Yankees fans shout for Ichiro and CC Sebathia’s Cooperstown crown in 2025

Former Yankees Ichiro Suzuki and CC Sebathia
Amanda Paula
Tuesday January 23, 2024

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The Baseball Writers’ Association of America Hall of Fame ballot saw a resurgence of interest with the announcement of a three-person Class of 2024 on Tuesday night. However, the absence of CC Sabathia and Ichiro Suzuki from the Hall of Fame Class of 2023 left many Yankees fans questioning the choices and advocating for their inclusion.

Who was included in the Hall of Fame?

Adrián Beltré, a masterful third baseman, and Joe Mauer, a decorated Twins catcher, both secured entry into the National Baseball Hall of Fame on their first BBWAA ballot. The power-hitting Rockies first baseman, Todd Helton, earned his well-deserved spot on the sixth attempt. The trio, elected by BBWAA, will join Contemporary Baseball Era Committee electee Jim Leyland in an induction ceremony scheduled for July 21 at the Clark Sports Center in Cooperstown, N.Y.

Beltré, renowned for his exceptional defensive skills and membership in the 400-homer club, expressed disbelief at the honor. With a resounding 95.1% support from ballots, Beltré’s induction became a foregone conclusion. His Hall of Fame case primarily revolved around his remarkable contributions in his 30s, solidifying his place among the all-time greats. Beltré, the only infielder other than Derek Jeter to achieve 3,000 hits and win five Gold Gloves, concluded his 21-season career with impressive statistics, including 3,166 hits, 477 homers, and a Baseball-Reference Wins Above Replacement (93.5) mark that ranks third among third basemen in history.

Todd Helton, who spent his entire 17-year career with the Rockies, faced initial skepticism due to Coors Field’s hitter-friendly environment. However, over time, voters recognized his prowess both at home and on the road, ultimately leading to his election with 79.7% support. Helton’s offensive numbers were notable, and he excelled defensively at first base, winning three Gold Gloves. A five-time All-Star and four-time Silver Slugger, Helton’s induction, alongside Larry Walker, has overcome the bias against Rockies players in the voting system.

Joe Mauer, despite a more complicated case than Beltré, entered the Hall on his first ballot as arguably the best catcher of his generation. With 76.1% support, Mauer, a six-time All-Star and the 2009 AL MVP, showcased excellence both behind the plate and as a first baseman later in his career. His .306 career batting average and three batting titles, along with other impressive statistics, solidified his legacy as one of the greatest catchers in the history of the game.

Yankees’ case for Cooperstown

Former Yankees CC Sebathia
AP

As Yankees fans eagerly anticipate the 2025 edition, the question lingers: why should CC Sabathia and Ichiro Suzuki be included in the prestigious Hall of Fame? Sabathia, a dominant left-handed pitcher, boasts an illustrious career that includes six All-Star selections, a Cy Young Award, and a reputation as a postseason hero.

Former Yankees  Ichiro Suzuki
AP

Ichiro, one of the most iconic outfielders in baseball history, amassed over 3,000 hits in the Major Leagues, showcasing unmatched speed, defensive prowess, and consistent offensive production. Both Sabathia and Ichiro have left an indelible mark on the game, earning the admiration of fans and fellow players alike, making a compelling case for their enshrinement in Cooperstown alongside baseball’s elite.

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