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Today In Brewer History: Happy Anniversary, Eddie Mathews

On this day in 1978 the BBWAA announced that longtime Milwaukee Brave Eddie Mathews had been elected to the Hall of Fame, appearing on 301 of the collected 379 ballots (79.4%). Despite the fact that Mathews was one of ten future Hall of Famers on the ballot this year, he was the only one elected. All time greats Don Drysdale, Duke Snider and Pee Wee Reese, among others, had to wait for another opportunity.

Despite finishing his career just shy of 100 wins above replacement (98.3 rWAR), Mathews also had to do some waiting. 1978 was his fifth year of eligibility, but he had been passed over in each of the previous four seasons:

Season Votes % Rank Player(s) Elected
1977 239 62.4% 2nd Ernie Banks
1976 189 48.7% 5th Robin Roberts, Bob Lemon
1975 148 40.9% 8th Ralph Kiner
1974 118 32.3% 9th Mickey Mantle, Whitey Ford

With help from and the B-Ref Play Index, happy birthday today to: