Hall of Fame 2017: Last chance for Tim Raines, first for Manny Ramirez

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Tim Raines is down to his final chance.

After falling 23 votes shy of induction into baseball's Hall of Fame, Raines' candidacy will come down to next year's vote. That will be his 10th and final year of eligibility on the Baseball Writers' Association of America ballot. Newcomers to the ballot in 2017 include Manny Ramirez, Ivan Rodriguez and Vladimir Guerrero.

Raines stole 808 bases in his 24-year career, surpassing 70 in every season from 1981-86. He later won two World Series titles as a member of the New York Yankees and finished his career with a .294 lifetime batting average.

SEE MORE: Remembering when Griffey could've been teammates with Piazza

He received the support of 69.8 percent of the voters this year in results announced Wednesday. A player needs 75 percent to gain election. On Wednesday night, a series of messages appeared on Raines' Twitter account, expressing gratitude.

"A heartfelt thank you to all the fans on Twitter/in person who continue to show love & support," one of his tweets said. "My family and I are touched."

Ken Griffey Jr. and Mike Piazza were elected to the Hall this year, and Raines was one of three other candidates who came pretty close. Jeff Bagwell missed by 15 votes, and Trevor Hoffman was 34 shy in his first year on the ballot.

Here are a few things to watch in next year's Hall of Fame vote:


Raines and Lee Smith are the two players down to their final appearance on the BBWAA ballot. In 2014, the Hall of Fame changed the maximum number of years on the ballot from 15 to 10, but Smith was grandfathered in and will be allowed his 15th chance in 2017.

Smith, who had 478 saves in his 18-year career, was at 34.1 percent in this year's vote.


Tim Raines through his career
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Hall of Fame 2017: Last chance for Tim Raines, first for Manny Ramirez
Tim Raines of the Montreal Expos poses in 1980 at an unknown location. (AP Photo)
Montreal Expos Tim Raines, left, slides home safely as Chicago Cubs catcher Jody Davis, right, snags a late throw during fifth inning action, Sunday, Sept. 13, 1981, Chicago, Ill. Raines came home on a hit by Andre Dawson. The Expos won 10-6. (AP Photo/Fred Jewell)
DAYTONA BEACH, FL - CIRCA 1982: Tim Raines #30 of the Montreal Expos bats during an Major League Baseball spring training game circa 1982 at Jackie Robinson Stadium in Daytona Beach, Florida. Raines played for the Expos from 1979-90. (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images)
NEW YORK - CIRCA 1983: Tim Raines #30 of the Montreal Expos tracks a fly ball against the New York Mets during an Major League Baseball game circa 1983 at Shea Stadium in the Queens borough of New York City. Raines played for the Expos from 1979-90. (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images)
1987: Tim Raines #30 of the Montreal Expos sprints to a second base during a 1987 season game. Tim Raines played for the Montreal Expos from 1979-1990. (Photo by: Andrew D. Bernstein/Getty Images)
CHICAGO - UNDATED: Tim Raines of the Chicago White Sox poses for a portrait prior to an MLB game at Comiskey Park in Chicago, Illinois. Raines played for the White Sox from 1991-1995. (Photo by Ron Vesely/MLB Photos via Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - CIRCA 1991: Tim Raines #30 of the Chicago White Sox bats against the Detroit Tigers during an Major League Baseball game circa 1991 at Comiskey Park in Chicago, Illinois. Raines played for the White Sox from 1991-95. (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OH - AUGUST 24, 1991: Tim Raines #30 of the Chicago White Sox during batting practice before a game against the Cleveland Indians during a MLB game on August 24, 1991 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Ronald C. Modra/Sports Imagery/Getty Images)
BALTIMORE, MD - OCTOBER 11: Tim Raines of the New York Yankees during Game Three of the American League Championship Series against the Baltimore Orioles on October 11, 1996 at Oriole Park at Camden Yards in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Sporting News via Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - OCTOBER 03: New York Yankees' Tim Raines gets sprayed with champagne and beer in the locker room after the Yankees defeated the Texas Rangers in the American League playoffs. (Photo by Keith Torrie/NY Daily News Archive via Getty Images)
Tim Raines takes part in the 2008 MLB All-Star Week Taco Bell All-Star Legends & Celebrity Softball Game at Yankee Stadium on July 13, 2008 in New York City. (Photo by Michael Loccisano/FilmMagic)


Ramirez hit 555 home runs in his 19-year career, but he doesn't figure to be inducted any time soon, with the voting still taking place under the cloud of performance-enhancing drug suspicion. Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens, for example, were below 50 percent in this year's voting.

Ramirez was suspended for 50 games in 2009 while with the Los Angeles Dodgers after testing positive for a banned drug. He retired in April 2011 instead of serving a 100-game ban for a second positive test while with Tampa Bay, but later agreed to a reduced 50-game suspension and played in the minors for Oakland in 2012.

Guerrero, who has managed to avoid the PED controversy, hit .318 with 449 home runs in his 16-year career, mostly with the Expos and Angels.


With Piazza set for induction, the focus turns to two other catchers who will debut on the ballot for 2017. Rodriguez hit .296 with 311 homers and won 13 Gold Gloves, but voters concerned about PED allegations may be hesitant to support him. Former Texas teammate Jose Canseco alleged he injected steroids into Rodriguez.

Posada played his entire 17-year career with the New York Yankees and was part of five World Series champions.


Curt Schilling was at 52 percent this year, and Mike Mussina checked in at 43 percent. Their progress will be worth monitoring, and Hoffman is already within striking distance of being inducted.


Jason Varitek and Magglio Ordonez may not come all that close to the Hall threshold, but their presence on the ballot for 2017 will bring back fond memories for fans in Boston and Detroit.

Edgar Renteria, whose 11th-inning hit won Game 7 of the 1997 World Series for the Florida Marlins, makes his debut on the ballot as well.

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