On Tuesday, the Baseball Hall of Fame announced the results of their election for the class of 2015. Four well deserving men were elected to the hall.
Craig Biggio, who should have been elected on the first ballot, was a consistent player at 3 different positions (catcher, 2nd base, and outfield), achieved the magic number of 3,000 hits in his final season, after an almost 20 year career with the Houston Astros.
John Smoltz was a tough competitor. He pitched excellently in the playoffs, was an ace in the deep staff of the Atlanta Braves of the 1990’s, joins his Braves teammates Greg Maddux and Tom Glavine in the hall, and is the only pitcher to have 200 or more wins and 150 or more saves.
Randy Johnson is one of the most imposing pitchers ever to take the hill at 6’10”. A 300 game winner, 5 time Cy Young award winner, and the Co-MVP of the 2001 World Series for the Arizona Diamondbacks, Randy was a no doubt first ballot hall of famer. He defined the power pitcher for generations.
Pedro Martinez, my favorite pitcher to watch, had a run from 1997 to 2002 where he was easily, far and away, the greatest pitcher in the game. He won 3 Cy Youngs, a World Series in 2004, won over 200 games, and ranks 3rd in strikeout to walk ratio, strikeout rate, and 2nd all time in win percentage. He also was a no doubter for the Hall of Fame.
Should there have been others elected? Perhaps. Mike Piazza, Jeff Bagwell, Curt Schilling, Tim Raines, and Lee Smith can all make compelling cases. Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens have a limited case because of their steroid connections, but they can make a case. None of the names just mentioned got in today. And it is possible that none of these guys will be voted in. Time will tell. The election system isn’t perfect, but the four men elected were completely deserving.