Part of my ongoing effort to catalog my Hall of Fame-related coverage at SI.com for this site.
Hall of Fame reorganizes era-based committees (July 2016)
This past July (during the Hall of Fame’s Induction Weekend festivities), the institution announced what amounts to a redistricting. Instead of candidates being divided into three chronological eras—the Pre-Integration Era (1871–1946), Golden Era (’47–72), and Expansion Era (’73 onward)—to be voted upon in a triennial cycle, they’ve now been separated into four eras to be voted upon with differing frequencies within a ten-year cycle, because the earlier eras have been more thoroughly picked over by past committees, often to the Hall’s detriment. Besides the Today’s Game Era (for candidates whose greatest contribution came from 1988 onward), the other three eras are Early Baseball (1871–1949), Golden Days (’50–69) and Modern Baseball (’70–87).
..As I noted in July, while the focus on more recent eras is laudable, the years chosen as dividing lines create some questions with regards to classifying candidates, even when the stated goal is to do so by the era in which each player had the greatest impact. That’s less of an issue with this slate than the Modern Baseball one, though if you’re wondering why Jack Morris—whose 1991 World Series Game 7 shutout stands as his signature moment—isn’t on this ballot, it’s because the bulk of his career (’77–95) and major accomplishments came prior to ’88. From among the 10 candidates on the Today’s Game slate…
Part 1: Harold Baines, Albert Belle, Will Clark, Orel Hershiser
Part 2: Mark McGwire
Part 3: Davey Johnson, Lou Piniella (as managers)
Part 4: Bud Selig
Part 5: John Schuerholz, George Steinbrenner
Results: Schuerholz, Selig elected