Is Dale Murphy Being Snubbed By The Hall Of Fame Voters?

Jim CheneyCorrespondent IJuly 27, 2009

SAN FRANCISCO - 1989:  Dale Murphy #3 of the Atlanta Braves swings the bat during a game with the San Francisco Giants in 1988 at Candlestick Park in San Francisco, California.  (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)

On Sunday, the induction ceremony was held for the three newest Hall of Fame members in Cooperstown, New York. Rickey Henderson, Jim Rice, and Joe Gordon enter baseball's elite club comprised of only 292 members.

Since the first election in 1936, when Cy Young and Lou Gherig were denied election, the question is always raised, who got snubbed?

Over the last 11 elections, the focus of Braves's fans have centered on one player: Dale Murphy.

Murphy, who played 15 seasons in Atlanta from 1976-1990, was the face of an Atlanta franchise that spent most of the 1980s near the bottom of the NL West.

Despite the lowely status of the team during the 80s, Murphy still managed to be one of the best players in the league.

He twice won the MVP award and won five Gold Glove. Additionally, only Mike Schmidt hit more home runs (313) than Murphy did (308) in the 1980s.

This begs the question, why isn't Dale Murphy receiving more support for induction in the Hall of Fame?

In the 11 years he has been on the ballot, Murphy has received over 20 percent support only once, in 2000 (23.2). In fact, his support has been waning over the last few years and in the last election, Murphy only received 11.5 percent of the votes.

I have never been a big fan of the idea that just because one player is in the Hall of Fame, that means another player should be. Therefore, I won't mention that Murphy won more MVPs and Gold Gloves than Jim Rice. I also won't bring up the fact that Murphy had more home runs in less at bats than Rice did.

To be fair though, Rice did have a much better batting average than Murphy did.

However, my point is, if Rice can receive 76 percent of the vote this year, why did Murphy only receive 11 percent?

While we can argue the worthiness of Dale Murphy being inducted into the Hall of Fame, it is clear to me that he is not receiving the amount of support he deserves.

Murphy was one of the most dominate players of the 1980s and deserved to play on a better team. If he had, he might just be receiving the consideration he deserves for the Hall of Fame.