NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Jorge Posada enjoyed a storybook major league career. But was it good enough to earn a spot in Cooperstown?
The longtime former catcher of the Yankees appears on the Hall of Fame ballot for the first time. But unlike his contemporaries, Manny Ramirez and Ivan Rodriguez, Posada’s debate won’t center on steroid use.READ MORE: COVID Impact: Doctors Say Some People Are So Scarred By The Pandemic They Now Have A Legit Fear Of Going Out
Posada played parts of 17 seasons with the Bronx Bombers, winning five World Series rings, including four as a starter.
While he lacks the kind of stats that generally ensure enshrinement — 3,000 hits, 500 home runs — Posada, who retired after the 2011 season, has a lot of other measurables going for him. He ranks eighth all-time in home runs among catchers, with 275. The five-time All-Star was also durable and consistent over a long career.
And of course, there are all those rings.
Meanwhile, former Astro Jeff Bagwell is the top holdover on the 2017 Baseball Writers’ Association of America 34-player ballot announced Monday. He fell 15 votes short of the required 75 percent in 2016 voting.
Ramirez was suspended for 50 games in 2009 while with the Los Angeles Dodgers for using a banned female fertility drug. He retired in 2011 rather than face a 100-game suspension after testing positive for a performance-enhancing substance. He applied for reinstatement that December, and his suspension for the second failed test was cut from 100 games to 50 because he sat out nearly all of the 2011 season.
Ramirez did not play in the majors again, although he did appear at Triple-A from 2012-14.
Former Yankee Roger Clemens and all-time home run leader Barry Bonds, also tainted by steroids allegations, are on the ballot for the fifth time. After a change on voting eligibility rules eliminated some retired writers, Clemens rose to 45.2 percent and Bonds to 44.3 percent in last year’s voting.
Players remain on the ballot for up to 10 years, provided they receive at least 5 percent of the vote.READ MORE: Confused About COVID-19 Mask Guidance? Here's The Current State Of Play In New York City
Rodriguez was never disciplined for PEDs, but former Texas teammate Jose Canseco alleged in a 2005 book that he injected the catcher with steroids. Asked whether he was on the list of players who allegedly tested positive for steroids during baseball’s 2003 survey, Rodriguez said in 2009: “Only God knows.”
Rodriguez spent most of his career with the Rangers and Tigers, but also played in 33 games for the Yankees in 2008.
A 12-time All-Star, Ramirez helped the Boston Red Sox win World Series titles in 2004 and ’07, the first for the franchise since 1918. He hit .312 with 555 home runs and 1,831 RBIs in 19 big league seasons, and he was voted MVP of the 2007 Series.
Rodriguez was a 14-time All-Star and 13-time Gold Glove catcher, and he was voted AL MVP in 2008 with Texas, his team for the first 12 of his 21 big league seasons. He batted .296 with 311 homers and 1,332 RBIs, winning a World Series with the Florida Marlins in 2003 after earning MVP of the NL Championship Series.
Guerrero was a nine-time All-Star and the 2004 AL MVP with the Anaheim Angels. He hit .318 with 449 homers and 1,496 RBIs in 16 big league seasons.
Also among the 19 newcomers on the ballot are Casey Blake, Pat Burrell, Orlando Cabrera, Mike Cameron, J.D. Drew, Carlos Guillen, Derrek Lee, Melvin Mora, Magglio Ordonez, Arthur Rhodes, Freddy Sanchez, Matt Stairs, Jason Varitek, Billy Wagner and Tim Wakefield.
Mora broke into the majors with the Mets in 1999 and was traded the following year to the Orioles, where he played the bulk of his career. Cameron spent two seasons with the Mets (2004-05) but is probably best remembered for his time with the Seattle Mariners.
Ken Griffey Jr. and Mike Piazza were elected last year, when Bagwell appeared on 315 of 440 ballots (71.6 percent. Other holdovers include Tim Raines (69.8), Trevor Hoffman (67.3) and Curt Schilling (52.3) along with Edgar Martinez (43.4), Mike Mussina (43), Lee Smith (34.1), Fred McGriff (20.9), Jeff Kent (16.6), Larry Walker (15.5), Billy Wagner (10.5) and Sammy Sosa (7).
Hall of Fame voters must submit their ballots by Dec. 31. The 2017 class will be revealed Jan. 18 and enshrined July 30.MORE NEWS: MTA Set To Resume 24/7 Subway Service Early Monday
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