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Biggio falls just shy of Hall of Fame induction

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Former Astro Craig Biggio fell just 0.2 percent shy of receiving the required 75 percent of the votes for induction into the National Baseball Hall of Fame today.

The voting results of the Baseball Writers Association of America were announced at 1:00 p.m. CT this afternoon. Biggio's former teammate, Jeff Bagwell, received 54.3 percent of the votes in what was his fourth year on the ballot. This was Biggio's second year after debuting with 68.2 percent of the vote last year, the most votes of any eligible player in 2013.

Biggio released the following statement regarding today's voting results:

"Congratulations to Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine and Frank Thomas. Obviously, I'm disappointed to come that close. I feel for my family, the organization and the fans. Hopefully, next year."

Astros President Reid Ryan also commented: "We certainly share our fans' disappointment over the voting results today. This was just the third time in history that a player has come within two votes of making it into the Hall of Fame, so that was tough.  

"On the positive side, it is encouraging that Craig appears to be on his way to eventual induction. The other two players that came as close as he did (Nellie Fox, Pie Traynor) eventually were inducted. It was also encouraging that on a crowded ballot with several strong candidates this year, Craig increased his vote total by six percent. The Astros and our fans know that Craig deserves to be in the Hall of Fame, and it is good to know that 74.8% of the Baseball Writers agree. We're hopefull it will happen in 2015.

"We also feel Jeff Bagwell is worthy of the Hall of Fame and are hopeful that his day will come in the near future as well."

In his 20 Major League seasons (1988-2007), all in an Astros uniform, Biggio was one of the top players of his era, excelling at catcher, second base and in the outfield. The seven-time All-Star played a vital role in the most successful run in franchise history, which included six postseason appearances and a National League pennant.

Biggio is one of 28 players in ML history to reach 3,000 hits. Everyone that has reached this plateau that is eligible for the Hall of Fame has been elected, with the exception of Rafael Palmeiro. Biggio is also one of just 14 players in ML history to reach both 3,000 hits and 1,000 extra-base hits. With the exception of Palmeiro, all others to reach these combined milestones are in the Hall of Fame. 

In his career, Biggio tallied 3,060 hits, which rank 21st all-time in Major League history, and 11th all-time among right-handed hitters. Additionally, his 3,060 hits rank fifth all-time in National League history among RHH. 

In 2,850 career games, Biggio hit .281 with 668 doubles, 291 home runs, 1,175 RBI, 1,161 walks, 414 stolen bases and 1,844 runs scored, the latter ranking 14th all-time and seventh in NL history. His 668 doubles are the most in Major League history by a right-handed hitter and rank fifth all-time among all hitters. Biggio also holds the NL record for career leadoff home runs with 53 and the modern Major League record for being hit by a pitch with 285.

Biggio is also one of just 10 players in the modern era to reach the 3,000 hit plateau while playing for the same team. His 3,060 hits are more than 138 current Hall of Famers, including Babe Ruth, Ted Williams, Lou Gehrig, Jimmie Foxx, Mickey Mantle, Joe DiMaggio, Reggie Jackson, Ryne Sandberg, Yogi Berra, Roberto Clemente, Brooks Robinson and Frank Robinson. Biggio is also one of just 13 players in Major League history to reach both 1,000 extra-base hits and 3,000 total hits, a list of Hall of Famers that includes Hank Aaron, Stan Musial, Willie Mays, Carl Yastrzemski, Ty Cobb, Tris Speaker, George Brett, Cal Ripken Jr. and Pete Rose (Biggio is only the second player that was primarily a middle infielder to accomplish this feat, joining Ripken).

Additionally, Biggio is the only player in MLB history to reach all four of the following milestones: 600 doubles, 250 homers, 3,000 hits and 400 stolen bases, and is one of just three players all-time to reach 3,000 hits, 200 homers and 400 steals, joining Hall of Famers Paul Molitor and Rickey Henderson.

On the Astros all-time lists, Biggio is tops in games, at-bats, hits, runs, doubles, extra-base hits and total bases, ranks second in RBI and stolen bases and third in home runs.

BIGGIO BY THE NUMBERS

*3,060 career hits rank 21st all-time in MLB history, 11th among RHH in ML history and 5th all-time in NL history among RHH.

*Is one of just 28 players in ML history to record 3,000 hits. All eligible players to reach this milestone are currently in the HOF with the exception of Rafael Palmeiro.

*Is one of just 14 players in ML history to reach both 3,000 hits and 1,000 extra-base hits. With the exception of Palmeiro, all others are in the Hall of Fame. This list includes: Hank Aaron, Stan Musial, Willie Mays, Rafael Palmeiro, Carl Yastrzemski, Ty Cobb, Tris Speaker, George Brett, Eddie Murray, Dave Winfield, Cal Ripken Jr. and Pete Rose (Biggio is just the second player who was primarily a middle infielder to accomplish this feat, joining Ripken).

