.9% of the vote in his 8th year of eligibility, it’s obvious Sosa won’t be getting a call any time soon.
Curt Schilling, who spent his first three years of major league ball with the Orioles, will surely get a call within the next two years. Schilling earned 70% of the vote and has two years remaining. I won’t get into the politics here, but please feel free to debate amongst yourselves.
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A look at the upcoming Hall of Fame eligibility lists shows a severe lack of Orioles flavor in the coming years, meaning it’s going to be a long time before Birdland participates in Cooperstown celebrations. It’s also going to be a long time before we see .500 ball at Camden Yards again. Small steps.