The Baseball Writer’s Association of America released their annual Hall of Fame ballot. On it are Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens; two of the best players in baseball history, as well as baseball’s most high-profile alleged steroid users. Their vote totals this year will be a clear indication of how baseball’s critics and fans view the best players of baseball’s Steroids Era.
But I’m more concerned about Jewish slugger Shawn Green, also on the ballot for the first time this year. In all honesty, Green has a slim chance of making the Hall, but I like seeing his name on the list. In 2001, in the middle of a career year for the Arizona Diamondbacks—a team trying to win the pennant—Green did not play on Yom Kippur. It was the first game in 415 that he missed.
“I felt like it was the right thing to do… I didn’t do this to gain approval. I thought it was the right example to set for Jewish kids, a lot of whom don’t like to go to synagogue.”
Other first time nods on the ballot include a handful of former Twins players Rondell White, Jeff Cirillo, and Todd Walker. For the full list, click here.
Does Shawn Green have a chance of making it into the Hall Of Fame?
My take is that Bonds and Craig Biggio will at least stay on the ballot. Sandy Alomar Jr. has a chance to do the same. And Green….well….with enough Jewish voters he could maybe stay on the ballot for a couple more years. [Editor’s note: If a player receives at least 5% of the total vote he remains on the ballot for the following year.] This year we should see local hero Jack Morris, and Mike Piazza make the Hall; and possibly Bonds and Clemens if voters overlook the steroids. Biggio will come close but I bet he just misses it.
Should be interesting. Lets hope Green stays on!
And Let Us Say…Amen.
A version of this article originally appeared on Jeremy Fine’s sports blog, TheGreatRabbino.com.