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2023 Hall of Fame ballot includes Andre Ethier among the newcomers

“Anyway, here’s Wonderwall”

Divisional Series - Los Angeles Dodgers v Arizona Diamondbacks - Game Three Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images

The National Baseball Hall of Fame announced its 2023 ballot on Monday, with Scott Rolen the top returner from last year’s ballot and Carlos Beltran headlining the newcomers.

A total of nine former Dodgers are on the ballot, including three for the first time. Andre Ethier, Jayson Werth, and Bronson Arroyo (yes, Bronson Arroyo) are the newcomers.

Playing ten seasons in the majors is a requirement to be on the ballot but does not guarantee inclusion. Several 10-year major leaguers were eligible for the 2023 ballot but were left out. Former eligible Dodgers with 10 years in the majors who aren’t on the ballot are Jonathan Broxton, Joe Blanton, and Carlos Ruiz.

Ethier played all of his major league games with the Dodgers, acquired from the A’s for Milton Bradley and Antonio Perez in general manager Ned Colletti’s best move. In 12 years with Los Angeles, Ethier hit .285/.359/.463, a 122 wRC+ with 303 doubles and 162 home runs.

He made two All-Star teams, won a Silver Slugger Award, and a Gold Glove Award. His four walk-off home runs in 2009 were the most in Dodgers history, and his seven career walk-off homers are the most in Los Angeles Dodgers history. Ethier in August 2012 tied a Dodgers record with hits in ten consecutive at-bats, and his 30-game hit streak in 2011 is the second-longest in club history.

The other newcomers who also played for the Dodgers only did so sparingly.

Werth was a productive outfielder for the Dodgers in two injury-plagued seasons in 2004-05, playing in 191 games. He missed the entire 2006 season after wrist surgery and was non-tendered after the season. He signed with the Phillies, where he was an integral part of a pair of World Series trips and seemed to get better as his beard grew, before landing a seven-year megadeal with the Nationals just as Washington was starting to become good.

Werth in 15 major league seasons hit .267/.360/.455, a 120 wRC+ with 300 doubles and 229 home runs.

The Dodgers acquired Arroyo during the 2015 season in a three-team deal with the Braves and Marlins that included Alex Wood coming to Los Angeles and Hector Olivera going to Atlanta.

Arroyo was recovering from July 2014 Tommy John surgery and never pitched for the Dodgers. But in his time rehabbing at Camelback Ranch, Arroyo struck up a friendship with fellow Tommy John-rehabber Walker Buehler, who the Dodgers drafted in the first round that year.

That bond was strong enough that, in the Dodgers ring ceremony in the 2021 home opener, in which every player had a video introduction from a baseball hero, Arroyo introduced Buehler and in doing so sang Wonderwall while playing the guitar.

Welcome back

The returning former Dodgers on the ballot almost seem like an exercise in futility, with none of the six players anywhere close to the 75 percent required for induction to Cooperstown, coupled with time on the ballot running out.

Andruw Jones made the biggest leap among that group last year, jumping from 33.9 percent to 41.4 percent. He would need similar gains for each of the next five years to gain induction, though could make some headway on a ballot this year uncluttered at the top after Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens, and Curt Schilling exhausted their eligibility last year.

Jeff Kent is in his 10th and final year on the ballot, having topped out at 32.7 percent. His best bet will be at least a few years down the road if the Contemporary Baseball Era committee considers him for its ballot.

Gary Sheffield is similarly running out of time, now on his ninth ballot after staying stagnant with 40.6 percent of the vote in each of the last two years. Manny Ramirez is on his seventh ballot, and hasn’t yet reached 30 percent.

A minimum of five percent of the vote is required to stay on the writers’ ballot. Jimmy Rollins (9.4 percent) made the cut in his first year on the ballot in 2022, as did Bobby Abreu (8.6 percent) in his third year. Carl Crawford was on last year’s ballot for the first time, but received zero votes.

It’s unlikely Ethier, Werth, or Arroyo will last more than one year on the ballot, but it’s an accomplishment just to be included.

Dodgers on the 2023 Hall of Fame ballot

Player Pos Year on ballot bWAR 2022 vote PA/IP% w/Dodgers
Player Pos Year on ballot bWAR 2022 vote PA/IP% w/Dodgers
Andruw Jones CF 6th 62.7 41.4% 2.7%
Gary Sheffield OF 9th 60.5 40.6% 20.8%
Jeff Kent 2B 10th 55.4 32.7% 22.5%
Manny Ramirez OF 7th 69.3 28.9% 9.1%
Jimmy Rollins SS 2nd 47.6 9.4% 5.5%
Bobby Abreu OF 4th 60.2 8.6% 2.3%
Andre Ethier OF 1st 21.5 n/a 100.0%
Jayson Werth OF 1st 29.2 n/a 11.3%
Bronson Arroyo SP 1st 23.4 n/a 0.0%

BBWAA writers must submit their ballots by December 31, with results announced on MLB Network on January 24.