Curt Schilling defends legacy, knocks 'cowards' after missing baseball Hall of Fame

Former Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling said he was “at peace” after failing to receive the required votes to be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Schilling received 285 of the 401 votes, 71 percent, just 4 points shy of the 75 percent needed for inductions, the Boston Globe reports. However, none of the candidates received enough votes to be inducted.

On Facebook, Schilling shared a lengthy statement that he said had also been sent to the Baseball Writers’ Association of America.

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Schilling requested to be removed from the ballot, adding, "I don’t think I’m a hall of famer as I’ve often stated but if former players think I am then I’ll accept that with honor." 

“As I’ve stated often over the past years to those I’ve spoken with in my heart I am at peace. Nothing, zero, none of the claims being made by any of the writers hold merit," said Schilling. "In my 22 years playing professional baseball in the most culturally diverse locker rooms in sports I’ve never said or acted in any capacity other than being a good teammate."

The retired baseball player is likely referring to criticisms of his behavior on social media where he has attacked groups such as Muslims and transgender people. Schilling once tweeted a photo comparing Muslims to Nazis. His anti-trans comments online led to him being fired as an analyst from ESPN.

A day after the deadly Capitol breach on Jan. 6, Schilling posted several tweets appearing to defend the rioters while deriding Black Lives Matter protesters.

The Globe points to one incident in which Schilling commented, “Ok, so much awesome here” on a photo of a Trump supporter sporting a T-shirt that read “Rope. Tree. Journalist. Some assembly required.” The Globe notes Schilling’s hostile behavior on social media likely damaged his chances of being inducted into the Hall of Fame.

"Never malicious, never to willfully or intentionally hurt another person. I was 100% accountable and still am," continued Schilling in his statement. "Even the thought of responding to claims of 'nazi' or 'racist' or any other term so watered down and rendered meaningless by spineless cowards who have never met me makes me ill."