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Baseball Hall of Fame Class of 2022: Speech Highlights and Twitter Reaction

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured Columnist IVJuly 24, 2022

Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images

On Sunday, beloved Boston Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz, Brooklyn and Los Angeles Dodgers slugger Gil Hodges, longtime pitcher Jim Kaat, Cuban pioneer Minnie Minoso, Minnesota Twins hit machine Tony Oliva, Black pioneer Bud Fowler and Negro Leagues legend Buck O'Neil were inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Ortiz got in via the Baseball Writers' Association of America. Hodges, Kaat, Minoso and Oliva were selected by the Golden Days Era Committee, and both Fowler and O'Neil were voted in by the Early Baseball Era Committee.

MLB Network @MLBNetwork

"In the echelon of baseball history, Bud Fowler plays an important role. As a player, but also as a barrier-breaking figure in our game.” - <a href="https://twitter.com/nlbmprez?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@nlbmprez</a><br><br>Bob Kendrick tells the story of Bud Fowler as he enters the <a href="https://twitter.com/baseballhall?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@baseballhall</a>. <a href="https://t.co/bzZCtgTJfZ">pic.twitter.com/bzZCtgTJfZ</a>

MLB Network @MLBNetwork

A star on the field for the <a href="https://twitter.com/whitesox?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@whitesox</a> and one of baseball's integration pioneers!<a href="https://twitter.com/adburgosjr?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@adburgosjr</a> details 13-time All-Star Minnie Miñoso's journey to the <a href="https://twitter.com/baseballhall?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@baseballhall</a>. <a href="https://t.co/fP0JUxZ5DN">pic.twitter.com/fP0JUxZ5DN</a>

MLB Network @MLBNetwork

"Because of his innate dignity, he appealed to people. Hodges brought that character to everything he did as a baseball player and later on as a baseball manager."<br><br>- Ron Swoboda on Gil Hodges <a href="https://t.co/42EMz57fv6">pic.twitter.com/42EMz57fv6</a>

MLB Network @MLBNetwork

"I think he's one of the most amazing human beings to ever walk the face of this Earth, who just happened to be a great baseball player."<a href="https://twitter.com/nlbmprez?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@nlbmprez</a> welcomes Buck O'Neil to the <a href="https://twitter.com/baseballhall?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@baseballhall</a>. <a href="https://t.co/HEvL5SO2tU">pic.twitter.com/HEvL5SO2tU</a>

National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum ⚾ @baseballhall

Welcome to baseball immortality, David Ortiz. <br><br>📷 Milo Stewart Jr. <a href="https://t.co/SrwHCmSCkw">pic.twitter.com/SrwHCmSCkw</a>

It was an emotional day for the inductees who were able to attend.

Jayson Stark @jaysonst

“I can’t believe I’m here.”<br><br>Tony Oliva, on his emotional HOF induction day. <a href="https://t.co/xsQtqZMBlA">pic.twitter.com/xsQtqZMBlA</a>

Pete Abraham @PeteAbe

Tony Oliva tells the crowd that Luis Tiant belongs in the Hall. He also says he didn’t like when “this Big Papi” hit well against the Twins.

Alex Speier @alexspeier

Oliva on Ortiz: “The best thing that happened to Big Papi was to go to Boston. … In Minnesota, we missed him.”

Jayson Stark @jaysonst

“When you pitch for a long time you have a lot of catchers. I had 38 of them.”<br><br>Jim Kaat, a man who pitched for 25 years, on his HOF induction day. <a href="https://t.co/wjRQgCGIU9">pic.twitter.com/wjRQgCGIU9</a>

Joe Pantorno @JoePantorno

Jim Kaat is 83.<br>Tony Oliva is 84.<br><br>Absolutely incredible that they get to have this day. Fantastic.

Chuckie Maggio @chuckiemaggio

Dave Winfield teaching everyone about the late Bud Fowler. Jim Kaat recognizing his 38 catchers (including former <a href="https://twitter.com/RocRedWings?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@RocRedWings</a> manager Phil Roof!). Big Papi’s daughter singing the anthem. <br><br>I love Hall of Fame ceremony day so much. How can you not be romantic about baseball?

Derek Jeter @derekjeter

Congratulations to <a href="https://twitter.com/davidortiz?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@davidortiz</a>, Gil Hodges, Jim Kaat, Minnie Miñoso, Tony Oliva, Bud Fowler and Buck O’Neil for being inducted to the <a href="https://twitter.com/baseballhall?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@baseballhall</a>!

For the current generation of fans, however, Ortiz was the most prominent inductee, and the ceremony started with his daughter singing the national anthem.

Bob Nightengale @BNightengale

Alex Ortiz, the daughter of David Ortiz, singing the national anthem before the Hall of Fame induction. <a href="https://t.co/dmd08JYjBD">pic.twitter.com/dmd08JYjBD</a>

Ian Browne @IanMBrowne

David Ortiz's daughter Alex, an aspiring vocalist at Berkeley, singing the anthem at the Hall of Fame induction. What a thrill for both of them. She did this for David's final Opening Day at Fenway in 2016.

In his speech, Ortiz credited the Red Sox organization for helping him reach the Hall:

Jayson Stark @jaysonst

“That organization made me the man I am today.”<br><br>David Ortiz on the meaning of joining the Red Sox from the HOF podium in Cooperstown, on a day he’ll never forget <a href="https://t.co/alHAfWXKK9">pic.twitter.com/alHAfWXKK9</a>

Jon Morosi @jonmorosi

Love the way David Ortiz credits Mike Goff, Dave Jauss, Grady Little, Terry Francona, John Farrell, and so many of his impactful managers and coaches over the years. He’s on a roll. This is a great speech. <a href="https://twitter.com/MLBNetwork?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@MLBNetwork</a>

Alex Speier @alexspeier

Ortiz thanks Francona and Farrell: “I love you guys and I’m always going to have you in my heart.”

Pete Abraham @PeteAbe

Ortiz’s speech one of heartfelt thanks. Shouting out many people.

Alex Speier @alexspeier

Ortiz says after his final game in 2016, it felt like everyone in New England was on the field with him. He says Boston will always be in his heart and he will always be there for the city.

Chris Cotillo @ChrisCotillo

David Ortiz’s message to the writers who voted him in: “You guys have got it going on.”

Ortiz shouted out his old teammates, too.

"Jason Varitek ... that man is serious!" he said in his speech. "Love you, Cap."

Alex Speier @alexspeier

Ortiz thanked Dave Jauss for helping to make him a Red Sox. Then thanks “number 45, mi compadre Pedro” for helping to make him a Red Sox.

Chris Cotillo @ChrisCotillo

Ortiz paying tribute to the late Kirby Puckett: "He taught me so much about the game, he gave me so much advice and was so wonderful to me."<br><br>Ortiz wore No. 34 in honor of Puckett once he got to Boston.

Chris Cotillo @ChrisCotillo

Ortiz could not look less nervous. Meeting the moment, as always.

In his 14 years with the Red Sox, Ortiz blasted 483 of his 541 career homers, was a 10-time All-Star and won three titles. His clutch hitting helped the Red Sox end one of the most famous and lengthy title droughts in American sports history in 2004, and titles followed in 2007 and 2013.

That made him one of the most beloved figures in Boston sports history.

"If my story can remind you of everything, let it remind you that when you believe in someone, you can change their world, you can change their future," Ortiz said in his speech, thanking those who believed in him along the way to Cooperstown.

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