FORMER AAABA PLAYER ELECTED TO MLB HALL OF FAME
On his way to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, John Smoltz made a couple stops in Johnstown, playing for the Lansing, Michigan team.
Smoltz was among three former Cy Young Award winners and one member of the 3,000-hit club elected to the Hall of Fame Class of 2015, which was announced Tuesday.
The former Atlanta Braves pitcher entered the Hall during his first year on the ballot. He joined pitchers Pedro Martinez and Randy Johnson and slugger Craig Biggio.
Numbers are such a big part of baseball, so here’s another: Five.
Smoltz is the fifth former AAABA?Tournament player to enter the National Baseball Hall of Fame. The others are Joe Torre (2014), Barry Larkin (2012), Reggie Jackson (1993) and Al Kaline (1980).
“It continues to speak about the tradition of the tournament and the caliber of players that have gone through there,” said former New Orleans manager Joe Scheuermann, a AAABA?Hall of Famer. “The selling point down here for years and years was that you were going to play against future major leaguers and hall of famers. It’s a great honor for the tournament to have a person of his prestige enter the hall.
Smoltz played in the Johnstown tournament as a 16-year-old in 1983, when Lansing went 1-2.
(courtesy of Johnstown Tribune Democrat)