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Baseball Class of 2015 Another Big Crowd?

Back-to-back years with multiple first-time inductees into the Baseball Hall of Fame hasn't happened very often but will likely take place in 2015. Randy Johnson, Pedro Martinez and John Smoltz among the frontrunners.

The Baseball Writers’ Association of America 2015 Hall of Fame ballot has been released, featuring 34 names, including 17 holdovers from previous elections and 17 newcomers. Results will be announced on Jan. 6.

Photo courtesy Baseball Hall of Fame website.

Photo courtesy Baseball Hall of Fame website.

New candidates include Cy Young Award winners like Randy Johnson, Pedro Martinez and John Smoltz, all likely entrants. They will be joined by Carlos Delgado, Gary Sheffield, Nomar Garciaparra, Troy Percival, Rich Aurilia, Aaron Boone, Tony Clark, Jermaine Dye, Darin Erstad, Cliff Floyd, Brian Giles, Tom Gordon, Eddie Guardado and Jason Schmidt.

Holdovers from previous ballots that have the best chance for entry include Craig Biggio and Mike Piazza. Don Mattingly is eligible for the BBWAA ballot for the 15th-and-final time.

The Golden Era Committee will make its selections Dec. 8. The nine players on the Hall of Fame’s Golden Era Committee ballot totaled three Most Valuable Player Awards, an average of more than six All-Star Game selections per player and seven World Series titles.

That list includes: Dick Allen, Ken Boyer, Gil Hodges, Bob Howsam, Jim Kaat, Minnie Minoso, Tony Oliva, Billy Pierce, Luis Tiant and Maury Wills. Kaat, Hodges and Minoso received the most votes the last time.