Who is Steve Marcus and Why Did He Turn in an Empty Ballot for the 2021 Baseball Hall of Fame?

Published 12/15/2021, 9:05 AM EST


The Hall of Fame is the ultimate recognition for any athlete. Even in the MLB, induction into the Hall of Fame serves as a great marker of individual talent. The induction is based on BBWAA or Veteran’s Committee members serving their choices upon the ballot. Picking players from a pre-selected list of candidates for every year. 2021 however, marks the second year that Steve Marcus has entered an empty ballot into the voting list.

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Why did Steve Marcus enter an empty ballot?

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Steve Marcus, is a respected member of the media and has been a journalist working at the publication Newsday since 1972. He has also been a voting member of the Baseball Writers Association of America, responsible for the induction of players into the Hall of Fame, since 2009. He has however, recently come upon criticism for turning up empty ballots into the Hall of Fame induction. Marcus’s last vote was cast in 2019 when he voted for the inclusion of Derek Jeter into the Hall of Fame.

His tweets give the indication that he intends to keep the Hall of Fame to a limited affair and not to include any other player, using the hashtag “#keepthehallsmall”  however, he has come under criticism as a general reaction. The general public has said that he has potentially, in reserving his vote, taken the chance away from new and exciting media writers to vote for other potential inductees.

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In a tweet that he since deleted, Marcus has said,

“I just submitted my 2022 Hall of Fame ballot with no selections. I omitted the new and usual PED suspects and, at his own request, Curt Schilling. Strongly considered Scott Rolen, but determined Rolen does not compare with the elite third basemen already in Cooperstown. #HOF

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The reaction of the general public

While respecting the opinion of the journalist, the general public seemed to think of the ballot as a wasted vote. They would rather have the Ballot being passed amongst ‘new savvy media personnel, instead of conventional journalists who would rather waste the opportunity of a ballot than take a stance on any of the potential inductees.’

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Some also raised questions as to whether the process could involve different voters or different categories of voters. Managers, players from the teams or even potentially ex-players, could vote. This would possibly give us a more wholistic nomination than just media personnel.

The Hall of Fame is a grand achievement and testament to a player’s talent and hardwork. Should the Gatekeepers be passing up an opportunity as important as the yearly ballot? Tell us what you think!

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Aditya Deshingkar

124 articles

Aditya Deshingkar is a US Sports writer at EssentiallySports. An aspiring lawyer, Aditya is a final year student of the law program at GLC. Notably, as an avid sports lover, he shares a keen interest in NBA, MLB, and Formula 1.

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