Dawson elected to baseball's Hall of Fame
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Andre Dawson was elected to the Hall of Fame yesterday in his ninth try, while Bert Blyleven and Roberto Alomar fell just short of earning baseball's highest honor.
Dawson received 420 of 539 votes in results announced by the Baseball Writers' Association of America, 15 more than the 75 percent necessary to gain election. The eight-time All-Star outfielder had fallen 44 votes short last year.
"If you're a Hall of Famer, eventually you're going to get in no matter how long it takes," Dawson said during a telephone conference call. "The wait isn't a big factor in the scheme of things. You get frustrated when, you know, people continue to say, "Well, when do you think you're going to get in?' And you don't really have the answer to that."
Dawson hit 438 homers with 1,591 RBIs in a career that spanned from 1976-96. Nicknamed "The Hawk," he was voted NL Rookie of the Year in 1977 with Montreal and NL Most Valuable Player in 1987 with the Chicago Cubs, the first member of a last-place team to earn the honor.
Blyleven, who finished with 287 wins, 3,701 strikeouts and 60 shutouts, had 400 votes (74.2 percent), up from 338 last year. He gets two more tries on the BBWAA ballot.
A 12-time All-Star second baseman, Alomar led the Toronto Blue Jays to consecutive World Series titles in 1992-93. He finished with a .300 career batting average, 2,724 hits, 210 homers, 474 steals and 10 Gold Gloves.
HOLLIDAY PAY EXTENDED
The St. Louis Cardinals will be paying Matt Holliday through 2029 under the $120 million, seven-year contract that will be finalized today.
Holliday will get $17 million a season in salary, but $2 million a year will be deferred without interest, a person familiar with the negotiations told The Associated Press yesterday. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the sides have not announced financial details of the deal, which was subject to a physical.
Holliday's contract includes a $17 million team option for 2017 with a $1 million buyout, and the Cardinals must decide whether to exercise it within five days of the end of the 2016 World Series.
Manny Pacquiao's promoters said his prospective bout with Floyd Mayweather Jr. was dead late last night after a mediation session failed to resolve the fighters' differences, scrapping what was likely to be the richest fight in boxing history.
The bout was slated for March 13 at the MGM Grand Garden in Las Vegas, but Top Rank said it couldn't reach an agreement with Golden Boy Promotions, which represented Mayweather in the negotiations, after nine hours of mediation Tuesday and more discussions yesterday.
FEMALES LEAD ECLIPSE
Rachel Alexandra and Zenyatta are finally in that long-awaited match race — for Horse of the Year.
The two females who dominated thoroughbred racing were the only horses receiving votes for the honor; however, there were three finalists in each of the other 16 Eclipse Award categories announced yesterday.
The winners will be honored Jan. 18 in Beverly Hills.
Either Rachel Alexandra or Zenyatta will become the first female to win the year-end honor since Azeri in 2002. They are virtual locks to win divisional championships.
Rachel Alexandra is a finalist for 3-year-old filly after going 8-0 with a Preakness Stakes win, one of three victories over males.
The 5-year-old Zenyatta is a finalist for older female after a 5-0 campaign capped by a win over boys in the Breeders' Cup Classic.
Voting is done by the National Thoroughbred Racing Association, the National Turf Writers Association and the Daily Racing Form.
QATAR TOP SEEDS ADVANCE
Top-ranked Roger Federer and No. 2 Rafael Nadal each won in straight sets yesterday to reach the quarterfinals at the Qatar Open in Doha, Qatar.
Federer beat Evgeny Korolev of Russia, 6-2, 6-4, and Nadal defeated Potito Starace of Italy, 6-2, 6-2.
Third-seeded Nikolay Davydenko also reached the quarterfinals with 6-3, 6-4 sweep of Marco Chiudinelli of Switzerland.