Yankees Derek Jeter could be lone Hall of Fame inductee in 2020
With Yankees great Mariano Rivera set to be enshrined into Cooperstown on Sunday, we take a look at next year’s potential class — and it’s hard to see anyone other than Derek Jeter getting the necessary 75 percent of the vote.
Sunday will be an extraordinary day in Upstate New York, as six men will be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame. As the first unanimous selection in Cooperstown, Yankees icon Mariano Rivera will headline a stellar group of players that includes Edgar Martinez, Roy Halladay, Mike Mussina, Lee Smith and Harold Baines.
With Rivera and Halladay both being first-ballot Hall of Famers, Mussina in his sixth year of eligibility, Martinez in his 10th and final year of consideration — and Baines elected by the Veterans’ Committee, it got me thinking how crowded the induction stage will (or won’t) be in 2020.
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While it remains to be seen if Derek Jeter becomes the second player ever to receive 100 percent of the BBWAA vote, there will be some that say he wasn’t the greatest player at his position (like Mo was), therefore, potentially leaving him off the ballot.
However, it’s hard to look at Jeter’s resume and say he’s anything other than “Mr. Unaimous,” as former teammate Andruw Jones recently said to TMZ.
"“If Jeter don’t get 100 percent, we got a problem then,” Jones said."
Throughout his 20-year major league career, Jeter collected 3,465 hits (sixth all-time), slashed .310/.377/.440 and played the second-most games ever at shortstop (2,674).
There’s also the accolades most are familiar with:
- 1996 AL Rookie of the Year
- Five-time World Series Champion
- Five-time Silver Slugger
- Five-time Gold Glover
- 14-time All-Star
- All-Star Game & World Series MVP
As for the former players that will be first-time eligible or those that remain on the ballot, it’s hard to see anyone getting the necessary 75 percent of the vote to join The Captain and his career 72.4 WAR in the hall.
Although the official HOF ballot won’t come out until November, 14 returnees with the highest previous percentage of the vote are highlighted by Curt Schilling (64.7 percent), Larry Walker (59.7 percent), Roger Clemens (59.5 percent), Barry Bonds (59.1 percent) and Omar Vizquel (42.8 percent).
Some of the new additions, while solid big leaguers are nowhere near qualified for entrance into the HOF — Bobby Abreu, Jason Giambi, Cliff Lee, Alfonso Soriano, Paul Konerko, Adam Dunn — the list goes on.
While Schilling is creeping towards election, he still needs 60 votes. Walker saw a giant surge as well, but he requires a whopping 87 votes to stand next to Jeter.
Anything is possible, as Tim Raines and Edgar Martinez recently proved, but it’s far more likely that Derek Jeter is the one and only man elected into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2020 — even if he isn’t a unanimous choice (which he should be).