piece you should have read if you have not already, a lot of voters have set up their stalls, decidedly against Bagwell.
I think the article that has got up most people's noses, is this one from MLB writer Dan Graziano, but at least he has explained his decision if it is totally boneheaded. A pretty decent refutation of his entire argument can be perused here, so I will not repeat any of it.
Probably the most pithy piece on the entire thing is this from Craig Calcaterra, over at HardBall Talk (h/t to Astros County for link), who pretty much destroys Ross Newhan's argument (former LA Times writer). So they keep Bagwell out of the HOF to protect their standards, but they let Bruce Sutter in, opening the door for a whole slew of closers, whose value is totally inflated in today's game.
But even without the steroids hullaballo, there are those who are totally stuck in the past, and seem to dismiss anything resembling sabermetrics as a lie, and still poo-poo Bagwell's candidacy because he didn't hit 500 home runs, because he didn't hit well in the playoffs, and because they never really bothered to watch him play because he played for a loser team.
Even the baseball bloggers alliance ballot, unofficial as it is, has Bagwell at just 62%, which is surprising considering that bloggers seem to be more rightheaded on things like Sabermetrics and steroids.
As I prophetically pointed out five months ago, Bagwell's candidacy has blown into something far bigger, a battleground between those who believe everyone should have a black mark against their name merely because they played in the same era as the juicers, and those who have the good sense to see that Bagwell was a guy who was never suspected by those of clear and sound mind, and if you suspect everyone of everything, with no proof whatsoever, you belong in the 1950s where Joe McCarthy ruled the roost of finger pointing and back stabbing.
Still, Bagwell will have to wait, possibly until 2013, when Craig Biggio will appear on the ballot, and let's see if anyone has the temerity to accuse him of steroids abuse. "40 years old and he still looks like a bat-boy." Both the Killer B's going into the Hall together will be a photo op too good to miss for most, but it will leave a sour taste in the mouth of most Houstonians, as they nurse a slight against 'their' man.
Photo found on flikr.