The vote for the hall had already been completed by this point, although Schilling’s words sparked a late effort to allow some voters to withdraw their votes, which the hall refused.
“All votes must be cast by December 31. Changes are not allowed,” said Jon Shestakofsky, vice president of communications and education at the hall, on Tuesday.
While Schilling is not a slam dunk contestant – there are a number of pitchers who have exceeded their 216 total wins and are not in the Hall of Fame – he was a strong contender for the due to his string of all-star seasons baseball’s highest honor and its World Series exploits with Boston, Arizona and Philadelphia. In January last year, it stopped short of introduction and appeared on 70 percent of the ballot papers.
Even so, some writers stated that it was impossible to reward someone they saw as offensive and intolerant.
In December one of the country’s most famous sports journalists, Joe Posnanski, said he could no longer support him.
On January 6, Schilling sparked new controversy by tweeting support for the Capitol uprising: “You cowards sat on your hands, doing nothing while Liberal trash was looted and burned for air. Jordan and big screens, sit back, stfu and watch people start a confrontation for shit that matters like rights, democracy and ending state corruption. ”
Schilling doubled his inflammatory rhetoric in the weeks that followed. “Real evil and corruption enter the WH tomorrow,” he tweeted on January 19th.
The Hall of Fame ballots stipulate that candidates should display “integrity” and “character”, which some voters have considered sufficient to disqualify Schilling.
“I voted for Curt at least twice,” said writer Claire Smith, “but not so in the last two votes (for classes 2020 and 2021).”
“My decision was based on character (what I am told is a valid consideration that voters can use in their HOF voting decision). My decision was made after Curt retweeted the allegations that the mass murder of the Newtown, Ct. Children was a joke, ”added Smith, who is the only female writer to have ever seen Cooperstown’s respected J.G. Taylor Spink Award.
Still, Smith said it made sense that the Hall of Fame would refuse to let voters change their votes after they have been cast.
“I understand the hall’s policy of not having ballots changed,” said Smith. “We have just withstood attacks on other types of ballot boxes. Voters of all types should think in good faith and then stand by their decision.”
Some voters have argued that it doesn’t matter what Schilling has done or said in the years since he retired. They judged him solely on what he did in Major League Baseball from 1988 to 2007.
This was Schilling’s ninth year in the Writer’s Pick, so he’s got one more shot. Among those who supported his candidacy was Trump, who tweeted in 2019: “Curt Schilling deserves to be in the Baseball Hall of Fame. Great record, especially when it’s under pressure and when it matters most. Do what everyone knows in baseball is right! “
None of the other 24 candidates were chosen, a rarity in the hall elections. It’s been a rough year for the institution, with some of its most popular members dying in the past few months, including Tom Seaver, Joe Morgan, Bob Gibson, Lou Brock and most recently Hank Aaron.