Longtime Atlanta Braves pitchers Greg Maddux and Tom Glavine, along with Chicago White Sox slugger Frank "the Big Hurt" Thomas will join the baseball's Hall of Fame this year, finally sneaking past the voters who have denied other sluggers of their era. They were the only three players to appear on 75 percent of the ballots submitted by the 571 members of the Baseball Writers' Association of America. Last year, there were zero new inductees.
Those three former players will join three managers — Bobby Cox, Joe Torre and Tony La Russa — who were elected by an expansionary committee in December. The six players and coaches to be inducted into the Hall will be the most Cooperstown has inducted in one year since 1971.
Last year, no players received the necessary 75 percent of the vote from a group of baseball writers, leaving an empty Hall of Fame class of 2013, mostly due to widespread accusations of steroid use among the players of that era. Craig Biggio, the Houston Astros shortstop, just missed out on making the 2014 class seven honorees, as he received a 74.8 percent approval — a short fall of just two votes.
Maddux, Glavine, and Cox combined in the 1990s to form the core of an Atlanta franchise that would win an astounding 14 division titles in 15 years and appear in four World Series, winning one in 1995. Maddux notched 355 wins to go along with four Cy Young awards and a record 18 Golden Gloves. "Quite simply, he was Picasso on the mound," Hall of Fame President Jeff Idelson said in announcing the vote. Maddux finished with 97.2 percent approval, just below the record approval of Tom Seaver's 98.84 percent.