It is no secret that the vast of majority of us here at Talking Chop think very highly of Andruw Jones’ Hall of Fame candidacy despite the tepid support he had received his first couple of years on the ballot. Aside from the fact that he was one of the best defensive centerfielders the game has ever seen (if not THE best although he certainly has some real competition there), he accumulated 67 fWAR in his 17 seasons in the league while connecting for 434 home runs. That other candidates with...well, more questionable resumes were performing better in Hall of Fame voting while Andruw was struggling to just stay on the ballot was as confusing to us as anyone.
However, in 2019, Andruw saw a significant increase in votes this go around early on in the process and the fantastic tracker of Hall of Fame votes that Ryan Thibodaux does each year had him with a net gain of 30 votes on public ballots heading into the announcement of the next Hall of Fame class on Tuesday evening.
While it wasn’t enough to get him into the Hall of Fame, Andruw did see a significant jump in support at the end as he finished with 19.4% of the vote.
To the surprise of exactly no one, Derek Jeter was inducted into the Hall. While his defensive acumen as a shortstop is grossly overrated, there is no question that he was a great player in his career and played on some great Yankee teams. He was a lock to get into Cooperstown in this class the day he retired. Jeter was not unanimous, though, as he got just 99.7% of votes. I assume there will be some discussion
Other than that, Larry Walker and Curt Schilling were the two candidates (other than Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens who had been hovering just outside induction for a while now) that had realistic chances of getting into the Hall with Jeter in this class. Both had, barely, enough support on public ballots for induction according to the above HOF vote tracker, but the non-public ballots are often very different in terms of voting demographics and tend to bring candidates’ percentages down overall.
While Schilling was unable to get in on this ballot, Larry Walker was voted into the Hall in his last year of eligibility on the ballot. Walker had been dinged for a chunk of his career numbers happening when his home park was Coors Field in previous votes, but his status as a five tool player for the vast majority of his career and impressive numbers proved to be enough to get him in in his final year on the ballot.