Curt Schilling Is Hurting His Hall of Fame Vote Chances
Curt Schilling’s boorish behavior on social media may cost him more than a cushy analyst job at ESPN. The Globe‘s Dan Shaughnessy says he’ll no longer cast a Hall of Fame vote for the three-time World Series champion, because of a tweet he sent out earlier this month applauding a t-shirt that advocates for violence against journalists.
The since-deleted tweet, which was posted Nov. 8, featured a photo of a man wearing a shirt that reads, “Rope. Tree. Journalist. Some Assembly Required.” Above it, Schilling wrote, “Ok, so much awesome here…”
Shaughnessy, who was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame this summer, says he’s now out on Schilling after this latest episode. “I have held my nose and voted for the Big Blowhard in recent years (11-2 in postseason, ridiculous walk/strikeout ratio), and he was up to 52.3 percent (75 percent required) last year, but I shall invoke the ‘character’ clause this year,” he writes. “Schill has transitioned from a mere nuisance to an actual menace to society. His tweet supporting the lynching of journalists was the last straw for this voter. Curt later claimed he was joking. Swell.”
Considering the Baseball Writers’ Association of America votes for the Hall of Fame, Schilling may find himself excluded from more than one ballot this year. Reporter Jon Heyman tweeted recently he’s not sure if he can still support Schilling’s candidacy.
Last year, Schilling received 52.3 percent of the Hall of Fame vote. Given the plethora of incendiary comments he’s made in recent months—he was canned from ESPN in May after posting a crass anti-transgender meme and writing the “men’s room was designed for the penis”—voters have plenty of reasons to abandon Schilling before he reaches the 75 percent threshold that’s required for entry into Cooperstown. BBWAA election rules say voting “shall be based upon the player’s record, playing ability, integrity, sportsmanship, character, and contributions to the team(s) on which the player played.” Suffice to say, demeaning transgender people online isn’t a high-character move.
In the past, Schilling has suggested his right-wing views have hindered his candidacy. If true, that’s wrong. But now his act is beyond politics. It wouldn’t be surprising if many journalists refuse to vote for a man who’s tacitly advocated for them to be lynched.