BOSTON (CBS) — Back in 2009, Jon Heyman wrote that Curt Schilling had to be in the baseball Hall of Fame. In the past, Schilling has had Heyman’s vote for a spot in Cooperstown.
That likely won’t be the case this time around, and it has nothing to do with Schilling’s résumé as a player.
“Two of the criteria in a very short paragraph are character and integrity, and I’m starting to feel sick to my stomach to even vote for this guy,” Heyman told 98.5 The Sports Hub’s Zolak & Bertrand on Thursday. “Some people can throw out character and integrity, and generally, I don’t put that much stock into it. I basically go on the on-field performance.
“I dealt with [Schilling] and did not like him personally, but that doesn’t come into play. I usually like the guys but I’ve voted for a few people I do not like. I do not like Curt Schilling, at all,” added Heyman. “It has nothing to do with his political views; it’s about character and integrity.”
Like many of the baseball writers who have Hall of Fame ballots, Heyman took offense to a Tweet Schilling sent out, and later deleted, praising a shirt worn by a man at a Donald Trump rally that read: “Rope. Tree. Journalist. Some assembly required.”
With that display of Schilling’s character, Heyman said he can’t see himself voting for the former Red Sox pitcher over other players like Mike Mussina and Edgar Martinez.
“There is a line there to me and he crossed that line by espousing lynching. He did many things before that, and many of those things got him fired at ESPN. I was willing to ignore all of those things, but I can’t imagine why anyone would espouse lynching,” said Heyman. “I don’t know what he believes. I saw him with some hateful rhetoric on TV and then he went and added this to it. If you think that’s a joke, it’s not a very good joke and it seems to line up with things he espouses.
“If someone else wants to just look at his baseball career, I’d certainly understand that. To me, he belongs in the Hall of Shame,” said Heyman. “I understand if you want to not count character and integrity. If you want to say it only applies to his character as a ball player, that’s fine. But to me, he’s crossed the line and I would not feel good voting for him.”
Listen to the full interview below, including Heyman’s approach towards voting for PED users: