Martinez, Moseby and Humber to be inducted into Canadian ball hall

February 1, 2018

Courtesy of Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame

St. Marys, Ont. – The Montreal Expos’ only Cy Young Award winner, the first Toronto Blue Jays outfielder to win a Silver Slugger Award and Canada’s premier baseball historian will form the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame’s induction class of 2018.

Former Montreal Expos superstar Pedro Martinez, long-time standout Toronto Blue Jays centre fielder Lloyd Moseby and Canada’s foremost baseball historian William Humber will be inducted in a ceremony to take place on June 16 at the Hall of Fame grounds in St. Marys, Ont.

“Each of this year’s inductees has had a tremendous influence on baseball in this country,” said Scott Crawford, the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame’s director of operations. “Pedro Martinez and Lloyd Moseby are two of the most successful and beloved stars to have played for major league teams in Canada and Bill Humber’s commitment to promoting the history of the game in this country has been unparalleled.”

2018 Inductee Bios

Pedro Martinez

Born in Manoguayabo, Dominican Republic, in 1971, Pedro Martinez was signed as an amateur free agent by the Los Angeles Dodgers in 1988. He was used primarily as a reliever for parts of two seasons with the Dodgers before he was dealt to the Montreal Expos for Delino DeShields on November 19, 1993.

It was in Montreal that his major league career would truly take off. A key member of the Expos’ rotation in 1994, when the team owned a six-game lead atop the National League East division in August before a strike wiped out the rest of the season, Martinez would evolve into the club’s ace. After registering 14 wins and a 3.51 ERA in 30 starts in 1995, he was selected to his first All-Star Game in 1996 when he recorded 13 victories and struck out 222 batters in 216-2/3 innings.

But it was his 1997 season that was one for the ages. In the midst of the steroid era, when offensive numbers were exploding, Martinez posted a 17-8 record and led the league with a 1.90 ERA. He also topped NL pitchers in complete games (13) and WAR (9.0) and his 305 strikeouts set a single-season franchise record. As a result, he became the first and only Expos pitcher to win the National League Cy Young Award.

Sadly, due to the organization’s financial constraints, the Expos dealt him to the Boston Red Sox following the season. In total, in four seasons with the Expos, Martinez posted a 55-33 record, good for a .625 winning percentage (second-best among pitchers in Expos history). He also registered a 3.06 ERA (fifth-best in Expos history), 20.1 WAR (third-best in Expos history) and struck out 843 batters (fourth-best in Expos history). He continued his dominance with the Red Sox, winning four American League ERA titles and two Cy Young Awards in seven seasons with the club. And during the celebration after the Red Sox captured their first World Series title in 86 years in 2004, Martinez acknowledged Expos fans in a TV interview.

“I would like to share this with the people in Montreal that are not going to have a team anymore,” he said. “My heart and my ring is with them, too.”

It was a gesture that Expos fans have not forgotten.

An eight-time All-Star, Martinez finished his 18-year big league career with the New York Mets (2005 to 2008) and the Philadelphia Phillies (2009). In all, he recorded 219 wins, a 2.93 ERA and is one of four pitchers to complete their career with more than 3,000 strikeouts (3,154) and less than 1,000 walks (760). For his efforts, he was elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 2015.

Martinez has also been very active in charitable endeavors. For over a decade, the Pedro Martinez Charity (PMC) Community Center has been operating in the Dominican Republic to educate and offer opportunities to underprivileged children ranging in age from six to 17. Martinez also runs two charity events – Feast with 45 and The Pedro Martinez Charity Annual Gala – in Boston each year that raise money to support children in his home country.

“When I got the call from Scott Crawford of the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum telling me that I was a member of the 2018 induction class, I felt honoured, humbled and a bit surprised. I never expected, when I was playing the game, to be here today. I took each day like it was a dream. I was so proud to play baseball every day and was fortunate as a player to be welcomed with open arms in both Canada and the United States. These countries provided me the opportunity to play the game I love so much,” said Martinez.

“Although I only played four seasons with the Expos, the fans always went out of their way to show how much they cared, appreciated and loved me. There is a huge amount of love and respect between me and the Expos’ fans. I want to thank the people who voted for me. Thank you to all the members of the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. I would not be here today without my teammates and my family. It is truly an honour to be the fifth Dominican born baseball player to be inducted, along with Vladimir Guerrero, Felipe Alou, Tony Fernandez and George Bell.

“I extend my heartfelt congratulations to the other members of the class of 2018 – Lloyd Moseby and Bill Humber. I look forward to seeing everyone in June.”

