With the announcement that Jeff Bagwell and Ivan “Pudge” Rodriguez are the newly elected members of the baseball Hall of Fame, there are no more excuses for excluding Barry Bonds.
For years now voters have kept Barry Bonds out of the Hall of Fame because of his alleged use of steroids during his baseball career.
It has nothing to do with Barry Bonds numbers as he finished his career as the all-time leader in home runs with 762 and walks with 2,558. He also scored, 2,227 runs, drove in 1,996, stole 514 bases and hit .298.
On top of that, he won seven MVP awards — including five with the Giants — was a 14-time All-Star and won eight Gold Gloves.
There is no denying that based on those numbers he is a first ballot Hall of Famer. But yet he has not been elected to the Hall of Fame during his first five years on the ballot.
However, he has seen his percentage go up from 36.2 percent his first year on the ballot, to 53.8 percent this past year.
A lot of that has to do with some of the other guys who are being included in the Hall of Fame that have connections to steroids.
The first of these was Mike Piazza who was elected to the Hall of Fame in the 2016 class. While the evidence wasn’t quite as strong with Piazza, there were definitely rumors of him using performance enhancing drugs during his career.
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After that, a lot of the voters who previously refused to vote for anyone that had rumors swirling around them of PED use became more open to the idea. If one rumored steroid user is in the Hall of Fame, then all of them should be, right?
That certainly seems to be the trend we are heading in as Barry Bonds saw his percentage go from 36.8 percent in 2015 to 44.3 percent in 2016, and then to 53.8 percent this year.
Bonds is still far short of the 75 percent needed to enter the Hall of Fame, but with five years left he’s certainly trending that way.
Now with Jeff Bagwell and Ivan Rodriguez getting in this year, both guys who have been linked to steroids, I don’t see how the voters can continue to keep out the best player of our generation.
Especially with Ivan Rodriguez getting in as the case against him for using steroids is pretty strong.
I don’t know if Barry Bonds gets in next year because of names like Chipper Jones and Jim Thome being added to an already crowded ballot, but I definitely think it happens soon. It doesn’t make any sense to keep Bonds out of the Hall of Fame with the players that they’ve let in now.