Monday, December 05, 2011

Ron Santo inducted to HOF

Ron Santo has finally got his due. Too late in my opinion as he is not alive to see it. I may be a die-hard St. Louis fan but I know HOF-caliber ballplayers when I see them.
Santo was the lone candidate among a ballot of 10 men, whose greatest contributions were realized between 1947 and 1972, to receive the 12 votes necessary to earn 75 percent and election to the Hall of Fame by the Golden Era Committee. Santo received 15 votes from the 16-member electorate and will be enshrined into the Baseball Hall of Fame on July 22nd in Cooperstown.

"The numbers of are there," said Committee member and Hall of Famer Billy Williams. "Everybody saw the numbers, the home runs, the Gold Gloves. And I think everyone looked at it with a different view saying, 'This guy should be in the Hall of Fame.'"

Santo died on December 3, 2010, but his wife believes he is celebrating today.

"I am sure he is smiling down on this day," she said. "I am a believer in what's meant to be. I believe he was meant to be in the Hall, unfortunately it couldn't be during his lifetime. But I think the message is to never give up. This was always his dream."

Santo becomes the 12th major league third baseman to be elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame, the first elected at the position since Wade Boggs in 2005. Including three selections from the Negro leagues, there are now 15 third basemen in the Hall of Fame. In 15 major league seasons, Santo compiled a .277 lifetime batting average, with 2,254 hits in 2,243 games, while totaling 1,331 runs batted in and 365 doubles.[...]

Santo played for 14 seasons with the Chicago Cubs and one with the Chicago White Sox and was a nine-time All-Star. He hit 342 career home runs and won five Rawlings Gold Glove Awards for his defense at third base. He was honored by the Cubs Walk of Fame, becoming a member of the inaugural Class of 1992 and was selected to the club's all-century team in 1999. He was also a Cubs broadcaster for 21 years.[...]

"[During the voting process], some people brought out more than the numbers of Ron Santo," said Williams. "And talked about what he did for the community."
Here's how the voting went down:

Results of the Golden Era Ballot (12 votes needed for election): Ron Santo (15 votes, 93.75%); Jim Kaat (10 votes, 62.5%); Gil Hodges (9 votes, 56.25%); Minnie Minoso (9 votes, 56.25%); Tony Oliva (8 votes, 50%); Buzzie Bavasi, Ken Boyer, Charlie Finley, Allie Reynolds and Luis Tiant each received less than three votes.

The 16-member Golden Era Committee was comprised of Hall of Fame members Hank Aaron, Pat Gillick, Al Kaline, Ralph Kiner, Tommy Lasorda, Juan Marichal, Brooks Robinson and Billy Williams; major league executives Paul Beeston (Blue Jays), Bill DeWitt (Cardinals), Roland Hemond (Diamondbacks), Gene Michael (Yankees) and Al Rosen (retired); and veteran media members Dick Kaegel, Jack O'Connell and Dave Van Dyck. Hall of Fame Chairman of the Board Jane Forbes Clark served as the non-voting chairman of the Golden Era Committee.

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