Roger Clemens (45%) and Barry Bonds (44%) may have made significant strides in their fourth years on the Hall of Fame ballot, but it's still a traveshamockery that neither star is in Cooperstown yet.
Clemens, an 11-time all-star and 7-time Cy Young winner, was a Hall-of-Famer before he allegedly started using PEDs. So was Bonds, a 14-time all-star and 7-time MVP, was a Hall-of-Famer before he saw exponential growth in his home run - and cap size - numbers. Yet neither star garnered as many votes as Curt Schilling?!?
I wrote in 2015 that "simply put, the Hall of Fame should be for the guys who dominated their peers, regardless of era. By those metrics, Bonds and Clemens should be on every voter's ballot." That goes for the dead-ball era, the long-ball era, the "it's OK to use amphetamines and cocaine" era...and because we don't have any clue exactly who used drugs in the 1990s and 2000s, the PED era too.
I wrote in 2014 that "held to today's standards (on drugs), Willie Mays, Mickey Mantle, Mike Schmidt, Hank Aaron, and Whitey Ford may all have been kept out of the Hall" and that year's inductee, Tom Glavine, even turned a blind eye to the PED epidemic as the Braves' long-time rep to the players' union, which fought off drug testing for so long.
And I wrote in 2012 that "we don't compare pitchers' ERAs in 2012 with those of the dead-ball era because stats fluctuate between eras. But dominance among peers remains the best indicator of Hall-of-Fame worthiness and during the 'steroid era,' when PEDs were largely legal. The playing fields were level."
So when Edgar Martinez, a 7-time all-star at the DH position with one top-five MVP finish and one steroid allegation, gets 43% of the HOF vote...yet Mark McGwire, a 12-time all-star at first base with three top-5 MVP finishes, gets just 12% of the HOF vote...something is wrong with the system.
We have no idea who used PEDs - they were far more rampant than we'll ever be able to quantify - so why pretend we have any idea? Especially when the Hall is already filled with gamblers, racists, and spitballing cheats.
PS - what the heck did Mike Piazza do in his 5th, 6th, and 7th years of retirement that suddenly made him HOF-worthy in his 8th year of retirement??? The system is less-than-ideal.
FOLLOW: Shadow of the Stadium on Twitter
FOLLOW: Shadow of the Stadium on Facebook