Popular former Mets David Wright, Jose Reyes and Bartolo Colon are among the first-time-eligible names on the 2024 Baseball Writers’ Association of America Hall of Fame ballot that was released Monday.
But the former Mets star who has the best chance of making it to Cooperstown this time could be closer Billy Wagner, who hopes to continue his climb toward the 75% needed for induction on his ninth year on the ballot.
Wagner’s vote totals have grown from 10.5% in 2016 to the 68.1% he received last year. Wagner had 422 saves, 101 of them with the Mets, for whom he played from 2006-09.
Longtime Atlanta outfielder Andruw Jones, who played with the Yankees from 2011-12, also has seen an increase in votes and went from 41.4% in 2022 to 58.1% in his seventh year of eligibility last year.
Former Met and Yankee Carlos Beltran is on the ballot for the second time. His candidacy was hurt by his role in the 2017 Astros sign-stealing scandal that cost him his job as Mets manager in 2020. Beltran received 46.5% of the votes in his first year of eligibility.
Prominent former Yankees on the ballot include Alex Rodriguez and Andy Pettitte, both of whom have performance-enhancing drug use on the negative part of their resumes. Rodriguez got 35.7% of the vote last year in his second year of eligibility. Pettitte received 17.0% in his fifth year on the ballot.
Former Mets and Yankees slugger Gary Sheffield is in his 10th and final year on the BBWAA ballot. He was named on 55.0% of ballots last year.
The top non-New York names on the ballot for first-time include third baseman Adrian Beltre, who had 3,166 career hits and 477 home runs and should easily be elected, plus three-time AL batting champion Joe Mauer and former Mets nemesis Chase Utley.
Former Colorado first baseman Todd Helton needs just a few more votes on his sixth year on the ballot after receiving 72.2% last year.
The results will be announced on Jan. 23.