Baseball Toaster The Griddle
A place where a man can slow down to a walk and live his life full measure, but he has to keep his watch on Pacific Time.
Frozen Toast
Google Search
The Griddle

02  01 

12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

12  10  07 
06  05  04  03 
Suggestions, comments, ring the catcher's interference alarm?

Email me at

The stuff I keep track of
Random Game Callbacks

Select a date:

Personal favorites that I wrote
There will be no unanimous choices in the HOF voting Tuesday
2007-01-07 09:49
by Bob Timmermann

Tim Sullivan of the San Diego Union reports that HOF voter Paul Ladewski of the Daily Southtown from Chicago has submitted a blank ballot to the BBWAA for the upcoming election. Ladewski refuses to vote for any player from "the steroid era." Further info here.

I think the real reason for Ladewski's stance is that when he was a kid, he read a biography of William Plumer.

Link via Baseball Think Factory.

The HOF balloting results will be announced Tuesday.

As I think more about this, I think Ladewski's stance isn't all that courageous, but really more self-serving. He can make himself the story and he accomplishes very little about the problem of PEDs in baseball. He is merely just declaring a generation of players "unclean" in his eyes, but ones from other eras get free passes despite all of the other problems of that time (such as segregation). It's very easy to condemn a whole group of people without having to investigate each one individually. Ladewski claims to have been a big baseball fan since the 1950s. If he was alive in 1942, he probably would have been a big fan of Japanese internment also.

Ladewski's Daily Southtown reply to criticism.

2007-01-07 10:13:41
1.   D4P
Is it possible/reasonable to point to any era in baseball and proclaim with 100% confidence that said era was a "performance-enhancing drug-free era"...?
2007-01-07 12:19:23
2.   Andrew Shimmin
I agree with Joe Sheehan: "If any player is going to be a unanimous selection between now and Greg Maddux's eligibility, it will be [Cal Ripken Jr.] This is a terrific opportunity to identify the voters who should have their privileges revoked."
2007-01-07 12:58:59
3.   D4P
Everybody wants to be the next Fred Hickman
2007-01-07 13:18:46
4.   Bob Timmermann
So nobody else is a big fan of "The Era of Good Feelings"?
2007-01-07 13:25:11
5.   Shaun P
Good. The last thing that team-stealer known as Cal Ripken Jr should get is unanimous election to the Hall of Fame. Personally I hope half the upstate NY crowd boos the heck out of him on Induction Day, arrogant team-stealing jerk.
2007-01-07 13:26:22
6.   Shaun P
Oh, and here's hoping enough other people don't vote for that team stealer so that Tom Seaver remains the highest voter percentage getter. The team-stealer doesn't deserve that distinction either.
2007-01-07 13:31:03
7.   Bob Timmermann
I have thought more about Ladewski's stance and wrote about it up top.
2007-01-07 13:37:49
8.   D4P
I agree. While I'm not unsympathetic to the desire to avoid awarding cheaters, it's seems naive to think the existing HOF members are pristine and above reproach. I'm sure there are plenty of spitballers, sandpaper/emory boarders, pinetarers, sign-stealers, drug-users, etc. already in there.
2007-01-07 14:02:41
9.   Tom Meagher
So is he saying Blyleven took steroids?
2007-01-07 14:05:05
10.   Bob Timmermann
Ladewski was quoted in the story as saying:

"I refuse to vote for any veteran who played in that period, even if he was not a suspected (steroid) user," Ladewski wrote in an e-mail. "In my opinion, any such player had an obligation to blow the whistle in the best interests of the game, even if he did it anonymously.

"A player of (Tony Gwynn's) quality should receive 100 percent of the votes," one sportswriter said of Mr. Padre.
"I understand this is an unusually hard-line approach, but I believe it's my responsibility to uphold the Hall of Fame standards in whatever way necessary."

