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Who would Pinstripe Alley elect to the Baseball Hall of Fame from the 2022 ballot?

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It’d be a busy weekend in Cooperstown if we had our druthers.

79th MLB All-Star Game Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

The seemingly interminable Hall of Fame voting season is nearing its close. A week from today, the National Baseball Hall of Fame will reveal if the Baseball Writers’ Association of America selected anyone as part of the 2022 Hall of Fame class. Veterans Committee honorees Tony Oliva and Jim Kaat are already in line to be celebrated, as well as representatives on behalf of fellow inductees Minnie Miñoso, Gil Hodges, Bud Fowler, and Buck O’Neil.

Someone from more recent years could potentially join that group on stage. Last year, no one reached the 75-percent threshold needed from the BBWAA ballots to earn induction, but if Ryan Thibodaux’s vote tracker is any indication, there’s a decent chance that someone will make it for 2022.

None of the PSA writers are in the BBWAA, but as has become our custom, we wanted to weigh in on the debate. I gave the staff sample ballots and 13 writers returned entries. Thus, candidates needed 10 votes to reach the 75 percent required for our virtual Hall of Fame.

So who made the cut from our staff? Well, quite a few players — nine to be precise:

Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens were unanimous picks. To those who have followed the PSA ballots over the years, they were inevitable slam dunk picks. We’ve always supported their candidacies despite a fair portion of writers and fans not wanting them in Cooperstown due to their PED connections. I don’t think I’m speaking out of turn here when I say that the view of the staff is that they were such overwhelmingly dominant players that it’d be silly to keep them out of the Hall of Fame for PEDs when they played almost entirely before testing was really enforced, and when key enablers of that era, like Bud Selig and Tony La Russa, were welcomed to the Hall with open arms.

Todd Helton and Alex Rodriguez were also unanimous. Helton’s candidacy has quickly ascended since debuting on the ballot in 2019 with just 16.5 percent of the vote, likely in part due to longtime Rockies teammate Larry Walker’s induction, and the growing realization that he was such a force at bat that he wasn’t merely a product of Coors Field. As for A-Rod? Unlike Bonds and Clemens, he did get suspended for PED use, so your mileage may vary as to how that affects your view of him. Nonetheless, A-Rod did “do the time” as it were, and it’s hard to keep such a fantastic all-around player out of Cooperstown. It might take him awhile in real life though, as he’s appeared on under half the public ballots thus far.

Another player who was suspended for PED use and made it anyway was Manny Ramirez, albeit one vote shy of unanimity. Gary Sheffield and David Ortiz had PED links as well, but like Bonds and Clemens, they were pre-suspension era connections, and all three were menacing enough hitters to make our collective cut anyway. For what it’s worth, Thibodaux has Ortiz as the most likely player to be enshrined in 2022 from this entire group at the moment, as he’s appeared on 83.5 percent of public ballots as of Monday night (Bonds and Clemens trail in the 75-77 percent range). Goodwill goes a long way, it seems.

Helton isn’t the only “clean” player in our class either, by the way. Scott Rolen and Andruw Jones were simply outstanding on defense for the majority of their careers, and they were pretty tough to get out at the plate, too. Like Helton, Rolen and Jones have recently zoomed up the ballot percentage totals, and given that they both have five years left of eligibility remaining, they will probably make it one day.

Here are the specifics on the votes went down:

PSA staff HoF vote results

Writer Player 1 Player 2 Player 3 Player 4 Player 5 Player 6 Player 7 Player 8 Player 9 Player 10
Writer Player 1 Player 2 Player 3 Player 4 Player 5 Player 6 Player 7 Player 8 Player 9 Player 10
Andrew Bonds Clemens Helton Rodriguez Ramirez Rolen Sheffield Jones Ortiz Abreu
Jake Bonds Clemens Helton Rodriguez Ramirez Rolen Sheffield Jones Ortiz
Pavich Bonds Clemens Helton Rodriguez Ramirez Rolen Sheffield Jones Ortiz Sosa
Josh Bonds Clemens Helton Rodriguez Ramirez Rolen Sheffield Lincecum Ortiz Wagner
Matt Bonds Clemens Helton Rodriguez Ramirez Rolen Sheffield Wagner Ortiz Sosa
John Bonds Clemens Helton Rodriguez Ramirez Rolen Hunter Jones Kent Wagner
Peter Bonds Clemens Helton Rodriguez Ramirez Rolen Sheffield Jones Ortiz Wagner
Jon Bonds Clemens Helton Rodriguez Ramirez Rolen Sheffield Jones Abreu
Erin Bonds Clemens Helton Rodriguez Ramirez Rolen Sosa Jones Ortiz
Jesse Bonds Clemens Helton Rodriguez Ramirez Rolen Sheffield Jones Ortiz Wagner
Kevin Bonds Clemens Helton Rodriguez Ramirez Schilling Sheffield Jones Ortiz Kent
Kunj Bonds Clemens Helton Rodriguez Ramirez Rolen Sheffield Kent Pettitte Lincecum
Dan B. Bonds Clemens Helton Rodriguez Sosa Kent Sheffield Jones Ortiz Wagner

Get your own votes in!

Disagree with us? Well, you can submit your own ballot in our community Hall of Fame vote! Follow the link to a Google Sheets form, and we’ll tally the ballots over the course of the next week. No one made the 75-percent cut from the 2021 group, so I’ll be curious to see if that changes for 2022. Either way, I’ll reveal the results of that survey next Tuesday in the same article about the official Hall of Fame ballot results.