The Veteran's Committee Hall of Fame ballot came out the other day and there is a name on it with a Jay's connection, Pat Gillick.
Gillick was with the Jays from 1977 to 1994. In 77 he was assistant GM then became GM the next year, keeping the job for 17 years. He oversaw the team's rise from cellar dweller to 2 time World Series champ.
From Toronto Gillick went to Baltimore, where he got the Orioles to the playoffs twice in his three years there. Then Pat put in four years in Seattle, getting the Mariners to the playoffs twice. From there it was on to Philadelphia and another World Series win.
Pat clearly belongs in the Hall, I'm not sure it will happen this year though, there are a couple of other strong candidates on the ballot:
Late Yankees owner George Steinbrenner, former union head Marvin Miller and former Yankees manager Billy Martin also will be on the 12-man ballot with players Vida Blue, Dave Concepcion, Steve Garvey, Ron Guidry, Tommy John, Al Oliver, Ted Simmons and Rusty Staub.
Lord knows how the Veteran's Committee does their work. If you made a list of crappy Hall of Fame choices, most of them will have been made by the Veteran's Committee. But then, this year, Toronto's Bob Elliot is one of the voters.
None of the players would make the cut if it were up to me.
I imagine George Steinbrenner will make it, what ever you think of the guy, and I don't think much of him, he did change baseball. The only question is if there is enough guys on the committee that hate him to delay his entrance for a year. If George goes in, it would really be poetic justice for Billy Martin to go in at the same time, but then he only had one World Series win, he would be a pretty borderline choice.
The one that has to go in is Marvin Miller. It is a crime that he isn't in yet. Before he became head of the Player's Association, the players had almost no rights. They were drafted by a team and were owned by that team until released or traded. Players could either sign the contract offered them or stay home.
Miller's first victory was to raise the player's minimum salary from $6,000 to $10,000. From there he won the players the right of free agency and arbitration. He also did smaller things like get padding on outfield walls and improve scheduling. He made life a lot better for the players.
The only reason he isn't in the Hall is the stupidity and pettiness of the people voting. He has to go in this time.
Gillick deserves to go in and Steinbrenner will make it, but Marvin Miller has to go in.