It's probably not a shock, but there'll be no need for acceptance speeches by any of the Diamondbacks on this year's Hall of Fame ballot. Though at least they got some votes, which is more than can be said for most of the former Diamondbacks who have reached the ballot, such as Devon White and Bobby Witt. Indeed, I believe the only D-back for whom X marked the spot was Todd Stottlemyre, who received one vote in the 2008 ballot. This year, while there was a positive landslide in comparison, our franchise players still fell far short of the 75% needed for election. That was only reached in this year's results by Rickie Henderson (94.8%) and Jim Rice (76.4%).
On the ballot this time for Arizona were several members of the 2001 World Series team, headed by Mark Grace, who received 22 votes, or 4.1% of the vote. Matt Williams got seven votes (1.3%) and Jay Bell got a couple of ballots (0.4%). Dan Plesac, who appeared for the Diamondbacks in 1999 and 2000 and is sixth on the career list for games by a pitcher (1,064), was also on the ballot but received no votes. Unfortunately, the number of votes received means that none of the Diamondbacks made the 5% cutoff, needed for them to get another shot in 2010. So the only way Mark Grace will get into Cooperstown, is if he buys a ticket. :-) Next year will see Roberto Alomar and Shane "One-inning wonder" Reynolds on the ballot, so we'll see if they have any more luck - Alomar will likely be the closest yet.
On the rest of the ballot, Ricky Henderson was a lock, though I'm surprised he wasn't closer to a unanimous choice than he came - by my math, that's almost 30 people who decided he didn't deserve to get in, despite ten All-Star appearances, 3,055 hits, a career OPS+ of 127 and 468 more stolen-bases than anyone else in the history of the game. It's nice to see people holding the Hall of Fame to very high standards, but really... Rice is perhaps slightly more borderline, but has been at 50% or more every year since 2000, and became the first player elected in his final year of eligibility since Ralph Kiner in 1975. One wonders what, exactly, changed the minds of almost half the voters between 1999, his fifth year on the ballot, when he got only 29.4%, and now. They're the first LFs to get in since Yastrzemski in 1989.
The interesting one is Mark McGwire, whose percentage of support was marginally decreased, from 23.6% last season, to 21.9% today. That's ten voters who decided he was no longer a decent candidate and, while it keeps him on the ballot for 2010, it's going to be an uphill struggle for him.
If you had to vote for one, which former Diamondback on the Hall of Fame ballot this year would get your Hall of Fame vote?
Jay Bell (6 votes)
Mark Grace (152 votes)
Dan Plesac (7 votes)
Matt Williams (29 votes)
194 total votes