NEW YORK - Keep the cheaters out of our club.
That was the prevailing sentiment from several baseball Hall of Famers who were happy to see Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens and Sammy Sosa excluded from the Cooperstown fraternity Wednesday.
"I'm kind of glad that nobody got in this year," former Detroit Tigers outfielder Al Kaline said. "I feel honored to be in the Hall of Fame. And I would've felt a little uneasy sitting up there on the stage, listening to some of these new guys talk about how great they were."
Goose Gossage went even further -- he often does.
"I think the steroids guys that are under suspicion got too many votes," he said. "I don't know why they're making this such a question and why there's so much debate. To me, they cheated. Are we going to reward these guys?"
Not this year, at least.
Baseball writers failed to elect anyone for only the second time in 42 years. Among those rejected were a trio of steroid-tainted stars in Bonds, Clemens and Sosa, all eligible for the first time.
Bonds received just 36.2 percent of the vote and Clemens 37.6 in results announced by the Hall and the Baseball Writers' Association of America. Sosa got 12.5 percent.