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IBWAA selects Ken Griffey Jr., Edgar Martinez

The Internet Baseball Writers Association of America selected Ken Griffey Jr. and Edgar Martinez for its Hall of Fame. AP Photo/John Froschauer

What would the Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York, look like in an alternate universe, one with a different voting bloc and slightly different voting rules? Well, it may include Edgar Martinez.

In its seventh annual Hall of Fame vote, the Internet Baseball Writers Association of America (IBWAA) selected the two longtime Seattle Mariners teammates. While Ken Griffey Jr. will be elected in the Baseball Writers' Association of America (BBWAA) vote announced later Wednesday, Martinez's percentage is expected to be below 50, well short of the 75 percent threshold needed to earn that plaque in Cooperstown. The IBWAA had previously elected Mike Piazza, Jeff Bagwell and Tim Raines, three players who may finally get elected in the BBWAA voting.

Howard Cole, who founded the IBWAA in 2009, suggested that his group is "a bit more open-minded, and that's reflected in our results." The IBWAA undoubtedly skews younger, a group that is going to be more forgiving of steroid-era players, thus the selections of players like Piazza and Bagwell ahead of its BBWAA brethren.

But note: The Hall of Fame board in Cooperstown made revisions to the BBWAA eligibility list this year, purging many voters who haven't covered the game in the previous decade. This will create an election much different from previous years. Older voters submitted ballots with fewer average names and had a greater tendency to not submit ballots for the likes of Piazza and Bagwell, let alone Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens and Mark McGwire. Early returns on public ballots show significant increases for not only Raines and Bagwell, but Martinez, Curt Schilling and Mike Mussina, putting them on a more likely Hall of Fame path.

The IBWAA ballot, which allows voters to vote for up to 15 players, also reveals that the 10-player limit in the BBWAA hurts vote totals. In the IBWAA vote, Larry Walker polled at 45 percent, while Fred McGriff, Jeff Kent and Gary Sheffield all received more than 30 percent. The BBWAA percentages for those players will be much lower. Jim Edmonds received 21 percent from the IBWAA but appears destined to receive less than 5 percent on the BBWAA ballot. That means he gets booted, his borderline Hall of Fame never getting a chance to be discussed or build momentum.

The good news for Martinez is that the IBWAA vote tends to run a year or two ahead of the BBWAA vote for non-obvious candidates. The Internet voters were a year ahead on Bert Blyleven and Craig Biggio, while Piazza was elected in 2013 and Bagwell and Raines last year. "While I haven't seen the BBWAA's results for this year, obviously, it doesn't look good for Edgar Martinez," Cole said. "We're certainly proud to honor him."

This year, 230 writers participated in the IBWAA voting with an average of 8.7 names submitted per ballot. Voting results:

Ken Griffey Jr.: 100 percent

Edgar Martinez: 75.2

Trevor Hoffman: 70.9

Mike Mussina: 68.3

Roger Clemens: 66.1

Barry Bonds: 65.7

Curt Schilling: 63.9

Alan Trammell: 58.7

Larry Walker: 45.2

Fred McGriff: 36.1

Mark McGwire: 36.1

Jeff Kent: 33.9

Lee Smith: 32.6

Gary Sheffield: 32.2

Billy Wagner: 30.9

Sammy Sosa: 24.8

Jim Edmonds: 21.7

Nomar Garciaparra: 6.1

Less than 5 percent: Mike Hampton, Mike Lowell, Troy Glaus, David Eckstein, Garret Anderson, Jason Kendall, Luis Castillo, Mark Grudzielanek, Mike Sweeney, Brad Ausmus, Randy Winn.