On January 12 2009 — Rickey Henderson, the all-time major league leader in stolen bases, runs and leadoff home runs, is elected to the Hall of Fame on the first ballot; at the time of his retirement, Henderson also held the all-time walk record.

Also elected is Jim Rice, the third player to go in on the 15th and final ballot (after Ralph Kiner and Red Ruffing); Rice’s long-time teammate Fred Lynn says stats should be discarded in pushing his case. Rice, who spent his entire 16-year career with the Red Sox, compiled a .298 lifetime batting average and was considered one of the most dominant players in his era.

 

 


 

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