Chili Dog MVP Press Box: News & Media

Hall of Fame heartbreak

Dick Allen, who passed away Dec. 7 of last year at the age of 78, missed being elected to the Hall of Fame by one vote.

Once again. Just like 2014.

“I don’t understand it, I don’t see the justice,’’ [Mark “Frog’’] Carfagno told USA TODAY Sports. “Four of the top five all got an increase in votes but Dick. It’s not fair. He was the best player on the ballot.

“I feel so bad for the family. It doesn’t make any sense. I’m starting to think it’s a conspiracy.’’

Carfagno, 68, who has led Allen’s Hall of Fame campaign since 2014, grew silent. He has spent at least 20 hours a week for the past seven years spreading the word on Allen’s greatness, trying to make sure why everyone understands that Allen should be in the Hall of Fame.

“We used to be so worried whether Dick would be alive when he got into the Hall of Fame,’’ Carfagno says. “Now, I’m worried whether I’ll be alive when it happens.’’

Carfagno plans to take a break for his own health.

“This has beaten me up so much,’’ says Carfagno, who worked on the Phillies’ grounds crew for 33 years when he became close friends with Allen, the seven-time All-Star, MVP and Rookie of the Year winner. “It’s just disappointment after disappointment.

“Even if he’s elected, I don’t think I could even have the strength now to go into that building.

“I don’t even think I can even go to a baseball game again. That’s how much this has taken out of me.’’

Allen won’t be up for another vote until 2026.

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