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The elections to select the 2010 class of inductees to the Baseball Hall of Fame proceeded according to revised rules enacted in 2001 and further revamped in 2007. The Baseball Writers Association of America (BBWAA) held an election to select from among recent players; one player was elected. In keeping with the 2007 rules changes, the Veterans Committee held one election to select managers and umpires, and another to select executives; one manager and one umpire were elected. Elections to select players were held prior to the 2009 inductions; the next election for players whose careers began in 1943 or later is scheduled for the 2011 class of inductees, while the next election for players active prior to that point is scheduled for the 2014 class.
The BBWAA was again authorized to elect players active in 1990 or later, but not after 2004; the ballot, announced on November 27, 2009, included candidates from the 2009 ballot who received at least 5% of the vote but were not elected, along with selected players, chosen by a screening committee, whose last appearance was in 2004. All 10-year members of the BBWAA were eligible to vote; ballots had to be returned by December 31.
Voters were instructed to cast votes for up to 10 candidates; any candidate who received votes on at least 75% of the ballots would be honored with induction to the Hall. Results of the 2010 election by the BBWAA were announced on January 6. The ballot consisted of 26 players, including 11 candidates returning from the 2008 ballot (a record low, besting the previous year's record of 13). 539 ballots were cast (including five ballots which supported no candidates), with 405 votes required for election. A total of 3,057 individual votes were cast, an average of 5.67 per ballot. The candidate who received election to the hall is listed in bold italics. Those candidates who received less than 5% (indicated here with a *) of the vote will not appear on future BBWAA ballots, but may eventually be considered by the Veterans Committee. Candidates who were eligible for the first time are indicated here with a †:
Players eligible for the first time who were not included on the ballot were: Paul Abbott, Andy Ashby, Danny Bautista, Brian Boehringer, Darren Bragg, Dave Burba, Greg Colbrunn, Mike Fetters, Brook Fordyce, Karim Garcia, Tom Goodwin, Ricky Gutierrez, Jimmy Haynes, Sterling Hitchcock, Curt Leskanic, Josias Manzanillo, Brent Mayne, Mark McLemore, Scott Service, Chris Stynes, Scott Sullivan, Todd Van Poppel, John Vander Wal, Fernando Viña, and Turk Wendell.
For the first time in the history of BBWAA voting, two players fell shy of election by fewer than 10 votes. Blyleven, on the ballot for the 13th time, fell 5 votes shy; he gained 62 votes from his 2009 total. He has two more chances in the BBWAA voting, and the highest percentage of the BBWAA vote earned by a player who never earned induction was the 63.4% earned by Gil Hodges in his last year on the ballot in Template:Bhofy. Alomar fell 8 votes short in his first appearance on the ballot, and received the highest percentage ever for a first-time candidate who was not elected at that time.
Veterans Committee electionsEdit
The Veterans Committee election process, radically changed in 2001, was revised again in July 2007. Under the 2001 rules, elections of non-players would be held every fourth year on a "composite ballot"; no candidate was elected from the composite ballot in 2003 or 2007. With the 2007 rules changes, the composite ballot was split into two separate ballots—one for managers and umpires and the other for executives. Also, the voting membership of the Committee, which previously included all living members of the Hall, was reduced to include just a handful of those members, plus additional executives and sportswriters. Voting for both the managers/umpires and executives ballots, which now takes place prior to inductions in even-numbered years, began with the 2008 class of inductees, when two managers and three executives were elected. To be eligible, managers and umpires must be retired for at least five years, or for at least six months if they are age 65 or older, while executives must be either retired or at least age 65.
Among those newly eligible for the 2010 class of inductees were umpires Bruce Froemming and Joe Brinkman and manager Art Howe, although none of the three were included on the ballots that were released in November 2009.
A Historical Overview Committee of sportswriters appointed by the BBWAA's Board of Directors met to develop a ballot of 10 managers and umpires. The managers/umpires list was then submitted to a panel composed of Hall of Fame members, executives and veteran media members for a final vote. A separate ballot of 10 executives was developed by a panel including executives, players and writers, which was the same committee which finally voted in that area. The final ballots were released in November 2009. Each panel member was allowed to vote for up to four individuals on each ballot, and each candidate who received 75% of the vote from either panel was elected; therefore, a maximum of five inductions were possible from each ballot. Voting was conducted at baseball's winter meetings in Indianapolis on December 6, 2009, with the results announced the next day; as was the case with the 2008 class of inductees, the Committee met to discuss the candidates, although the previous three elections had been conducted by mail.
The ballot for managers and umpires included eight managers (designated M) and two umpires (designated U), with 12 votes required for election. Candidates who received at least 75% of the vote and were elected are indicated in bold italics.
