Finally! Ron Santo, HOF

Ronnie's in. Bittersweet but worthy of shedding a few tears for all Cub fans.

Here's the link to the National Baseball Hall of Fame's site announcement.

The "Golden Era" decision committee was changed to a 16 member group for this vote.  As in the usual Hall of Fame voting, 75% of the ballots were needed. Ron Santo got 15 of 16 ballots which is 94% and in Cub circles officially considered a landslide. He's the only candidate who got in this time. The next most ballots went to Jim Kaat who got 10 votes, Gil Hodges and Minnie Minoso with 9 votes and Tony Olivo with 8.

Teammate, Billy Williams, was a member of the HOF voting committee, was quoted saying "we got it done."

The remainder of the committee:

The 16-member Golden Era Committee was comprised of Hall of Fame members Hank Aaron, Pat Gillick, Al Kaline, Ralph Kiner, Tommy Lasorda, Juan Marichal, Brooks Robinson; major league executives Paul Beeston (Blue Jays), Bill DeWitt (Cardinals), Roland Hemond (Diamondbacks), Gene Michael (Yankees) and Al Rosen (retired); and veteran media members Dick Kaegel, Jack O'Connell and Dave Van Dyck. Hall of Fame Chairman of the Board Jane Forbes Clark served as the non-voting chairman of the Golden Era Committee.

Pat Hughes on WGN radio (as I type) says he envisions Ron with a maximally happy look on his face, "like a happy 10 year old kid".

His wife, Vicki Santo, during the same WGN radio interview said up in heaven he's pumping his fist saying, "I got there".

July 22nd 2012 will be Ron Santo's induction date. Heel Clicking optional.

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Wonder who didn't vote for #10?

The 16-member Golden Era Committee was comprised of Hall of Fame members Hank Aaron, Pat Gillick, Al Kaline, Ralph Kiner, Tommy Lasorda, Juan Marichal, Brooks Robinson and Billy Williams; major league executives Paul Beeston (Blue Jays), Bill DeWitt (Cardinals), Roland Hemond (Diamondbacks), Gene Michael (Yankees) and Al Rosen (retired); and veteran media members Dick Kaegel, Jack O'Connell and Dave Van Dyck. Hall of Fame Chairman of the Board Jane Forbes Clark served as the non-voting chairman of the Golden Era Committee.

I still have to say, I lost some respect for the HoF voters for making us all wait until after he was dead. I know some people didn't like that he basically campaigned for his own inclusion in the HoF, but unlike statements made by the likes of Ricky Henderson, Ron's desire for the HoF always seemed to me to express an almost awe-struck respect for what the HoF is and giddiness at the widely shared belief that he belonged among those ranks.

Good for the old-timers.

Different cast of voters this time around.

Even so, I think this underscores the issues with the way HOF voting works. Either you're a HOFer or you're not, and I've never understood why players get different vote totals each time they're up for election. Nothing changed about their impact on the game or about their numbers, so why would anyone feel different about them?

Basically, if Santo was going to be voted to the HOF eventually, I think he should've been voted in when he was eligible.

Well I guess one reason could be the strength of class? If a lot of top flight players are eligible, a borderline or less obvious choice could be overlooked?

I think there are viable reasons for someone getting in later. Different voters looking at certain stats differently, different competition like Dusty said below. That said neither are why Santo got in this time and this specific case is pretty ridiculous. Whatever, he's in now. At least his family has that.

Heyman tweets...

cubs getting a bit of interest in soriano. belongs in AL. obviously they'd have to pay bulk of $.

(yawn)

Tommy LaSorda on XM...

Says he feels bad about it because Ron's not alive to enjoy this. He always told Santo in their conversations that Ron belonged in the HOF. Also feels Kaat and Gil Hodges belong.

LaSorda said they talk as a group about the candidates extensively. There was extensive discussion on everyone. Members were allowed to vote for 4 candidates.

I'm sure time has no meaning wherever Ronny is now, and he saw this the instant he joined his new colleagues in baseball heaven. He probably watched the Cubs outfielders running in to celebrate break the world series curse, too, in the year 2525.

I bet if you asked which he'd have rather seen in his lifetime, it would be the WS. If there was a Wikipedia entry for Cubs Fan his picture would be there.

I hate WSux fans. As soon as the Santo election news is posted, there are assholes on the Trib's site ready to bash Santo--the heel-clicking, the Don Young incident, etc....These losers are so obsessed with Cubs-hate they can't even let a DEAD man have a nice day. This is why when people tell me the Cards are the Cubs mortal enemy, I just shake my head. I despise everything about the south side.

