Brewers give extensions to general manager Doug Melvin and manager Ron Roenicke

4 Comments

It’s less than ideal timing with the team in last place and the disabled list suddenly packed with regulars, but the Brewers announced contract extensions with general manager Doug Melvin and manager Ron Roenicke.

Melvin’s new deal runs through 2015, while Roenicke’s contract runs through 2014 and includes a team option for 2015.

Melvin took over as GM of a 56-106 team in late 2002, getting them to 81-81 in 2005, and they’ve finished .500 or better in four of the past seven seasons while making the playoffs twice during that time. Not exactly a dynasty, but prior to Melvin’s arrival the Brewers had a losing record in 10 straight seasons and their last playoff appearance was 1982.

Roenicke replaced Ken Macha as manager in last season, taking the Brewers to the playoffs with a 96-66 record that stands as the best in franchise history. Prior to that he served as the Angels’ bench coach under manager Mike Scioscia and played eight seasons in the majors as a part-time outfielder.

Mariano Rivera elected to Baseball Hall of Fame unanimously

Elsa/Getty Images
19 Comments

Former Yankees closer Mariano Rivera deservingly became the first player ever inducted into the Hall of Fame unanimously, receiving votes from all 425 writers who submitted ballots. Previously, the closest players to unanimous induction were Ken Griffey, Jr. (99.32% in 2016), Tom Seaver (98.84% in 1992), Nolan Ryan (98.79% in 1999), Cal Ripken, Jr. (98.53%), Ty Cobb (98.23% in 1936), and George Brett (98.19% in 1999).

Because so many greats were not enshrined in Cooperstown unanimously, many voters in the past argued against other players getting inducted unanimously, withholding their votes for otherwise deserving players. That Griffey — both one of the greatest outfielders of all time and one of the most popular players of all time — wasn’t voted in unanimously in 2016, for example, seemed to signal that no player ever would. Now that Rivera has been, this tired argument about voting unanimity can be laid to rest.

Derek Jeter will appear on the Hall of Fame ballot for the first time next year. He may become the second player ever to be elected unanimously. David Ortiz appears on the 2022 ballot and could be No. 3. Now that Rivera has broken through, these are possibilities whereas before they might not have been.

Another tired argument around Hall of Fame voting concerns whether or not a player is a “first ballot” Hall of Famer. Some voters think getting enshrined in a player’s first year of eligibility is a greater honor than getting in any subsequent year. I’m not sure what it will take to get rid of this argument — other than the electorate getting younger and more open-minded — but at least we have made progress on at least one bad Hall of Fame take.