Scott Rolen elected to Hall of Fame by BBWAA

Scott Rolen, a seven-time All-Star who won eight Gold Glove Awards for fielding at third base during a 17-season career in the major leagues, was elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame Tuesday in balloting by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America and verified by Ernst & Young.

Players are elected to the Hall provided they are named on at least 75 percent of ballots cast by eligible voting members of the BBWAA. With 389 ballots submitted in the 2023 election, including eight blanks, candidates needed to total 292 votes to be elected.

Rolen was the only one of the 28 candidates to reach that threshold with 297 votes, which accounted for 76.3 percent of the electorate. He will be honored during Induction Weekend 2023 July 21-24 in Cooperstown, N.Y., at the July 23 Induction Ceremony on the grounds of the Clark Sports Center along with Fred McGriff, who was elected by the Contemporary Baseball Era Players Committee last month in San Diego.

Also being honored that weekend will be the Ford C. Frick Award winner for baseball broadcasting, Pat Hughes, and the BBWAA Career Excellence Award winner for baseball writing, John Lowe, July 22 at the Awards Presentation.

Rolen, 47, who was elected in his sixth year on the ballot, batted .281 with 1,287 runs batted in, 1,211 runs and an on-base plus slugging percentage of .854 combined with the Philadelphia Phillies, St. Louis Cardinals, Toronto Blue Jays and Cincinnati Reds. Numbered among his 2,077 hits were 517 doubles, 43 triples and 316 home runs. He was the National League winner of the Jackie Robinson Rookie of the Year Award in 1997 – a unanimous selection – with the Phillies and a member of the Cardinals’ championship club in 2006 when he hit .421 with a home run and two RBI in the World Series.

Falling 11 votes short of election was first baseman Todd Helton, who made a jump of more than 20 percent from 2022 with 281 votes (72.2) in his fifth year on the ballot. The only other players to gain mention on more than half the ballots were relief pitcher Billy Wagner with 265 (68.1) and outfielders Andruw Jones with 226 (58.1) and Gary Sheffield with 214 (55.0).

In his 10th and final season on the BBWAA ballot, second baseman Jeff Kent received 181 votes (46.5). His case will revert to the Historical Overview Committee in December 2025 for consideration on the Contemporary Baseball Era Players Committee for the Class of 2026.

Candidates may remain on the BBWAA ballot for up to 10 years provided they are listed on at least five percent of ballots cast. There are 14 players from this year’s ballot who will be eligible again for 2024, including two of the 14 first-year candidates, outfielder Carlos Beltrán with 181 votes (46.5) and relief pitcher Francisco Rodríguez with 42 votes (10.8).

The Hall of Fame has 342 elected members, including 270 players, of whom 136 have come through the BBWAA ballot. The average ballot in the 2023 election contained 5.86 names, down from 7.11 last year, with 13.9 percent of the voters using all 10 slots, down from 33.8 percent a year ago. The total of ballots cast marked a 96.1-percent return rate of the 405 ballots mailed to voters.

The vote:

Scott Rolen 297 (76.3%), Todd Helton 281 (72.2), Billy Wagner 265 (68.1), Andruw Jones 226 (58.1), Gary Sheffield 214 (55.0), Carlos Beltrán 181 (46.5), Jeff Kent 181 (46.5), Álex Rodríguez 139 (35.7), Manny Ramírez 129 (33.2), Omar Vizquel 76 (19.5), Andy Pettitte 66 (17.0), Bobby Abreu 60 (15.4), Jimmy Rollins 50 (12.9), Mark Buehrle 42 (10.8), Francisco Rodríguez 42 (10.8), Torii Hunter 27 (6.9),  Bronson Arroyo 1 (0.3), R.A. Dickey 1 (0.3), John Lackey 1 (0.3), Mike Napoli 1 (0.3), Huston Street 1 (0.3), Matt Cain 0, Jacoby Ellsbury 0, Andre Ethier 0, J.J. Hardy 0, Jhonny Peralta 0, Jered Weaver 0, Jayson Werth 0.