Baseball Hall of Fame 2019: Preview, Viewing Info for Induction Ceremony

John HealyContributor IJuly 20, 2019

Baseball Hall of Fame inductee Mariano Rivera speaks after signing the backer board where his plaque will hang while visiting the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, Friday, Feb. 1, 2019, in Cooperstown, N.Y. The former New York Yankees closer will be inducted on July 21. (AP Photo/Hans Pennink)
Hans Pennink/Associated Press

Six more players will be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York, on Sunday, and the 2019 class is certainly unique. 

Mariano Rivera, the first-ever unanimous Hall of Fame selection, will be inducted alongside his former New York Yankees teammate Mike Mussina, Seattle Mariners DH Edgar Martinez and the late Philadelphia Phillies and Toronto Blue Jays pitcher Roy Halladay, who was voted in posthumously on his first year on the ballot. 

Those four were voted in by the Baseball Writer's Association of America. The Today's Game Era Committee voted in reliever Lee Smith and DH/outfielder Harold Baines.


Viewing Info

When: Sunday, July 21

Time: 1:30 p.m. 

TV: MLB Network




Baseball's GOAT

Of all the legendary players enshrined in Cooperstown, only Rivera has received a unanimous vote to earn his spot in the Baseball Hall of Fame. The former Yankees closer pitched 19 years and the all-time saves leader was as dominant in his early 40s as he was his mid-20s, a rarity among even the most elite relievers. 

It is a no-brainer why Rivera earned a unanimous vote. He was a five-time World Series champion, including the 1999 World Series MVP, and held a microscopic 0.70 ERA with 42 saves in 141 career postseason innings.

Perhaps his greatest postseason moment came in the 2003 ALCS when he pitched three scoreless innings and earned the win the deciding extra-inning Game 7 victory over the Red Sox


Moose is Loose

Mike Mussina's Hall of Fame candidacy has been a contentious debate over the years, but now that can finally be put to rest.

The former Yankees and Orioles right-handler was valued for his consistency and reliability over his 17-year career, and on his sixth year on the Hall of Fame ballot, he finally got in.

While he never won a Cy Young, Mussina finished in the top-five six times in his career and was a five-time All-Star. He may be one of the best pitchers to field his position, too, winning seven Gold Gloves over his career. 

Yet it was the rise of sabermetrics that helped make Mussina's case. For example, ERA+, which adjusts for a pitcher's ballpark, has Mussina at 123, which ties him 88th all-time with fellow Hall of Famers Bob Feller and Dazzy Vance. 


Hit Machine

Like Mussina, Martinez was often debated as Hall-worthy, primarily because he was a DH and had just a handful of seasons hitting for power. Still, his ability to hit the ball was why he was one of the most feared hitters in baseball during his 18-year career.

Martinez retired with a .312 career batting average and .409 on-base percentage. The seven-time All-Star was a two-time batting champ and seven-time Silver Slugger winner.

His best season came in 1995 when he led the league in average (.356), on-base percentage (.459), doubles (52) and runs scored (121) finishing third-place in the MVP vote.


Honoring Doc

Perhaps the most emotional ceremony will be for Roy "Doc" Halladay. The former Philies and Blue Jays pitcher died in a self-piloted plane crash in Nov. 2017 at the age of 40. Halladay will be represented by his family on Sunday with his wife, Brandy, making a speech. 

Halladay was one of the best pitchers in baseball during his 16-year career. He was an eight-time All-Star and two-time Cy Young Award winner. He is one of six players to win the award in both the American and National League.

Halladay became the second pitcher in MLB history to throw a no-hitter in the postseason, allowing one walk in Game 1 of the 2010 ALDS—which was also his first career postseason start. He also pitched a perfect game in the regular season earlier that same season against the Miami Marlins

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