Ten former players and baseball executives will get one more chance at the Hall of Fame this winter, coming up for consideration on the Veterans' Committee ballot that was released on Thursday. The ten figures up for consideration are:
- Ken Boyer
- Minnie Minoso
- Tony Oliva
- Jim Kaat
- Allie Reynolds
- Luis Tiant
- Charles Finley
- Buzzie Bavasi
- Gil Hodges
- Ron Santo
The Veterans' Committee of the Hall of Fame might seem like a shadowy bunch of old-timers -- the Illuminati of the museum, controlling everything with pen strokes and secret handshakes -- but the 16-member committee is made upmostly of people you've heard of:
Dave Van Dyck.
And of those 16 people, 12 will need to vote for a player or executive for them to be inducted into the Hall of Fame.
While Ken Boyer, Minnie Minoso, Gil Hodges, and Jim Kaat will have their supporters, as will some of the other names, the only obvious choice on the ballot is Ron Santo, a nine-time All-Star who played at the most underrepresented position in the Hall of Fame -- there are only ten third basemen in the Hall, and Santo's accomplishments fit in quite well with that group.
One of the more interesting names is probably Charlie O. Finley, the owner who moved the A's from Kansas City to Oakland, alienating players, fans, and Major League Baseball along the way. If you want evidence of alienation, this should do just fine:
It took years for the A's to reclaim their fan base, though they regularly draw at least twice that many fans now.
Yet for all of his wacky decisions and legendary frugality, Finley could be in the Hall of Fame if the idea tickles the fancy of 12 out of 16 select people. Very, very interesting and amusing.
The committee will meet in Dallas on December 4th, with an announcement to follow the next day. If anyone is elected, they will enter the Hall of Fame as part of the 2012 class with the induction ceremony scheduled for July 22nd, 2012.