Wednesday, January 06, 2010

MLB Hall of Fame Voting-The Blank Ballot Bandits

It is upon us, the season where people blast the Baseball Writers Association of America, where others blast the Bill James Baseball Scientology Brigade, others blast fans for being fans, and the rest just yell "rabble, rabble, rabble" because other people are yelling. While many will "put everyone on blast", I am going to single out one group that angers me beyond all belief.

First off, let me say there are many member of BBWAA who don't suck, don't have their head up their own ass, enjoy watching baseball in color, use a computer, don't call it the interweb, use cell phones and drive gas-fueled cars. I have had the privilege of interacting with many of these writers since starting this, among them Jerry Crasnick, Jayson Stark, Tony Massarotti, Buster Olney, Jeff Blair, and others. I won't yell from the rooftop that the BBWAA is full of idiots, because it isn't "full of them", it has a few in the midst, which is the way society works. There are always a few ass-hats in with everyone else. Some of them are obvious, some are conspicuous. I can't rightfully sit here and bash the entire BBWAA. I can, however, bash some of them.

First off if you voted for any of the following...

Robin Ventura 7 votes
Kevin Appier 1 vote
Eric Karros 2 votes
David Segui 1 vote
Ellis Burks 2 votes
Pat Hentgen 1 vote

You should immediately call your doctor and demand an MRI to check for head injuries. If you voted for any of them and did not vote for Blyleven, Raines, Murphy or Alomar throw yourself off a bridge. Unless you lost a bet, did performance-enhancing drugs with Segui and promised you would pay him back for a round of stanazol, there is no excuse. None. Zero. It's like screwing up your name on the SAT's. You are a failure at your job and at life and should just stop. Now, onto the 5 blank-ballot bandits.

What is a blank-ballot bandit, you ask? It's someone who gets a ballot to vote on the Baseball Hall of Fame and turns it in blank. It's like someone going to vote in a local election and turning in a blank piece of paper.

"Hmmm, Obama, McCain, Nader? Screw it this is too much for me."

Two of these Triple B's write for Fanhouse, and have quite the history. One, Lisa Olson, was at the heart of a massive sexual-harrassment problem with Victor Kiam and Zeke Mowatt in the bad Patriots days of the late 80's early 90's. Although the way she was treated back then was awful, she is now effectively waving it in the face of the Baseball Hall of Fame. How? According to Mike Chiappetta(who follows MMA for Fanhouse) via Twitter, Olson has not voted for anyone since she became eligible. I would give my left testicle to get a vote for the BBWAA, and this writer just pisses the opportunity away every year? Lisa, next year just ask me who to vote for, I will give you some names. Hell auction it off on EBay and give proceeds to charity, I don't give a shit, but what you are doing is as bad as voting for the Seguis and Appiers. The other Triple B, also from FanHouse, announced on TV he turned in a blank ballot. He is none other than Jay Mariotti, crown-prince of the ass-hat brigade. Apparently he is too busy to be bothered to vote. It's a prime example of someone who looks at the opportunity to vote for Hall of Famers, make a mark on history, and wipes their ass with it.

It's an embarrassment to the other members of the BBWAA, Major League Baseball, the Hall of Fame, Bob Costas, Pete Rose, and Moonlight Graham to have people who are using these ballots to make a statement, or who are putting themselves above the organization they are a part of. If you can't be bothered to fill out a ballot, tell the BBWAA you don't want to be in it anymore and stop wasting your time, our time, and their time, because you are not an asset to the BBWAA, you are a detriment to it and society as a whole. Roberto Alomar (who is one of the top 10 second basemen of all time) may have spit in the face of an umpire, but when you can't be bothered to fill out a ballot, you spit in the face of everyone who cares about Major League Baseball. You don't deserve the privilege to decide who my kids get to see in Cooperstown, and it's too bad someone believes you do. On a day when the career of Andre Dawson should have been celebrated and all that's right about baseball should have been at the forefront, you made it about yourself, and that is as bad as anyone jamming a needle in their ass, because you just jammed one in the ass of every baseball fan. Hats off Triple B's, you have the baseball world buzzing once again. Until next year...

Update: Apparently Olson has a valid excuse and reasoning behind not voting. This just means Mariotti is an even bigger ass-hat. Hats off to Murray Chass for the long-winded explanation on his blog. Yes, it's a blog.


Dick said...

Matty, it's just amazing that these baseball writers can't take some time out to fill out a HOF ballot. There are many people like you and I that are as knowledgeable than a lot of these boneheads. Jay Mariotti can flush himself down the porcelain tube...I've seen him rant and rave over things that most could give a rats ass about.

Congrats should go out to Andre Dawson as you stated. This is his day in the sun!

Dan said...

Great post! The blank ballots are a disgrace, but the token votes don't bother me too much. With up to 10 spots to fill, I can understand a writer throwing a vote at a class act as a tip of the cap, which I'm sure most of these votes are (not sure about David Segui, though. Does his uncle have a vote?). I think the writers see this as a final chance to give a guy a little recognition for a solid career when they know they won't be on the ballot beyond this year. Were there only three or five slots per ballot, it'd be a different story.

Derek in McFalls said...

I agree with you about all of those players who got a votes, except for Robin Ventura. After the ass kicking that he received from Nolan Ryan, he deserves to say that he got at least a few votes for the Hall of Fame.

Derek in McFalls said...

I agree with you about all of those players who got a votes, except for Robin Ventura. After the ass kicking that he received from Nolan Ryan, he deserves to say that he got at least a few votes for the Hall of Fame.

Unknown said...

What a joke the process has become. These voters you blogged about cost Blyleven as some voted for him last year and not this year. This deal is almost as bad as the Veterans Committee

Stan said...

What makes Mariotti a real asshat is he went on PTI wednesday and listed reasons why Andre Dawson deserved to be in the Hall of Fame.

Stan said...

What makes Mariotti a real asshat is he went on PTI wednesday and listed reasons why Andre Dawson deserved to be in the Hall of Fame.

The Boat said...

the worst thing about blank ballots is that they have to sign them to count. So they can't just send back the ballot unmarked, they have to take the time to sign their name and then send it back. So it isnt laziness that motivates them but rather the chance to draw attention to themselves.

calbearman said...

I have no problems whatsoever with blank ballots. The standard for getting into the hall is 75% and if you as a voter believe that no one is worthy a blank ballot is wholly appropriate.

Similarly, I have no problem with making distinctions between first time ballots and subsequent election. This is a time honored tradition and is a part of the system. Voters are given full discretion to choose whomever they choose.

But if there is one thing I would change it is making all ballots public. If someone wants to vote for David Segui, let it be known who it is. If someone wants to leave off a Willie Mays or Hank Aaron (or into the future Greg Maddux or Ken Griffey Jr.), just make sure the light of day is shone on the voter.

NBot said...

Hold up on that Lisa chick. Not turning in a ballot is a lot different than sending it in blank.

Sending them in blank added an 0-5 for everyone eligible. Not sending it in at all has zero effect.


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