The Baseball Hall of Fame has officially debuted the “Today’s Game Ballot”, which focuses on players/managers/executives from 1986-2016.  This will now be on a four year rotation with Modern Baseball (1970-1987), Golden Days (1950-1969) and Early Baseball (1871-1949).

The Today’s Game Ballot is designed to focus on more contemporary players, many of which have dropped off the ballot in recent years.

10 men have been chosen for this ballot:

Harold Baines: Ranked #40 on  Baines blasted 384 Home Runs and 1,628 RBIs over a career that was mostly spent as a Designated Hitter.  Baines is known mostly for his work with the Chicago White Sox and is a six time All Star. 

Albert Belle: Ranked #51 on  Belle finished in the top three in American League MVP voting three times and is a five time All Star and five time Silver Slugger.  He was on the ballot for two years. 

Will Clark: Ranked #61 on  Clark is a six time All Star with four top five National League MVP finishes.  He led the NL in bWAR in 1989 and won the NLCS MVP that same year.

Orel Hershiser: Ranked #79 on Notinhalloffamecom.  Hershiser would win the Cy Young, MVP and World Series in 1988.  Three times he would lead the NL in bWAR for Pitchers.

Davey Johnson: Managed the New York Mets to the 1986 World Series and has a 1,372-1,071 Record.

Mark McGwire: Ranked #15 on  McGwire is a member of the 500 Home Run Club and is a 12 Time All Star. 

Lou Piniella: A Manager for 23 years with a record of 1,835-1,712 and a World Series win with the Cincinnati Reds in 1990.

John Schuerholz: The First General Manager to win the World Series in both leagues, Kansas City in 1985 and Atlanta in 1995.

Bud Seilig: The Commissioner of MLB from 1992 to 2015.

George Steinbrenner: The infamous owner of the New York Yankees won seven World Series Titles.

The focus for many is on McGwire who just left the ballot after ten years and never finished above 25 percent on the ballot. 

The 16 man Modern Baseball Committee will be meeting on December 5 on the winter meetings.  To be inducted, a candidate require 75% of the vote.

We know for sure that the Baseball Hall of Fame will be adding at least two people to their institution next summer.

The 16 Man “Today’s Game Era” Committee has selected former Commissioner, Bud Selig and Executive, John Schuerholz to Cooperstown, the latter of which received a full 100 percent of the vote. 

To get elected, a candidate needed 75 percent (12 votes) to gain induction.

Bud Selig received all but one of the 16 votes.  A former owner of the Milwaukee Brewers, Selig is either widely praised or panned depending on your point of view.  Work stoppages and PED growth happened under his watch, but so did substantial revenue growth, interleague play and revenue sharing.  He becomes the fifth former commissioner to get elected.

Schuerholz was considered a lock and based on his record how could he not be?  He was the first General Manager to win the World Series in both leagues (Kansas City in ’85 and Atlnata in ’95) and while Atlanta only one World Series, it was a powerhouse team that won 14 consecutive divisions.

Former player and Manager, Lou Piniella received seven votes.

The other candidates received five for less and as per the rule (though we find that absurd) their exact vote count was not released. 

Those who received five votes or less are George Steinbrenner (Owner), Mark McGwire, Albert Belle, Davey Johnson (Manager), Harold Baines, Orel Hershiser and Will Clark.  They could possibly be nominated again in four years, the next time that the “Today’s Game Era” is scheduled to meet.

Of note, the 16 man committee are owners Bill DeWitt Jr. (Cardinals) and David Glass (Royals), executives Andy MacPhail (Phillies), Kevin Towers (Reds) and Paul Beeston (formerly of the Blue Jays), media members Bill Center, Steve Hirdt and Tim Kurkjian, and Hall of Famers Roberto Alomar, Bobby Cox Andre Dawson, Dennis Eckersley, Pat Gillick, Frank Thomas, Ozzie Smith and Don Sutton.

We would like to congratulate the two new entries to the Baseball Hall of Fame and are curious to see who will join Bud Selig and John Schuerholz.
With the second revamping of its veterans committee structure in the last six years, the Baseball Hall of Fame seems ready to address the twin challenges of the logjam on the writers' ballot and of an evaluation process that until now has given scant attention to candidates from the last few decades of the game.
We here at thought it would be fun to take a look at the major awards in North American team sports and see how it translates into Hall of Fame potential.

Needless to say, different awards in different sports yield hall of fame potential.  In basketball, the team sport with the least amount of players on a roster, the dividend for greatness much higher.  In baseball, it is not as much as a great individual season does not have the same impact.

75. Orel Hershiser

What a year 1988 was for Orel Hershiser.  He didn’t just win the Cy Young that year, getting better to the point of being unstoppable as the season wound down.  He broke Don Drysdale’s consecutive scoreless innings record to end the regular season than went on to win three games in the post season (including one save) and propelled the Dodgers to a World Series win and won the World Series MVP in the process.  What a year!