This year the Hall of Fame ceremony should be pretty quiet. For the first time since 1996, no players were elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame. A player needs at least 75% of the vote to gain election. It is just the eighth time the Baseball Writers Association of America (BBWAA) failed to elect any players. Five voters submitted blank ballots. BBWAA secretary-treasure Jack O'Connell said, "With 53% you can get to the White House, but you can't get to Cooperstown. It's the 75% that makes it difficult."
Some notables on the ballot this year were Mark McGwire, Rafael Palmeiro, Miguel Tejada, Sammy Sosa, Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens, and Craig Biggio. Biggio came the closest to getting elected this year with 68% of the vote. Roger Clemens is the only seven-time Cy Young Award winner and he didn't make it. Clemens said, "After what has been written and said over the last few years, I'm not overly surprised."
Former Boston Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling, who was also on the ballot said, "I think as a player, a group, this is one of the first times that we've been publicly called out. I think its fitting, if there was ever a ballot and a year to make a statement about what we didn't do as players - which is why we didn't actually push to get the game clean - this is it."
BBWAA president Susan Slusser said she didn't vote for Bonds, Clemens, or Sosa. "The evidence for steroid use is too strong." And regarding Craig Biggio Slusser said, "I'm surprised he didn't get in." Hal Bodley, the former baseball columnist for USA Today, said that the BBWAA vote was a "loud and clear" message on the steroids topic.
I believe this does send an important message to all baseball players in the Major League that for the first time ever phenomenal statistics including homeruns, batting average, RBI's and World Championships aren't good enough anymore because of the steroid era.