Five years after retirement, Ken Griffey Jr. set another record when he was elected to the Hall of Fame yesterday afternoon.
Griffey will enter the Hall with the highest percentage of votes from the Baseball Writer’s Association of America after being named on 437 of the 440 ballots – for 99.3%. Tom Seaver was the previous record holder, at 98.6% in 1992.
A veteran baseball writer told me that most of the few voters who didn’t cast a ballot for Seaver in 1992 did so because they mailed in blank ballots to protest the fact that Pete Rose was not listed as a candidate.
I can’t explain why anyone wouldn’t vote for Griffey – other than the natural difficulty in getting 440 human beings to all agree on something. But ultimately it doesn’t matter: he goes in with the highest voting percentage of all time, and that’s something.
For the second day in a row, we have lots of fun Griffey reading.
- We’ll start with the news stories on Griffey’s record-setting vote totals, from The News Tribune and the Seattle Times.
- John McGrath writes that Griffey is a trailblazer.
- Larry Stone has a column on the election results.
- The News Tribune posted a gallery of photos of Griffey – there are 240 of them, so settle in.
- Edgar Martinez made a big gain in the voting totals, moving up to 43% (75% is needed for enshrinement). He has three years left on the ballot.
- Jayson Stark has the big-picture takeaways from the Hall vote, including thoughts on the large percentage increases by Edgar Martinez and Mike Mussina.
- Baseball America posted a collection of its early scouting reports and notes on Griffey.
- Mike Piazza was also elected to the Hall, and he has one claim Griffey can’t match: he’s the only Hall Of Famer with an indie rock song about him.
- The Mariners made a move on Thursday, releasing reliever Anthony Bass so he can play in Japan (presumably for a lot more money). Bob Dutton updates the roster here – I think the M’s still need some bullpen upgrades.