I think there are class size restrictions for each year so maybe not the best example, but to a certain extent, yes.
I mean, Jim Rice, to pull just one of several examples was on the ballot 15 times (FIFTEEN. FUCKING. TIMES.) before he got in to the HOF and he got in because it was the last year he was eligible. What, in the following 14 years, was in place so that by 2009 he was HOF-worthy. He is not an isolated example, either. Dale Murphy next year will likely get in because its the 15th time on the ballot.
Once, maybe twice if you're passed over for the Hall, yeah I'm fine with saying they're not worthy.
And seriously, what is so controversial that saying only the undisputed best-of-the-best ought to be enshrined in a memorial to the greatest players and moments of a sport? I don't get it--by definition it should be exclusive to all but the top 1% of players.
ETA: Look at Jack Morris for an example of why being passed over means you shouldn't get in: Morris has been eligible for the National Baseball Hall of Fame since 2000. From 2000 to 2003, he never received greater than 30% of the vote. He received 40% of the vote for the first time in 2006. In 2010, he received 52.3% of the vote, and in 2012, he received 67% of the vote, his highest level of support so far.
Jack. Fucking. Morris. He's going to get in too. All he did was accumulate stats because he had a long career. He was never dominant, never great and didn't leave a mark on the game. But he's going to get in. Did his perfomance in the years between 2010 and 2012 improve by 20%? Nope. He just stayed on the ballot.