What a relief to know that Robbie Alomar never used PEDs.
That’s just one sad, tongue-in-cheek conclusion from the final vote tallies, announced yesterday, from the 2011 Hall of Fame class.
Alomar got in on his second try. Bert Blyleven made it on his 14th try.
Great picks. Both deserving.
But the names of those left far, far behind the magical 75 percent entry threshold speak to the flawed voting procedure and occasionally twisted logic that eligible voters from the Baseball Writers Association of America wind up resorting to when it comes to deciding who gets into Cooperstown.
The exclusion of Jeff Bagwell, a first-timer on the ballot who received less than 42 percent of the vote, and the inclusion of Alomar, who got nine out of every 10 votes, is a perfect example.
Let’s see: Alomar’s brilliant career began in 1988 and ended in 2004.
Bagwell’s brilliant career began in 1991 and ended in 2005.
Each dominated his position for most of his career, Alomar slightly more than Bagwell, but Bagwell’s 1994 National League Most Valuable Player award, two other top-three finishes in the MVP voting, plus his NL Rookie of the Year award place him in elite territory.
Here’s another key piece of data: The two also happened to play through what is commonly known as the Steroids Era, from roughly the mid-1990s to the mid-2000s.
And here’s where analysis gives way to emotion.