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a question by Feb 27, 2012
I am a strong proponent of Shoeless Joe Jackson being elected to the baseball Hall of Fame and being reinstated. The idea that a man could hit .375 during the series and have it thought that he blew the series is absurd. Unfortunately, another of the strongest arguments in his favor is that he was so unschooled, both formally and informally.
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MichaelN's Answer
answered:    February 29, 2012
He was kept out by people close to the situation through the years. He probably had some involvement in the fix or he might have known about it but was complacent. It is not fair for us to overturn what was put in effect and held by people with better information than us. It also sends a bad message that if you are caught unfairly affecting the outcome of games, that you can be forgiven.
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February 29, 2012
Joe hit over .370 in the series and there is no indication that he played poorly in the field. He was also illiterate and very sensitive about it. It is easy to see how he could have been swayed by his more sophisticated teammates to agree to the fix but then back out during the series. It is also clear that Mountain Landis was extremely harsh in his judgement, after all the players were aquitted at the trial. Joe was a great player that made a foolish mistake, being influenced by his teammates.
February 29, 2012
Again I bring up that the people who knew the exact details kept him out. There may be info you do not know. Playing well doesn't mean that he didn't know that the fix was in. Connie Hawkins played basketball like an All-star while shaving points. Pete Rose is the all-time baseball hits leader but he did things that didn't come out until recently and now we understand why Giamatti's ban is still in place. The TV series Boardwalk Empire explores the fix in some of its episodes and presents its own spin on things.
February 29, 2012
I don't believe that point shaving in basketball is relevant to Joe Jackson's case. In the case of Hawkins, he is not trying to lose the game, just keep the margin of victory under a certain value. This can more easily be done by missing that key shot, stalling at the end, a poor pass or many other simple errors.
February 29, 2012
Good points. I just brought it up because we will never know if those unscrupulous people that had Hawkins shaving points, may have eventually "asked" him to throw a game or two. We only know what Hawkins admitted to.
 
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answered:    February 28, 2012
I agree with you that Joe should be in the Hall of Fame. There have been players accused of far worse things who have been placed in the Hall. If you're a fan of Shoeless Joe, I recommend you check out "Shoeless Summer" by John Bell. It's a great little book about Jackson's time in the minors playing for a team in Americus, GA. I was given this book as a gift by my brother a few years back and I love it.
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