Sports

Bagwell, Raines, Rodriguez elected to Baseball Hall of Fame

Hoffman, Guerrero narrowly miss out on induction

Jeff Bagwell, Tim Raines and Ivan Rodriguez were voted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame by the Baseball Writers Association of America on Wednesday.

Bagwell, who fell just 15 votes shy of earning induction last year in his sixth year on the ballot, earned the highest percentage of votes from BBWAA members with 86.2 percent.

Bagwell was followed by Raines with 86 percent and Rodriguez with 76 percent. Players must be named on 75 percent of the ballots cast by BBWAA members to be elected.

Reliever Trevor Hoffman, in his second year on the ballot, and outfielder/DH Vladimir Guerrero, in his first year of eligibility, just missed out, receiving 74 and 71.7 percent of the vote, respectively.

Bagwell, a first baseman, played for the Houston Astros his entire career, hitting .297 with 2,314 hits, 449 home runs and 1,529 RBIs. He won the National League Rookie of the Year award in 1991 and went on to appear in four All-Star Games and win the NL MVP in 1994. He also won a Gold Glove in 1994 and is a three-time Silver Slugger winner. Bagwell was especially known for his offensive power, compiling nine seasons with more than 30 home runs, eight seasons with 100 or more RBI, and nine seasons with more than 100 runs scored.

Raines played left field in a 23-year career that got started with the Montreal Expos in 1979, although he didn't become a full-time player until the strike-shortened 1981 season. He is regarded as one of the best leadoff hitters and baserunners in baseball history, leading the National League in stolen bases four times and owning the most stolen bases by a switch-hitter in major-league history. The seven-time All-Star was part of two World Series championship teams with the Yankees in 1995 and 1998 and won a National League batting title in 1986.

Widely regarded as one of the best defensive catchers of all time, Rodriguez won the AL MVP award in 1999 while playing for the Texas Rangers. The 14-time All-Star and 13-time Gold Glove winner also won a World Series with the Florida Marlins in 2003. The .296 career hitter collected 2,844 hits and 311 home runs in his career and holds the major league records for putouts by a catcher and games caught.

Bagwell, Raines and Hoffman are joined in the class of 2017 by former MLB commissioner Bud Selig and longtime executive John Schuerholz, who were voted in by the Today's Game Era Committee in December.

For Raines, it was his 10th and final year on the ballot. The other player in his final year of eligibility, reliever Lee Smith, did not earn election after receiving 34.2 percent of the vote.

Rodriguez and Guerrero did the best among the 19 players appearing on the ballot for the first time. The next closest newcomer was Manny Ramirez with 23.8 percent.

Five other first-time eligible players received votes, but that group of Jorge Posada (3.8 percent), Magglio Ordonez (0.7 percent), Edgar Renteria (0.5 percent), Jason Varitek (0.5 percent) and Tim Wakefield (0.2 percent) failed, along with 11 other newcomers who received no votes, to earn the 5 percent needed to stay on the ballot going forward.

The class of 2017 will be inducted on July 30 in Cooperstown, N.Y., as part of the July 28-31 Hall of Fame Weekend.

Center fielder Ken Griffey Jr. and catcher Mike Piazza were elected to the Hall of Fame in last year's balloting.


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