*Is one of 35 players in ML history to reach 1,000 career extra-base hits. All eligible players to reach that level are in the Hall of Fame with the exception of Palmeiro and Barry Bonds.

*Is the only player in MLB history to reach all four of the following milestones: 600 doubles, 250 homers, 3,000 hits and 400 stolen bases.

*1,844 runs scored ranks 14th in ML history and seventh in NL history.

*Is one of just 10 players in the modern era to reach the 3,000 hit plateau while playing all of his games with the same team.

*Has more hits than 138 Hall of Famers, including: Babe Ruth, Ted Williams, Lou Gehrig, Jimmie Foxx, Mickey Mantle, Joe DiMaggio, Reggie Jackson, Ryne Sandberg, Yogi Berra, Roberto Clemente, Brooks Robinson, Frank Robinson

*His 668 doubles are a MLB record for a RHH and rank 5th all-time among all hitters.

*In 1998, joined Tris Speaker (HOF) as the only players to collect 50-or-more doubles and 50-or-more stolen bases in the same season

*His 285 HBPs rank 1st all-time in modern MLB history.

*His 53 leadoff home runs are a NL record and rank third all-time in MLB history.

*Is one of only three players to reach 3,000 hits, 200 homers and 400 steals, joining Hall of Famers Paul Molitor and Rickey Henderson.

*Was a vital member of six postseason teams and a NL Pennant winning club in 2005.

*One of eight players all-time with 100 career steals of third base (107)

*Led MLB in runs twice (1995, 1997)

*Led MLB in doubles three times (1994, 1998, 1999)

*Led MLB in steals in 1994

Below is a comparison done by Baseball Reference of Biggio to an average Hall of Famer:

                     Years     ASG            PA              AB            R            H         2B      3B      HR       RBI       SB       BB         BA     OBP  

HOF AVG          18            6          9009        7926     1323     2399     410    110    211    1213   229     893      .303    .376

Biggio              20            7        12504     10876    1844     3060     668      55     291    1175    414   1160     .281    .363  

ACCOLADES

*Five Silver Slugger awards, one as a catcher, four as a second baseman, latter ranks T-3rd for the position.

*Is one of five players to win the Silver Slugger award at multiple positions, joining Albert Pujols, Gary Sheffield, Bobby Bonilla and Miguel Cabrera.

*Seven All-Star appearances (voted the starter at second base in four straight seasons from 1995-98).

*Became first player ever to be named an All-Star at both catcher (1991) and second base (1992).

*Four-time Gold Glove winner (ranks T-7th all-time among second basemen).

*1997 Branch Rickey Award winner - given to the player "who personifies service above self."

*Won MLB's 2007 Roberto Clemente Award - given to the player who "best exemplifies the game of baseball, sportsmanship, community involvement and the individual's contribution to his team."

BIGGIO AMONGST HIS PEERS (1988-2007):

*First in hits (3,060).

*First in doubles (668).

*First in games played (2,850).

*Fourth in total bases with 4,711 (trailed Barry Bonds, Rafael Palmeiro and Ken Griffey Jr.).

*Fifth in extra base hits with 1,014 (trailed Bonds, Palmeiro, Griffey and Sammy Sosa).

*10th in steals (414).

SOLID DECADE (from 1992-2001):

*Led all second basemen in games played, at-bats, runs, doubles, walks, intentional walks, on-base percentage.

*Second among second basemen in hits and batting average.

*Fourth among second basemen in homers and fifth in stolen bases.

ADVANCED STATISTICS:

*Using Baseball Reference's Wins Above Replacement metric, Biggio ranks ahead of many Hall of Famers with his 62.1 Wins Above Replacement for his career.

*Tallied more Wins Above Replacement than Hall of Famers Andre Dawson, Billy Williams, Dave Winfield, Juan Marichal, Jackie Robinson, Dennis Eckersley, Bob Feller, Yogi Berra, Harmon Killebrew, Whitey Ford, Willie Stargell, Enos Slaughter, Kirby Puckett, Ralph Kiner, Sandy Koufax, Jim Rice and Lou Brock.

*Using Baseball Reference's similarity scores (created by Bill James), Biggio's career statistics rate the most similar to Robin Yount (HOF), Derek Jeter, Joe Morgan (HOF), Paul Molitor (HOF), Roberto Alomar (HOF), Cal Ripken Jr. (HOF), and George Brett (HOF).

*Biggio rates as a 57 on Bill James' Hall of Fame Standards Score, which determines how well a player's career statistics match up to the typical standards of a Hall of Famer. A score of 50 represents the career of an average Hall of Famer.

BIGGIO IN THE COMMUNITY:

*Biggio was and still is actively involved with The Sunshine Kids, a support organization for children with cancer and their families. As a player, he helped raise approximately $2.5 million for the organization. 

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