John Smoltz was voted into the Hall of Fame on his first try. Curt Schilling, in his third year on the ballot, was not. Lagging even further behind was second-year candidate Mike Mussina.
Schilling responded by speculating that he is hurt in the balloting by being a Republican.
This notion brings to mind the adage about not attributing to malice that which can be adequately explained by incompetency. Schilling should be particularly grateful for that adage, given the spectacular collapse of his electronic gaming enterprise, 38 Studios, and the $75 million hit that failure put on the state of Rhode Island's economic development fund. Adhering to that adage allows me to assume that Schilling was an incompetent businessman rather than that he was running a fraud.
And if something off field accounts for Schilling not garnering enough support for election, I think it more likely that the 38 Studios fiasco is responsible, not Schilling's politics. After all, Smoltz is a Republican too.
That said, I don't know why Smoltz drew instant enshrinement while Schilling and Mussina wait. It's one of those goofy BBWAA things, I guess.
Player A: 216-146 (.597), 3.46, 3,116 strikeouts. Postseason record 11-2, 2.23
Player B: 210-147 (.588), 3.26, 154 saves. Postseason record 15-4, 2.67
Player C: 270-153 (.638), 3.68. Postseason record 7-8, 3.42
Player A is Schilling. Player B is Smoltz. Player C is Mussina.
As far as I'm concerned, all three are deserving. I just don't see that Smoltz set himself apart from the other two.
And, for what it's worth, Player D, Jack Morris, now off the ballot:
254-186 (.577), 3.90, Postseason record: 7-4, 3.80. Mussina, Schilling and Smoltz are all clearly better.