The National Baseball Hall of Fame announced the results of this year’s voting process, and Alex Rodriguez wasn’t elected in his first year on the ballot despite having some of the most impressive stats in MLB history.
Former Boston Red Sox slugger David Ortiz was the only player elected for Cooperstown, with 77.9 percent of the ballots.
No other player surpassed the 75-percent threshold needed for election.
Rodriguez, one of the best players of his generation, only obtained 34.3 percent of votes.
Alex Rodriguez came in at 34.3 percent on his first year on the ballot.
— Joel Sherman (@Joelsherman1) January 25, 2022
If he hadn’t been caught and suspended using steroids, he would have been a first-ballot Hall of Famer without a doubt.
A-Rod slashed .295/.380/.550 with 696 home runs, 2,021 runs scored, 2,086 RBI, 329 stolen bases, and 113.7 Wins Above Replacement (WAR)
He won the MVP award three times in his career, tied for second most all-time behind Barry Bonds’ seven.
He is a 14-time All-Star (1996–1998, 2000–2008, 2010, 2011), a World Series champion (2009), a two-time Gold Glove Award winner (2002, 2003), a 10-time Silver Slugger Award winner (1996, 1998–2003, 2005, 2007, 2008), a batting champion (1996), a five-time American League home run leader (2001–2003, 2005, 2007), and a two-time MLB RBI leader (2002, 2007).
An Incredible Resume, But…
Few players have Rodriguez’s resume.
However, there is the matter with steroids, which is hard to ignore and different from other stars.
Many players have been linked to steroid use in the nineties and 2000s, but only a handful have been caught after MLB decided to take issue of performance-enhancing drugs seriously.
Rodriguez denied he ever used PEDs in 2007, but only a couple of years later, in 2009, he admitted he used them from 2001 to 2003 while with the Texas Rangers.
However, in 2013, he infamously clashed with the New York Yankees for allegedly acquiring steroids as part of the Biogenesis scandal.
The league suspended him for 211 games in 2013, which was later reduced to 162 after an arbitration process.
He missed the whole 2014 season as a result.
Voters Aren’t Forgiving Players In The Steroid Era
As a result of all this, his future looks murky as far as the Hall of Fame concerns.
Bonds, for all his issues, didn’t fail a test or get suspended for steroids use.
Much like fellow slugger and Hall of Fame candidate Manny Ramirez, however, A-Rod was suspended, as he violated the rules.
Let’s not put A-Rod in with that group. If you don’t see how his case for the HOF is completely different than the others then you are blind. https://t.co/fiRZtKRCEg
— Caleb Noble (@calebnoble08) December 23, 2021
All things considered, A-Rod has a long way to go in the Hall of Fame voting process.
His low percentage is proof that voters hold him lower than other stars in the steroid era who didn’t fail a test or got suspended.
If Bonds’ ceiling was capped because a third of voters are clearly unwilling to forgive his links with steroids, then A-Rod will have a tougher time making it into Cooperstown.
He may eventually get in, if not via the regular voting process, through the Today’s Game Era committee.
But his chances are currently not good.NEXT: Why Did Barry Bonds Leave The Pirates?