Baseball Bloviation

Greg Maddux will likely wear an Atlanta Braves hat to Cooperstown, but he will always be a Chicago Cub to me. (ChicagoNow.com)

Every year, it’s the same thing.

The Baseball Hall of Fame. Who gets elected and inducted into the hall in July.

Should be a simple thing, right?

Not according to the fools who continue to make this election process a long-running sham filled with controversy, stupid rationales, and pure unadulterated spite.

Let’s clear a few things here at the start: it was Deadspin who came up with the idea, not Dan LeBatard (DLB). Deadspin made an offer, and DLB accepted it. Deadspin offered to pay him, he refused any payment of any kind. If you don’t want to believe that, then let me direct you to the original post by Deadspin. They explained it as clear as day what their intent was.

A preface: there are members of the Baseball Writers of America who care about making the right selections, namely Richard Justice and Jayson Stark, are upfront about their decision, and clearly hope to do right by the fans and the players they choose. This group are the ones I will not lump in with the other faction I’m going to talk about shortly.

And three: people who have an opinion that is different that popular individuals are afraid to voice them, for fear of retribution. My feeling is that you shouldn’t ask for permission to say or write that you disagree with something. You can still respect then and their views, but don’t let that get in the way of something that you feel you have to respectfully go against.

This group is the real reason that every January, there is always drama about who is voted to the Baseball Hall of Fame. This group has idiots who treat their votes like a referendum against great players. And, they publish a list of their members for public knowledge.

Okay, here it goes….

The Baseball Writers of America (BBWAA) are the ones that all of you should be upset and mad at. There is a section of these writers, who are Hall of Fame voters, who are the most spiteful, petty, sanctimonious group of hypocrites ever to grace the earth.

A******s is a better word for them.

It’s not the system…it’s the people who vote. 

Murray Chass, Dan Shaughnessy, and several others are the ones who have given the BBWAA a black eye and worst, there is no one in the BBWAA who has the cajones to stand up to these clowns. For years this faction of arrogant jerks have continued a long, sorry practice of using and abusing their voting privileges to conduct their own personal agendas against players who are HOF candidates.

And Dan LeBatard is the bad guy?

To all of you who are sitting on your high horse and talking about how DLB made a mockery of his ballot, shut the hell up. Ken Gurnick made a mockery of his vote by essentially “playing stupid” with the “I don’t know who used what or didn’t use what, so I’m taking Jack Morris” excuse. Memo to Mr. Gurnick, Morris spent a little over 1/2 of his career during the “Steroid era”. Keith Olbermann pointed that out (see his monologue down the bottom of this post. Forward to the 1:34 mark).

I have no idea how much anguish Jack Morris, or anyone else, feels after being on a ballot for 15 years and never getting that call. (Rick Stewart/Getty Images)

Chass’ rationale is even more stupefying. He says Biggio used PEDs. It doesn’t take a hot dog, a bratwurst, a kielbasa, and an Italian sausage to know that if a player’s name didn’t pop up in the Mitchell Report, rumors, or various sources regarding PED use, then it’s likely he didn’t use it. If Biggio did use PEDs, then prove it with evidence.

Chass offers nothing and isn’t forced to provide proof.

How did Craig Biggio fall two votes short of being elected? Look no further than Chass and Gurnick. Chass is to the HOF ballot as Phil Mushnick is to a column…they don’t deserve to have either.

The BBWAA is the group that is so proud of the fact that they: have never unanimously elected a Hall of Famer (and swear that they never will); are brazen enough to put Armando Benitez and Jim Deshaies, and not Biggio, on their ballot and boast about it, without repercussion, and this is where I get real upset, when they decided that Buck O’Neil wasn’t worthy of being elected…by citing his career numbers.

No one cares about Buck O’Neil’s stats. That’s not what people know O’Neil for. He was known in being one of the greatest ambassadors for the game of baseball. The man loved baseball so much, he gave his life to the game and its history. He should have been elected as a contributor while he was alive. People cared about his passion for baseball.

These bastards, the BBWAA, waited until he was six feet under to “finally” elect him.

Shameful and pompous.

And Dan LeBatard is the bad guy?

Yeah, that’s what Gregg Doyel, Michael Wilbon, and Tony Korheiser thinks. I wonder what they would do with their votes. Oh wait, they’ve never had a vote in any sports hall of fame that I can think of. Carry on.

I’ve had my issues with Bob Costas in the past. I respect him, and I can disagree with him. His statement on Thursday on DLB’s ESPN radio show:

…was as insult to fans.

Excuse me, Bob, isn’t that what the voters have been doing? Voting for people they like, not because they like them, but to spite those they hate and loathe?

Are you telling me that fans are too stupid to understand sports? You expect us to sit down, keep quiet, and bark when you tell them to bark and agree with your view of “what sports should be”?

Elitists like Costas, George Will, and others, including some bloggers and media critics, need a dose of crow. Fans are tired of being preached at about how to watch, talk, and think about sports . This is why fans gravitate to sites like Deadspin, Awful Announcing, and other sports links to get their news and talk about what they’ve seen and heard.

Those places don’t “talk down” to their readers and listeners. Fans have more access, virtually, to what goes on in a game, locker room, and what sports media talk about.

Bob, you’re starting to sound like the crusty old white guys who are unwilling to evolve with the rest of the world. In most places, they’re known as Republicans, but this isn’t a political blog.

For those who act like you’re horrified by what Deadspin and DLB has done, spare me the moral speeches.

Because you would have done the same damn thing, or close to it, to make a statement about the BBWA. The great Richard Justice pointed this out:

and this one.

And Dan LeBatard is the bad guy?

It’s voters like Marty Noble who get away with indefensible excuses and hateful spite, that they are never admonished for it by their own peers. But they have no problems resorting to the “do as we say, not as we do” logic on DLB, which in my humble opinion is bullshit.

It is voters like Richard Justice, Peter Gammons, Ray Ratto, and Jayson Stark who have been trying to shed light on how their fellow voters abuse and uses their votes and ballots as vengeful tools and soapbox preaching. If anything, LeBatard and Deadspin gave them an added boost in getting the public to support their cause to change this ungodly and soulless manifest destiny.

Keith Olbermann, another guy I don’t agree with most of the time, nails it with this take:

Enough of this bloviation and fake outrage towards one person, so that a group could cover up the sins of their own fellow voters. The BBWAA has no one but themselves to blame, along with the Hall of Fame. The inability to police themselves is clear and evident.

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