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Jeff Bagwell Headlines 2017 Baseball Hall of Fame Class

Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

Longtime Houston Astros first baseman Jeff Bagwell was one of three players elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame on Wednesday, joining Tim Raines and Ivan Rodriguez.

Bagwell was elected this year after spending seven years on the ballot, while Raines made the hall of fame in his final season of eligibility at ten years. This was Rodriguez’s first year on the ballot, making it the 52nd time the Baseball Writers Association of America has voted in a player first-ballot.

Rodriguez and Johnny Bench are now the only two catchers in Major League history to make the hall as a first-ballot hall of famer. ‘Pudge’, Rodriguez’s infamous nickname, received 76% of the vote, while Raines was given 86%, and Bagwell was pegged at 86.2% of the vote.

During his 15-year career, Bagwell was a National League MVP, a four-time MLB All-Star, a Gold Glove Award winner, and three-time Silver Slugger. His 449 career homers rank 38th all-time, as he is tied with Vladimar Guerrero, who narrowly missed the hall of fame at 71% of the vote in his first year on the ballot.

Another near miss on the ballot was Trevor Hoffman, who was the first player in MLB history to record 600 saves before that mark was eventually succeed by New York Yankees legend Mariano Rivera. Hoffman received 74% of the vote in his second year on the ballot.

Edgar Martinez, Roger Clemens, Barry Bonds, Mike Mussina, and Curt Schilling all received under 60% of the vote, meaning that if any of them were to be elected, it probably won’t happen for at least another year.

Based on this year’s results, Guerrero and Hoffman will be apart of the 2018 Hall of Fame class that will likely feature Chipper Jones and Jim Thome, who will both be eligible for the first time next season.

Raines, who was first included on the ballot in 2008, had a 23-year career in Major League Baseball, with 13 of them coming with the Montreal Expos. He was a seven-time all-star, and is 5th on MLB’s all-time steals list behind only Ty Cobb, Billy Hamilton, Lou Brock, and Rickey Henderson.

Rodriguez won the Gold Glove Award on 13 separate occasions, establishing himself as one of the best catchers of all-time with a career slash line of .296/.334/.464 with 319 homers and 1,332 RBIs. He was also named to the MLB All-Star Game 14 times.

The casualties from this year’s ballot include Jorge Posada, Magglio Ordonez, Edgar Renteria, Jason Varitek, Tim Wakefield, Pat Burrell, Casey Blake, Mike Cameron, Derek Lee, Orlando Cabrera, J.D. Drew, Carlos Guillen, Freddy Sanchez, Matt Stairs, Arthur Rhodes, and Melvin Mora. They will not be on next year’s ballot due to receiving less than 5% of the vote.

Players who received under 40% of the vote include Lee Smith, Manny Ramirez, Larry Walker, Fred McGriff, Jeff Kent, Gary Sheffield, Billy Wagner, and Sammy Sosa, meaning that they will be on the ballot for the chance to be elected in 2018.

Here’s a look at baseball’s hall of fame classes since 2010:

2010

Andre Dawson

2011

Roberto Alomar

Bert Blyleven

2012

Barry Larkin

2013

No players selected

2014

Greg Maddux

Tom Glavine

Frank Thomas

2015

Randy Johnson

Pedro Martinez

John Smoltz

Craig Biggio

2016

Ken Griffey Jr.

Mike Piazza

2017

Jeff Bagwell

Tim Raines

Ivan Rodriguez

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About Tony Montalto (2000 Articles)
Twitter: @tony_montalto

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