Orel Hershiser debuts on Today’s Game Era Hall of Fame ballot
Hershiser is one of 10 finalists on this year’s Today’s Game Era ballot that will be considered by the committee on managers, umpires, executives and long-retired players at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. The 16-person committee will vote on Dec. 4 at baseball’s Winter Meetings in National Harbor, Md.
The 10 candidates on the Today’s Game Era Committee ballot are: Harold Baines, Albert Belle, Will Clark, Davey Johnson, Mark McGwire, Lou Piniella, John Schuerholz, Bud Selig, George Steinbrenner and Hershiser. Any candidate who receives votes on at least 75 percent of all ballots cast will be inducted into the Hall of Fame as part of the Class of 2017 on July 30.
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Against the Athletics in the Fall Classic, Hershiser shut out Oakland’s powerful offense in Game 2, then returned to the mound on three days rest in Game 5 – allowing just two runs on four hits in the series-clinching win.
Hershiser was named the series MVP of the NLCS. Of Hershiser’s final 101 2/3 innings in 1988, 96 were scoreless.
“My life will be divided in two parts,” Hershiser said. “Before ’88 and after ’88.”
After 15 wins and a fourth-place finish in the 1989 NL Cy Young Award vote, Hershiser missed most of the 1990 season following reconstruction of his right shoulder. His trademark curveball no longer had its bite, but Hershiser remained an effective pitcher – and became a coveted free agent when play resumed following the strike in 1995. The Cleveland Indians signed Hershiser to stabilize a young rotation, and he responded with 16 wins in helping Cleveland capture its first American League pennant in 41 years.
Craig Muder is the director of communications for the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum