LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — Marvin Miller missed making baseball's Hall of Fame in his sixth and what his family hopes is his final opportunity. A legendary labor leader, Miller's contributions — while not universally appreciated, obviously — had as much or more of an effect on the game than those of anyone else in the past 40 or 50 years.
And yet, the various electorates in a position to acknowledge Miller's place in baseball have refused to do so, time and again. No disrespect to former managers Bobby Cox, Tony La Russa and Joe Torre — all of whom were announced as new Hall of Famers on Monday — but their awards are tarnished because Miller isn't already in Cooperstown. It's too bad for them, but that's way it has to be. And that's how Miller would have wanted it.
Some time ago, Miller concluded, the powers that be — tightly aligned with his foes in Major League Baseball — just kept re-nominating him in order to embarrass him, because they knew he wouldn't win. One of Miller's dying wishes, literally, was for the Hall of Fame to stop putting his name up for election. Miller's family even actively lobbied for Miller be dropped from consideration. It probably will in the future, if he's nominated again.
That didn't stop Don Fehr, the man who replaced Miller as the union's executive director in 1983, from being among those who ripped the Hall for omitting Miller again after he failed to get the required 12 of 16 votes. In a statement, Fehr said:
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