Derek Jeter Elected to Hall of Fame, Misses Unanimous Selection by One Vote
It wasn't a question of whether or not Derek Jeter would be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame -- all eyes were on the percentage attached to how many votes the shortstop received.
Jeter received the highest percentage of votes among any position player in baseball history, but fell one vote shy of becoming the Hall's second unanimous selected. 396 of the 397 eligible voters from the Baseball Writer's Association of America had a checkmark next to Jeter's name on the ballot.
Joining No. 2 on the 2020 Hall of Fame ballot is right fielder Larry Walker -- in his tenth and final year of eligibility. The two all-time greats will be inducted into Cooperstown this July alongside backstop Ted Simmons and trailblazing executive Marvin Miller as part of the Veteran's Committee's vote.
Jeter's induction comes as no surprise. His résumé over a prolific 20-year big-league career was the epitome of a first-ballot Hall of Famer.
As the starting shortstop for the game's most storied franchise, Jeter set records for the most hits (3,465), games played (2,747), at-bats (11,195), stolen bases (358) and doubles (544) in New York Yankees history. He has the sixth most hits in baseball history, one of just 32 players to ever eclipse the 3,000-hit plateau.
His dominance wasn't merely compiled during the regular season. Jeter played a full season's worth of games in the postseason -- en route to five World Series titles, Jeter played in 158 playoff games (the most of any player in baseball history). When it mattered most -- in the months of October and (Mr.) November -- Jeter was a remarkable career .308 hitter with 20 home runs. His 200 hits and 111 runs scored are all-time postseason records.
The Captain appeared in 14 All-Star Games and was recognized as the American League Rookie of the Year in 1996 -- he won five Silver Sluggers and five Gold Glove Awards at his position, one of the most physically and mentally demanding spots on the diamond.
Mariano Rivera was undeniably the best closer of all-time (with a record 652 saves) and earned the first unanimous selection in baseball history. Jeter came one vote shy of replicating what his fellow member of the Core Fore was able to accomplish. His 99.7 percent vote was the most for a position player since Ken Griffey Jr. in 2016 (99.3) -- Griffey missed three votes that year.
Nonetheless, you can argue Jeter was also one of the best to ever play shortstop.
Only 19 players have appeared in more than 2,000 games at the position -- among them, Jeter has the highest OPS (.817), the most hits, runs (1,923) and championship rings. He produced 12 seasons with a batting average north of .300 -- that's tied for the most at the position ever. Honus Wagner and Luke Appling were the only other shortstops to accomplish such a feat -- both those two finalized their career before 1950.
Vote tally aside, Jeter's career transcends the game of baseball. His legacy is now forever etched in baseball history.
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