Corky Simpson is a retired sportswriter. One who will henceforth be known as "The writer who didn’t vote for Rickey Henderson." Or, more generally, "the worst fucking sportswriter of all time."
Indeed, this is the first year that Rickey Henderson is on the ballot for the Hall of Fame. Henderson is arguably the greatest leadoff hitter in baseball history, and unquestionably one the best, most exciting, players in my lifetime. There should be no question that he should walk straight into the Hall of Fame, and then easily steal whichever spot he chooses for his plaque. No writer with a ballot has any reason to leave his name off. None. Not based on actual baseball anyway. But here's the thing...
No one has ever received every vote in the history of BBHoF voting. Not Babe Ruth, not Ty Cobb, not Tom Seaver, not Willie Mays, not Jackie Robinson, not Nolan Ryan, not Cal Ripken, Jr., not Cy Young.
Uh Oh. Sounds like the perfect reason for some holier than thou jackass writer to "protect the legacy" of the Hall and leave Henderson off, just to keep him from being the first unanimous selection...
But every writer was putting Henderson on their ballot, usually followed by the words “no-brainer.” Could it be done? Could Rickey make HoF history? I was getting kinda excited.
And then, I got to the ballot of the Award-Winning Corky Simpson - who, you guessed it … didn’t vote for Rickey Henderson.
So, is Simpson deliberately playing spoiler and screwing Henderson? I mean, he must be. He even voted for the extremely-poor man's Rickey—Tim Raines. Obviously he must be making a point. Maybe he's one of those dicks who won't vote for guys the first year on the ballot...nope, he voted for Matt Williams—a guy who should buy a ticket to get in. (To Simpson's credit, he DID vote for Jim Rice.)
Writers get ten slots on their ballots, and Simpson wrote eight names down—and then he submitted his ballot. With two blank slots. And no Rickey.
Amazingly, worse than the omission, is Simpson's excuse...
I screwed up on the Henderson nonvote,” said Simpson, who detailed his choices in a Dec. 10 column for the Green Valley News. “You get to vote on 10 and I only picked eight. I probably did it too quickly.”
Take away his privileges. Right. Fucking. Now.
Seriously. Only a handful of people have the authority to cast HOF ballots. They should do so with due diligence and impartiality. This fossil employed neither. Clearly I spent more time on this blog post than he did considering his HOF ballot.
There are only three possible genuine reasons for this, because the "oversight" is a load of shit. A play for attention—and he's getting it; Deliberately spoiling the unanimous induction, but not having the balls to admit it; Or racism. I can't think of anything else.
A list of all the HOF votes cast so far.
MORE: Deadspin, Flannel Boy, Pinto.
I came across a fantastic photo of Henderson's outstretched 1982 Oakland A's gloves hitting second, and a Bill James quote, so I combined 'em...