“I lost out for that job to Carlos Beltrán, and I had no issues with it at all,” said Eduardo Pérez, an analyst for ESPN and SiriusXM who played 13 seasons in the majors. “That’s the utmost respect I have for that man. Seeing it from my eyes, he’s a first-ballot Hall of Famer, like it or not — and don’t tell me that everyone in the Hall of Fame are perfect individuals. They’re far from perfect.”
Pérez, whose father, Tony, was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2000, said today’s candidates face a different environment than those from previous generations. Several Hall of Famers committed ethical sins more troubling than spitballs — domestic violence, enforcement of the color barrier, collusion, alleged game-fixing, illegal recreational drug use — but now, it seems, a candidate’s transgressions seem more likely to stain or erase their legacies.
“In today’s world, because of social media and because of the access people have to information, you’re more vulnerable than you were back in the day,” Pérez said. “Character is seen differently, and it can be exposed easier.”