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Baltimore Orioles

Three players with Orioles ties passed over for Hall of Fame by Contemporary Era Committee

Nearly half of the former players on the Contemporary Era ballot for the Baseball Hall of Fame spent part of their career with the Orioles. But none of the players connected to Baltimore are heading to Cooperstown.

None of Albert Belle, Rafael Palmeiro and Curt Schilling received the necessary 12 votes from the 16-person Contemporary Era Committee to be inducted. Of the remaining five players on the ballot, only first baseman Fred McGriff received induction. To be eligible for the ballot, players must have been retired for at least 15 years, completed their eligibility for the Baseball Writers’ Association of America’s balloting and had most of their career contributions come after 1980.

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Schilling earned the first of his 216 career wins as an Oriole, but it was his only one with Baltimore. After Schilling spent three years mostly as an Orioles reliever, the club traded him to the Houston Astros as part of a package to acquire first baseman Glenn Davis. Schilling pitched 17 more years in the majors for Houston, Philadelphia, Arizona and Boston, finishing second in Cy Young Award voting three times and winning three World Series while posting a 2.23 ERA in 19 career postseason starts. He appeared on the BBWAA ballot the maximum 10 times but always came short of the 75% of votes needed for induction, getting as high as 71.1% in his penultimate year on the ballot. Schilling’s post-playing career has featured several controversial social media posts, including anti-transgender remarks and support for the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol.

Belle spent the final two years of his 12-season career with Baltimore, averaging 30 home runs and 110 RBIs while hitting .289/.374/.509. In his career, Belle hit 381 home runs with a .295 average and .933 OPS while also playing for Cleveland and the Chicago White Sox. One of the game’s top sluggers, Belle ended his career at the age of 34 two years into a five-year contract with Baltimore because of a degenerative hip condition. In his second appearance on the BBWAA ballot, he came short of the necessary 5% of votes to remain on the ballot.

Seven of Palmeiro’s 20 seasons came in two stints with the Orioles, for whom he hit 223 of his 569 career home runs. Although that total ranks him 13th in American/National League history, it’s tainted by Palmeiro’s suspected use of performance-enhancing drugs, as he tested positive while playing for Baltimore during his final season in 2005. One of seven players with at least 500 home runs and 3,000 hits, Palmeiro last only four years on the BBWAA ballot, never receiving more than 12.6% of votes.


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