A. Bartlett Giamatti was a sorry Commissioner if ever there was one, but not near as bad as what we have now, once said about baseball:
“It breaks your heart. It is designed to break your heart. The game begins in the spring, when everything else begins again, and it blossoms in the summer, filling the afternoons and evenings, and then as soon as the chill rains come, it stops and leaves you to face the fall alone.”
I love baseball. The first sign that there is life in this world and the hope of spring, after the depredations and degradations of football is the Hall of Fame announcement. Then, in a few weeks, winter will come to an official end and it will be Spring Training!
First things first. Tim Raines deserves to be Immortal. This said, no way am I going to begrudge anyone who makes it, especially a Cincinnati Red, especially one of those all round good guys!
Barry Larkin has just achieved immortality!
Have you noticed how darn many members of the Cincinnati Reds have become immortal in recent years, including My Man Johnny! Larkin received 86.4% of the vote, which is huge! He is one of those rare players who refused to betray the Reds for money. Like My Man Johnny, he remained a Red his entire 19 year career. Durn, I remember his rookie season!
“…Barry Larkin 495 (86.4%), Jack Morris 382 (66.7%), Jeff Bagwell 321 (56.0%), Lee Smith 290 (50.6%), Tim Raines 279 (48.7%), Edgar Martinez 209 (36.5%), Alan Trammell 211 (36.8%), Fred McGriff 137 (23.9%), Larry Walker 131 (22.9%), Mark McGwire 112 (19.5%), Don Mattingly 102 (17.8%), Dale Murphy 83 (14.5%), Rafael Palmeiro 72 (12.6%), Bernie Williams 55 (9.6%), Juan Gonzalez 23 (4.0%), Vinny Castilla 6 (1.0%), Tim Salmon 5 (0.9%), Bill Mueller 4 (0.7%), Brad Radke 2 (0.3%), Javy Lopez 1 (0.2%), Eric Young 1 (0.2%), Jeromy Burnitz 0, Brian Jordan 0, Terry Mulholland 0, Phil Nevin 0, Ruben Sierra 0, Tony Womack 0….”
My Man Johnny (a good Republican) said the following:
“…”It certainly is a deserving honor for the Cincinnati native and Reds shortstop,” said Hall of Famer Johnny Bench. “Barry distinguished himself as a tremendous leader and a dominating player.”…”