The result of this year’s Hall of Fame election, in which no payers were elected, is already controversial enough, but the number of votes for some players who appeared on the ballot for the first time is what could set the stage for vehement arguments for years to come.
Known steroid users Roger Clemens and Barry Bonds graced the Hall of Fame ballot for the first time this year, and each received slightly more than one-third of the vote. That’s fine. Two-thirds of the Baseball Writers Association of America voting members said they don’t think steroid users should be in the Hall of Fame, at least not yet.
The “not yet” part is what could get really messy in future years.
Mark McGwire, who was one of the first steroid-era players to reach the Hall of Fame ballot, received about one-quarter of the votes in his first year of eligibility, and his percentage of votes has steadily decreased each year. This time he received 16.9 percent of the vote.
Similarly, Rafael Palmeiro, who has mo...