A 16-member committee will meet in San Diego Sunday to consider candidates whose greatest contributions to baseball came from 1970 to 1987 for the Hall of Fame.
The ballot of nine former players and one late executive includes Steve Garvey, who played the final five seasons of his 19-season major league career with the San Diego Padres.
When candidates from what the Hall of Fame defines as the Modern Baseball Era were last considered for election to the Hall of Fame in December 2017, Garvey was among six candidates on the 10-man ballot to receive fewer than seven votes from a 16-member committee.
The exact total was not released by the Hall of Fame. Twelve votes, 75% of the committee, were required for election. The same rule is in effect in 2019.
Pitcher Jack Morris, who spent most of his career with the Detroit Tigers, and shortstop Alan Trammell, who played for the Tigers for his entire 20-year career, were both elected to the Hall of Fame from the Modern Baseball Era in 2017. Morris received 14 votes and Trammell 13.
Ted Simmons, a catcher for the St. Louis Cardinals and two other teams during a 21-year career from 1968-88, fell one vote short of being elected.
The late Marvin Miller, who headed the Major League Baseball Players Association from 1966-82, received seven votes, the only other person to receive at least seven votes.
Simmons and Miller are also on the 2019 ballot, as is Tommy John, who won 288 games, 26th most in baseball history. All but two of the pitchers ahead of John are in the Hall of Fame.
The exceptions are Roger Clemens, ninth on the list with 354 victories, who has been dogged by suspicion he used performance-enhancing drugs, and the 19th-century pitcher Bobby Mathews, 25th on the list with 297 victories, who played his entire career when the pitching mound was 50 feet from home plate, 10 feet, 6 inches less than the current distance.
John was also among the 2017 Modern Baseball Era candidates who failed to receive at least seven votes.
Garvey played for the Los Angeles Dodgers from 1969-82 and was the National League MVP in 1974, helping lead the Dodgers to their first pennant since 1966.
Garvey had a .294 career batting average with 2,599 hits, 272 home runs, and 1,308 RBI. He was a 10-time All-Star selection and the MVP of the 1974 and 1978 games, the latter played in San Diego.
Garvey’s 1,207 consecutive game streak from 1975 to 1983 was the third longest in major league history when it ended when he broke his thumb in a home plate collision on July 29, 1983. It is now the fourth longest behind Cal Ripken Jr. (2,632), Lou Gehrig (2,130) and Everett Scott (1,307).
The first 1,107 games were with the Dodgers and the final 100 were with the Padres.
Garvey went from a wild-throwing third baseman to a slick-fielding first baseman, receiving four Gold Glove awards and sharing the Dodgers’ highest career fielding percentage for a first baseman, .996, with Wes Parker.
The highlight of Garvey’s career with the Padres was his selection as the MVP of the 1984 NL Championship Series as he helped them overcome a two games to none deficit to defeat the Chicago Cubs three games to two to win their first pennant.
The closest Garvey came to being elected to the Hall of Fame by members of the Baseball Writers Association of America was in 1995, his third year of eligibility, when he received 42.6% of the vote. He received over 40% two other times.
Votes from 75% of those voting is required to be elected to the Hall of Fame.
The committee appointed by the Hall of Fame to evaluate the Modern Baseball Era candidates consists of Hall of Famers George Brett, Rod Carew, Dennis Eckersley, Eddie Murray, Ozzie Smith and Robin Yount; six major league executives and four media members or historians.
The meeting is being held in San Diego in connection with baseball’s winter meetings which will run through Thursday.
Figures from the Modern Baseball Era are considered twice in a five-year period for election to the Hall of Fame. They will next be considered in 2022.
Individuals whose greatest contributions to baseball came from 1950 to 1969, what the Hall of Fame defines as the Golden Days Era, and before 1950, the Early Baseball Era, will be considered for the Hall of Fame next year.
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