Skip to main content

Billy Wagner's Hall of Fame Snub Turning Into Bizarre Situation

The Hall of Fame voters made a mistake when not electing a former Philadelphia Phillies closer to Cooperstown.

Getting chosen for the National Baseball Hall of Fame is an incredible honor.

Rightfully so.

But in recent years, players have fallen short for bizarre unexplained reasons. It makes you wonder what some people are watching.

The most egregious player not heading for Cooperstown, N.Y., is left-handed relief pitcher Billy Wagner. He came up five votes short and has only one shot remaining to get selected.

Five votes? Come on, people.

There’s no reason Wagner should have fallen short. He’s a Hall of Famer.

Wagner needed 75 percent of the votes and he got 73.8 percent.

Adrian Beltre, Todd Helton and Joe Mauer got in. Hard to argue with Beltre and Helton. Mauer could easily be questioned. He was a terrific player, but there’s a distinction between a terrific player and a Hall of Famer.

Wagner is both.

The seven-time All-Star is only one of seven pitchers in history to record double-digit seasons of 25 or more saves. In addition, Wagner is one of six pitchers to accumulate more than 1,000 strikeouts in less than 1,000 innings.

Wagner compiled 422 saves in a 16-year career with the Houston Astros, Philadelphia Phillies, New York Mets, Boston Red Sox and Atlanta Braves.

Wagner ranks sixth all-time in saves behind Mariano Rivera (652), Trevor Hoffman (601), Lee Smith (478), Francisco Rodriguez (437) and John Franco (424). Wagner earned 225 saves in nine seasons with the Astros and 59 saves in two seasons with the Phillies.

Next year will be the 10th and final year of eligibility on the ballot for Wagner.

Will those five votes turn in his favor?

They should.

Otherwise the Hall of Fame will be missing a very worthy candidate