In contrast with the 2008 election, voters made less of an effort to vote for as many candidates as they were allowed. While at least 58 of the possible 64 individual votes were cast in 2008, the number of known individual votes cast in this election was 48 (vote totals for five candidates were not released). Seven of the candidates had been on the ballot in the last elections in 2008, with Grimm, Kelly, and O'Neill appearing on the ballot for the first time and umpire Cy Rigler dropping off the ballot. Four candidates were living when the final results were announced—Harvey (age 79), Herzog (78), Johnson (66), and Kelly (59).
The election committee, which was announced on the same day as the ballot, included:
Of the 16 members of the election committee, 11 voted for the class of 2008. The five new voters were all Hall of Famers—Murray, Roberts, Sandberg, Smith, and 2008 inductee Dick Williams.
On the executives ballot, 9 votes were required for election; no candidates were elected.
As with the other committee, voters in this election made less of an effort to vote for as many candidates as allowed than in the 2008 election. The number of individual votes cast went down to a greater degree than in the managers/umpires balloting—only 28 of the possible 48 individual votes were known to have been cast in this election, compared to 44 in the 2008 voting. Also, the number of candidates receiving fewer than 3 votes, whose vote totals were not released, went from three in 2008 to six in 2010. Of the 10 candidates, six (Fetzer, Howsam, Kauffman, McHale, Miller, and Paul) were holdovers from the 2008 ballot. Autry, Breadon, and Ruppert appeared on the ballot for the first time; White, who was on the 2007 composite ballot but was not on the 2008 ballot, returned for 2010. Buzzie Bavasi, who died in the intervening period, was on the 2008 ballot but not the 2010 ballot. Two candidates were living when the results were announced—Miller, age 92, and White, age 75.
The election committee, which was announced on the same day as the ballot, included:
Of the 12 members of the election committee, eight voted for the class of 2008. The new voters were Hall of Famers Roberts and Seaver, executive Schuerholz, and sportswriter Pepe.
J. G. Taylor Spink AwardEdit
The J. G. Taylor Spink Award has been presented by the BBWAA at the annual summer induction ceremonies since 1962. It recognizes a sportswriter "for meritorious contributions to baseball writing". The recipients are not members of the Hall of the Fame, merely featured in a permanent exhibit at the National Baseball Museum, but writers and broadcasters commonly call them "Hall of Fame writers" or words to that effect.
Three final candidates, selected by a three-member BBWAA committee, were named on July 14, 2008 at Busch Stadium in St. Louis in conjunction with All-Star Game activities: Bill Madden, national baseball columnist for the New York Daily News, Bob Elliott of the Toronto Sun and Joe Giuliotti, retired from the Boston Herald. All 10-year members of the BBWAA were eligible to cast ballots in voting conducted by mail in November.
On December 8 at baseball's winter meetings, Bill Madden was announced as the recipient. Madden, who started his career in 1969 with United Press International before joining the Daily News in 1978, received 226 votes out of the 452 ballots cast, with Elliott receiving 149 votes and Giuliotti receiving 76; one blank ballot was submitted.
Ford C. Frick AwardEdit
The recipient of the Ford C. Frick Award, presented at the induction ceremonies annually since 1978 to a broadcaster for "major contributions to baseball", is not considered to be a member of the Hall, but is permanently recognized in an exhibit at the museum. After the 2007 changes to the Veterans Committee, the winner (if living) is no longer an automatic member of that body. To be eligible, an active or retired broadcaster must have a minimum of 10 years of continuous major league broadcast service with a ball club, a network, or a combination of the two.
Ten finalists were announced in January 2010. In accordance with guidelines established in 2003, seven were chosen by a committee composed of the living recipients, along with additional broadcasting historians and columnists. Three additional candidates were selected from a list of candidates through results of voting by fans conducted in December 2009 on the Hall's Facebook page. The recipient was announced in February following a vote by the same committee which selected the first group of finalists. They based the selection on the following criteria: longevity; continuity with a club; honors, including national assignments such as the World Series and All-Star Games; and popularity with fans.
Jon Miller, radio announcer for the San Francisco Giants, television play-by-play announcer for ESPN Sunday Night Baseball and regular-season and postseason announcer on ESPN Radio, was announced as the 2010 Ford C. Frick Award winner on February 2, 2010. Beginning his career in 1974 with the Oakland Athletics, he is best known for his radio work with the Baltimore Orioles from 1983 through 1996, and the Giants from 1997 to the present. Before joining ESPN in 1990, he worked with NBC from 1986 through 1989. He also worked with The Baseball Network.