I know I'm about a week late on the Hall of Fame conversation, but my question has nothing to do with the guys that got elected in. My question has to do with who was actually on the ballot. Is there any criteria for being put on the HOF ballot, and who decides who should be on it in the first place? I was surfing over at baseball-reference.com and they have the whole ballot posted on their homepage. Guys like Ron Gant, Jay Bell, Greg Vaughn, and Dan Plesac were all very good Major League players, but worthy of HOF consideration? All of them were on the ballot (albeit none of them received the required 5% of the vote to remain on next year's ballot, or any votes for that matter), but how did they get on there? How does a guy like Jay Bell get on the ballot despite a career BA of .265, 195 career home runs, and never finishing higher than 12th in the MVP voting?