98.5 The Sports Hub staff report
After coming up 16 votes shy of punching his ticket to the Baseball Hall of Fame in what turned out to be an inductee-less 2021 class, former Red Sox ace Curt Schilling is done waiting for his potential call to Cooperstown.
“I will not participate in the final year of voting,” Schilling wrote in a 1,100-word Facebook post. “I am requesting to be removed from the ballot. I’ll defer to the veterans committee and men whose opinions actually matter and who are in a position to actually judge a player. I don’t think I’m a Hall of Famer as I’ve often stated but if former players think I am then I’ll accept that with honor.”
In his post, the always-outspoken and controversial Schilling, who will be eligible for the 10th and final time in 2022, noted himself as ‘mentally done’ with the voting process, which requires a player receiving 75 percent of votes from the BBWAA for induction.
“I know math and I know trends and I know I will not attain the 75% threshold for induction,” Schilling wrote.
It doesn’t help Schilling’s case that next year’s ballot will add some other superstar-though-controversial talents such as Alex Rodriguez and David Ortiz to the mix, while Steroid Era shutouts like Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens will be in the same boat as Schilling and will have to hope they can push themselves over the hump and into the Hall in what will be their final year of eligibility. To Schilling’s point, 2021 may have been math’s best chance at getting him into Cooperstown.
The BBWAA disagreed with Schilling’s assessment, however, said that Schilling’s request would be in violation of the rules set in place by Hall’s board of directors, and suggested Schilling remain on the ballot next year.
“Mr. Schilling has fulfilled both of those requirements and should remain on the ballot for consideration by the voting body for what would be his final year on the BBWAA ballot in 2022,” the BBWAA’s Jack O’Connell said in a statement. “The Hall of Fame assigned the BBWAA to be the electorate in 1936. This association has abided by the rules for 85 years and shall continue to do so. The BBWAA urges the board to reject Mr. Schilling’s request.”
A 20-year veteran, Schilling’s career accolades included 216 career victories, six All-Star nods, and three World Series championships, including two with the Red Sox in 2004 and 2007. Considered one of the game’s great postseason pitchers, Schilling also co-won the 2001 World Series MVP as a member of the Arizona Diamondbacks.