- Buster Olney, Senior Writer, ESPN The Magazine
The worst thing about the Hall of Fame voting has become the career dissection that accompanies it annually.
Jack Morris threw almost 4,000 innings in his career, including his 13 starts in the postseason, and along the way he finished in the top five in the Cy Young voting five different times. But every year for the last 14, as his candidacy for Cooperstown induction is measured over and over, there is loud and out-of-context and overstated conversation about what he wasn’t. I get the debate, and yet still hate that there has to be a discussion every December about whether a respected player like Don Mattingly, Dale Murphy, Lou Whitaker or Alan Trammell -- who all had incredible careers -- is worthy.
It’s a practice that seems unnecessarily excruciating. Imagine if they did this with the Oscars, and for 15 years the folks who created "The Shawshank Redemption" had to listen to renewed talk about why it just wasn’t good enough.
But the problem in the Hall of Fame voting now is that the supposed worthiness of the candidates is not the only factor that now must be considered by a significant percentage of voters. Now a chunk of voters -- mostly those who have voted for players linked to PEDs -- have to decide who among the growing number of candidates is worthy of one of the 10 open spots on the ballot.