2007-01-07 14:16:19
11.   Jon Weisman
If someone did it anonymously, how would Ladewski know?
2007-01-07 15:11:46
12.   Andrew Shimmin
5- I don't understand what you mean. Which team did he steal? I can't find anything about his involvement with the Nats move; did he have something to do with it?
2007-01-07 15:13:56
13.   grandcosmo
11. This is no time for logic.
2007-01-07 15:16:41
14.   Bill Crain
The Aberdeen IronBirds, owned by Ripken, used to be the Utica Blue Sox.
2007-01-07 16:07:14
15.   Andrew Shimmin
14- Thanks. Also, wow.
2007-01-07 17:22:32
16.   JimCobain
What a sanctimonious moron. Where was Mr. Ladewski DURING the seroid era? He is a reporter. The only way I buy his argument is if I see that he was writing article after article about steroid abuse in baseball during the time of 1980-2004. As a reporter it's his job to blow the whistle not have players narc on other players. The media is very quick to point fingers but they stayed quiet. Lupica made millions on his book "The Summer of '98." No where in there is a mention of steriods. Now he points fingers. What a joke.
2007-01-07 18:21:48
17.   dianagramr
Did Mr. Ladewski fill out his ballot under the influence of illegal drugs?
2007-01-07 21:50:53
18.   Greg Brock
Just another case of a journalist attempting to make himself the story. Nothing new, and pretty par for the course in the last twenty years.

Somewhere along the line, journalists decided to become crusaders rather than journalists. I get into this debate with my family members (a few reporters and editors) all the time.

It may have always been this way, but it has gotten considerably worse.

2007-01-07 22:11:42
19.   Bob Timmermann
I have not yet examined Max Mercy's ballot.
2007-01-07 22:34:59
20.   das411
2 - Amen! But I've always wondered why anybody could possibly have voted against Willie Mays for HOF. Has anybody ever looked into this?

14 - Does an IronBirds vs IronPigs matchup have any change of happening ever? Please??

16 17 18 - Agreed. Thank you 24/7 news channels...

2007-01-07 23:11:35
21.   Bob Timmermann
Ladewski speaks for himself in an update at top.
2007-01-08 00:28:35
22.   Robert Fiore
You'd have to be a nitwit to say that Tom Seaver didn't belong in the Hall of Fame. Then again, you'd have to an even bigger nitwit to say that Willie Mays or Henry Aaron or Mickey Mantle or Joe DiMaggio or Stan Musial didn't belong in the Hall of Fame. Ladewski's error (only one of them, but the biggest one) is to presume that because no one gets elected to the Hall unanimously then voting against undeniably qualified candidates is justifiable. What it actually means is that in any given year a minimum of 1.2% of the Hall of Fame voters are nitwits, and Ladewski is one of them. It should be noted that being a self-righteous, moralistic, grandstanding nitwit is not as bad as being a racist nitwit. It would be an interesting philosophical question as to whether more undeniable candidates have been denied unanimous election by racist nitwits or by moralistic nitwits. On the other hand you could say that Ladewski is a member of the third great faction of nitwits, the nostalgic sentimentalist nitwit, whose vote is based on the proposition that the modern day ballplayer is a pale shadow of the ballplayers of the nitwit's youth.
2007-01-08 06:28:22
23.   Penarol1916
18. It has not gotten considerably worse, perhaps since the 1960's it is more prevalent, but do you really think that it is even remotely as common as it was in the days of the yellow journalism of Hearst and the muckraking of Mencken? There is a very interesting book about New York newspaper wars during the early 1900's about the three competing schools of thought of journalism and how the idea of objective reporters just reporting the facts and not advocating for a stance only became the dominant form of journalism in America in the '30's and '40's.
2007-01-08 07:40:52
24.   rbj
Babe Ruth and a whole lot of other players took a not merely illegal but unconstitutional drug during the 1920s. Probably not performance enhancing, but still, if you're going to be sanctimonious about it, be consistent.
2007-01-08 08:30:14
25.   Greg Brock
Consuming alcohol was not illegal during prohibition. Producing and selling alcohol was illegal.
2007-01-08 11:30:15
26.   murphy
i guess the real question is: when does the "steroid era" end? and when EXACTLY did it begin?

seeing as he is the authority on this matter, perhaps mr. ladewski would be kind enough to share.

i would hate to see someone squeak by in a HOF election because his or her career fell on cusp of the aforementioned time period unbeknownst to several ignorant members of the BWWAA.

2007-01-08 12:06:19
27.   Bob Timmermann
Ladewski says 1993, "Give or take a year".
2007-01-08 12:11:03
28.   Hythloday
I don't know that Ladewski is trying to make himself the story, but he is taking this all a bit too seriously. It is a HOF for a game.

Besides that it is the internal logic of his argument that is flawed. His criteria for judgement seems to be based upon a specious history rather than available facts. He cites a lack of evidence as his reason for not voting. What evidence does he require? Will he continue to use whatever metric he is using in the future?

Comment status: comments have been closed. Baseball Toaster is now out of business.