Ron Santo
Ron Santo, pictured left talking to Bud Selig, was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame on Monday. REUTERS

Former Chicago Cubs third basemen Ron Santo was finally elected into the Baseball Hall of Fame on Monday, but unfortunately the election came a year too late for the recently deceased baseball great.

Santo, who played with the Cubs for 15 seasons, received 15 of 16 Veterans Committee votes and was the only candidate to meet the necessary 75 percent benchmark. Santo tragically passed away on Dec. 3, 2010 from complications of bladder cancer.

The Chicago legend was a nine-time All Star player during his career, but never gained a lot of traction with the Baseball Writers' Association of America ballot. Before getting through with the Veterans Committee, Santo achieved only 43.1 percent of the vote the last time he was on the writers' ballot.

I think some people brought a lot -- other than numbers around Ron Santo (to the discussion), former Cubs teammate and Hall of Famer Billy Williams told USA Today. Everybody saw the numbers -- the home runs, the Gold Gloves. But I think they looked at (him) with a different view.

Santo finished his career in 1974 with 2,254 hits, 342 home runs, and a .277 career average. In his long wait to make it into the Hall of Fame, Santo once told reporters that I don't want to go in post-humorously (sic).

Though it is bittersweet that Ron is not here to enjoy this day, we are comforted by the pride members of the Santo family have for their husband, father and grandfather, Cubs chairman Tom Ricketts said in a statement. On behalf of the Chicago Cubs organization and all of our fans, we congratulate Ron Santo's family on this historic day and look forward to his induction next summer.

Santo is the 15th third basemen elected into the Hall of Fame and the first since former Red Sox Wade Boggs was elected in 2005. He is the 46th person with a Cubs association to make it into the Hall of Fame, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.