Greg Maddux Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports
We’ve been following the upcoming results of the 2014 Hall-of-Fame class rather closely here at Motor City Bengals. While we all agree that Alan Trammell and Lou Whitaker belong in the Hall-of-Fame, and differ in opinion on Jack Morris‘ case, one thing that cannot be denied is that Morris seems to have the best shot (though still a rather remote shot) at making it in his 15th and final opportunity on the ballot.
Some who support Morris’ case for the Hall-of-Fame might be happy to read the report from Deadspin which stated that Greg Maddux has been left off one voter’s ballot. The only one on his ballot? Jack Morris.
Ken Gurnick, a Los Angeles Dodgers beat writer for MLB.com, voted Jack and issued this rationale for the choice.
"Morris has flaws — a 3.90 ERA, for example. But he gets my vote for more than a decade of ace performance that included three 20-win seasons, Cy Young Award votes in seven seasons and Most Valuable Players votes in five. As for those who played during the period of PED use, I won’t vote for any of them."
While I fully support Jack Morris for the Hall-of-Fame, he is being used as pawn for Gurnick to get on his soap box about steroids, just like he and his fellow voters did a year ago when no one was nominated for the 2013 Hall-of-Fame (though the Veteran’s Committee later voted a few in).
I can understand the frustration with PEDs, however he is not punishing PED users. Players such as Greg Maddux and Tom Glavine have never been in the same sentence with the word steroids before and are great candidates to be first-ballot Hall-of-Famers. So why punish them?
Instead of cherishing their responsibility of voting players to the hallowed corridors of Cooperstown, writers/voters use it as a way to get themselves notoriety and push their agenda. We often lament officiating in sports, saying “we don’t pay to watch you ump.” Its the same with baseball writers who vote for the Hall-of-Fame, “we don’t want to go to Cooperstown because of you.”
This is exactly what is wrong with the current voting system and its the reason the trio of star Detroit Tigers from 1984 likely won’t be eligible for the Hall-of-Fame until at least 2016.