For the first time in 60 years, the Baseball Writers Assn. of America has voted four players into the Hall of Fame.
Randy Johnson, Pedro Martinez, John Smoltz and Craig Biggio were elected to the Hall of Fame on Tuesday, two years after the BBWAA elected no one and triggered a national debate about how voters should account for baseball's steroid era.
Johnson got 97.3% of the vote, more than any pitcher except Tom Seaver and Nolan Ryan. Martinez got 91.1% of the vote, Smoltz 82.9% and Biggio 82.7%.
Candidates required 75% for election. Mike Piazza, arguably the greatest hitting catcher in
Barry Bonds and
Bonds, who holds the MLB all-time home-run record and a record seven most valuable player awards, got 36.8% of the vote, after getting 36.2% in 2013 – his first year on the ballot – and 34.7% last year. Clemens, winner of a record seven
Johnson, whose 4,875 strikeouts rank as the most of any left-hander in MLB history, won five Cy Young awards – including four in a row from 2001-04 -- and finished second three times. He won 303 games and led the
Martinez’s name still evokes a shudder for
DeShields was injured and ineffective in Los Angeles, while Martinez blossomed into an elite starter for the Expos and
Smoltz follows his
Biggio, primarily a second baseman for the
The four-person BBWAA class is the largest since 1955, when Joe DiMaggio was the marquee electee. The only larger class was the first, in 1936, which featured Babe Ruth, Ty Cobb, Walter Johnson, Christy Mathewson and Honus Wagner.
Dodgers batting coach