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Ken Griffey Jr. Is a First Ballot Hall of Famer, But Three People Didn’t Vote for Him (Video)
Ken Griffey Jr. was one of the greatest baseball players of his or any generation. From 1990 through 2000 the guy hit .299/.384/.579 with 422 home runs, averaging 6.6 wins above replacement. He eventually finished his career with 10 Gold Gloves, 13 All-Star appearances, and of course those 630 home runs, which is good for 8th all-time. Who knows what The Kid might have done had he started juicing like Barry Bonds.
On Wednesday, as expected, Ken Griffey Jr. was elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in his first year of eligibility. And he did so in record fashion, receiving votes on 437 of the 440 total ballots, which is a record 99.3%.
Here he is getting “the call”:
Ken Griffey Jr. gets the call that he’s in the Baseball Hall of Fame. https://t.co/qECVFmSwPl
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) January 6, 2016
As you can see, Junior wasn’t exactly ecstatic. But what did you expect? The guy knew he was getting in. The only question was how many votes he would get—or rather, how many he would not get.
That’s certainly what everybody was talking about on Twitter:
3 people…Raise your hand if you didn’t vote for JR. Then slap yourself with the other..
— Adam Eaton (@AdamSpankyEaton) January 7, 2016
Maybe the three writers who didn’t vote for Griffey were Reds beat writers from the 2000s.
— David Schoenfield (@dschoenfield) January 7, 2016
99.3% for Griffey, left off of 3 of 440 ballots by people who hate America
— Jay Jaffe (@jay_jaffe) January 6, 2016
They didn’t kick out enough writers
— Bluebird Banter (@bluebirdbanter) January 6, 2016
Frankly, it is pretty hard to understand why someone would not vote for Junior. A lot of the logic seems to be, well, if Willie Mays and Hank Aaron didn’t get in with a unanimous vote, why should Ken Griffey Jr.? But that’s like saying, well, my grandmother smoked when she was pregnant, why shouldn’t I? Just because people were idiots in the past, that doesn’t mean we should be idiots now.
Still, it’s important not to lose sight of what really matters here. And what matters is that one of the greatest baseball players of all time is in the Hall of Fame…and his number is flying on a flag on top of the Seattle Space Needle:
— Seattle Mariners (@Mariners) January 7, 2016
— Ken Lambert (@SeaTimesFotoKen) January 7, 2016
Oh, and Mike Piazza got in too, because he was also good.