HOF update: #Cubs Sosa, Smith

Sammy Sosa was again denied a chance to get into the Baseball Hall of Fame, and for the fourth straight year, his vote totals dropped.

Sosa, 47, received 31 votes, or 7 percent, from the Baseball Writers Association of America on Wednesday, well below the numbers needed for induction into Cooperstown. However, Sosa did get enough votes to remain on the ballot for another year.

In 2013, Sosa received 71 votes, or 12.5 percent, and those numbers dropped in 2014 when he got 41 votes, or 7.2 percent. Last year, he received 6.6 percent (36 votes). A candidate must receive 75 percent of the vote from BBWAA members to gain election to the National Baseball Hall of Fame, and at least 5 percent to stay on the ballot.

Lee Smith, who saved 478 games over 18 seasons in the big leagues, including eight years with the Cubs from 1980-87, also will stay on the ballot. He received 150 votes (34.1 percent). Last year, Smith received 166 votes (30.2 percent), which was a slight increase from 2014 when the right-hander got 171 votes (29.9 percent).

The BBWAA did elect two players into the Hall on Wednesday: Ken Griffey Jr. and Mike Piazza.


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Unfortunately for Lee Smith, relievers are, by and large, not afforded due respect by H of F voters. There are just five relief pitchers total in the long history of the august institution. Many observers believe Trevor Hoffman, who was part of this year`s eligibles, is deserving, but we see he fell short of the 75%. The likes of Hoyt Wilhelm, Rollie Fingers, and Bruce Sutter were all so outstanding, the voters could not ignore them. I suggest that will be the case with Mariano Rivera, whom I believe will become a candidate for the first time in 2019.

Aloha jhosk- good to see you here in the new year. I want to give Castro kudos, as you may have heard he wrote a thank you letter to the Cubs; speaking about the organization believing in him and giving him a chance. This shows me maturity and I wish him all the best with the Yankees. You take care now. Mahalo!

Yes, k.g., saw that message penned by Starlin. He did demonstrate an intelligent and candid reflection on his experience with the Cubs. Will be able to follow him with the Yankees, as we have access to the Yes Network. Am pleased to see Gordon re-sign with the Royals, because it means the Cardinals are denied the possibility of acquiring him. He`s a stand-up guy, and a heckuva player, as is Zobrist. Have seen rumors that Fowler would be a good fit with the Giants, and you would know more about that subject than most fans. Is always a pleasure!

As you were. Just learned this morning that the Giants signed Span to play center. Means Pagan has been demoted, and Dexter is still searching for a team. Also, you must be aware Maeda signed with the Dodgers yesterday.

Aloha jhosk- Good point about Gordon. I know the KC fans are happy and as you say, we Cubs fans! The Cardinals have had a tough off-season but still have a strong system. I was surprised about Span. I think Fowler believes he can get more than the amount the Giants worked out with Span. I hope at this point, with what the Cubs have put together that Dexter is not re-signed. No ill will towards him but if he is re-signed then I see Soler getting traded. I do not think Fowler is needed now with both Zobrist and Heyward in the lineup. And I have faith in this organization that someone currently on the roster can be the lead-off (for example Russell). But again as it stands now, the line-up is formidable and the lead-off can be worked out if not in ST then during the regular season. Take care now! Mahalo!

`USA Today` suggests Detroit is a likely landing spot for Fowler. I agree we are better served without him. He has a weak arm, in addition to other reasons. `USA Today ` printed today Dexter`s .250 batting average with the Cubs in 2015 is the lowest of his career. { I must admit, I was not aware of that.} Did I ever mention I like Tyler Clippard? He`s available, and wonder if other Cubs` fans feel likewise. Don`t know if surrendering a draft choice would be involved. If it is, I say forget about it. Am I concerned about our set-up pitchers going into this season? As Sarah Palin would say,” You betcha!” The same could be said about our closer.

Aloha jhosk- I like Clippard, again what would it cost? I still stand by my statement that after getting Warren from the Yankees and resigning Cahill plus some of the other pickups they made, pitcher-wise, I feel very confident of them going into ST as the team stands now and let the pitchers duke it out for the final rotation spot(s), then work on the bullpen with the remaining arms. I think the organization can be more selective (this of course is assuming a limited amount of injuries) going into the season and make moves if need be by the July deadline. You know for me, I would keep Gray of the A’s on the radar. If not this year, who knows maybe next year. In regard to Fowler, I think after the money Detroit spent on Zimmermann and the money they owe other players (Cabrera-Verlander-Martinez-Sanchez-Kinsler-Maybin… and so forth) come 2016, Fowler would be a good move for them over the more expensive Cespedes. With the addition of Zimmermann helping out their rotation, I think they can manage without Cespedes’ bat, of course that assumes that Martinez stays healthy and gets back to his regular form (a .300+ hitter). So, I hope he is taken by the “Motor City” then there is no more talk of him. Again, not in a bad way but getting on with the business of this current team and getting them ready not only for ST, 162 regular game season but also the post-season! Meaning endurance or as marathon runners say, how to pace yourself and run the race. Take care now! Mahalo!

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