Ken Davidoff's perfect Hall of Fame ballot

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Yesterday I said that there were no perfect Hall of Fame ballots. I should have waited to see Newsday’s Ken Davidoff’s before I said that, because his is pretty close to perfect: Alomar, Blyleven, Larkin, Martinez, McGwire, Raines, Trammell.

There is no one on that list I wouldn’t include on my own ballot. There is no one on the current ballot with the possible exception of Fred McGriff who I think deserves enshrinement who isn’t listed above, and like I said yesterday, McGriff is a damn close call for me and I understand that reasonable people disagree on him.  I think we’ll find come January 6th that neither Matinez, McGwire, Raines nor Trammell will even approach the 75% required to get in, but seeing them on more and more ballots is really encouraging.

Nice going, Ken.

Pujols hits 701st career home run, connects for Cardinals

albert pujols
Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images
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ST. LOUIS — Cardinals slugger Albert Pujols hit his 701st home run, connecting Friday night against the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Pujols launched a slider from former teammate Johan Oviedo over the Big Mac Land sign in left field at Busch Stadium. The solo drive in the fourth inning made it 1-all.

Pujols faced Oviedo for the first time and made the 24-year-old righty the 456th different pitcher he’s homered against.

The St. Louis star hadn’t homered in a week since hitting No. 699 and 700 at Dodger Stadium last Friday. Pujols had gone 10 at-bats without a home run after two starts and one pinch-hit appearance.

The Busch Stadium crowd gave the 42-year-old Pujols a long standing ovation before he came out of the Cardinals dugout to tip his cap for a curtain call.

Pujols hit his 22nd home run this season for the NL Central champion Cardinals.

Pujols is fourth on the career home run list behind Barry Bonds (762), Hank Aaron (755) and Babe Ruth (714).