Simply put, Alex Rodriguez is one of the greatest players in baseball history.
Come on, look at his numbers: 696 home runs, 3,115 hits, 2,086 RBI, 329 stolen bases.
This man was a three-time MVP, a 14-time All-Star, a 10-time silver slugger, a two-time Golden Glove winner, and a World Series champion.
He also received the longest drug suspension in baseball history and was suspended for the entire 2014 season by the New York Yankees.
Had it not been for his rampant use of performance-enhancing drugs, which was later exposed when Rodriguez revealed that he had been doping throughout his three-year tenure with the Texas Rangers after signing a 10-year, $240 million contract, he could have been a unanimous selection. to the Hall of Fame.
However, the Baseball Writers’ Association of America was pretty clear in its vote.
If you used a PED – or at least got caught using a PED – you won’t get into Cooperstown.
Let’s be honest, if Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens weren’t elected to the Hall of Fame without a positive test result or drug suspension, how can Rodriguez?
Why A-Rod belongs to the Hall
Of course, judging strictly by performance and equipment, Rodriguez is no problem.
He was perhaps the greatest player of his era.
He wasn’t Barry Bonds, but he was close.
Why, if not for a drug suspension and maybe another season or two, he could have been the home run king of baseball history.
Rodriguez hit at least 35 home runs every year from 1998 to 2008, including three 50-homer seasons. He hit 30 or more home runs in 15 of his 22 seasons. He even hit 33 home runs in his first season, coming back from a drug suspension in 2015.
Indeed, he was sensational in every element of the game.
He was a home run hitter and a contact hitter, batting at least .300 nine times and winning the title in 1996 with 358 hits.
He played great defensively, winning two Golden Gloves, and seamlessly transitioned from shortstop to third base after joining the Yankees in 2004.
He was a terrific runner with 329 stolen bases and stole 46 bases in 1998 with the Seattle Mariners.
There are only four players in history with at least 600 homers and 3,000 hits: Henry Aaron, Albert Pujols, Willie Mays and Alex Rodriguez.
Rodriguez was the epitome of a brilliant all-round ballplayer.
If you’re going to ignore a historic PED disqualification, multiple PED confessions, or point out that there are definitely players in the Hall of Fame who were obvious PED users but never got caught, hey, A-Rod is your guy.
Where the A-Rod don’t add up
The Baseball Writers Association of America has been loud and clear that they don’t want cheaters in the Hall of Fame.
Baseball’s Modern Era Committee voters supported this position, with Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens receiving four or fewer out of 16 votes, with 12 votes needed to be elected.
Despite being the all-time home run king with 762 points, a seven-time MVP, a 14-time All-Star, an eight-time Golden Glove winner, a two-time baseball champion, and arguably the greatest player in history, second only to Babe Ruth , Bonds was eliminated.
And despite being a seven-time Cy Young winner, an MVP winner, a seven-time ERA champion, a two-time World Series champion, an 11-time All-Star and a 354-game winner with 4,672 strikeouts, Clemens is out.
Bonds and Clemens have never tested positive on PED, have never been suspended for using PED, have never been fined for using PED, and have not been convicted of perjury by testifying that they did not use PED.
Considering Rodriguez revealed he used a PED for several seasons, was one of 15 players suspended after buying a PED in the infamous Biogenesis case, how can he get into the game if Bonds and Clemens don’t?
The Rodriguez case was ready the moment Bonds and Clemens dropped off the BBWAA ballot.
His only reasonable hope is someday the Veterans Committee, on the condition that Bonds and Clemens are also elected by the same committee.
Rodriguez seems to have gotten a little boost after his first voting season. His name appeared on 40.3% of the ballots published publicly and listed in Ryan Thibodeau Hall of Fame Ballot Tracking, although that figure should fall by at least 5% when all votes are revealed. Rodriguez received only 135 votes last year, which is 161 votes before the election, i.e. 34.3%.
Will he get in eventually?
Rodriguez’s only real chance of being elected to the Hall of Fame is with the Veterans Committee.
It’s just that if Bonds and Clemens weren’t elected by the BBWAA, how can Rodriguez come in, especially given his historical drug abstention?
If Bonds and Clemens are one day elected by the Veterans Committee, or a pair of current Hall of Famers suddenly come out and reveal that they were doping, perhaps only then will Rodriguez have a chance.
However, until that time comes, Rodriguez will simply remain on the ballot for another eight years until his 10-year term expires.
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Alex Rodriguez is in MLB GOAT, but the Hall of Fame is out of reach