PED stain remains too strong to deny Andy Pettitte an HoF berth

Andy Pettitte, Jorge Posada, Mariano Rivera, and Derek Jeter are called the "Core Four" the Yankees dynasty that won five titles from 1996 to 2009.

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Five World Series rings and the best-winning record in the history of the postseason couldn’t guarantee Andy Pettitte a place in the Baseball Hall of Fame. His admission of using PED for two days continues to shadow the productive performance he displayed over 18 seasons and deny an HoF berth.

The left-handed pitcher was one of the most consistent players on five World Series-winning teams. This is his fifth year on the Baseball Hall of Fame ballot, and Andy Pettitte remains an interesting case as a legend of the New York Yankees and an admitted drug user.

Andy Pettitte has 19 playoff wins and 44 playoff starts, which are both all-time records. He helped the Yankees win the World Series in 1996, 1998, 1999, 2000, and 2009. His last ring came after he played for the Houston Astros. With 2020 strikeouts, Andy Pettitte is the Yankees pitcher with the highest strikeouts.

Even though Andy Pettitte has a 3.89 career ERA, he hasn’t been given an HoF berth yet because he and Roger Clemens both used human growth hormone. This was revealed in the 2007 Mitchell report.

Still, you can’t tell the story of those Yankee teams without talking about Andy. When he joined the team in 1995, the Yankees went to the playoffs for the first time in 14 years. Pettitte won 256 games over the course of his 18-year career. From 1996 to 2010, he averaged 30 starts and a 15-9 record.

Despite the PED stain, Andy Pettitte remains popular among the Yankees fans. He together with Derek Jeter, Mariano Rivera, and Jorge Posada comprised the “Core Four” that remained the mainstay of the team from 1995 to 2011. They won five World Series championships together. In 2015, the team retired his shirt, which is a big deal for a player who used PEDs.

Why Andy Pettitte should have a berth in the HoF

Andy Pettitte is the pitcher with the most wins in the history of the postseason. In his rookie year, he made a foray into the wild-card team and went on to win the Division Series.

With the 1996 World Series tied at two games each, Andy Pettitte pitched a shutout into the ninth inning of Game 5 against the Atlanta Braves. The Yankees won 1-0, which set the stage for the team’s first championship since 1978. He went on to start the games that won the World Series for his team in 1998, 2000, and 2009. In 20 innings, Andy Pettitte only gave up three earned runs.

Andy Pettitte won 21 games twice in his career, but in nine of his 18 seasons, his earned run average (ERA) was higher than 4.00.

Andy Pettitte admitted to using HGH a few days after the Mitchell Report came out, but he said it was only for “two days” in 2002 and that it was to help him get better after getting hurt.

“This is it – two days out of my life; two days out of my entire career, when I was injured and on the disabled list,” Pettitte said in a Dec. 2007 statement. “I wasn’t looking for an edge. I was looking to heal.”

Andy Pettitte said that was a lie less than two months later. But he submitted about HGH use to a Congressional panel probing the matter.

“In 2004, when I tore the flexor tendon in my pitching arm, I again used HGH two times in one day out of frustration and in a futile attempt to recover,” Pettitte then admitted.

The HoF voting

Andy Pettitte hasn’t changed much in the past four years. Ryan Thibodeaux’s tracker shows 12 new votes from the 144 public ballots for the Yankees’ pitcher. Even though he has less than 20% of the vote (18.5%), that level of support would be a new high point and could give him some momentum for the second half of his time on the ballot.

Many believe Andy Pettitte won’t get in through BBWAA voting unless God does something crazy. Pettitte has been treated much better than most of the Other PED Guys, such as Bonds and Clemens. But it doesn’t look like the bulking the trend in the next six years.

What do you think? Leave your comment below.

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