Golden Era Committee Candidates Announced

The nine players on the Hall of Fame’s Golden Era Committee ballot totaled three Most Valuable Player Awards, an average of more than six All-Star Game selections per player and seven World Series titles.

And the 10th member of the ballot? Well, all he did was assemble the great Cardinals teams of the 1960s and the Big Red Machine of the 1970s.

The 16-person Golden Era Committee is ready to go to work.

“This system puts people into the context of where they belong,” said Jack O’Connell, the secretary/treasurer of the Baseball Writers’ Association of America and a member of the BBWAA’s Historical Overview Committee, which crafts each year’s Eras Committee ballot. “So the voters can compare candidates against other candidates from their own time.”

Golden Era Committee meets for second time

To the top

The latest cycle of the Baseball Hall of Fame’s Eras Committees features candidates whose main contribution to the National Pastime came between 1947 and 1972 – the Golden Era. Established by vote of the Museum’s Board of Directors in the summer of 2010, the Eras Committees consider candidates from three timeframes: The Expansion Era (1973 and forward), the Pre-Integration Era (baseball’s origins through 1946) and the Golden Era.

Golden Era candidates were first considered in the fall of 2011, which resulted in the election of Ron Santo as a member of the Class of 2012.

The 10-person ballot for consideration by this year’s Golden Era Committee consists of Dick Allen, Ken Boyer, Gil Hodges, Bob Howsam, Jim Kaat, Minnie Minoso, Tony Oliva, Billy Pierce, Luis Tiant and Maury Wills. Results of the Golden Era Committee vote will be announced Dec. 8.

Kaat (10 votes in 2011), Hodges (9 votes), Minoso (9 votes), Oliva (8 votes), Boyer (less than 3 votes) and Tiant (less than three votes) return to the ballot after appearing in the fall in 2011 in the first vote of the Golden Era Committee. Allen, Howsam, Pierce and Wills will be considered by the Golden Era Committee for the first time.

The 16-person Golden Era Committee, which is reconstituted each time it meets, consists of Hall of Famers Jim Bunning, Rod Carew, Pat Gillick, Ferguson Jenkins, Al Kaline, Joe Morgan, Ozzie Smith and Don Sutton; baseball executives Jim Frey, David Glass, Roland Hemond and Bob Watson; and veteran media members Steve Hirdt, Dick Kaegel, Phil Pepe and Tracy Ringolsby.

Any candidate receiving votes on 75 percent of all ballots cast will be inducted into the Hall of Fame as part of the Class of 2015 on July 26.

Quick candidate bios

To the top

Dick Allen

Won the 1964 National League Rookie of the Year Award, the 1972 American League Most Valuable Player Award and was named to seven All-Star Games. In 15 big league seasons – played during some of the most offensively-challenged seasons in baseball history – Allen hit 351 home runs and drove in 1,119 runs. He led his league in on-base percentage twice and slugging percentage three times, hitting better than .300 in six full seasons while finishing with a career batting average of .292.

Ken Boyer

Played 15 seasons as a third baseman – mainly with the Cardinals – earning 11 All-Star Game selections and winning the 1964 National League Most Valuable Player Award en route to leading the Cardinals to a World Series championship. Boyer won five Gold Glove Awards at third base and led the National League in RBI with 119 in 1964. In addition to his 1964 MVP Award, Boyer finished in the Top 10 of the NL MVP voting in three other seasons. He topped the 20-home run mark in eight seasons and finished his career with 282 home runs.

Gil Hodges

Named to eight All-Star Games in an 18-year big league career as a first baseman with the Dodgers and Mets, winning three Gold Glove Awards and leading the Dodgers to seven National League pennants and two World Series titles. He drove in 100-or-more runs in seven straight seasons (1949-1955) and had 11 straight seasons (1949-59) with at least 20 home runs. He finished his playing career with 370 home runs and 1,274 RBI. As a manager, Hodges skippered the 1969 Miracle Mets to the World Series title.

Bob Howsam

Served as the general manager of the Cardinals in the 1960s, helping build teams that won two World Series titles and three National League pennants before moving on to Cincinnati, where he assembled the parts for the Big Red Machine that won four NL pennants and two World Series. The 1975-76 Reds – who won back-to-back World Series titles – were powered by players like Joe Morgan and George Foster, whom Howsam had acquired in trades. Howsam was named the Sporting News Major League Executive of the Year in 1973.

Jim Kaat

Pitched 25 seasons in the big leagues, winning 283 games over the course of four different decades. Kaat, who pitched in big league games in four different decades, was named to three All-Star Games, won 16 Gold Glove Awards and helped the Cardinals win the 1982 World Series. Kaat posted three 20-win seasons (1966, 1974-75) and twice recorded more than 300 innings pitched (1966, 1975). His career total of 4,530.1 innings pitched ranks 25th all-time and his 283 wins rank 31st.

Minnie Minoso

Played 17 seasons mostly with the Indians and White Sox, earning nine All-Star Game selections and three Gold Glove Awards as an outfielder. In his first full seasons in the big leagues in 1951, Minoso led the American League in triples and stolen bases and finished fourth in the Most Valuable Player Award voting. A .298 career hitter, Minoso scored 100-or-more runs in four seasons and totaled at least 100 RBI in four seasons. A native of Cuba, he blazed a trail for Latin American players in the big leagues in the 1950s.

Tony Oliva

Played 15 seasons for the Twins, winning three batting titles and leading the American League in hits five times. He was named to eight All-Star Games and won the 1964 AL Rookie of the Year Award. A .304 career hitter, Oliva’s career was shortened due to a knee injury. He totaled 220 home runs and 329 doubles, leading the AL in doubles four times. He topped the 20-home run mark in five seasons.

Billy Pierce

Won 211 games over 18 seasons, earning seven All-Star Game selections and an earned-run average title in 1955 while leading the American League in complete games three times. Pierce won 15-or-more games in eight seasons and played a key role in pennant-winning teams with the White Sox in 1959 and the Giants in 1962. Owner of a 3.27 career ERA, Pierce struck out 1,999 batters in his career.

Luis Tiant

Won at least 20 games in four of his 19 big league seasons, finishing his career with 229 wins and a 3.30 ERA while earning three All-Star Game selections. He won two American League ERA titles and led the league in shutouts three times. Tiant led the American League in shutouts three times and finished with 49 career shutouts, good for 21st on the all-time list. Tiant struck out 2,416 batters in his career.

Maury Wills

Led the National League in stolen bases six times, including a then-modern record 104 steals in 1962 en route to the National League Most Valuable Player Award. Wills was the starting shortstop on three Dodgers World Series championship teams and was named to seven All-Star Games. His 586 stolen bases rank 20th all-time. A .281 career hitter, Wills totaled 2,134 career hits and 1,067 runs scored in 14 seasons.

Full Candidate Bios

To the top

Voting Rules

To the top