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Rolen, Walker fall short in Hall of Fame voting

Former Cardinals not among electees Wednesday, but will remain on ballot for next year
MLB.com @LangoschMLB

ST. LOUIS -- Though none of the four players to earn election into the National Baseball Hall of Fame on Wednesday have a connection to the Cardinals, two who do will continue to garner consideration in coming years.

Both Scott Rolen and Larry Walker surpassed the 5-percent threshold necessary to remain on the ballot. In his first year of eligibility, Rolen was listed on 42 of 422 ballots. Walker received 34.1 percent of the vote, the highest total he's had in eight years on the ballot.

ST. LOUIS -- Though none of the four players to earn election into the National Baseball Hall of Fame on Wednesday have a connection to the Cardinals, two who do will continue to garner consideration in coming years.

Both Scott Rolen and Larry Walker surpassed the 5-percent threshold necessary to remain on the ballot. In his first year of eligibility, Rolen was listed on 42 of 422 ballots. Walker received 34.1 percent of the vote, the highest total he's had in eight years on the ballot.

Former Cardinals Jamie Moyer (2.4 percent), Chris Carpenter (0.5 percent) and Jason Isringhausen (0 percent) will all fall off the ballot after one year.

2018 Hall of Fame election results | Full coverage

Eligible voters from the Baseball Writers' Association of America considered 33 candidates on the 2018 Hall of Fame ballot, and for the fourth time in baseball history, four were elected. Chipper Jones (97.2 percent), Vladimir Guerrero (92.9 percent), Jim Thome (89.8 percent) and Trevor Hoffman (79.9 percent) will be enshrined into Cooperstown this July, along with Jack Morris and Alan Trammell, both of whom were elected by the Modern Baseball Era Committee in December.

Players become eligible for Hall of Fame consideration five years after retirement, and they can remain on the ballot for up to 10 years as long as they receive at least 5 percent of the vote.

Walker, who ended his 17-year career by appearing in 144 games with the Cardinals, saw his support jump more than 12 percent this year. The 1997 NL MVP winner with the Rockies, Walker slashed .313/.400/.565 in his career. He was a seven-time Gold Glove Award winner, five-time All-Star, three-time National League batting champ and three-time Silver Slugger Award winner.

Rolen will also get a longer look by Hall of Fame voters after appearing on 10.2 percent of the ballots cast. He had some of his best years in St. Louis, where he made four All-Star teams and won three Gold Gloves from 2002-07. Rolen was also a member of the Cardinals' 2006 championship team and batted .421 in that World Series.

Rolen's career spanned 17 years, and his home run (316) and RBI (1,287) totals rank in the top 15 all-time among third basemen. Getting the necessary 75 percent support from the voters, however, will be an uphill climb for Rolen. Bob Lemon, a 1976 Hall of Fame inductee, was the last to earn enshrinement after receiving 10.2 percent or less support.

Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Follow her on Twitter and Facebook.

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