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Baseball America: Hall of Fame

Baseball America: Hall of Fame

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Baseball America: Hall of Fame

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United States
Baseball America Enterprises, LLC.
Back issue only

in this issue

8 min.
six of hearts

They defined excellence on the diamond during the 1990s and beyond, starring on both coasts and throughout America’s heartland. Now, the Class of 2018 is coming home to Cooperstown. Vladimir Guerrero, Trevor Hoffman, Chipper Jones, Jack Morris, Jim Thome and Alan Trammell will be inducted Sunday, July 29 in Cooperstown in front of what is sure to be another historic crowd at the Clark Sports Center. The Induction Ceremony, which will begin at 1:30 p.m. ET, will be shown nationally on MLB Network for the 10th straight year. The Class of 2018 marks the fifth time in history that six living Hall of Famers will be inducted, the most recent of which came in 2014. Only the 1939 Induction Ceremony – which featured members of the first four Hall of Fame classes –…

5 min.
can’t-miss hall of famer

The stories, as many as there are, simply don’t do justice to the hitting skills of Vladimir Guerrero. Those who played with and against him still tell tales in amazed tones. “I was in center field, and the catcher put down four fingers for a pitchout,” said All-Star center fielder Torii Hunter, who was playing against Guerrero in Double-A in 1996. “Vladdy reached out and hit a homer to right-center. We had a pretty tall wall, and as I’m running, I could not believe it went out of the park. I’m like, ‘Who is this guy?’” Guerrero, elected to the Hall of Fame in January by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America, spent a career doing the impossible. One of six brothers and sisters raised by a single mother, Altagracia Alvino, Guerrero grew up…

10 min.
it’s a vlad, vlad, vlad world

The craggy-toothed smile that lights up in a split second is still present as Vladimir Guerrero first steps onto the field at Olympic Stadium to take batting practice as a September callup. So, too, is the humility that has been Guerrero’s calling card as much as his awe-inspiring statistics. Is he surprised to be called up from Double-A? How does he expect to be used? Guerrero just smiles, stares into a phalanx of cameras, and shrugs. “He feels happy,” says Expos first base coach Luis Pujols, who acts as Guerrero’s translator. “And he says that from what he understands, plans are that he will be here next year, too.” Oh, right. Go ahead and insult Moises Alou, the manager’s son yet. But know what? No one can argue with Guerrero’s assessment, couldn’t even if…

4 min.
good positioning

Before this year, you could count the number of relief pitchers in the Hall of Fame on the fingers of one throwing hand. But as rare as it is for a big league reliever to be voted into the Hall of Fame, it’s more astounding that the latest reliever elected – Trevor Hoffman – wasn’t even a pitcher when he got to pro ball. Hoffman, elected by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America in January, didn’t pitch at the University of Arizona, where he developed into an MLB prospect as a bazooka-armed shortstop – and really hadn’t worked from the mound since Little League. Never mind, too, that it wasn’t until his third big-league season that Hoffman began throwing the “Bugs Bunny” pitch that remains his identity, the trademark offering that produced the…

8 min.
hoffman heads towards saves record, hall?

Not bad for a washed-out minor league infielder. Trevor Hoffman, who failed as a position player deep in the Reds system 15 years ago, has since gone on to become one of the best closers in baseball history. The longtime Padre saved his 400th game early this season and is churning his way toward Lee Smith’s record of 478, his changeup as baffling as ever. Off the field, the 37-year-old Hoffman is far more down the middle than his pitches—he’s one of the straightest shooters in the big leagues. He sat down to talk about the best role for a closer, his possible Hall of Fame speech and being the son of a British ballerina. AS: Adam Eaton is wearing a new shirt that says “500 OR BUST,” talking about your career…

5 min.
family guy

For Larry Wayne Jones Jr., baseball was always about family. Now, as a Hall of Famer, the Atlanta legend known as “Chipper” will celebrate the game’s greatest honor with those who made it possible. “I can’t wait for my dad to go up and rub elbows with the best in the game,” Jones said. “He deserves it more than I do, for all that he and Mom did for me growing up. That’ll be a pretty awesome family trip.” In January, Jones became just the eighth third baseman to be voted in by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America. In his first year eligible, he was named on 97.2 percent of the ballots to lead the 2018 class. He’ll be the sixth Braves legend inducted in the past five years, along with his…