Lloyd Moseby

Born in Portland, Ark., in 1959, Lloyd Moseby grew up in Oakland, Calif., and was selected second overall by the Toronto Blue Jays in the 1978 MLB draft. That same year, the left-handed hitting outfielder began his professional career with the Blue Jays’ Rookie Ball affiliate in Medicine Hat and quickly climbed through the club’s ranks to make his big league debut on May 24, 1980.

The charismatic Moseby would become the Blue Jays’ starting centre fielder for the bulk of the next 10 seasons. His breakout major league campaign came in 1983 when he batted .315, socked 18 home runs, 31 doubles, seven triples and swiped 27 bases. He also topped American League centre fielders with 11 assists. For his efforts, he became the first Blue Jays’ outfielder to win a Silver Slugger Award and was named the team’s Player of the Year. He was also selected to The Sporting News and Baseball America All-Star teams.

For an encore, Moseby belted 18 home runs, led the American League in triples (15) and registered 39 stolen bases in 1984. He also topped AL centre fielders with 470 putouts and his 7.3 WAR that season was second among AL position players to Cal Ripken Jr.

Teaming with Jesse Barfield and George Bell in what was considered the best outfield in the majors, Moseby possessed a potent combination of power and speed. He posted back-to-back 20-home run, 30-stolen base seasons in 1986 and 1987 and in 1986, he was selected to the American League All-Star team.

In  his 10 seasons with the Blue Jays, Moseby also played a key role on two division-winning clubs (1985, 1989) and ranks among the franchise’s all-time leaders in several statistical categories, including first in stolen bases (255), second in triples (60), third in at bats (5,124) and walks (547) and fourth in games (1,392), runs (768), hits (1,319) and doubles (242).

He suited up for two seasons with the Detroit Tigers to finish off his 12-year major league career, before spending his final two pro campaigns with the Yomiuri Giants in Japan.

Following his playing career, Moseby served as a coach for the Blue Jays’ Short-Season class-A St. Catharines Stompers and the triple-A Syracuse Chiefs, before becoming the Blue Jays’ first base coach in 1998 and 1999. Since 2009, he has worked in an ambassador’s role with the club, representing the team in charitable events and serving as an instructor with the Blue Jays Baseball Academy at various kids events across the country including the Honda Super Camps and Instructional Clinics and Tournament 12.

“I really appreciate this honour,” said Moseby. “It’s still sinking in, but I’m excited about the ceremony in June.”

William Humber

Born in Toronto, Ont., in 1949, William Humber is widely acknowledged as Canada’s premier baseball historian. On top of the countless presentations about Canadian baseball history that he has done across North America, Humber has also authored several groundbreaking books on the topic, including Cheering for the Home Team (1983), Let’s Play Ball: Inside the Perfect Game (1989), The Baseball Book and Trophy (1993) and Diamonds of the North: A Concise History of Baseball in Canada (1995).

The Bowmanville, Ont., resident was also instrumental in the formation of the Toronto Hanlan’s Point chapter of the Society of American Baseball Research (SABR) and he played a central role in the organization of Toronto’s first SABR Convention in 1981. He is also the only Canadian to have served on the board of directors of SABR, having done so in 1982 and 1983 and then again in 1989.

In 1979, he founded a course called “Baseball Spring Training for Fans” at Seneca College which continues to this day. He has taught the course since its inception. In 1989, he was the driving force behind the “Let’s Play Ball: Inside the Perfect Game” exhibit at the Royal Ontario Museum, which celebrated 150 years of Canadian baseball history.

For his contributions, Humber was made an honorary inductee into the Saskatchewan Baseball Hall of Fame in 2004 and is a recipient of the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Medal, which is awarded to Canadians who have made outstanding and exemplary contributions to their communities or to Canada as a whole. Humber also serves on the selection committee for Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame and for the Clarington Sports Hall of Fame, and in 2006, he was elected to the Black Ice Hockey and Sports Hall of Fame in the writers category. He continues to be a regular contributor on baseball matters to radio and TV shows throughout Canada and the U.S.

“Researching the roots of Canadian baseball, sharing those stories, and celebrating long lost heroes, has been a lifelong passion for me, so to join them in this special place is both an honour and a humbling experience,” said Humber after being informed of his induction.

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2 thoughts on “Martinez, Moseby and Humber to be inducted into Canadian ball hall

  1. Thank you to all those that helped with our big announcement today. It will be a great induction weekend June 14-16 in St. Marys. Hope to see you then.

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