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2023 Baseball Hall of Fame: Seven storylines to watch and a prediction ahead of Tuesday’s announcement

2023 Baseball Hall of Fame: Seven storylines to watch and a prediction ahead of Tuesday's announcement

The results of the BBWAA vote for the 2022 Baseball Hall of Fame class will be revealed Tuesday night. Much of the intrigue in this vote will revolve around the chance Scott Rolen makes it, the gains made by several players (specifically Todd Helton) and how Alex Rodríguez and Carlos Beltrán fare. 

The full 2023 ballot can be viewed here. The rules: A player is eligible to be placed on the ballot after five years of retirement. Players who get at least 75 percent of the returned ballots from qualified BBWAA voters gain entry to the Hall of Fame. Those who get below five percent fall off the ballot. Those between five and 75 percent can remain on the ballot for up to 10 years. BBWAA members who are active and in good standing and have been so for at least 10 years can vote for anywhere from zero to 10 players each year. 

Regardless of what goes down in the BBWAA vote, there’s already one new Hall of Famer in the 2023 class: Fred McGriff. He made it by way of the Contemporary Era Committee vote held during the winter meetings

Here are the details for Tuesday’s selection show:

2023 Baseball Hall of Fame class announcement

  • Time: 6 p.m. ET | Date: Tuesday, Jan. 24
  • TV channel: MLB Network (coverage starts at 4 p.m. ET and lasts four hours)
  • Live streamfuboTV (try for free)

Below are six storylines to watch for as the vote totals get unveiled Tuesday night. NOTE: When I mention “polling,” I’m talking about Ryan Thibodaux’s ballot tracker (it’s not really a poll so much as gathering ballots, but this is the easiest way to succinctly frame it).

1. Is this Rolen’s year?

Scott Rolen’s climb in the vote has a “when, not if” feel to it. It’s actually more than feel. Last month, I went through recent historical voting trends to show that Rolen is overwhelmingly likely to get in. 

It still matters if it is this year or next or the year after, though. First off, from a human perspective, surely Rolen is excited to get in and if he just misses the cut, it’s another year of waiting. In terms of big picture Hall of Fame voting, it’s a spot on the ballot and clearing them helps every other legitimate candidate. Remember, voters only have a maximum of 10 spots on their ballot and some Small Hall voters limit themselves artificially beyond that. More succinctly, the quicker Rolen gets off the ballot, the easier it is for every other player to make gains — including next year’s newcomers…

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