November 27, 2006
Quotes from Hall of Fame voters on whether they plan to vote for Mark
McGwire in the upcoming election:
"Short answer on McGwire is: No. I will not vote for any admitted or highly
suspected steroid user until more time passes and more information is uncovered.
I think this era stained the game, and as for McGwire personally, his appearance
in D.C. was such an embarrassment for both him and the game that my current
feeling is that if he refuses to defend his own career, why should I?" -- Scott
Miller, CBS Sportsline.com.
"I do not plan on voting for McGwire this year. I believe the totally
positive accomplishments of Ripken and Gwynn for over two decades in the game
should stand alone this year and be left separated from any controversy. I will
consider McGwire in the future." -- Bill Center, The San Diego Union-Tribune.
"I turned in my Baseball Writers' card this year, specifically so I
wouldn't have to vote on cheaters after possibly already having voted in
cheaters without knowing so, because there was no steroids testing at the
time." -- Dave Newhouse, The Oakland (Calif.) Tribune.
"I'm going to vote for him. I can't say I feel good about voting for him.
... Just as baseball allowed Gaylord Perry to go out and cheat his way to 300
wins -- which got him to the Hall of Fame -- it allowed McGwire and all of these
players to compile their stats and break their records and earn their money and
accolades based on those feats. So I think I'm stuck with evaluating what the
sport allowed to happen on the field. Either the '90s happened or they didn't.
Since they happened, and the hundreds of players using whatever they used
leveled the playing field to some extent, I feel more comfortable voting for
players like McGwire than I do trying to pick and choose who did what, and when,
and why." -- Jayson Stark, ESPN.
"Definitely no until he gives us some answers. He's got a lot of explaining
to do." -- Bob Klapisch, The Record of Hackensack, N.J.
"I don't have any plans to vote for Mark McGwire. This will be my first
Hall of Fame ballot, and I take that responsibility very seriously. There are
just too many questions surrounding McGwire." -- Jesus Ortiz, Houston Chronicle.
"I'm still pondering this issue, as I'm not sure whether to punish the
player or punish the era." -- Mark Gonzales, Chicago Tribune.
"I will not vote for McGwire. The steroids/andro situation helped me reach
that conclusion, but I don't think he was a Hall of Famer before he fell
knee-deep in controversy." -- Hal Bodley, USA Today.
"I'll vote for him. You can't rewrite the history of the game after the
fact. Besides, think of all the money baseball would have to refund to the fans
and the networks if all of a sudden it said, Remember how much McGwire's home
runs did for us in our post-lockout agony? Never mind."' -- Ron Rapoport,
"I'd have no problem voting for McGwire if I thought his plaque would
mention that he was called to testify before Congress on the steroid issue; and
if there were a room in Cooperstown devoted to the whole debate over steroids,
with film from McGwire's testimony. But without that, it's hard to stomach the
notion that he would be celebrated as a home run hero without some kind of
qualifier about the whole steroid era. Long story short: I might vote for him."
-- Filip Bondy, Daily News of New York.
"The first ballot should be for the automatics, the guys with no doubts and
no clouds over them. He doesn't deserve that honor." -- Tom Gage, The Detroit
"Once somebody is in the Hall of Fame, you can't kick them out. But if
somebody doesn't get in, you have several years to re-examine, get more
perspective, learn more and change your thinking. I'm open-minded about voting
for him, but I really need more information on what he did and what went on at
the time." -- Dom Amore, The Hartford Courant.
"I can't elect a guy for home run hitting alone. If a guy doesn't have
2,000 hits, unless he's a pitcher, or a guy who had a remarkable career that was
ended by unfortunate circumstances, I can't vote for him." -- Bob Rosen, Elias
"I'm not going to close the door on him throughout the 15 years if he stays
on the ballots. I'd still like to hear him talk about the past." -- Jim
Salisbury, The Philadelphia Inquirer.
"I'm voting for him. Where's the proof?" -- Dave O'Hara, retired.
"No, I will not vote for McGwire. The one thing -- the only thing -- that
makes him worthy of Cooperstown consideration is his home run total. And that
statistic is so tainted, I cannot take it seriously." -- Jim Hawkins, The
Oakland (Mich.) Press.
Updated on Monday, Nov 27, 2006 6:43 pm EST
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