Red Sox

BBWAA urges Hall of Fame to keep Curt Schilling on the 2022 ballot

Schilling requested to be taken off the ballot for 2022 after failing to make it in 2021.

Curt Schilling was not voted into the 2021 Baseball Hall of Fame class.

The Baseball Writers’ Association of America (BBWAA) is siding against Curt Schilling for a second straight day.

The BBWAA announced Wednesday that it is urging the National Baseball Hall of Fame’s board of directors to keep Schilling on the ballot for the 2022 Hall of Fame class despite his wishes.

“It is the position of the Baseball Writers’ Association of America that Mr. Schilling’s request to remove himself from the ballot is a violation of the rules set forth by National Baseball Hall of Fame’s board of directors,” BBWAA secretary/treasurer Jack O’Connell said in a statement.

O’Connell cited that Schilling has reached the five percent voting threshold every year he’s been on the ballot and that the BBWAA has “abided by the rules for 85 years and shall continue to do so.”

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Moments after it was announced that no one was voted into the 2021 Baseball Hall of Fame class on Tuesday, Schilling released a letter he wrote to the Hall of Fame asking to be removed from the BBWAA’s ballot for his final year of eligibility.

“I’ll defer to the veterans committee and men whose opinions actually matter and who are in a position to actually judge a player,” Schilling wrote. “I don’t think I’m a hall of famer as I’ve often stated but if former players think I am then I’ll accept that with honor.”

Schilling was the top vote-getter of the players on the 2021 Hall of Fame ballot, receiving 71.1 percent of the vote. However, he still fell 16 votes short of the 75 percent needed to be inducted.

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Schilling’s embrace of hateful speech in recent years has been noted as a reason why he hasn’t been inducted after nine years of eligibility. Earlier in January, Schilling tweeted what appeared to be support for the riots at the Capitol, saying, “You cowards sat on your hands, did nothing while liberal trash looted rioted and burned for air Jordan’s and big screens, sit back, [shut up] and watch folks start a confrontation for [expletive] that matters like rights, democracy and the end of [government] corruption.”

In 2016, Schilling tweeted an image of a man wearing a t-shirt that read “Rope. Tree. Journalist.” and wrote, “Ok, so much awesome here.” After mocking those who were offended by that shirt, Schilling later said he was being sarcastic. In April of that year, ESPN fired Schilling for posting an anti-transgender message on Facebook. The network suspended him a year prior for posting a meme comparing Muslim Jihadism to German Nazis on Twitter.

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If Schilling remains on the ballot for the 2022 Hall of Fame class, he’ll have some more competition to reach the 75 percent threshold. His former Red Sox teammate David Oritz and former Yankees star Alex Rodriguez are both eligible for the Hall of Fame for the first time. Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens could potentially get in as well as they both enter their final year on the BBWAA’s ballot.

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