Way Above Average: Four-time Batting Champion Bill Madlock to Appear at Hall of Fame Classic

Legends Game to be Held June 20 at Doubleday Field

May 28, 2010
Bill Madlock will appear at the 2010 Hall of Fame Classic. (National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum)

COOPERSTOWN, NY – Bill Madlock was the only right-handed hitter between 1973 and 1987 to win a National League batting title.

And he did it four times.

The first player to win multiple batting titles with two different teams, Madlock finished in the top 20 in MVP voting six times. Madlock, a career .305 hitter with 2,008 hits and 163 homers, will suit up on Father’s Day at Doubleday Field in Cooperstown in the Hall of Fame Classic. The second-annual Classic Weekend will feature Hall of Famers Gary Carter, Bob Feller, Rollie Fingers, Goose Gossage, Harmon Killebrew, Phil Niekro and Ozzie Smith, along with 20 other former major leaguers – like Madlock – in a seven-inning exhibition game, with first pitch slated for 2 p.m.

The 2010 Baseball Hall of Fame Classic is co-organized by the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum and the Major League Baseball Players Alumni Association. Ford Motor Company will be the Presenting Sponsor of the Baseball Hall of Fame Classic.

Madlock, nicknamed “Mad Dog” for his intensity on the field, broke in with the Texas Rangers in 1973. After one season, he and teammate Vic Harris were traded to the Cubs for future Hall of Famer Ferguson Jenkins. The next season, Madlock won his first batting title and was named co-MVP of his first All-Star Game.

Madlock went on to play for the Giants, Pirates, Dodgers and Tigers. He won a World Series with Pittsburgh in 1979, hitting .375 with five walks in the series. After winning his second National League batting title with the Cubs in 1976, he went onto win two with the Pirates in 1981 and 1983. He also finished second in 1982.

Tickets for the Hall of Fame Classic are available online at baseballhall.org or by calling 1-866-849-7770. Tickets are $12.50 for first and third base seats and $11 for outfield seats. A $3.50 handling charge per ticket applies to phone and online orders. Phone orders will be taken Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. EDT and Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. EDT. The online ordering system at www.baseballhall.org is available 24 hours per day.

Classic Weekend will feature a slate of family friendly activities, highlighted by the return of the Hall of Fame Classic. Other activities planned for Classic Weekend include the Cooperstown Golf Classic fundraiser for the Museum, a reprise of the popular “Family Catch,” the Youth Skills Clinic hosted by several former major league players, a special Voices of the Game program, and other special programs throughout the Museum.

Among the 20 other recently retired players already committed to participate in the Classic include former major league stars Kevin Bass, Paul Blair, Brian Boehringer, Bert Campaneris, John Doherty, Jay Johnstone, Jeff Kent, Tim Leary, Mike Pagliarulo, Dennis Rasmussen, Lee Smith and Rich Surhoff.

The Hall of Fame Classic will be preceded by the Cooperstown Game Day Parade, presented by the Cooperstown Chamber of Commerce, the village of Cooperstown and the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, beginning at noon on Main Street. Game participants will ride in the parade on their way to Doubleday Field. The Legends Hitting Contest will begin at 1 p.m., followed by the Hall of Fame Classic at 2 p.m.

On Saturday, June 19, the Museum will present the return of “Family Catch” at Doubleday Field from 12-2 p.m. Beginning at 3 p.m., the Hall of Fame and the MLBPAA will present the Youth Skills Clinic at Doubleday Field, featuring former major league players as instructors. At 7 p.m., the Museum will host a roundtable discussion with the seven Hall of Fame members. Advance registration is required for all events. Please call 607-547-0397 for more information.

For more information on Hall of Fame Classic Weekend events, call 1-888-Hall-of-Fame.

Samantha Carr is the manager of web and digital media for the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum