The Baseball Hall of Fame ballots were released today. This promises to be perhaps the most controversial elections ever. Of the first time players, several have had the words “performing enhancing drugs” (and juicer) associated with their names, to greater or lesser degrees, including:
- Barry Bonds, the all-time home run leader with 762.
- Roger Clemens, 354 wins.
- Sammy Sosa, the only slugger to bash more than 60 homers in three different seasons and who totaled 609.
- Mike Piazza, who hit 396 of his 427 homers as a catcher — the most of any player at that position in Major League history.
- Curt Schilling, winner of 216 regular-season games and 11 more in the postseason.
In addition, there are several “repeat” players who are under the steroids cloud, including Mark McGuire, Raphael Palmiero, and Jeff Bagwell. (You can see all the stats for the first-timers here, courtesy of the Hall of Fame.)
Each of the rookie candidates has had at least one book written about him (Piazza has a new memoir about to come out that has raised some eyebrows over the possible revelations as well as the timing of its release).
With little else to talk about in the off-season other than the standard rumor-mongering, you can bet the election will fuel the MLB network even more than most years in the weeks leading up to the results, which will be announced on Jan. 9.
One debut name that has not been whispered when it comes to PEDs is Shawn Green. Green ranks towards the top among JMLs in several offensive categories , including home runs (328, three behind Hank Greenberg), RBIs (second to Greenberg with 1,070), and hits (second behind Buddy Myer with 2,003). In addition, Green holds the Major league record for most total bases in a game: he hit four home runs, a double, and a single for the Los Angeles Dodgers in a 16-3 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers in 2002.
Here’s a video he did in which he discusses his 2011 memoir, The Way of Baseball: Finding Stillness at 95 mph.