Greg Cote

Cooperstown: Any 1st-ballot players worthy? Time to let Steroids Era guys in? You decide

Longtime former Atlanta Braves star Chipper Jones, who retired after the 2012 season, is thought to be among favorites for 2018 Baseball Hall of Fame induction in his first year on the ballot.
Longtime former Atlanta Braves star Chipper Jones, who retired after the 2012 season, is thought to be among favorites for 2018 Baseball Hall of Fame induction in his first year on the ballot. Pouya Dianat-AP

Cooperstown. Is anyone worthy of first-ballot induction this time? Will the faces of the “Steroids Era” — Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens — finally be let in? These are questions for voting members of the Baseball Writers’ Association of America who decide who gets into the Hall of Fame, sports’ most famous hall, in Cooperstown, N.Y.

Now you can have your say, too.

There are 33 former players on the 2018 ballot and voters might select as many as 10. But about two dozen of those 33 guys have no realistic shot at being elected with the needed 75 percent vote. On this ballot, I have eliminated the chaff and pared to a Sweet 16 — partly because a 33-choice poll would be longer than the Miami Dolphins’ playoff odds.

So I have winnowed to the best/most viable 16 candidates. These include the 10 non-elected players who got at least 20 percent of the vote last year, and the six first-year ballot guys (noted by asterisk) whom I think have the best chance to be elected as ballot “rookies.” The 16 are listed alphabetically. You may vote for as many as ten (10), but vote for only the men you believe are Cooperstown-worthy.

Note: I am a BBWAA voter, but results of this poll will not influence my own official ballot, which I will reveal as I send it in before the Dec. 31 deadline. This poll is just for fun. As for deciphering the results, if every participant in our poll used the maximum 10 votes, then a percentage of 7.5 here would equate to the 75 percent standard needed for election. Ready? Vote!

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