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2015 BBA Hall of Fame Vote Recommends 7 for Cooperstown

The BBWAA will reveal the Hall of Fame's class of 2015 on Tuesday, but the Baseball Bloggers Alliance (which I am a member of) revealed their choices today. Here are the results, straight from the BBA press release:

Seven players from the 2014 Baseball Writers of America ballot were recommended for enshrinement in the Baseball Hall of Fame by the members of the Baseball Bloggers Alliance on Friday.

Given the backlog of quality players on the ballot, this year the BBA adopted the plan suggested by St. Louis Post-Dispatch columnist Derrick Goold of a binary ballot. Each player on the ballot was given a yes or no vote by the BBA voters and those receiving over 75% were then recommended.

With this format, pitcher Randy Johnson received 100% of the vote while pitcher Pedro Martinez was close behind at 95%. Others that topped the 75% mark were catcher/second baseman/outfielder Craig Biggio (90%), pitcher John Smoltz (89%), catcher Mike Piazza (85%), first baseman Jeff Bagwell (77%) and outfielder Tim Raines (77%).
Those that just fell short of the mark were designated hitter Edgar Martinez (71%) and pitcher Curt Schilling (68%).

The rest of the voting was as follows:
  • Mike Mussina 67%
  • Barry Bonds 65%
  • Roger Clemens 63%
  • Alan Trammell 53%
  • Jeff Kent 44%
  • Gary Sheffield 38%
  • Larry Walker 37%
  • Fred McGriff 33%
  • Mark McGwire 33%
  • Don Mattingly 31%
  • Lee Smith 31%
  • Sammy Sosa 23%
  • Carlos Delgado 19%
  • Nomar Garciaparra 13%
  • Cliff Floyd 4%
  • Brian Giles 4%
  • Rich Aurilia 3%
  • Darin Erstad 3%
  • Troy Percival 3%
  • Aaron Boone 1%
  • Jason Schmidt 1%
  • Jermaine Dye 0%
  • Tom Gordon 0%
  • Eddie Guardado 0%

Using this binary method, only 13% turned in a ballot with less than 10 names selected. 40% turned in a ballot with 15 or more names selected, with a high of 20.

I took liberal advantage of the binary ballot and ended up with 18 players I voted in favor of. I do not consider myself a proponent of a "big" Hall of Fame, but I suppose I will have to examine my position after my voting this year. I voted in favor of all seven enshrinees, the next nine highest vote-getters, and then both Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa. Sheffield, Kent, McGwire, and Sosa were the last four on my ballot, if you were wondering, and probably the only four you could really talk me out of voting for on this year's ballot.

The BBA hasn't been around incredibly long, but has done its own Hall of Fame voting for several years. Historically I would call BBA votes "progressive." In general, the group votes more players into the Hall of Fame on each ballot than the BBWAA, but not more members in overall. The BBA simply votes in eventual Hall of Famers faster. For instance, Barry Larkin got in on the BBA's first ballot but the BBWAA's second. This year's vote looks like no exception as the BBWAA looks likely to elect five Hall of Famers but leave Bagwell and Raines out for now, though with high vote totals that usually end up with eventual enshrinement.