10 Reasons Why This Year’s Baseball Hall of Fame Class Might Be One of the Best Ever
Mariano Rivera, Roy Halladay, Mike Mussina and Edgar Martinez
Sure, there are bigger names than in baseball over the past 25 years. But when look at their numbers, this year's Baseball Hall of Fame class is surprisingly stacked.
Those four will be enshrined among the game's best at the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, NY on July 19.
The Baseball Hall of Fame Class of 2019 is one of the largest classes to be voted in by the Baseball Writers' Association of America.
There has only been one time when the BBWAA elected more than four. Babe Ruth, Ty Cobb, Walter Johnson, Christy Mathewson and Honus Wagner all joined the Hall of Fame during its inaugural year in 1936.
Rivera, Halladay, Mussina and Martinez will join hard-throwing relief pitcher Lee Smith and one one of the game's most consistent hitters throughout the '80s and '90s, Harold Baines, to make up the Baseball Hall of Fame Class of 2019.
Smith and Baines were voted in by the Eras Committee, which consists of Hall of Famers, executives and veteran media members.
Here are 10 reasons why this year's Baseball Hall of Fame class might be among the best ever:
1. Mariano Rivera is the first player ever to be voted unanimously to the Hall of Fame. The Yankees closer received 100 percent of the vote. The previous high mark was set in 2016 by Ken Griffey Jr. who received 99.32 percent of the vote.
2. No one in the history of Major League Baseball has had more saves than Rivera. He recorded a total of 652 saves across 19 season. And he was a starter for most of his rookie season, so that's really 18 seasons.
3. This year's inductees made a combined 33 All-Star Game appearances. Rivera accounts for 13 of those appearances.
4. The late Roy Halladay pitched only the second postseason no-hitter ever when he blanked the Cincinnati Reds while playing for Philadelphia during the 2010 National League Division Series. The only other pitcher to toss a no-hitter in the playoffs until that point was Don Larsen who turned in a perfect game for the Yankees in the 1956 World Series.
5. Halladay silencing the Reds' bats in the 2010 playoffs was far from the only no-hitter of his career. It was actually the second one he had pitched that season. Not even a year later, Halladay threw a perfect game against the Florida Marlins, retiring all 27 batters in order.
6. Roy Halladay's magical 2010 season was capped by being named the National League Cy Young Award winner as the league's top pitcher. He is one of only six pitchers to win the Cy Young Award in both the American and National Leagues. Halladay won it in the American League in 2003. He also led the league in wins both of those season.
7. Mike Mussina may not have every won a Cy Young award, but he did place in the top 5 in voted for the award six times during his career. That doesn't mean his trophy case is bare either. Mussina, who played a combined 18 seasons with the Baltimore Orioles and New York Yankee, was a seven-time Gold Glove award winner.
8. The three pitchers being inducted this year combined for 6,103 strikeouts during their career. Mussina leads the way with 2,813.
9. Of course they may have had a difficult time when fellow 2019 inductee Edgar Martinez was at the plate. Martinez only struck out in 14 percent of his plate appearances across 18 seasons with the Mariners.
10. Martinez is considered by many to be one of the best designated hitters since the DH was implemented among American League teams in 1973. He was recognized for being the best DH in the league during five different seasons with Seattle with an award that was later named the Edgar Martinez award.