Every person who writes about baseball puts out their own Hall of Fame ballot, so here's mine.
Actually, I am a member of the Baseball Bloggers Alliance, and they sent me a ballot to fill out as they are doing their own voting among the members of the Alliance. So without further ado, here is who I voted for, in no particular order. (I voted for the maximum amount of ten.)
These I think are slam dunks. From the ballots of the actual voters who have made them public, it appears that Bagwell and Raines will get in for sure, and it is Raines' last chance, so there appears to have been a bit of urgency to get him in. He really should have been elected years ago. So should Bagwell, who like Mike Piazza, was a "suspected" PED user, and was kept out until now. It's the first time on the ballot for both Rodriguez and Guerrero, and both are currently on the border. I have no problem voting for both now, and they are both Hall of Fame worthy for sure.
This is Hoffman's second year on the ballot, and I suspect he won't make it this year. He still put up Hall of Fame numbers, and his time will come. Edgar Martinez was still one of MLB's great designated hitters, and it's about time to honor players at that position. Curt Schilling probably won't make it again this year, and he's not doing himself any favors with his controversial opinons on politics and the messes his mouth gets him in. I would always vote for him for the Hall, but I suspect there are many writers who will always hold his huge ego against him.
Here's three guys who will always be overlooked for the Hall. Jeff Kent put up numbers that second basemen in any generation haven't put up, and I'm surprised he gets so little support. Same for Fred McGriff. One of the most feared hitters of his generation, but I am guessing he doesn't get much support because he came up seven home runs short of 500. And Lee Smith was absolutely one of the best closers of the 1980s and 90s, and it's a shame he gets overlooked. This is his final chance at the Hall, and it doesn't appear he'll make it.
No, I didn't vote for Barry Bonds or Roger Clemens. They are both trending upwards in the 2017 public ballots, and I suspect they may make it by next year. They just won't get my support, and for obvious reasons. And forget about Manny Ramirez. Two failed drug suspensions will forever doom his chance. The question now is will he even get the 5% needed to stay on next year's ballot (and from the current public ballots known, it appears he will).
One beef I have with the Hall of Fame ballot is this rule about only voting for 10 candidates. I'll never understand why it isn't unlimited to as many guys you want to vote for. I would still bet that only a handful would go beyond 10 or 12 on their ballots, but limiting it hurts the chances of those who are borderline Hall of Famers. ( Mike Mussina would be on my ballot if I had more choices.) And a couple of years ago, there were writers who skipped Pedro Martinez and Randy Johnson on their ballots because they were assured of election and wanted to put players on the ballot who deserved their support who they otherwise would have left off. That situation has to be rectified.
Anyway, the announcement of the Class of 2017 will be made tonight at 6 PM on MLB Network.