The Baseball Hall of Fame pitched a shutout in 2021. There wasn’t a single ballplayer who proved capable of gaining the necessary 75 percent of ballots in order to earn induction into the Baseball Hall of Fame.
That isn’t expected to be the case in 2022. In fact, top MLB betting site BetUS is making two former players odds-on picks to gain Hall of Fame entry in their first year on the ballot. Former New York Yankees slugger Alex Rodriguez is listed at a betting line of -150 to be a first-ballot inductee to Cooperstown.
The chances are considered even stronger for ex-Boston Red Sox powerhouse David Ortiz. Big Papi is the betting favorite to gain Hall of Fame enshrinement in 2022 at odds of -500.
Baseball Hall of Fame ballots is submitted by selected members of the Baseball Writers Association of America. Balloting will be conducted late in 2021 and those gaining enshrinement, if any, will be announced early in 2022.
There will still be a Hall of Fame induction ceremony in 2021. The 2020 class will be inducted one year late on September 8. Their ceremony was delayed a year by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The last time the BBWAA didn’t anoint any player worthy of Hall of Fame status was in 2013. However, MLB’s two veteran’s committees – “Early Baseball” (prior to 1950) and “Golden Days” (1950-1969) – combined to enshrine Hank O’Day, Jacob Ruppert, and Deacon White, ensuring that there would be a Hall of Fame ceremony that year.
The most recent year in which there was a complete Baseball Hall of Fame shutout was in 1965. There were also no inductees to the Hall in 1960, 1958, 1951, 1943, 1941, and 1940.
Thus, there is precedence for the Baseball Hall of Fame to go successive years without anyone being inducted and that’s a play available to be made via this prop. No inductees are offered at odds of +1000.
Ortiz checks off several of the standard boxes required for Hall of Fame enshrinement. He clouted 541 home runs during his career, over the magical 500 plateau. That included an American League-leading 54 homers in 2006. In 2016, his farewell of 20 big-league campaigns, Ortiz smacked a league-best 48 doubles and also topped the AL in slugging percentage (.627), OPS (1.021), and RBI (127). It was among three times that he led the AL in RBI.
Ortiz was a 10-time All-Star. Although he never was named MVP, he finished in the top five of the voting on five occasions.
In the postseason, Ortiz clouted 17 homers and drove in 61 runs in 85 games. He won three World Series titles with the Red Sox. Big Papi was the 2004 American League Championship Series MVP and the 2013 World Series MVP. He batted .688 in the Fall Classic that year with two homers and six RBI.
That’s the resume of a Hall of Famer.
On paper, Rodriguez’s resume reads like a slam dunk for the Hall of Fame. In baseball terminology, he touches them all.
Three times, A-Rod was named AL MVP. He smacked 696 home runs, fourth on the all-time list. Rodriguez finished with 3,115 hits. He led the AL in home runs on five occasions, three times going over 50 homers in a single season. He won a batting title and twice topped the RBI leaders. Rodriguez was a 14-time all-star selection.
If only he hadn’t touched steroids. Rodriguez admitted to using performance-enhancing drugs on two occasions. The second time, he was suspended by MLB for the entire 2014 season.
Considering that Barry Bonds, baseball’s all-time home run leader, as well as 300-game winner Roger Clemens, continue to be ostracized by Hall voters for suspected steroid use, the chances that a convicted steroid user will be inducted, especially on the first ballot, seem remote at best. Betting A-Rod to gain entrance to the Hall this year is not a wise wager.
Pitcher Curt Schilling drew the highest percentage on the 2011 Baseball Hall of Fame ballot at 71.1 percent. He was 16 votes shy of gaining induction. However, Schilling’s far-right political views – he openly supported the January 6, 2021 insurrection at the U.S. capital building – will likely ensure he never gets over the hump and into the Hall. In fact, Schilling has requested his name be removed from the 2022 ballot.
It will be his 10th and final year with a chance to gain induction. The same holds true for Clemens and Bonds. Neither Bonds (60.8 percent) nor Clemens (61.6 percent) were close to induction in 2021.
There are a number of leading online betting sites that will provide bettors with the chance to place a wager on MLB, whether it be a moneyline or point spread wager, a future book bet, a parlay wager, or perhaps a player or team prop wager.