Major League Baseball got things right when they had their 2014 Hall of Fame Induction Day Sunday.
All six inductees got their rightful due. All six truly had Hall of Fame careers.
Pitchers Greg Maddux and Tom Glavine, hitter Frank Thomas, and managers Bobby Cox, Tony LaRussa and Joe Torre all had big impacts on the game during their eras.
Maddux and Glavine were a pair of crafty pitchers who each won over 300 games, many of them coming during their playing time in Atlanta. Both had multiple Cy Young Award years and both had multiple All-Star Game appearances.
Maddux and Glavine were also adept at other facets of the game. Maddux won several Golden Glove Awards which meant he was the top fielder at his position.
Glavine won a couple of Silver Slugger Awards which meant he was the top hitter at his position.
Thomas was just a top hitter at any position he played. An Auburn alumni, Thomas had the body to be a duel sports star like Bo Jackson. The ‘Big Hurt' went baseball totally and ‘hurt’ he did, blasting home runs and extra base hits all over ball parks.
Manager Bobby Cox will always be endearing to the South and the City of Atlanta. A crusty leader, Cox could get himself ejected at the drop of a hat. But, he knew how to handle a baseball team and led the Braves to their best seasons, which included the years Maddux and Glavine won a fair share of their victories.
LaRussa was a crafty manager who knew how to use his whole roster to get wins. The Cardinal icon actually has a law degree from Florida State. There were many times his opponents felt they were in court and saw LaRussa make the right decision.
Torre also made a lot of right decisions in his stints with St. Louis, the Yankees and the Dodgers after he had a successful playing career, much of it with Atlanta.
At some point I got to see all the inductees plying their trades. Maddux and Glavine were a joy to watch pitching. Maddux, a right-hander and Glavine, a lefty, pitched like they were dissecting their opponents.
Thomas hit like he was smashing his foes.
Cox, LaRussa and Torre knew how to handle their teams and probably the biggest plus for all three of them was the fact they were “player-managers,” which is the best trait a manager can have.
These six truly belong in the Hall of Fame. Again, MLB you got something right.