Even those candidates that didn't get in this time around had showings that proved this year's balloting results were as efficient as they have been in recent memory.
Mike Piazza moved up to nearly seventy percent, seemingly making him a near-lock for well-deserved enshrinement in 2016. Curt Schilling moved up nearly ten percent, making him the next likely big game starting pitcher to get elected to the Hall. Either one or both could very well join Ken Griffey Jr as the newest inductees next year.
Tim Raines also jumped in the balloting, garnering 55% of the vote, and seems to be gaining momentum with two years left on the ballot. I believe after Rickey Henderson that Raines was the best lead off hitter of all-time. Had he played in New York his entire career instead of Montreal, he would already be in.
As I've written on this blog before, Barry Bonds would get my vote if I had one, but I am clearly in the minority, as his results remain stagnant in the mid-30 percentile. To me, Bonds was the greatest hitter since Babe Ruth.
And that other high-profile PED user, Roger Clemens, is pretty much stuck in neutral as well at 37%. But it's interesting how Clemens is one percentage point higher than Bonds in the balloting results. Bonds was a much more valuable player than Clemens ever was and it just goes to show how his venomous relationship with the media and Roger's positive one played in the writer's minds.
Sadly, Don Mattingly leaves the ballot, this being his fifteenth and final year. He looked like a no-brainer candidate back in the mid-Eighties when, for four years, he was the best player in the game. A bad back, of course, ended his phenomenal career way too soon.
So overall, the BBWAA did a good job with their ballots, except for the nine numbskulls who didn't vote for Pedro Martinez.