It takes 75% of the vote to propel you into the hall of fame, and for the second straight year, Seattle's favorite son was many votes short. Martinez got only 32.9% of the votes, down from 36% of the vote that he received last year. Many expected it to take a while for hall voters to overcome the notions that being a designated hitter discounts the numbers a great hitter like Martinez put up. Because of this attitude, it is expected that Martinez will be waiting in the wings for quite some time. That's a feeling that hall inductee Burt Blyleven is used to.
Since 1992 Blyleven has felt the sting of being passed over for the greatest honor in baseball. In 2010, he was just votes short, coming up with 74.21%, but, this year, Blyleven finally broke down the wall and got in. Blyleven received 79.7% this year and that was more than enough. Many thought that Blyleven was the best pitcher to have not gotten the nod to enter the hall, now, however, that dubious honor belongs to someone new.
Of the other names on the list, the most notable one is the one time single season home run king Mark McGwire. It would appear that, as expected, voters are shying way from controversial players with a rumored past of substance abuse. Last year, McGwire recieved 22% of the vote, this year he is down to only 19.8% of the vote.
Another player who has been accused of substance abuse fared worse. Rafael Palmeiro, who was in his first year of eligibility, only received 11% of the vote. The futures look grim for these players. Whether they actually broke the rules and took these substances is secondary. Public opinion has spoken and these players are unlikely to make it in any time soon.
In order to remain on the ballot, you need to get at least 5% of the vote. 16 players who returned to the ballot did not reach this threshold and were eliminated. Among those 16, there were three players of note to the Seattle fan. The sometimes Mariner, sometimes Yankee Tino Martinez only got 6 votes totaling about 1% of the vote. Also, a pair of players for the Mariner's record breaking 2001 season, John Olerud (4 votes for 0.7%) and Brett Boone (1 vote for .2%), missed the cut to return next year.