Four elected to baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown

SHARE Four elected to baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown
SHARE Four elected to baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown

The National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, N.Y., will welcome four members in one class for the first time since 1955.

Three pitchers — John Smoltz, Pedro Martinez and Randy Johnson — joined Craig Biggio in the 2015 hall of fame class.

It’s the first time three pitchers have been elected at one time.

Johnson received 97.1 percent of votes from 549 voters. Martinez got in with 91.1 percent. Smoltz came in at 82.9 percent, and Craig Biggio at 82.7.

Johnson won 303 games and five Cy Young awards. His 4,875 career strikeouts rank second all-time in behind Nolan Ryan.

The hard-throwing left-hander played for six teams during his 22-year career. He spent 10 years in Seattle, where he went 130-74 and won his first Cy Young in 1995.

The Mariners traded Johnson at the trade deadline in 1998 to the Astros, and then Johnson signed with the Diamondbacks as a free agent. He led the league in strikeouts in five of the next six seasons and won four straight Cy Young awards from 1999-2002.

Martinez was the best pitcher in the American League from 1997-2003. He led all pitchers in ERA in five of those seven years, and three times had the best winning percentage.

Martinez was 118-36 during the stretch and owned a career 219-100 record. His career ERA was 2.93.

Martinez was signed by the Dodgers as an amateur free agent in 1988, then traded to the Expos in 1993 for Delino DeShields. The Expos then flipped Martinez to the Red Sox for Carl Pavano and a player to be named later.

That trade worked out well for the Red Sox, who enjoyed the best of Martinez’s career. He won a World Series with Boston in 2004 before signing with the Mets the following offseason as a free agent.

Smoltz played 20 seasons with the Atlanta Braves as a Cy Young-winning starter and MVP-caliber closer.

His 213 wins and 154 saves put him in a category all by himself. He’s the only pitcher with as many of both. Only he and Dennis Eckersley have had a 20-win season and a 50-save season.

Along with Greg Maddux and Tom Glavine, Smoltz was a constant on the Braves teams that went to the playoffs every year from 1991-2005. The Braves won the World Series in 1995.

He went to eight All-Star games and was twice the National League strikeout champ.

Biggio missed out on induction last year by two votes. He played catcher, second base and outfield during his 20-year career, all of which was spent in Houston. Biggio was a seven-time All-Star, four-time Gold Glove winner and twice finished in the top five of MVP voting.

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