Decades too late, Marvin Miller is finally elected

NEW YORK - MAY 25: Executive director of the Major League Baseball Players Association Marvin Miller explains new baseball contract agreement at press conference on May 25, 1970 in New York City. (Photo by Arthur Buckley/NY Daily News Archive via Getty Images)
NEW YORK - MAY 25: Executive director of the Major League Baseball Players Association Marvin Miller explains new baseball contract agreement at press conference on May 25, 1970 in New York City. (Photo by Arthur Buckley/NY Daily News Archive via Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Malcolm W. Emmons/Sporting News via Getty Images via Getty Images)
(Photo by Malcolm W. Emmons/Sporting News via Getty Images via Getty Images) /

Marvin Miller belongs in the HoF

As we all know, baseball’s Hall of Fame also serves as a museum for the sport; a place that recognizes the stars that played the game, but also informs fans of its rich history and how this game we know today came to be.

And there’s no better description of just that than what’s found right on the HoF’s website:

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"“The Museum preserves history, honors excellence and connects generations. Beyond the iconic Hall of Fame Plaque Gallery are exhibits that tell the story of baseball’s impact on our lives, and our country.”"

Whether he likes it or not, Marvin Miller is part of baseball history; and that’s not meant to be some rude proclamation, but an affirmation that not all events throughout history are necessarily good. History is history, and being able to properly recognize what took place in baseball during those days is more important to future fans of baseball than a decade-long run of cronyism.

Sure, Miller’s family has every right to carry out his wishes, choosing to pass on acknowledging his election; and if that means there’s no one there to speak on his behalf on induction day than so be it. However, I have a feeling there will be plenty of former players, executives and countless others willing to stand up on the podium on induction day (July 27) and show their appreciation for a man that did more than hit hundreds of home runs or bat for a high average.

Marvin Miller is the reason that players this week have the amazing opportunity to command life-changing amounts of money to play the game they love. And now, finally, the voters got it right.

But if you’re still on the fence in terms of whether electing Miller was the right thing for voters to do, consider an excerpt from Dan Szymborski’s (FanGraphs) write-up late Sunday night — an absolute perfect narration of what Miller’s induction should symbolize:

"“Both his accomplishments and the stain of the institution’s failure to honor him during his lifetime are now part of that story, and while his plaque will be the same size as all the others, its presence will stand as a towering middle finger aimed at the small men — particularly commissioner Bowie Kuhn, who wound up on the short end virtually every time the two sparred during Miller’s tenure, yet was elected in 2008 — who conspired against him during his lifetime and after, and who colluded against the players in efforts to break the union.”"

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This is a happy ending to a long and unfortunate story. The injustice that blocked Miller from his rightful place in baseball’s Hall of Fame cannot be undone nor will it be forgotten. However, it will now live and forever be part of the sport’s history — both the bad part and then now the good one.