BASEBALL HALL OF FAME — Bill Dahlen among finalists on Veterans Committee ballot.
COOPERSTOWN, N.Y. — Nearly a century after he played his last Major League game, Nelliston’s Bill Dahlen has taken a big step toward entering baseball’s Hall of Fame.
Dahlen, a turn-of-the-century National League star of the 1890s and 1900s, was one of 10 finalists nominated Monday for consideration by the latest configuration of the hall’s Veterans Committee. The players, each of whom began his career before 1943, will be voted on when the panel meets Dec. 7; Results will be announced the following day at baseball’s winter meetings in Las Vegas.
Joining Dahlen on the ballot are Wes Ferrell, Joe Gordon, Sherry Magee, Carl Mays, Allie Reynolds, Vern Stephens, Mickey Vernon, Bucky Walters and Deacon White.
The finalists were selected by a Baseball Writers’ Association of America committee; A separate 12-member committee of Hall of Famers, media and historians will vote in December. Players must appear on 75 percent of the ballots to gain election. The next vote for pre-1943 players will take place in 2013.
The hall will soon announce a second list of 10 finalists for players whose careers began in 1943 or later. The results of that voting will also be announced Dec. 8.
Dahlen spent 21 seasons in the big leagues as a shortstop with franchises in Chicago, Brooklyn, New York and Boston. A .272 lifetime hitter, he scored more than 100 runs six times and finished his career with 2,455 hits and 547 stolen bases. He set a record during the 1894 season with hits in 42 consecutive games and after going 0-for-6 on Aug. 7 immediately embarked on another hitting steak of 28 games. Only Joe DiMaggio’s 56-game streak in 1941 was longer than Dahlen’s 42 among right-handed batters.
Ferrell won 193 games in 15 seasons with the Indians, Red Sox, Senators, Yankees and Braves. He led the American League with 25 victories in 1935 and still holds the big league record for pitchers with 28 career home runs. Ferrell’s brother, Rick, was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1984.
Gordon played 11 seasons for the Yankees and Indians and won the American League’s Most Valuable Player award in 1942. He was selected for the All-Star Game nine times and played in six World Series, winning five.
Magee was a four-time National League RBI leader during his 15-year career with Phillies, Braves and Reds.
Mays had five 20-win seasons and compiled a record of 207-126 over 15 years with the Red Sox, Yankees, Reds and Giants. He pitched for two world championship teams.
Reynolds won 182 games between 1942 and 1954 with the Indians and Yankees. He pitched in six All-Star Games and was part of six World Series championship teams.
Stephens was an eight-time all-star during a 15-year career with the Red Sox, White Sox, Orioles and St. Louis Browns. He led the American League in runs batted in three times and led the Browns to their only pennant in 1944.
Page 2 of 2 - Vernon won two batting titles during 21 seasons with the Red Sox, Indians, Braves, Pirates and Washington Senators.
Walters won 198 games for the Reds, Phillies and Braves over 16 years. He won the National League’s pitching triple crown in 1939, when he won the Most Valuable Player award, and led the Reds to a World Series title the following year.
White spent 20 seasons in the National Association, National League and Players League in the 1800s and won two batting titles.
The format of the Veterans Committee has changed twice since 2001, when charges of cronyism accompanied the election of Bill Mazeroski. The 15-member panel was expanded to include every living member of the Hall, but that group failed to elect anyone in three tries. The hall then changed to the current format of separate panels. A revamped committee considered managers and executives last December and voted in former commissioner Bowie Kuhn, former Dodgers owner Walter O’Malley, managers Dick Williams and Billy Southworth and ex-Pittsburgh owner Barney Dreyfuss while bypassing former players’ association head Marvin Miller.
Compiled From Evening Times Staff and Wire Reports