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Vladimir Guerrero, Trevor Hoffman lead 2018 Hall of Fame ballot

By in Press Enterprise on November 20, 2017

By Jeff Fletcher

For Vladimir Guerrero and Trevor Hoffman, the path to the Hall of Fame is officially open again.

The 2018 Hall of Fame ballot, which includes newcomers Jim Thome and Chipper Jones, was released Monday morning. It is a key step toward what is a likely election for a pair of players with Southern California ties.

Guerrero, who won an MVP during his six years with the Angels, and Hoffman, who grew up in Orange County before starring for the Padres, were both nearly elected last year.

Hoffman, at 74 percent, and Guerrero, at 71.7 percent, both came up just short of the 75 percent required for election.

Voters — members of the Baseball Writers’ Association of America for at least 10 years — must cast their ballots by Dec. 31. Results will be announced Jan. 24.

Guerrero has a chance to be the first player to go into the Hall representing the Angels. The Hall’s curators would have the final say of whether he goes in representing the Angels or Montreal Expos, with whom he spent his first eight years.

Guerrero hit .318 in his career, with 449 homers. The only players to exceed him in both categories are Babe Ruth, Ted Williams, Stan Musial, Lou Gehrig and Jimmie Foxx.

Guerrero, who was inducted into the Angels Hall of Fame in August, said at the time he was satisfied with his showing in his first bid for Cooperstown.

“I was very happy because it’s the first time I was in the vote,” Guerrero said. “I was very close. I hope next year I can make it.”

Hoffman, a product of Anaheim’s Savanna High and Cypress College, recorded 601 saves, which was the all-time record before it was broken by Mariano Rivera.

Guerrero and Hoffman are the leading returning candidates on a ballot that also includes Edgar Martinez (58.6 […]    

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