Baseball Hall of Fame 2020 voting results, updates: Derek Jeter, Larry Walker head to Cooperstown

The National Baseball Hall of Fame has two new members. Tuesday night, Yankees legend Derek Jeter and five-tool threat Larry Walker were announced as the newest Hall of Famers during a live MLB Network broadcast.

Players must appear on 75 percent of submitted ballots to be inducted into Cooperstown. Walker received 76.6 percent in his 10th and final year on the Hall of Fame ballot. Jeter was one vote short of unanimous in his first year of eligibility. Longtime teammate Mariano Rivera remains the only unanimous selection in Hall of Fame history. Here are the highest voting percentages in history:

  1. Mariano Rivera (2019): 100.0 percent
  2. Derek Jeter (2020): 99.75 percent
  3. Ken Griffey Jr. (2016): 99.32 percent
  4. Tom Seaver (1992): 98.84 percent
  5. Nolan Ryan (1999): 98.79 percent

Across parts of 20 seasons, all with the Yankees, Jeter racked up 3,465 hits; 260 home runs; 544 doubles; 358 stolen bases; five Gold Gloves; 14 All-Star nods; eight finishes in the top 10 of the AL MVP balloting; and the second-most defensive games at shortstop in MLB history (2,674). Jeter won four World Series with the Yankees -- he was MVP of the 2000 World Series -- and batted .308/.374/.465 in 158 career playoff games. Throw in his popularity and strong reputation among voters and Jeter was beyond a lock for election in his first year on the ballot. 

"Every accolade that has been bestowed on Derek throughout his career has been earned and deserved," Yankees owner Hal Steinbrenner said in a statement. "He was a captain and champion in every sense of the word, a man who embodied our traditions and expectations with an unmistakable grace and dignified resolve. Derek's legacy as one of the most beloved and charitable players in the last quarter century cements his place in baseball history. As he is immortalized in Cooperstown this summer, we proudly reflect on the honor he brought the Yankees franchise, the New York community, and the great game of baseball."

"When we drafted Derek Jeter with the sixth pick in the 1992 draft, he had obvious physical talent, however what truly set him apart and put him on the path to Cooperstown was his burning desire to win and a personal drive to be the very best player he could be," Yankees GM Brian Cashman added. "From the outset, he played the game the right way, and his confidence was contagious. So often it felt that he would not be denied, and that belief rubbed off on his teammates, leading to so many victories over so many years. He provided countless memories for our fans, and it's clear how much he will always mean to them. Thanks to Derek, we reached the pinnacle of the baseball world five times, and he will forever be a defining player of his generation. Congratulations on an honor well-earned."   

Walker played for three teams (Expos, Rockies, Cardinals) in his 17-year career, during which he hit .313/.400/.565 with 383 home runs and 230 stolen bases. He was a five-time All-Star who won seven Gold Glove awards and who received MVP votes in eight seasons, including winning the 1997 National League award. By WAR, Walker is one of the top five outfielders of the last 50 years, though it took him all 10 years on the ballot to get into the Hall of Fame. The Coors Field stigma and injury issues suppressed his support.

"I know I speak for the whole Rocky Mountain Region in congratulating Larry for his election into the Hall of Fame," said Rockies owner Dick Monfort. "Larry blessed our region for parts of 10 seasons and we feel extremely fortunate to be a part of his incredible career. Congrats, Larry."  

"On behalf of the entire St. Louis Cardinals organization, I would like to congratulate Larry Walker on this well-deserved honor and his selection to the National Baseball Hall of Fame," Cardinals chairman Bill DeWitt Jr. said in a statement. "Although Larry's time with the Cardinals came at the end of his distinguished career, he played a significant role in 2004 in helping the Cardinals to their first National League title and World Series appearance in 17 years."  

Curt Schilling, in his eighth year on the ballot, received 70.0 percent of the vote. His voting percentage has steadily increased over the years, and, historically, once a player reaches 70 percent, it's only a matter of time until they get over the 75 percent threshold. Schilling has another two years remaining on the ballot and is likely to be voted into Cooperstown at some point given his current trajectory, and in all likelihood it will be next year.

Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens, arguably the greatest hitter and pitcher of their generation, continue to remain well short of induction due to performance-enhancing drug ties. Bonds appeared 60.7 percent of submitted ballots, Clemens 61.0 percent. Both have two years of Hall of Fame eligibility remaining, though their support has stagnated in the 50-60 percent range the last few years. Barring a sudden jump in support the next two years, neither will qualify for Cooperstown.

Other notables on the Hall of Fame ballot include Omar Vizquel (52.6 percent), Scott Rolen (35.3 percent), Billy Wagner (31.7 percent), and Gary Sheffield (30.5 percent). No other player appeared on at least 30 percent of submitted ballots. Paul Konerko (2.5 percent), Jason Giambi (1.5 percent), and Alfonso Soriano (1.5 percent) are among the notable players to receive less than the five percent necessary to remain on the Hall of Fame ballot another year. Full voting results are available at the BBWAA's site.

Groundbreaking union leader Marvin Miller and eight-time All-Star catcher Ted Simmons were voted into the Hall of Fame by the Modern Era committee last month, posthumously in Miller's case. The Modern Era committee is one of four "era" committees that meets every few years to vote on players who fell off the BBWAA ballot, like Simmons, and personnel not eligible for the BBWAA ballot, like Miller. Whoever gets the necessary 75 percent in the BBWAA vote will be inducted alongside Miller and Simmons in July.

Live updates

We're here to provide running commentary before, during, and after the 2020 announcement ceremony on Tuesday: 

Live updates
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Legit surprised Jeter wasn't unanimous. Doesn't matter though. Hall of Famer all the same. Pleasantly surprised Walker was voted in.

January 21, 2020, 11:25 PM

The only unanimous Hall of Famer being a reliever is ... something.

January 21, 2020, 11:24 PM

Curt Schilling and Roger Clemens were the next two players behind Jeter and Walker in this year's voting. Schilling with 70 percent of the votes and Clemens with 61 percent.

Derek Jeter is the second and final player announced to the 2020 Hall of Fame class. Jeter falls one vote short of being an unanimous selection with 99.7 percent of the vote.

Larry Walker is our first player inducted tonight. He enters the Hall with 76.6 percent of the vote, just above the 75 percent required.

My not-so-bold prediction: Jeter gets in unanimously and he's the only selection. Walker falls a few votes short, and Schilling a few votes behind him.

January 21, 2020, 10:20 PM

We're a little less than an hour away from the results of the BBWAA vote for the 2020 Hall of Fame class being announced.

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