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Bob Ryan Tweets Unwavering Hall of Fame Support for Curt Schilling and Steve Carlton

By Stephen Douglas
Steve Carlton
Steve Carlton / Jim McIsaac/Getty Images
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Curt Schilling is so mad he wasn't voted into the Baseball Hall of Fame that he asked to be taken off next year's ballot. That was on Tuesday. On Thursday, after most people had moved on, Bob Ryan logged on to Twitter to let Schilling know that he voted for him and to make his point, he explained that he also voted for Steve Carlton. Why Steve Carlton? Because in 1994 there was a feature about Carlton in Philadelphia Magazine where he was quoted saying a lot of wild conspiracy theory stuff that had some people wanting him left out of the Hall.

The full original article from Philadelphia Magazine, "Thin Mountain Air," by Pat Jordan, along with a postscript from the author and editor, exists on an old school Deadspin vertical called The Stacks where they featured "cool old journalism." After the feature was first published, the American Jewish Congress asked for Carlton to be barred from the Hall of Fame, but backed off when Carlton said the article had "almost no truth to it." Via the Baltimore Sun on April 14, 1994:

"I specifically deny saying anything that could be interpreted as offensive to Jewish people. I stand on my long record of treating all teammates and opponents with the same respect, be they Jewish, black or white.""

Now, back to Ryan. He obviously does not care about the Hall of Fame's interest in a baseball player's character, which, whatever. But going on Twitter to trumpet that while basically telling Schilling he's right seems like a questionable choice. This is also Ryan telling Schilling that he can do anything and he will vote for him. Just as a reminder, Schilling came out in support of insurrection earlier this month, which was actually a last straw for some voters who wanted to remove Schilling from their ballots.

The truth is, Carlton was voted into the Hall of Fame in a different era. Carlton got 95.6 percent of the votes and that happened months before that article was published. Ryan seems to be implying that he voted while already knowing those things. Did the other writers know about Carlton's worldview? Would it have made a difference? Did 26 percent of voters in the 80s know AND care about how into conspiracy theories Carlton was? Did baseball writers actually care about character before the steroid era? Who knows, but at least they weren't able to tweet about they had voted for Ty Cobb too.

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