The Pretender HOF Ballot for 2014 is ready. Are you?
- By Terje Hoaas, December 2nd 2014
The Oslo Pretenders Baseball Club proudly presents its HOF Ballot for the class of 2014. The Hall of Fame is the home for the best of the best and only the greatest will enter the exclusive club of eternal glory. Only 8 members have been voted in since 2005. In the class of 2014 the Pretenders presents three great stars from the past. All three of them are first-timers on the Ballot, but only one of them will enter this year.
And the candidates are (in alphabetic order by surname)…..
Bob Mainardi (188 games, 1991-2009)
Big Bob was one of the founding members who started up the club back in 1991. Bob was the most feared power-hitter in the 90’s and set the tone right away by becoming the first player to hit two home runs in a single game in his rookie season for the club. Bob continued to smack the ball over the fence and counted an impressive 15 bombs after the season of 1996. After this his power started to decline, but Big Bob continued to play for over a decade at 1B for the Pretenders. He was finally caught by Glenn Wells for the home run king title in 2003 when Wells tied Bob’s lifetime record. But as a true Pretender and a warrior, Big Bob fought back the next season and smacked his 16th homer – his first in 8 seasons – to reclaim the title (at least for another season before both Wells and eventually Leif P Sandvik surpassed him on the list).
Bob Mainardi’s 1995 season stands out as one of the greatest single season ever played by a Pretender – hitting .491 with 5 homers (still tied as a single season record with Håkon Jåtun) with 44 RBIs (2nd best ever) and 55 total bases (3rd best ever). Bob also co-founded the P-kids team and helped coach for several seasons.
Jostein Sameien (98 games, 1997-2007)
Jostein – aka Jo-Jo – started his Pretender career in the late 90’s when the club was in deep need of new blood. He became an important asset to the struggling outfield and played a vital part of the renewal process that started the second golden age of the club back in 2000. Jo-Jo had an MVP-worthy season in 2002 (finished 2nd in the voting), going .435 with two bombs and 16 RBIs. He broke the single season record for most singles in a season that year. But more importantly than the Norwegian League, Jostein was a core member of the e-cup squad from 2001-2007 and played an important role in the outfield as one of many great Norwegians on the team.
On a side note, Jostein will forever be remembered for his Valgjerd Svarstad Haugland T-shirt he wore as an undershirt In the e-cup games in Antwerp in 2003. It was a hilarious moment.
Matthew Soria (66 games, 2002-2006)
Matt – the Iron Bat – was another great 1B-man in Pretender history and took over the position after Big Bob and HOF member Ron Whitehead. Matt was a solid player at the left corner of the infield in the new millennium and played a vital part in the new great Pretender era that started in 2000. Once a feared opponent playing for Bekkestua, Matt came over to the Pretenders as a free agent and became a core member of the club both on and off the field.
Matt won the MVP in 2003 for his club, going .435 with two dingers and 15 RBIs.
Who can vote and how?
Voting: Voting will be based upon the individual's record, ability, integrity, sportsmanship, character and contribution to the Pretender Organization. One of these three former players will be voted in to the Pretenders Hall of Fame.
Eligible candidates for voting: Every member of the Pretenders Board (9) will get one vote each. The members of the Oslo Pretenders Hall of Fame (7) will get one vote each. The rest of the active players in the club will all together have one vote. 17 voters in total.
Everyone needs to send in their votes by Tuesday the 9th to the Mullah by email.
The winning candidate will be announce on Wednesday December 10th.