Mike Piazza was voted into the Baseball Hall of Fame Wednesday, and Scott Ferrall couldn’t be happier for him.
Piazza, who is considered by many the greatest offensive catcher in baseball history, has been dogged by various suspicions throughout his career, ranging from PED use to his sexual orientation to everything in between. Nevertheless, Ferrall always felt that Piazza – a 12-time All-Star with 427 home runs – was classy, friendly and respected the game.
Bleacher Report MLB columnist Scott Miller agreed with all of that. Well, most of it.
“I’ll tell you what, Scott – because I know I can be honest with you, and I always write a column full disclosure on everybody voted for – I have not voted for Mike. I did not because I’m a hard-liner on the steroids,” Miller said on CBS Sports Radio’s Ferrall on the Bench. “I don’t vote for Barry Bonds. I don’t vote for Roger Clemens. I’ll tell you what: Everything you just said, Piazza and Jeff Bagwell are two guys I really, really wanted to vote for. I wasn’t sure because of my stand on the steroid guys. Obviously there’s been some suspicions. He’s been accused of things. So I had Mike and Jeff Bagwell kind of over on the side. I haven’t voted for them yet. I wanted to, but I wanted to let some years pass just to make sure nothing comes out.”
So far, nothing has. Piazza received 83.0 percent of the vote, while Bagwell received 71.6, falling 15 votes shy of induction.
“This was Mike’s fourth year on the ballot, Jeff Bagwell’s sixth,” Miller said. “I hadn’t voted yet. I was moving closer to voting, thinking, ‘There’s just not as much of a smoking gun around those two as there is Bonds and Clemens and some other guys.’ So like I say, I had them in a holding pattern, hadn’t voted, and really, really over the last couple years agonized over those two guys. I can’t sit here today and tell you definitively I did the right thing or not. You try to vote your conscience and do the best job you can.
“All of that said, you’re absolutely right,” Miller continued. “Mike Piazza is one of the nicest guys, obviously one of the greatest players. I don’t know what he did or didn’t do. I’m happy personally for him to get in, and a huge congratulations to Mike Piazza and a big congratulations as well to Ken Griffey Jr.”