Although most admit it is hard to argue with the 2015 Hall of Fame class that doesn’t stop the complaining about who didn’t make the cut. When analyzing this years final results, there are a number of players that most concede should receive more consideration from voters.
Curt Schilling is one of those players. Schilling was named on only 39.2 percent of the ballots, significantly less than the 75 percent needed to be inducted. The vote total stands out because Schilling’s numbers are similar to that of first ballot hall of famer John Smoltz. 2014 was Schilling’s third year on the ballot.
During a radio interview on WEEI in Boston, Schilling was asked why he thought the support for his hall of fame candidacy isn’t as strong as other players with similar numbers.
Schilling believes that bias, not stats are hampering his bid to enter the Hall of Fame.
"“The process isn’t flawed; stupid people do stupid things,” Schilling said. “I’ve seen so many in the past, voters making their vote into a news article, protesting this or protesting that, except just voting the player on his playing merits. And that’s normal, I guess, because we’re human, we all have bias, we all have prejudice. When Pedro gets 91 percent, that tells you something’s wrong.”"
Then Schilling then dropped a political bomb when comparing himself to John Smoltz.
"“I think he got in because of [Greg] Maddux and [Tom] Glavine. I think the fact that they won 14 straight pennants. I think his ‘Swiss army knife versatility,’ which somebody said yesterday, I think he got a lot of accolades for that, I think he got a lot of recognition for that. He’s a Hall of Famer,” Schilling said. “And I think the other big thing is that I think he’s a Democrat and so I know that, as a Republican, that there’s some people that really don’t like that.”“Listen, when human beings do something, anything, there’s bias and prejudice. Listen, 9 percent of the voters did not vote for Pedro. There’s something wrong with the process and some of the people in the process when that happens. I don’t think that it kept me [out] or anything like that, but I do know that there are guys who probably won’t ever vote for me because of the things that I said or did. That’s the way it works.”"
As it turns out, Smoltz isn’t even a Democrat. According to a piece by Craig Calcaterra on Hardballtalk, Smoltz was approached about running for political office….as a republican.
As for the anti-Pedro Martinez bias that Schilling was railing about…there is no word whether or not is it politically motivated.
Any bias towards Schilling has less to do with his political affiliations and more to do with his personality. Schilling always had a brash approach with the media during his playing days. It is often those interactions with the media that hurt players down the line.
Kirk Gibson, who many think should have gotten more consideration for the Hall, suffered in his hall of fame bid because of his famously poor relationship with the media. Some say Jack Morris is also a victim of this “bias”.
The flaw is Schilling’s thinking is best illustrated by another quote from the WEEI interview.
"I can’t spend my time being concerned about people’s opinions of me that I’ll never meet."
That’s fine but if Schilling wants to get into the Hall of Fame maybe he should start to become concerned.