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But to my knowledge, no other voter takes the same approach.
Its just remarkable that the writers are sure that the steroid era only started in the early to mid 90s.
This is not an easy question to decide.
Now, that's fine: Maddux, Glavine and Pedro all deserve induction, and all deserve unanimous first ballot induction.
As I’ve written previously, this is my way of distinguishing, say, Bonds from Hank Aaron, players from a dubious period from the greats of the past.
Consider all of the living Hall of Famers who played the game without chemical enhancement (and no, I don’t believe that even users of amphetamines gained the same edge as users of PEDs). Many members are appalled by the prospect of juicers entering their elite club. The sentiments of those all-time greats should not be ignored.
Also, MLBPA is a closed shop that bargains collectively. Short of illegal direct dealing or publicly undermining the elected leadership, there's nothing practical that a member could have done that we would hear about.
b) In negotiations, you don't give anything up without something in return. Drug testing, especially effective drug-testing, is a big thing to give up. The owners were never willing to concede anything of real value to the players to get drug testing. OK, let me back off -- we don't know this, we weren't in the negotiation room. I don't recall any leaks though about MLB offering anything of substance, just whining that they were doing everything they could if not for the obstinate union. Of course god only knows what it would have taken to get the Union to accept testing in the early 90s -- everybody was getting ready for war.
This year, I did not vote for Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens or any of the other first-time candidates. I generally do not for any player from this era on the first ballot, though I have made exceptions before and probably will again.
As I’ve written previously, this is my way of distinguishing, say, Bonds from Hank Aaron, players from a dubious period from the greats of the past. To those who ask, “What about players thought to be clean?” my response is, “They all were part of a union that had the power to implement change
Well, except for the impending PR nightmare which was completely predictable (especially by the late 90s).
Nobody has incentive to implement drug testing to keep the game "clean"-- athletes have always been willing to sacrifice future health for performance, winning and dollars; owners just care about the dollars.
If Glavine had had to actually throw the ball over the plate, I wonder how much closer to the line his HOF case would be. I swear I saw a Braves game once where he may have thrown one strike, but my friend and I agreed that it probably just missed. No other called strike was even arguably a strike.
Tris Speaker, Honus Wagner, Rogers Hornsby, Eddie Collins, Lou Gehrig, Joe DiMaggio, Jimmie Foxx, Yogi Berra, Cy Young, Tris Speaker, Nap Lajoie, Mel Ott and Eddie Mathews all failed to get in on the first ballot.
I'd like to see 'em wait at least 5 years. That way the voting record permanently makes people ask "Why wasn't Bonds/Clemens a first ballot guy?"
However, does he at least mention some kind of idiot reason he's not voting for Piazza? Other than "because, even though I have before?"
What year was this? That's the one thing I think a lot of people miss when they make this point about Glavine, that he got too many reputation calls. He didn't get reputation calls when he came up, he had to earn them by creating a, well, reputation.
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