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Thome is first Knight to make Baseball HOF


The only real question was whether Mariners designated hitter Edgar Martinez would join them.

Controversial players such as Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens, who have failed to get in, are getting closer and closer to the 75 percent needed for induction.

In the first year of eligibility, Thome was named on 89.8 percent of the ballots, which was well ahead of the required 75 percent for induction, and became the 13th member of the Indians' organization to earn enshrinement when the results of the voting were announced on MLB Network Wednesday night. He hit better than.300 from both sides of the plate while winning a World Series ring (1995), an MVP award (1999), a batting title (2008) and eight All-Star selections during his 19 years in Atlanta.

Thome was a five-time All-Star over the course of his 22-year career and ranks eighth in Major League Baseball history with 612 home runs.

Their detractors might yet change their minds, which frequently does happen as worthy candidates get second and third looks in their final year. He plans to become the fourth player to enter the Hall as a Montreal Expo.

Hoffman, who's 601 saves ranks second all-time behind Mariano Rivera, had nine seasons of 40 or more saves, including 53 in 1998.

For the third time in four years, four players were elected into the Hall.


"I am honored to offer my congratulations to Jim Thome on his first-ballot election today into Baseball's Hall of Fame", said Jerry Reinsdorf, White Sox chairman.

"Oh my gosh I don't know what to say", said Thome.

• Fred McGriff isnt making progress, the Tampa native and former Devil Ray polling once again at under 25 percent — in his ninth year on the ballot — despite posting consistent numbers on his way to 493 homers with a reputation for playing clean in an era others performances seemed enhanced. Just like Bonds, he completed his sixth year on the ballot and has four more years of eligibility. For the record, nearly every eligible candidate who had a career.300 batting average, 2,500 hits and 300 home runs has been enshrined.

Jim Thome was one of the most feared players of his generation, but after spending the first chunk of his career with the Indians, he bounced around all over the league.

Thome was a surprise success story as an unheralded 13th-round draft pick by the Cleveland Indians in 1989. Bonds got 56.4% and Clemens got 57.3%, averaging an increase of about 3%.

"It's unfortunate that some of the best players of this era have a cloud of suspicion because you're talking about ... guys that would be considered the greatest players of all-time", Jones said, alluding to Clemens and Bonds.

Pete Rose, permanently banned from Major League Baseball after an investigation into his betting on the game, didn't receive any write-in votes, as he often has in the past. Plus, a lot of voters believe that steroid users are already in the Hall of Fame. "There are going to be some voters that will never vote for them, but I think they're gaining steam with some of the newer voters who are coming on and voting for the first time or two".

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