1971 “will be the year Yogi Berra, the Montclair Millionaire, makes the Hall of Fame.” ~ The New York Daily News, January 1, 1971
It was not.
On January 21, 1971, the Baseball Writers Association of America chose to elect no one to the National Baseball Hall of Fame.
Not even Yogi Berra.
On January 26, 2021, the Baseball Writers Association of America – for the ninth time in history – elected no one to the Baseball Hall of Fame.
(I’ll get back to 1971 and Yogi, I promise.)
In a pandemic year when nothing is normal, the Hall of Fame’s non-election election this year seemed, well, pretty normal.
I could write about Curt Schilling – controversial, cranky, insolent, nogoodnik – who was among those not elected in 2021.
There are so many Curt’ish things we could discuss …
… the hurtful, hateful things he says that color his character and his worthiness to join the greats of Cooperstown … or
… his worthy statistics that stand up fine against other pitchers in the Hall. 11-2 in the post-season, alone. 11-2! … or
… how you weren’t surprised – because you weren’t, were you? – when Schilling, almost immediately after the Hall of Fame’s no-election announcement, released an obsequious, but quite polite, letter to the Hall requesting he be removed from consideration in 2022.
We could spend the rest of today coming up with ways to describe Curt Schilling … and we could call him a sore-loser lunkhead idiot, but, better, let’s call him a hoddydoddy or a jobbernowl because I spent a lot of time digging up those words and I don’t want them to go to waste.
Schilling wouldn’t be the first jerk in the Hall of Fame.
The Hall has its share of drunkards and carousers, racists, bullies, and homophobes, Klansmen and crooks, adulterers, cheaters, and scoundrels. A drug smuggler and, possibly, even a murderer.
Let’s just say, if every member of the Baseball Hall of Fame were still alive and they all came to your house for dinner, you’d do well to count the silverware when they left. Continue reading