Sunday was the whole reason why I made this trip out to Cooperstown. It was time for the induction ceremony for four players from my generation. I was so excited to make it out there but I was also running on empty in terms of sleep. It took me an hour to get to my lodging area and because the doors to the museum opened up at 7AM for Hall of Fame members (that’s me) I woke up at 5AM to prepare my checkout and drive to the Hall. But one benefit of that was that the parking was easy to find (and free) in the area right next to the Hall.
It rained a little that morning but that wasn’t going to deter me. In fact, I just powered through the rain and made it to the Hall. It has’t changed much since the last time I was here in 2008, but they did have a few new things. One was the removal of the wall of balls from all the no-hitters. The new Hank Aaron exhibit was great. It even included the actual uniform he wore when he broke Babe Ruth’s home run record.
There are so many things to see in the museum. The first floor features some cool artifacts from each of the new inductees but the highlight is still the hall of plaques. I didn’t get a chance to walk and look through all of them since I did that the last time I was here. But I did focus a little on some of the plaques that have been put up since 2008. It was an amazing experience just to see these plaques and walk through the halls of legends.
There are so many things that caught my attention at the Hall. For me, my personal favorite is still looking at all the historical artifacts from games that I remember watching or even hearing about. Artifacts such as all seven caps from Nolan Ryan’s no-hitters or the bat Luis Gonzalez used to beat the Yankees. They were all there.
I just have to say that if you have never been to the Hall, you have to come. And if you can come during induction weekend, it’s even better.
In order to get to the ceremony, you have to walk about a mile from the Hall. It’s not a bad walk and there is a huge field where the ceremony is. It’s free to the public but since Craig Biggio and Pedro Martinez supporters were aplenty, space was a little hard to come by. Many people were waiting and saving spots for hours. Luckily for me, I am only one person so I was able to maneuver my way to a pretty decent spot.
It was sunny, it was hot and it was amazing. The speeches delivered by all four men were unique and beautiful. The reason why I came up for this trip was mainly for Pedro. Even though I am a Randy Johnson fan and John Smoltz was my favorite of the Braves trio, it was Pedro who was my main attraction.
What was really neat was many of the living Hall of Famers were also in attendance. Hank Aaron got the loudest ovation and all the Boston and New York Hall of Famers also got a huge cheer.
How cool is this?
There were so many Dominican supporters here. Even before the ceremony, they were parading around cheering for Pedro. It was truly a special moment. My only gripe was that since Biggio was introduced first, many of his supporters left right after his speech. That’s a shame. Stay for the whole thing!
Still, it was a great experience for me. I could go in more detail about it but there are many things to say and I have big things set up for me today. I am in Boston and I will drive out to the Basketball Hall of Fame. I’ll have a blog post on that too. Until then!