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Why did DiMaggio get in early?

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  • Paul Wendt
    replied
    The term "hall of fame" was current in deadball era baseball writing, and I'm sure it was inspired by the American HOF.

    Somewhere in memos from newspaper/magazine reading I have notes on halls of fame in baseball, iirc. For two of them I recall general details.
    1. The monthly Baseball Magazine (Boston 1908-?, then New York) filled a hall of fame, or started to fill one, in its pages. ?That was by survey or editorial selection. ?That was in the teens and after the move to NYC.
    2. President Harry Pulliam, probably, had a hall of fame in the National League offices in NYC. ?That was something like photos of the annual batting champions rather than his selections.

    Warning. Those ? marks mean "I think I recall".

    Some of Baseball Magazine is digitized at AAFLA, their Hall of Fame project maybe findable by internet search.

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  • Gary Dunaier
    replied
    Originally posted by Paul Wendt View Post
    If you google "history hall of fame election rules" you will hit 1912 coverage of revisions in the Hall of Fame of Great Americans, which is tangibly a hilltop or hillside exhibit in The Bronx (right?).
    Yes, it's on the campus of Bronx Community College. It's actually the first "Hall of Fame" in the United States.

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  • Paul Wendt
    replied
    1.
    If you google "history hall of fame election rules" you will hit 1912 coverage of revisions in the Hall of Fame of Great Americans, which is tangibly a hilltop or hillside exhibit in The Bronx (right?).

    2.
    Several years ago, all of the articles in Total Baseball (ed.7 or earlier) were published on the web in Spanish. I recall searching for a mini-biography of William Hulbert and finding it but only in Spanish. Maybe the article by Bill Deane is available. (I am the wrong person to search for that.)

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  • Paul Wendt
    replied
    The rules have been changed so many times that there are no eras or epochs, only fortnights and weekends.
    No, no, I exaggerate.

    Two sources are the article "Awards and Honors" by Bill Deane in Total Baseball (eds. 1-7, at least) and the pocketbook Baseball's Hall of Fame by Ken Smith.

    From memory: there were some important changes in 1956, including this one iirc.

    The ballot was introduced at about that time: a printed list of names with instruction to vote by marking a subset of them. Previously there was a printed list of the latest election results. I suppose there was no list at all in 1936 and maybe none for sometime after 1936.

    --
    Writing about Hall of Fame election rules is obscured by ambiguous dating. Many dates are liable to be "off by one".

    Only this winter the Spink Award was re-dated to match the induction year rather than the election year.
    Baseball Writer Larry Whiteside Elected to Baseball Hall of Fame

    Posted by Tanisha on December 5, 2007

    Larry Whiteside, a pioneer among African-American journalists, was selected as the 2008 winner of the J.G. Spink Award in balloting by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America. It is presented annually to a sportswriter “for meritorious contributions to baseball writing.”

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  • Freakshow
    replied
    Originally posted by Captain Cold Nose View Post
    Very strange voting in those days. I don't know if there's actual documentation when the six-year rule went into effect. (Any ideas? Freakshow? Classic?) I've personally always considered 1962 the beginning of the "modern" era for HOF voting, with the first first ballot inductees based on the wait list in Jackie Robinson and Bob Feller. But that is, as I said, a personal assessment based on surface evidence.
    The five-years-retired rule came into effect with the election of 1954. Offhand, I can't point to a source for this, but you can see it in the voting results. DiMaggio was grandfathered onto the 1954 ballot due to his high support in 1953; I don't know of any other player given this benefit in that year.

    In the next few elections you often see players who weren't technically eligible being given a vote or two or three. Either these were write-ins votes or they were players allowed on the ballot by mistake, I'm not sure which.

    I usually think of the "modern era" of voting to begin with 1966, when they resumed annual elections. It was also that year, or perhaps the next, that the ballot screening committee was introduced.

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  • Captain Cold Nose
    replied
    Originally posted by RuthMayBond View Post
    He actually got a vote in 1945
    Maybe they didn't think he'd come back once the war was over. I don't know enough to honestly be more cynical about it.

    Very strange voting in those days. I don't know if there's actual documentation when the six-year rule went into effect. (Any ideas? Freakshow? Classic?) I've personally always considered 1962 the beginning of the "modern" era for HOF voting, with the first first ballot inductees based on the wait list in Jackie Robinson and Bob Feller. But that is, as I said, a personal assessment based on surface evidence.

    Leave a comment:


  • RuthMayBond
    replied
    Originally posted by Captain Cold Nose View Post
    There was no wait period at the time. DiMaggio actually was on the ballot previously and had fallen short.
    He actually got a vote in 1945

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  • sturg1dj
    replied
    thanks for the info!


    when did they institute the official wait period?

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  • Captain Cold Nose
    replied
    Originally posted by sturg1dj View Post
    why did it take 4 years for DiMaggio when it takes 6 for everyone else?
    There was no wait period at the time. DiMaggio actually was on the ballot previously and had fallen short. It is speculated one reason Babe Ruth finished tied for second on the initial HOF ballot was he had just retired the previous season and some felt it wasn't enough time after he retired to afford him the ultimate honor. That makes sense why DiMaggio actually had to wait. Him making it so quickly when he did speaks a lot of what the writers thought of him. Hardly anyone made it in a couple of ballots in the 40s and 50s.

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  • sturg1dj
    started a topic Why did DiMaggio get in early?

    Why did DiMaggio get in early?

    why did it take 4 years for DiMaggio when it takes 6 for everyone else?

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