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How Did Last Year’s 5 Blank Ballot Submitters Vote in 2014?

Last year, five writers submitted blank ballots (which doesn’t count as a non-vote, it counts as a vote against everybody, and brings every player’s percentage down). One of those voters has managed to remain anonymous. The other four came forward: Jorge Ebro (who famously didn’t realize that sending back a blank ballot would harm all candidates), Chris Jenkins (who wrote a column explaining why he did it), Mark Faller (whose explanation is now behind a paywall), and Howard Bryant from ESPN.

This year, one voter submitted a blank ballot according to the BBWAA. Was it the same anonymous voter as last year? Nobody knows except for that voter. It could be Chris Jenkins, who has yet to reveal his ballot this year in the San Diego Union Tribune or to me when asked via email.

The other three 2013 blank ballot submitters have revealed their ballots again this year:

  • Jorge Ebro told me via email that he voted for 6 players this year: Biggio, Glavine, Maddux, Morris, Piazza, and Thomas.
  • Howard Bryant told me on Twitter that he voted for Glavine, Maddux, Morris, and Thomas.
  • Mark Faller went from zero to the maximum 10, as he detailed in a column last week: Bagwell, Biggio, Glavine, Maddux, Morris, Piazza, Raines, Schilling, Smith, and Thomas

So all that’s left is Jenkins and our anonymous Blank Ballot Bandit(s). I’ll update this post if Jenkins (or any other blank balloter) reveals his 2014 ballot.

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Public vs. Anonymous Voters

Moises Alou (6), Hideo Nomo (6), Luis Gonzalez (5), Eric Gagne (2), J.T. Snow (2), Armando Benitez (1), Jacque Jones (1), and Kenny Rogers (1) received a total of 24 votes between them.

I’ve collected 49.21% of the ballots that were cast. Nearly half.

We know where exactly 1 of those 24 votes came from. The other 23 remain anonymous.

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Player Support By Ballot Size

With 281 ballots collected (49.2% of total known ballots), here’s how much support players received from voters based on the number of players included on ballots:

Takeaways:

  • Bagwell received almost no support from voters who had fewer than 7 players on their ballots.
  • Biggio received little support from writers who voted for fewer than 5 players.
  • Frank Thomas was not a Hall of Famer to 3 and 4 vote ballot casters.
  • Tim Raines received well over 50% support from writers who voted for 6 or more players, but received just 2 of 35 other votes.
  • Ken Gurnick is the worst. (So far, anyway. Apparently there was at least one blank ballot submitted.)
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