Players need to receive 75 percent of the vote to be elected. On Tuesday, Bonds received 66 percent, and Clemens got 65.2 percent in their last year of eligibility. Pitcher Curt Schilling, also in his final year on the ballot, earned 58.6 percent of the vote.
Big Papi Ortiz clocked in at 77.9, coincidentally the same as his time in the 100-yard dash, and just enough to get into Cooperstown in his first try.
The much-loved Big Papi was a classy and positive gentleman as always, issuing the following statement:
“I don’t even compare myself to them (Bonds and Clemens) because I saw so many times those guys performing and it was something that was very special. Not having them join me at this time is something that is hard for me to believe.”
In terms of impact on the team, the Red Sox’s acquisition of Big Papi was one of the most significant moves in post-WW2 baseball, comparable to the D-Backs signing Randy Johnson, or the Dodgers picking up Jackie Robinson. Ortiz placed in the top five in the MVP balloting in each of his first five years with the team, and the Sox won the World Series twice in those five years, after having failed to do so in the last 84 pre-Ortiz seasons. And then they won another before he retired. His lifetime World Series batting average is .455, the highest of all time among players with at least 40 plate appearances. He batted over .300 in his first two World Series, and then he almost won that third one by himself, batting an unearthly .688 to become the obvious MVP.
One of the nicest things about his career is that he went out on top. He had one of his best years in his last season at age 40 – leading the league in slugging percentage, RBI and OPS. He was such a feared hitter at the end of his career that he led the league in intentional walks in three of his last four seasons.
He is renowned for his clutch performance, but he was just a damned good hitter, clutch or otherwise. His lifetime OPS is among the top 40 of all time. Here are some players with a lower career OPS: Hank Aaron, Frank Robinson, Albert Pujols, Al Simmons, Mike Schmidt, Ken Griffey Jr …
I’ve made my point. Good individual player. Good team player. Fan favorite. Good guy. He’s in and he deserves it.