Baseball Hall of Fame balloting, 1985

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Elections to the Baseball Hall of Fame for 1985 followed the system in place since 1978. The Baseball Writers Association of America (BBWAA) voted by mail to select from recent major league players and elected two, Lou Brock and Hoyt Wilhelm.

The BBWAA petitioned the Hall of Fame Board of Directors to reconsider the eligibility of Ken Boyer, Curt Flood and Ron Santo with the intention of restoring their names to the 1985 ballot. Each had failed to achieve 5% in their first years on the ballot (Boyer, 1975–79, Flood, 1977–79 and Santo, 1980). The Board approved and Boyer, Flood and Santo returned to the ballot.

The Veterans Committee met in closed sessions to consider older major league players as well as managers, umpires, executives, and figures from the Negro Leagues. It also selected two players, Enos Slaughter and Arky Vaughan.

BBWAA election[edit]

The BBWAA was authorized to elect players active in 1965 or later, but not after 1979; the ballot included candidates from the 1984 ballot who received at least 5% of the vote but were not elected, along with selected players, chosen by a screening committee, whose last appearance was in 1979. All 10-year members of the BBWAA were eligible to vote.

Voters were instructed to cast votes for up to 10 candidates; any candidate receiving votes on at least 75% of the ballots would be honored with induction to the Hall. The ballot consisted of 41 players; a total of 395 ballots were cast, with 297 votes required for election. A total of 2,918 individual votes were cast, an average of 7.39 per ballot. Those candidates receiving less than 5% of the vote will not appear on future BBWAA ballots, but may eventually be considered by the Veterans Committee.

Candidates who were eligible for the first time are indicated here with a †. The two candidates who received at least 75% of the vote and were elected are indicated in bold italics; candidates who have since been elected in subsequent elections are indicated in italics. The 18 candidates who received less than 5% of the vote, thus becoming ineligible for future BBWAA consideration, are indicated with a *.

Nellie Fox was on the ballot for the 15th and final time.

Key to colors
     Elected to the Hall. These individuals are also indicated in bold italics.
     Players who were elected in future elections. These individuals are also indicated in plain italics.
     Players not yet elected who returned on the 1986 ballot.
     Eliminated from future BBWAA voting. These individuals remain eligible for future Veterans Committee consideration.
Player Votes Percent Year
Hoyt Wilhelm 331 83.8 8th
Lou Brock 315 79.7 1st
Nellie Fox 295 74.7 15th
Billy Williams 252 63.8 4th
Jim Bunning 214 54.2 9th
Catfish Hunter 212 53.7 1st
Roger Maris 128 32.4 12th
Harvey Kuenn 125 31.6 9th
Orlando Cepeda 114 28.9 6th
Tony Oliva 114 28.9 4th
Maury Wills 93 23.5 8th
Bill Mazeroski 87 22.0 8th
Lew Burdette 82 20.8 13th
Mickey Lolich 78 19.7 1st
Ken Boyer 68 17.2 6th
Roy Face 62 15.7 10th
Elston Howard 54 13.7 12th
Ron Santo 53 13.4 2nd
Joe Torre 44 11.1 3rd
Don Larsen 32 8.1 12th
Thurman Munson 32 8.1 5th
Dick Allen 28 7.1 3rd
Curt Flood 28 7.1 4th
Vada Pinson* 19 4.8 4th
Wilbur Wood* 16 4.1 2nd
Harvey Haddix* 15 3.8 10th
Dave McNally* 7 1.8 3rd
Ken Holtzman* 4 1.0 1st
Ron Fairly* 3 0.8 2nd
Jim Lonborg* 3 0.8 1st
Andy Messersmith* 3 0.8 1st
Don Kessinger* 2 0.5 1st
Denny McLain* 2 0.5 3rd
Jesús Alou* 1 0.3 1st
Rico Carty* 1 0.3 1st
Dock Ellis* 1 0.3 1st
Clay Carroll* 0 0.0 2nd
Ed Kranepool* 0 0.0 1st
George Scott* 0 0.0 1st
Bobby Tolan* 0 0.0 1st
Roy White* 0 0.0 1st

Thurman Munson, who died in a plane crash in 1979, would have been eligible for the first time, but the five-year waiting period was waived.

The newly eligible players included 16 All-Stars, two of whom were not included on the ballot, representing a total of 44 All-Star selections. Among the new candidates were 8-time All-Star Catfish Hunter,.and 6-time All-Stars Lou Brock and Don Kessinger. The field included two Cy Young Award-winners (Catfish Hunter and Jim Lonborg), as well as George Scott, whose eight Gold Gloves at first base were a record at the time.

Players eligible for the first time who were not on the ballot were: Darrel Chaney, Gene Clines, Joe Coleman, Willie Davis, Frank Duffy, Ray Fosse, Ellie Hendricks, Steve Mingori, Bob Montgomery, Tom Murphy, Bob Robertson, Wayne Twitchell, and Bobby Valentine.

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