The truth is there is No such thing as a true White Sox Fan, the only reason they exist is because they hate the Cubs and their fans. Sox fans dont care about winning they just care about how they do compared to the Cubs.

Finally... when I read this after getting out of a meeting, it got awfully dusty in the room.... a click of the heels to my favorite Cub from my childhood!

gotta love the Heckler's photo of the new Cub pitching coaches press conference...link in the TCR tweet window above

http://www.theheckler.com/2011/12/05/cubs-hir...

I hate to be a turd in the punch bowl, Santo's being HOF did not change my opinion as a player either way.

But's interesting to see that it took three(I think) different rule rivisions to get him into the HOF.

Now someone up top really liked Ronnie (Selig?) while the majority(voters) did not. It's not like there were 5-6 guys like Santo who were close enought to warrant this much work.

Kaat? No
Oliva? No
Minnie Minosa? Definatley not

Just saying

Mon, 12/05/2011 - 12:43pm — jacos

I hate to be a turd in the punch bowl, Santo's being HOF did not change my opinion as a player either way.

But's interesting to see that it took three(I think) different rule rivisions to get him into the HOF.

Now someone up top really liked Ronnie (Selig?) while the majority(voters) did not. It's not like there were 5-6 guys like Santo who were close enought to warrant this much work.

Kaat? No
Oliva? No
Minnie Minosa? Definatley not

Just saying

============================

JACOS: I have to respectfully disagree with you about Minnie Minoso.

Monte Irvin was not worthy of selection to the HOF based solely upon his MLB career, but he was worthy if you factor in what he did in the Negro Leagues prior to that.

Minoso played four years with the New York Cubans 1945-48 (and he was the Main Man on the Cubans Negro Leagues Championship team in 1947), and played in the East-West Game (Negro Leagues All-Star game) in '47 and '48.

I do have to admit that I am a bit prejuduced. I went to HS with Minnie's son, who was a member of our state championship basketball team in 1968, and later a member of the first class at the Kansas City Royals Baseball Academy in 1971.

I'm with AZ Phil.

Minoso suffered from the existence of the color line in baseball, yet his major league stats show that he was a star at the plate, on the bases, and in the field. His lifetime slash stats were .298/.389/.459 with a .848 OPS and a 130 lifetime OPS+. Pretty impressive. He finished with 205 SBs and averaged 9.8 outfield assists per season as an outfielder. He had a 162 game average of 16 HR and 90 RBI per season over his career. He was a 7-time All Star and a 3-time Gold Glove winner. He received MVP votes in 8 separate seasons. He maintained a level of excellence over a 10 season span, receiving MVP votes and All-Star selections from his rookie year of 1951 through 1960. To me, all of those things put together say Hall of Fame player.

and the Heckler's breaking story about Santo's HOF ceremony...titled: Santo to return from the grave for Hall of Fame induction just to piss off Mike Schmidt

“Ronnie made a secret deal with God that he would be able to come back for just one day after he died,” said Vicki Santo. “Naturally we all agreed that day would be for his Hall of Fame ceremony. I can’t wait to see the look on Mike Schmidt’s face when an angelic Ronnie floats down from the heavens to give his speech in person. It’s going to be great!”

http://www.theheckler.com/2011/12/05/santo-to...

I credit Theo for making this happen. After all, he is the new chosen one.

almost all rumors come from twitter these days, so I'll just be updating the right sidebar when I can...

http://www.baseballamerica.com/today/minors/a...

Ryno named BA minor league manager of the year, lots of great quotes...

Good day for Cubs HoF infielders.

did he even interview with anyone this year?

i know he was supposed to allegedly meet with STL, but i dunno if he actually met with them.

Yeah, he interviewed with St Louis on Nov 8th or 9th.

Your point regarding the election process is well-taken. Santo was first eligible for consideration by the writers in 1980, and his experience with voting over the past 31 years has, in my view, told a lot about the Hall of Fame. He was initally kicked off the writers' ballot in 1980 for failing to receive at least 5% of the vote (a rule which was then relatively new), a decision which in retrospect seems baffling. He was reinstated to the ballot in 1985, and given until 1998 on the BBWAA ballot (the time during which he was kicked off the ballot being added to the 15 years otherwise eligible). Ironically, being eligible for consideration by the BBWAA reduced the number of years during which he could be considered by the previous version of the veterans committee, which was cashiered following the Mazeroski election in 2001.

The post-2001 VC did not elect anyone during the entirety of its existence, being replaced prior to this election by the current process.

At the time Santo was first considered, only two third basemen had ever been elected to Hall of Fame by the writers (Eddie Mathews and Pie Traynor); there are now seven, with Robinson, Schmidt, Brett, Molitor and Boggs having been elected by the writers during this period.

