Alex Rodriguez is getting his first chance…
The 46-year-old Dominican American former professional baseball shortstop and third baseman, businessman and philanthropist is among 13 first-time candidates on the Major League Baseball Hall of Fame ballot of the Baseball Writers’ Association of America.
A-Rod, as he’s nicknamed, is joined by fellow first-timers David Ortiz, Ryan Howard, Tim Lincecum, Justin Morneau, Jimmy Rollins, Jake Peavy, Carl Crawford, Prince Fielder, Joe Nathan, Jonathan Papelbon, A.J. Pierzynski and Mark Teixeira, the Hall and BBWAA said.
A-Rod and the first-timers join 17 holdovers.
Steroids-tainted stars Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens make their 10th and final appearance on the BBWAA ballot along with Curt Schilling, who fell 16 votes shy of the necessary 75% in last year’s balloting. Schilling appeared on 71.1% of ballots, Bonds 61.8% and Clemens 61.6%.
Holdovers include Bobby Abreu, Mark Buehrle, Todd Helton, Tim Hudson, Torii Hunter, Andruw Jones, Jeff Kent, Andy Pettitte, Manny Ramirez, Gary Sheffield, Sammy Sosa, Omar Vizquel and Billy Wagner.
Sosa also will be on the ballot for the final time after receiving 17% last year.
BBWAA members with 10 or more consecutive years of membership are eligible to vote. Ballots must be postmarked by December 31 and results will be announced Jan. 25.
Any players elected will be inducted into the Hall at Cooperstown on July 24 along with anyone elected by the Golden Days Era and Early Baseball Era committees, which are scheduled to meet on December 5.
No one was elected by the BBWAA in last year’s vote, and Schilling asked after the vote that the Hall remove him from the ballot.
“It’s all right, the game doesn’t owe me anything,” he said during a live video stream on his Twitter account.
Clemens has denied using performance-enhancing drugs and Bonds has denied knowingly using them. Bonds also has been accused of domestic violence and Clemens of maintaining a decade-long relationship with a singer who was 15 when they met.
Rodriguez was suspended for the 2014 season for violating MLB‘s drug policy and collective bargaining agreement, and Ortiz’s name was alleged to have appeared on a list of players who tested positive during 2003 survey testing.