With 68 percent, Biggio just shy on first try at Hall
Astros star leading vote-getter in year without inductee; Bagwell inches up
By Brian McTaggart /01/09/13 2:20 PM ET
HOUSTON -- The Astros are still waiting for a Hall of Famer they can call their own.
Astros icons Craig Biggio and Jeff Bagwell each came up short on being elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in totals released Wednesday by the Baseball Writers' Association of America. No player had the 75 percent of the vote needed for enshrinement, with Biggio leading the way with 68.2 percent of the vote in his first year on the ballot.
Both Biggio and Bagwell will be eligible again next year for enshrinement, and no player who at one point has received 50 percent of the vote has never made the Hall eventually. Players can stay on the ballot for 15 years, so there's plenty of hope and time for the Killer B's.
Biggio certainly had Hall of Fame credentials. He played 20 years for the Astros, and in 2007, became just the 27th player to reach 3,000 hits. He wound up hitting 291 home runs, had 1,175 RBIs, 414 stolen bases and had a .281 average.
A first-round pick out of Seton Hall in 1987, Biggio quickly blossomed into an All-Star catcher before being moved to second base, where he became a superstar. He was among the best players in the game in the late 1990s and helped the Astros win four division titles in a five-year span (1997-99, 2001).
Bagwell, meanwhile, played in four All-Star Games, had 2,314 hits, 449 home runs, 1,529 RBIs and helped Houston reach the playoffs six times. He was forced to retire after a degenerative shoulder condition made it impossible for him to throw a baseball and nearly impossible to swing a bat.
The early end to his career kept him from hitting 500 home runs, which almost certainly would have punched his ticket to the Hall, but he still has strong credentials.
An All-Star at catcher and later at second, Biggio ranks 21st all-time in hits and has more doubles (668) than any right-handed hitter in Major League history. He's 15th all-time in runs scored (1,844), 10th in plate appearances (12,504) and first in hit by pitch (285) in the modern era.
Biggio became the 27th player in Major League history to reach the 3,000-hit plateau with a seventh-inning single against Colorado's Aaron Cook on June 28, 2007, at Minute Maid Park. Biggio's No. 7 was retired by the Astros in 2008.
Biggio was named to a franchise-record seven NL All-Star teams, received five Silver Slugger Awards, four Rawlings Gold Glove Awards and was a member of six Astros playoff teams. Biggio holds NL records for leadoff home runs with 53 (ranks 2nd all-time) and for hits in Interleague Play with 201. He also led all players during the 2005 postseason with 18 hits.
His 20 seasons with Houston are a franchise record, and he also made a club-best 19 consecutive Opening Day starts. Biggio is also the only player in Major League history to reach all of the following milestones: 600 doubles, 250 home runs, 2,700 hits and 400 stolen bases.