Scott Rolen is heading to Cooperstown.
The third baseman earned votes from 76.3% of participating writers and was the lone name called for the Baseball Hall of Fame’s class of 2023 on Tuesday.
Rolen played for the Philadelphia Phillies, St. Louis Cardinals, Toronto Blue Jays and Cincinnati Reds during his 17-year career. The 2006 World Series champion was named NL Rookie of the Year in 1997 and earned eight Gold Gloves, seven All-Star selections and a Silver Slugger Award.
After debuting on the ballot back in 2018 with only 10.2%, Rolen seemed like a long shot for Cooperstown, but has gained momentum in the five years since. He earned 17.2% in 2019, 25.3% in 2020, 52.9% in 2021 and 63.2% last year.
Several former players were on the cusp of joining Rolen as part of this year’s class. Todd Helton finished with 72.2% of the vote and Billy Wagner received 68.1%. Andruw Jones and Gary Sheffield all finished between 55-60%. Sheffield has been on the ballot since 2015, meaning he has one year left. This was Wagner’s eighth year on the ballot and Jones’ sixth.
Carlos Beltran and Jeff Kent both came in at 46.5%, but they are at far ends on the eligibility scale. While this is Beltran’s first year on the ballot, Kent is no stranger to this process in his 10th and final year.
Two notable sluggers made little progress in voting from 2022 to 2023. Alex Rodriguez went from 34.3% in his first year on the ballot to right around 35.7% in 2023. Manny Ramirez, meanwhile, came in at 33.2% in his seventh year on the ballot.
Here is a look at other players from this year’s ballot, their voting totals and how long they have been on the ballot:
Omar Vizquel: 19.6% (6th)
Andy Pettitte: 17.0% (5th)
Bobby Abreu: 15.4% (4th)
Mark Buehrle: 10.8% (3rd)
Francisco Rodriguez: 10.8% (1st)
Torii Hunter: 6.9% (3rd)
Bronson Arroyo: 0.3%
R.A. Dickey: 0.3% (1st)
John Lackey: 0.3% (1st)
Mike Napoli: 0.03 (1st)
Huston Street: 0.3% (1st)
Matt Cain: 0.0% (1st)
Jacoby Ellsbury: 0.0% (1st)
Andre Ethier: 0.0% (1st)
J.J. Hardy: 0.0% (1st)
Jhonny Peralta: 0.0% (1st)
Jered Weaver: 0.0% (1st)
Jayson Werth: 0.0% (1st)