Could Red Sox greats Luis Tiant and Pedro Martinez be elected to the Hall of Fame in the same year?
Martinez is expected to be a first-ballot Hall of Famer when the Baseball Writers Association of America casts its vote later this year. And on Thursday, the Hall of Fame released the 10 nominees for consideration by the Golden Era Committee, and Tiant, who was on the first Golden Era ballot in 2011, is again among them.
Also under consideration are Dick Allen, Ken Boyer, Gil Hodges, Bob Howsam, Jim Kaat, Minnie Minoso, Tony Oliva, Billy Pierce, and Maury Wills.
Tiant was a 20-game winner four times (three times for Boston) in a 19-year career with the Indians, Twins, Red Sox, Yankees, Pirates, and Angels, finishing with a total of 229 wins and a 3.30 ERA. He made three All-Star teams, won two American League ERA titles, and led the league in shutouts three times.
Martinez, who won 219 games with a 2.93 ERA, also pitched for the Dodgers, Expos, Mets, and Phillies. He won three Cy Young Awards and five AL ERA titles, had two 20-win seasons, and won the “pitching Triple Crown” in 1999 (leading the league in victories, ERA, and strikeouts).
Nominees must receive votes on 75 percent of the ballots cast by the 16-member Golden Era Committee — i.e. 12 of the 16 — to earn election to the National Baseball Hall of Fame. They would be inducted in Cooperstown on July 26, 2015, along with any electees who emerge from the BBWAA vote.
The 10 finalists were selected by a Historical Overview Committee from eligible candidates among managers, umpires, executives, and retired players whose most significant career impact came during the 1947-72 time period.
Players must have played for at least 10 seasons (and must not be on Major League Baseball’s ineligible list), and have been retired for 21 years. Managers, umpires, and executives must have had at least 10 years in baseball.
The Golden Era Committee was established by the Hall in 2010 (replacing, in part, the Veterans Committee), and candidates are voted on every three years. In the first balloting, in 2011, Tiant received fewer than three votes, but his significance has grown the past three years, making him a top candidate. Only Ron Santo was elected by the Golden Era Committee in 2011.
The 16 members of the committee that will vote as part of baseball’s Winter Meetings Dec. 7-8 are Jim Bunning, Rod Carew, Pat Gillick, Ferguson Jenkins, Al Kaline, Joe Morgan, Ozzie Smith, Don Sutton, Jim Frey, David Glass, Roland Hemond, Bob Watson, Steve Hirdt, Dick Kaegel, Phil Pepe, and Tracy Ringolsby.
The Historical Overview Committee that determined the ballot comprises 11 veteran historians: Dave Van Dyck (Chicago Tribune), Bob Elliott (Toronto Sun), Rick Hummel (St. Louis Post-Dispatch), Hirdt (Elias Sports Bureau), Bill Madden (New York Daily News), Ken Nigro (formerly Baltimore Sun), Jack O’Connell (BBWAA secretary/treasurer), Ringolsby (FSN Rocky Mountain), Glenn Schwarz (formerly San Francisco Chronicle), Claire Smith (ESPN), and Mark Whicker (Orange County Register).