1959 Induction Ceremony

Zack Wheat was elected by the Veterans Committee and was the only player inducted on July 20, 1959. The BBWAA failed to induct anyone. In his speech, Wheat called the induction ceremony “one of the greatest moments of (his) life.”

Zack Wheat was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1959. (National Baseball Hall of Fame Library)ZACK WHEAT: Elected by the Veterans Committee, Wheat played 19 seasons in the big leagues, all but one with the Brooklyn Dodgers. He topped the .300 mark 13 times, hit 30 or more triples six times and drove in 100-plus runs twice. Wheat earned a third place finish in the 1924 National League MVP voting at the age of 36 after hitting .375 with 14 home runs and 97 runs batted in. In a Dodgers uniform, his 2,804 hits, 464 doubles, 171 triples and 4,003 total bases are all still Dodger records. Wheat finished his career by playing the 1927 season with the Philadelphia Athletics, where he hit .324 in 88 games. When he retired, Wheat’s 2,884 career hits ranked 10th on the all-time list and his .317 batting average is still in the top 70. He died in Missouri in 1972.