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Journalist Sells Hall Of Fame Ballot, Gets Voting Ban

Dan Le Batard sold his Hall of Fame ballot to Deadspin, which let its readers fill it out. Now Le Batard is banned for life from Hall of Fame voting.
Posted at 6:48 PM, Jan 09, 2014

Some found it courageous, while others saw it as cowardly. Regardless, Dan Le Batard, the writer who sold his Hall of Fame vote to Deadspin, is permanently banned from voting and is suspended from the Baseball Writers' Association of America. 

The association said in a statement Thursday: "The BBWAA Board of Directors has decided to remove Dan Le Batard's membership for one year, for transferring his Hall of Fame ballot to an entity that has not earned voting status. ... The BBWAA regards Hall of Fame voting as the ultimate privilege, and any abuse of that privilege is unacceptable."

Le Batard is under fire after giving his Hall of Fame vote away, for free, to website Deadspin.com which had its readers choose who they wanted Le Batard to vote for. Ironically, of the 10 former players readers selected, their top three — Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine and Frank Thomas — were the only three to get elected to the hall Wednesday. 

Le Batard, who now has his own show on ESPN, first obtained his Hall of Fame vote as a writer for the Miami Herald. 

Le Batard addressed the ban on his Twitter page shortly after it was announced, calling it the "max penalty."

In a letter to Deadspin about why he was giving his vote to fans, he said he felt his vote had become "worthless" and the voting process was flawed.

Recently, Hall of Fame voters and inductees have come under scrutiny for the "steroid era" of baseball. That period's players such as sluggers Barry Bonds, Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa, have seen fewer votes because of uncertainty over whether they took performance-enhancing drugs. (Via USA Today

Dodgers beat writer for MLB.com Ken Gurnick came under fire prior to the  ​official announcement after he said he didn't vote for Greg Maddux because he didn't want to vote for any player who "played during the period of PED use." (Via Sports Illustrated) 

Many writers criticized Le Batard's decision, but many also praised him for it. (ViaCBSSporting News

 

Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine and Frank Thomas will join former managers Tony La Russa, Joe Torre and Bobby Cox as the 2014 Hall of Fame inductees.