Monday, December 6, 2010

Outrage! George Steinbrenner snubbed in Hall of Fame vote

Math question for you: When is three greater than seven? Answer -- when it comes to the Baseball Hall of Fame, where a team of voters elected MLB executive Pat Gillick and his three rings, over George Steinbrenner and his seven World Series titles.

I didn't think that Yankees Billy Martin, Ron Guidry, or Tommy John, who were also on the ballot, were worthy of Hall of Fame enshrinement, but I certainly did think Steinbrenner deserved to be in the Hall. He was only one of the most important owners in baseball histoyerry, who changed the game.  But Dave Concepcion gets more votes than him? Spare me.

Johnny Bench, Concepcion's Reds teammate and one of the committee members, said:
"Some people thought it was too early (for Steinbrenner to be elected),'' Johnny Bench said. "I believe he certainly will be (elected at some point).''
This is sloppy logic. To put it bluntly, Steinbrenner is dead now, and he will be dead three years from now, the next time the committee votes. Why not vote him in now, instead of in 2013?

Then again, what else should we expect from a committee that still won't acknowledge that Marvin Miller deserved induction, too?

I haven't seen a list of who in the committee voted for whom, but my brother pointed that Gillick was an executive for three teams: the Toronto Blue Jays, the Baltimore Orioles, and the Philadelphia Phillies. And there were three ex-Orioles players on the committee, as well as an Orioles exec, a Toronto writer, and a Phillies exec. Here's the list of voters:
The committee is comprised of Hall of Fame members Johnny Bench, Whitey Herzog, Eddie Murray, Jim Palmer, Tony Perez, Frank Robinson, Ryne Sandberg and Ozzie Smith; major league executives Bill Giles (Phillies), David Glass (Royals), Andy MacPhail (Orioles) and Jerry Reinsdorf (White Sox); and media members Bob Elliott (Toronto Sun), Tim Kurkjian (ESPN), Ross Newhan (retired, Los Angeles Times) and Tom Verducci (Sports Illustrated).
The New York Yankees may be the most storied franchise in MLB history, but they couldn't get even one person with a Yankees connection on the committee, unless you count (and I don't!) Tom Verducci, Joe Torre's co-author? How does that work?

Anyhow, I'm peeved!

Squawker Jon accused me of insisting that there needs to be a "Yankee seat here,"  to which I say, "How is it that there are multiple Orioles, Reds, and Cardinals as members on the committee? Yet the Yankee won seven rings in the post-1973 timeframe of the era the group was voting on, and don't have a single voter?" It figures.

What do you think? Tell us about it!


The Omnipotent Q said...

Despite his recent passing, the voters may have passed on George this time because of his past transgressions (two suspensions) as a punishment. I wouldn't be surprised is he's elected next time.

Uncle Mike said...

I hope Q is right about that, giving George "one last dig" before they do the right thing. Still, George's qualifications aren't going to change in the ensuing 3 years; anything the Yankees do in the interim are, pretty much, going to be due to his sons, Brian Cashman, Joe Girardi and the players, not to anything George did directly.

And I have no problem with the election of Gillick: He's built World Champions in 2 different cities under 2 different economic models. (The system available to him for the 1992-93 Blue Jays is a far cry from the one he had with the 2008 Phillies.) I don't like that his Jays drove the Yankees crazy, but that's no reason to deny him the vote.

But no election for Marvin Miller? He's 93, and will be 96 (if he makes it) the next time he's up. Do these ex-players on the committee really want to battle owners for a measly $10,000, like Steve Carlton had to get from billionaire beer baron Gussie Busch (leading to Busch trading him to the Phillies for Rick Wise)?

If it wasn't for Miller, there would be no free agency, George wouldn't have been able to pay the contracts of big stars like Reggie and Catfish, and the Yankees might still be looking at The Curse of Moose Skowron (no title since trading him for iffy-control reliever Stan Williams after the 1962 World Series).

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