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Rivera, Martinez, Mussina and Halladay Are Headed To Cooperstown!

Ladies and Gentlemen, Boys and Girls, your Baseball Hall of Fame Class of 2019!

The First Class by Ron Cogswell is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

Rivera, Martinez, Mussina and Halladay Are Headed To Cooperstown!

Estimated Reading Time: 5 Minutes

The BBWAA has announced the 2019 Baseball Hall of Fame inductees. In a smattering of first ballot guys and seasoned ballot veterans, there were several storylines the BBWAA could have chosen for this class. Was this the year for Roger Clemens and Barry Bonds? Would Larry Walker defeat the Coors Field effect? At one point it seemed like the BBWAA was going to make a mockery out of the voting system, and elect themselves into Cooperstown, but now we have our answer!

The 2019 Baseball Hall of Fame Inductees will be Yankees Closer Mariano Rivera, Seattle Mariner Designated Hitter Edgar Martinez, Orioles/Yankees Pitcher Mike Mussina, and the late Cy Young Winner Roy Halladay.

Mike Mussina – Pitcher

Mike Mussina’s 6th year on the ballot was a good one. After slowly climbing the percentage ranks, Mussina will get his plaque in Cooperstown. Beginning his career in Baltimore, Mussina became one of the most dominant pitchers in the AL East, and the AL as a whole. Representing the Orioles in 5 All-Star games during his 10 year tenure, Mussina also found himself in the Top 6 Cy Young finalists in 7 of his 10 seasons in Baltimore.

Mussina’s career record of 270-153 is solid as hell, as is his 3.68 ERA and his 1.192 WHIP. One great piece of trivia about Mussina’s career is how consistent he was throughout his career. The difference between Mussina in Baltimore and New York is minimal, despite spending 10 years as an Oriole and 8 as a Yankee. In his final year before retirement, Mussina finished 6th in Cy Young voting and 19th in MVP voting, all at the age of 39.

Mussina could now become the 11th Baltimore Oriole to enter the Hall or the 57th (or 58th…) Yankee to get a plaque. Which cap will he choose? Guess we’ll find out soon enough.

Roy Halladay – Pitcher

Roy “Doc” Halladay was frightening. He was electric yet somehow lights out at the same time. The guy was unhittable. Halladay was the kind of player who deepens your understanding of the game, all the while shaking what you thought you knew about pitching to the core.

There was a point in 2010 where it almost seemed foolish to show up in the dugout when Halladay was on the mound. If you did decide to show up and face the man, the odds were that he would be going the distance, slowly dissecting your lineup, piece by piece.

Facing off against the Cincinnati Reds in the 2010 NLDS, Roy Halladay made history. Only twice in Baseball’s history has a No-Hitter been thrown in the postseason. There’s Don Larsen’s perfect game in the World Series and Halladay’s Postseason debut. Halladay also became the first player to throw a No-Hitter and a Perfect Game in the same season.

Roy Halladay passed away this past year when his Icon A5 plane crashed in shallow waters off the coast of the Gulf of Mexico. Doc is dearly missed, and his contributions to the game and his incredible skill should be honored as often as possible.

Edgar Martinez – Designated Hitter

Edgar Martinez changed the way the game was changed… does that make sense? After the American League adopted the Designated Hitter, there were differing opinions on how to utilize the new position. Edgar Martinez broke the mold by creating a way for older players to stay in the game. The era of older power hitting DHs was born out of Edgar Martinez.

I mean, the guy also was one of the most prolific hitters of all time. In 1995, Martinez put up a slash-line that is hanging in the Louvre it’s so beautiful. Seriously, look at this: .356/.479/.628, with a 1.107 OPS, leading the league with 52 doubles. I mean, come on. Five years later, Martinez would tally 145 RBIs in the Mariners’ 2000 season.

The fact that he’s been on the ballot for a decade without being voted in is heinous. It’s not about time he’s getting his plaque, the BBWAA is LATE. The first DH elected to the hall should have gotten in a long time ago.

Mariano Rivera – Pitcher

Fewer people have scored a run on Mariano Rivera in the postseason, than have walked on the moon.

That’s a fact. And what a fact it is.

Mariano Rivera is the most dominant closer to ever take the mound, and he has the numbers to prove it. Rivera holds the MLB record for games finished and saves, giving true meaning to his trademark warm-up song, “Enter Sandman” by Metallica.

There’s a lot I can say about Mariano, but here’s the most career defining stat I could find.

Mariano was handed a lead in 914 regular season games. In those games the Yankees went 868-46, a .950 winning percentage. In the postseason, the Yankees gave Mariano a lead 68 times, going 64-4 in that stretch, good enough for a .941 win percentage.

Nothing is that constant in baseball.

Nothing, except Mariano Rivera.

Congratulations to all the inductees on this momentous occasion! Thank you for everything you’ve given us as fans.

but the BBWAA still needs to figure themselves out.

Justin Colombo is a 2017 Broadway Show Softball League All-Star at 3B/SS. He's essentially the Manny Machado of the Kinky Boots team. Justin has been writing about Baseball since he was a little kid. Now that being an actor in NYC has given him a lot of free time, in 2015 he decided to take his passion public and founded Three Up, Three Down as a way to express his love for the game. From there, Three Up, Three Down grew from a hobby to an obsession. After years of growth and one insult from MLB's Historian, Justin launched The Turf, a way to expand into all areas of the sporting world. Follow him on Instagram and Twitter. LET'S. GO. METS.

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