Who will get elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 2013? Will any eligible player receive enough votes to head to Cooperstown? The answer to those questions will be known at 2 p.m. EST, when Hall of Fame president Jeff Idelson unseals an envelope with the names – or possibly no names --- of those recognizing for being among baseball’s best.
For those who need instant results to baseball’s most controversial Hall of Fame balloting, the announcement will be shown via free online live stream at MLB.com. Follow this link to find out whether Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens, Sammy Sosa and other first-time eligible players will make it to the hall.
The Baseball Writers Association of America determines which players make it to Cooperstown. Players need to be on at least 75 percent of the ballots to punch their ticket to the hall.
Among the big – and controversial – names on the 2013 Hall of Fame ballot include single season and lifetime homerun king Barry Bonds, multiple Cy Young Award winner Roger Clemens and slugger Sammy Sosa. All three have been tainted by steroid allegations, while others eligible for the Hall of Fame in 2013 have been suspected of using performance enhancing drugs to beef up their hall credentials.
Out of 37 eligible Hall of Fame candidates, 24 will be on the ballot for the first time in 2013. Those names include Bonds, Clemens, Sosa, Curt Schilling, Mike Piazza and Craig Biggio.
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This year’s balloting may be the most unpredictable yet, with some writers refusing to vote for any players tied to steroids. It’s unclear whether any player will reach the 75 percent threshold in 2013.
“The so-called Steroids Era has caused division within the electorate,” wrote Chicago Tribune reporter Dave van Dyck. “They historically have been very stingy with their votes, especially considering it takes 75 percent to be included in the summer induction ceremonies.”
ESPN writer and BBWA member Buster Olney is in the camp of voters who have no qualms voting the likes of Bonds and Clemens into the hall.
“Drug use is part of the history, just like segregation and the 1919 Black Sox and game-fixing. You cannot have a Hall of Fame without players from the steroid era any more than you can erase the accomplishments of Babe Ruth and Lefty Gomez and others because they didn't play any major league games against African-American players,” Olney argued.
Sports Illustrated writer and Hall of Fame voter Tom Verducci disagreed.
“Voting for a known steroid user is endorsing steroid use,” he wrote. “Having spent too much of the past two decades or so covering baseball on the subject of steroids -- what they do, how the game was subverted by them, and how those who stayed away from them were disadvantaged -- I cannot endorse it.”