CINCINNATI - Jeff Bagwell, Tim Raines and Pudge Rodriguez were elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame Wednesday night, while Trevor Hoffman and Vladimir Guerrero fell just short.
Ties to PED use kept Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens out for the fifth year, but both gathered more votes than last year and moved closer to election.
Two longtime Cincinnati baseball writers and now WCPO contributors have taken opposite stands on Bonds and Clemens. John Fay voted for both this year and explains why in this column. John Erardi said he would refuse to participate in future Hall of Fame elections if either one even got 50 percent of the vote. Both did.
Meanwhile, Rose, baseball's hit king, is banned for betting on Reds games and begged the Hall of Fame last year just to be on the ballot.
Bagwell drew 86.2 percent, Raines 86 percent and Rodriguez 76 percent - four more votes than the necessary 332 of 442 (75 percent) from baseball writers,
Hoffman was five votes shy and Guerrero 15 short. Edgar Martinez was next at 58.6 percent, followed by Clemens at 54.1 percent and Bonds at 53.8 percent.
The complete vote: Jeff Bagwell 381 (86.2), Tim Raines 380 (86.0), Ivan Rodriguez 336 (76.0), Trevor Hoffman 327 (74.0), Vladimir Guerrero 317 (71.7), Edgar Martinez 259 (58.6), Roger Clemens 239 (54.1), Barry Bonds 238 (53.8), Mike Mussina 229 (51.8), Curt Schilling 199 (45.0), Lee Smith 151 (34.2), Manny Ramirez 105 (23.8), Larry Walker 97 (21.9), Fred McGriff 96 (21.7), Jeff Kent 74 (16.7), Gary Sheffield 59 (13.3), Billy Wagner 45 (10.2), Sammy Sosa 38 (8.6), Jorge Posada 17 (3.8), Magglio Ordonez 3 (0.7), Edgar Renteria 2 (0.5), Jason Varitek 2 (0.5), Tim Wakefield 1 (0.2), Casey Blake 0, Pat Burrell 0, Orlando Cabrera 0, Mike Cameron 0, J.D. Drew 0, Carlos Guillen 0, Derrek Lee 0, Melvin Mora 0, Arthur Rhodes 0, Freddy Sanchez 0, Matt Stairs 0.
Players will be inducted July 30 during ceremonies at Cooperstown along with former Commissioner Bud Selig and retired Kansas City and Atlanta Braves executive John Schuerholz, both elected last month by a veterans committee.
Bagwell was a four-time All-Star who spent his entire career with Houston, finishing with a .297 batting average, 401 homers and 1,401 RBIs.
Raines, fifth in career stolen bases, was a seven-time All-Star and the 1986 NL batting champion. He spent 13 of 23 big league seasons with the Montreal Expos, who left Canada to become the Washington Nationals for the 2005 season, and joins Andre Dawson and Gary Carter as the only players to enter the Hall representing the Expos.
Raines hit .294 with a .385 on-base percentage, playing during a time when Rickey Henderson was the sport's dominant speedster.
Rodriguez, a 14-time All-Star who hit .296 with 311 homers and 1,332 RBIs, was never disciplined for PEDs but former Texas teammate Jose Canseco alleged in a 2005 book that he injected the catcher with steroids. Asked whether he was on the list of players who allegedly tested positive for steroids during baseball's 2003 survey, Rodriguez said in 2009: "Only God knows."
Bonds, a seven-time MVP who holds the season and career home run records, received 36.2 percent in his initial appearance, in 2013, and jumped from 44.3 percent last year. Clemens, a seven-time Cy Young Award winner, rose from 45.2 percent last year.
Bonds and Clemens can remain on the ballot for five more years as long as they get at least five percent of the vote.
Bonds was indicted on charges he lied to a grand jury in 2003 when he denied using PEDs, but a jury failed to reach a verdict on three counts he made false statements and convicted him on one obstruction of justice count, finding he gave an evasive answer. The conviction was overturned on appeal in 2015.
Clemens was acquitted on one count of obstruction of Congress, three counts of making false statements to Congress and two counts of perjury, all stemming from his denials of drug use.
A 12-time All-Star on the ballot for the first time, Ramirez was twice suspended for violating baseball's drug agreement. He helped the Boston Red Sox win World Series titles in 2004 and '07, the first for the franchise since 1918, and hit .312 with 555 home runs and 1,831 RBIs in 19 big league seasons.
Several notable players will join them in the competition for votes in upcoming years: Chipper Jones in 2018, Mariano Rivera and Roy Halladay in 2019, and Derek Jeter in 2020.