There were three VC inductees who were third basemen in 1980; the old VC elected George Kell in 1983.

Santo's history in my view illustrates an ongoing tension between the Hall's desire to elect people while preserving the sense that their process is highly exclusive. His voting record also seems to indicate a bias by the voters in favor of round numbers. Bill James I think said of Jim Kaat that if you just rearranged his numbers a bit to take some wins from one season and add them to another, so as to give him 5 consecutive years of 20 wins, he would have already have been elected. You can make a similar argument about Santo. If you took some rbi from 1969 and spread them over some earlier years, you could have a several consecutive 100-rbi years, which might have made a difference with the writers.

In a broader sense, this is certainly well-deserved in my view, if seriously overdue. It is a shame that he could not have been inducted when he was alive.

Mind boggling that he couldn't get 5% of the vote? Really?

You could make a really good team of players that did not get 5%, including Bobby Grich, Lou Whitaker, Darrell Evans, Jimmy Wynn and Will Clark.

A really good trivia question is to ask what Hall of Famer was elected by the writers despite initially getting less than 5% in his first year on the writers' ballot? The answer is Ralph Kiner, who got less than 5% when the 5% rule was not in effect, and then saw his totals build until he got to 75% in his last year on the BBWAA ballot.

HOF voters don't (didn't) think walks were valuable.

"Santo's history in my view illustrates an ongoing tension between the Hall's desire to elect people while preserving the sense that their process is highly exclusive"

It should be exclusive but very flawed in the fact they have degrees on how to vote who goes in on what ballot.

He's not a first ballot guy, he's not a unanimous guy.

It's bull shit, and has been flawed since first vote didn't have any unannimous players.
Ruth?Cobb? Young?

Now it's a more of a pr ploy for MLB, because Bud could not let a winter go by with out one HOF announced. And he's about to get a few years of that coming up.

It's been a lot less exclusive when compared to players of certain eras and positions than it has been for others. Joe Posnanski had a post up awhile ago that illustrated that if you were a big league regular and had a career of any length in the late 20s or early 30s, odds were basically 50-50 that you'd be a hall of famer. It's much harder to get in if you were an offensive player in the 60s, as Santo was. Also, there are still fewer third basemen in the Hall than representatives from any other position.

I'm OK with the Hall being exclusive. I'd like to see consistency. Allowing in as many players as they did from the late 20s and 30s is nt the answer, but the experience of the past 20 years is too much of a correction.

"I'd like to see consistency"

Agreed

He's got to be retired for five years before he even gets on the ballot.

Riggs Stephenson. Discuss.

Uh...4500 at bats. Great batting average. Only played full time 5 seasons really in an era of offensive domination. Not a lot of HR's or RBI's...or steals....

I say nice guy, not HOF worthy/

I thought I read somewhere that Stephenson has the highest career OBP of anyone in the pre-WWII era that is not in the HOF. Take away Wilson's two monster years and you could argue Stephenson was a more important OF-er to the Cubs dynasty teams of the 20s and 30s than was Hack.

Stephenson only played over 100 games in 5 seasons.
1926
Wilson:.321/.406/.539, 97 runs, 21 HR, 109 RBI 529 PA's
Stephenson: .338/.404/.456, 40 runs, 3HR, 44 RBI 324 PA's
1927:
Wilson:.318/.401/.579, 119 runs, 30 HR, 129 RBI 520 PA's
Stephenson: .344/.415/.491, 101 runs, 7HR, 82 RBI 579 PA's
1928:
Wilson:.313/.404/.588, 89 runs, 31 HR, 120 RBI 551 PA's
Stephenson: .324/.407/.477, 75 runs, 8 HR, 90 RBI 512 PA's

I don't see Stephenson being better in any of those 3 years when you take both the slash lines and counting #'a into consideration.

Joe Posnanski's post on Santo.

http://joeposnanski.si.com/2011/12/05/ron-san...

Note that of the 12 players he mentions in the article (which include Dick Allen, who I would not vote for), 11 of them received less than 5% on a writers' ballot. Others that were kicked off the BBWAA ballot include Ted Simmons, Sal Bando, Bret Saberhagen, Orel Hershiser, Norm Cash, Boog Powell, Albert Belle and Vada Pinson. Many of those players are arguably better than some of the selections made by the writers in the past. I would take Saberhagen over Catfish Hunter, for example.

You could make a good case for Simmons, he was an elite-level hitting catcher in the 70s, killed the Cubs over and over again. Undoubtedly, the long shadow of Johnny Bench during Ted's career follows him in his retirement as well.

Too bad Joey Belle was such an ass, or he'd have a legit shot. Saberhagen is a tough one, a genuine borderline case.

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