By Tommy Fradenburg
In 2019 New York Yankees closer became the first player ever to be unanimously selected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in his first year on the ballot.
This year his former teammate Derek Jeter is on the ballot for the first time and looking to achieve the same feat. Other notables joining the ballot this year are Raul Ibanez, Cliff Lee, Bobby Abreu, and Jason Giambi, and greats like Curt Schilling, Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens and Larry Walker (in his final year on the ballot) all continue to wait to hear their names called. So who makes the 2020 cut for Cooperstown? Find out here!
Jeter was the no brainer of the class. The question was not if he would get in, but if he would be a unanimous vote. According to Tim Mead of the MLB Hall of Fame, the New York Yankees all-time hits leader Jeter received 396 out of 397 the votes, good for 99.7 percent but one short of joining his teammate Rivera in the unanimous club.
Over his 20-year career the shortstop from Kalamazoo, Michigan won the Rookie of the Year award in his first full season in 1995. He would go onto 3,465 hits with a .310 average and 1,311 runs batted in. He was selected to 14 All-Star games and won five Golden Glove and Sliver Slugger awards.
20 seasons in pinstripes.
2020 Baseball Hall of Fame inductee Derek Jeter's career was full of memorable moments ? pic.twitter.com/AcWqfMylI1
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) January 21, 2020
He also played nearly an entire season’s worth of games in the the playoffs (158) and posted a nearly identical average and on base percentage on the way to six World Series titles. He was known for his innate ability to be in the right place at the right time. Whether it is “the flip” from 2001 playoffs, his 3,000th hit being a home run or his final at bat at Yankee Stadium, clutch was in his DNA.
He becomes the 27th shortstop to be elected to the Hall of Fame.
In his last year on the Hall of Fame ballot, the National League legend became the second Canadian-born player to be inducted to Cooperstown. Walker was also a Rookie of the Year winning the award in 1990 with the Montreal Expos. He played a total of 17 seasons playing for the Expos, Rockies and Cardinals.
Over his career Walker smacked 383 home runs and 471 doubles. With an average of .313 and five silver slugger awards, the five time All-Star was a consistent offensive presence his entire time in the Major Leagues.
— National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum ⚾ (@baseballhall) January 21, 2020
On defense Walker played all over the outfield and at 1st base throughout his career, posting a career .986 fielding rate, committing just 48 errors on 3,517 fielding opportunities on his way to seven Gold Gloves.
He also advanced to the postseason on three occasions, once with Colorado in 1995 and twice with the Cardinals in the final two years of his career. In the 2004 World Series, Walker launched two home runs off of the Boston Red Sox but never did capture the crown as Boston Swept the Cardinals
Just Missed the Cut
Just missing out were pitchers Curt Schilling (70 percent of necessary 75 of votes) and Roger Clemens (61 percent) and home run king Barry Bonds (60.7 percent). All three players were in their 8th year of a possible 10 on the ballot, and so will have two more chances to be elected into baseball royalty