Gary Sheffield was 11.1 percentage points away from hitting the threshold for election to the Baseball Hall of Fame in the final year he’s eligible to be on the ballot.
Sheffield’s frustration appeared to boil over as he ripped the voting process in an appearance on Audacy’s “The Brett Boone Podcast.” He said he was “beyond surprised” to learn he wasn’t among the players voted into the Hall.
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Adrian Beltre and Joe Mauer made it in their first appearance on the ballot. Todd Helton was voted in on the sixth try.
“It’s a flawed system based on guys not watching you on a day-to-day basis. Because if they did there’s no way they could look at you with a straight face and say this guy’s better than this guy and his numbers mean more than his numbers,” Sheffield said. “Just from that standpoint alone, it’s biased and a lot of it is politics and a lot of other things when you look at it.”
“For me, there’s no one way that is going to fix this problem, but I can tell you that reporters are human beings, and the fact that they can tell you that they’re not biased, I don’t believe that. Whoever believes that is believing a fool because I just know for a fact that they are biased, and they do what they want to do and how they want to do it.”
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Sheffield will still be able to make the Hall of Fame through the Contemporary Baseball Era Committee, which consists of former players, executives, media members and historians. The players in question must be retired for at least 15 years and played most of their careers after 1980.
The former slugger was linked to a U.S. Senate investigation into MLB’s steroid scandal. He was also named in “Game of Shadows” as a player who received steroid shots from Barry Bonds’ personal trainer Greg Anderson. Sheffield denied taking steroids in his own book, “Inside Power.”
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Sheffield was a nine-time All-Star and won a World Series with the then-Florida Marlins in 1997. He hit 509 home runs and drove in 1,676 RBI.
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