I've included my official MLB Hall of Fame ballot. No, it's not real, something about having to be a member of the Baseball Writers Association of America. Sounds elitist to me. Nevertheless I've included my ballot with my choices highlighted.
Roberto Alomar Bert Blyleven
Jack Morris Barry Larkin
Lee Smith Edgar Martinez
Tim Raines Mark McGwire
Alan Trammell Fred McGriff
Don Mattingly Dave Parker
Harold Baines Carlos Baerga
Jeff Bagwell Brett Boone
Kevin Brown John Franco
Juan Gonzalez Marquis Grissom
Lenny Harris Bobby Higginson
Charles Johnson Al Leiter
Tino Martinez Raul Mondesi
John Olerud Rafael Palmeiro
Kirk Reuter Benito Santiago
B.J. Surhoff Larry Walker
I've joined the Blyleven converts. If I can argue that Felix Hernandez should win the Cy Young Award, it seems to me Bert should be in the Hall.
Roberto Alomar is a no brainer and should have gotten in last year.
Alan Trammell was so good for so long the only thing that seems a mystery to me is how his double play partner, Lou Whittaker, could fall off the ballot so quickly.
Barry Larkin was very good on some bad teams.
Bagwell's career was not long, but he amassed 449 home runs played mostly in a pitcher's cavern. He had a career OPS+ of 149, played a good first base, and somehow managed to steal 202 bases. He should be in, though I doubt he'll make it this year.
Larry Walker was a graceful right fielder with a great arm. He was a dangerous hitter with a career 140 OPS+ and 389 career home runs. Rookie of the Year with Montreal in 1990, Walker went on to be NL MVP with Colorado in 1997. Often injured, one wonders how much better he may have been healthy. Again, not a shoo in on the first ballot.
Once again I voted for Edgar Martinez. Hopefully as the writers think objectively about his achievements and lose their prejudice against DH's he'll at least improve over last year's 36.2%. Hell, Don't Ask, Don't Tell was axed yesterday, maybe the writers can take that next step too.
Brett Boone is on my ballot because, well, he's Brett Boone. He had the most memorable season I can ever remember seeing, in 2001. It's my thank you to him for that. I assure you Boone won't be on the ballot next year.
No Mark McGwire or Rafael Palmeiro. I know there are those who want to rehabilitate the image of known steroid users, but I'm not there yet. I'm sure at some point the writers will relent and begin voting them in, but I'm certainly not there yet. Despite McGwire's admission and apology last year, which I believe was heartfelt and honest, he still didn't connect drug use to performance. Palmeiro is merely despicable, insisting in front of Congress he did not take steroids and then found using the following season. No time for that shit.
Here is a link to statistics for those on the Hall of Fame ballot by Baseball-Reference.com