Larkin, Santo Inductions Highlight Hall of Fame Weekend 2012, July 20-23

Cooperstown Weekend Honors MVP and World Series-Winning Shortstop and Nine-Time All-Star Third Baseman, with Activities, New Celebrations

July 11, 2012

COOPERSTOWN, N.Y. – In a little more than a week, the eyes of the sports world will once again be focused on Cooperstown, N.Y., for baseball’s most exciting weekend. 

With new classics and old favorites throughout the lineup, Hall of Fame Weekend 2012 promises to be an unforgettable moment in time for fans with a full slate of family events, baseball entertainment, and exclusive opportunities comprising a classic American weekend, July 20-23. 

More than 40 Hall of Famers are scheduled to return to honor the Class of 2012 at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. The Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony, honoring the two newest members, will be held Sunday, July 22, at 1:30 p.m. ET at the Clark Sports Center – located one mile south of the Hall of Fame in Cooperstown. 

Barry Larkin was elected to the Hall of Fame by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America vote in January, making Cooperstown the final stop for the 12-time All-Star on a journey that saw him lead the Reds to the 1990 World Series title and win the 1995 National League Most Valuable Player Award. The December 2011 Golden Era Committee election produced one electee for induction: Former Cubs and White Sox third baseman Ron Santo, who reached the 30-homer mark four times and was named to the All-Star Game nine times in his 14-year big league career. 

The Induction Ceremony will be shown live on MLB Network, which is available in more than 70 million homes nationwide. This year’s Hall of Fame Weekend will feature the new fan-interactive game show Pitch Count, which will be held prior to the Hall of Fame Awards Presentation on Saturday, July 21 at Doubleday Field. 

Pitch Count will feature Hall of Famers Bert Blyleven and Phil Niekro and is modeled after popular past game shows, in which each Hall of Famer will be paired with a contestant to provide the mystery word answer to a baseball-themed category. The game features nine innings of head-to-head competition, with the winning team having a chance to play for a grand prize, a Lifetime Membership to the Hall of Fame for one lucky fan. Pitch Count will begin at 3 p.m. on July 21 at Doubleday Field. 

The Hall of Fame Awards Presentation will be held at 4:30 p.m. on July 21 at Doubleday Field and will feature the presentation of the Ford C. Frick Award for broadcasters to Tim McCarver, the J.G. Taylor Spink Award for writers to Bob Elliott and a celebration of the living managers who have skippered the Cardinals to World Series titles: Red Schoendienst, Whitey Herzog and Tony La Russa. Both Pitch Count and the Awards Presentation are free and open to the public. 

Also on Saturday, July 21, the Hall of Fame Parade of Legends returns for a third year to provide fans with more thrills. Hall of Famers will ride down Main Street in trucks provided by Ford Motor Company en route to a private reception at the Museum during the 6 p.m. parade, with the staging for this year’s Parade to take place at Doubleday Field, immediately following the Awards Presentation

The Sunday, July 22 Induction Ceremony will take place on the grounds outside of the Clark Sports Center, which is located on lower Susquehanna Avenue, unless severe weather cancels the event. Located just one mile south of the Hall of Fame, the short walk provides a picturesque view of the homes of Cooperstown. Please note that professional interpreters will be provided for the hearing impaired. The event will be held outdoors rain or shine. 

As of July 11, more than 40 Hall of Famers, including Class of 2012 member Barry Larkin, are scheduled to be a part of Hall of Fame Weekend festivities in Cooperstown, including: 

Roberto Alomar Dennis Eckersley Sandy Koufax Frank Robinson
Luis Aparicio Rollie Fingers Juan Marichal Ryne Sandberg
Ernie Banks Carlton Fisk Willie Mays Mike Schmidt
Johnny Bench Whitey Ford Paul Molitor Red Schoendienst
Yogi Berra Bob Gibson Joe Morgan Ozzie Smith
Bert Blyleven Pat Gillick Eddie Murray Bruce Sutter
Wade Boggs Tony Gwynn Phil Niekro Billy Williams
George Brett Doug Harvey Jim Palmer Dave Winfield
Lou Brock Rickey Henderson Tony Pérez
Robin Yount
Jim Bunning Whitey Herzog Gaylord Perry  
Steve Carlton Ferguson Jenkins Jim Rice  
Andre Dawson Al Kaline Brooks Robinson  


Dozens of members of the baseball community are also scheduled to attend Hall of Fame Weekend, including: Brewers Assistant GM Gord Ash; former major leaguer Glenn Beckert; Blue Jays President and CEO and Hall of Fame Board Member Paul Beeston; former major league pitcher Tom Browning; Fox Sports broadcaster Joe Buck; former big league pitcher Larry Christenson; former major leaguer Eric Davis; Fox Vice Chairman Ed Goren; former major league player Randy Hundley; Reds President of Baseball Operations and GM Walt Jocketty; former major league manager Tony La Russa; Pat O’Conner, the President and Chief Executive Officer of Minor League Baseball; White Sox Chairman and Hall of Fame Board Member Jerry Reinsdorf; Cubs Chairman Tom Ricketts; and MLBPA Chief Michael Weiner.

The Ceremony is expected to last two hours. Seating for the event is unlimited and free of charge. A blanket or lawn chair is recommended for comfortable viewing. As the weather in Cooperstown can be quite warm in July, it is recommended that visitors bring a cap and sunscreen. Ball caps, Yearbooks and Museum membership packages are available for purchase at the Induction site. Refreshments are sold at the site and water is provided complimentary to visitors.

Family activities scheduled throughout Hall of Fame Weekend 2012 include the following special events:

Hall of Fame Weekend Events

Friday, July 20         

PLAY Ball with Ozzie Smith & special guests,  (with Johnny Bench and Paul Molitor)
Plaque Gallery and On Field
8 a.m.

First Day Issue MLB All-Star stamps with Tony Gwynn
Cooper Park
10 a.m.

Authors Series: “Rick Ferrell: Knuckleball Pitcher” with Kerrie Ferrell, daughter of Hall of Famer Rick Ferrell, with a book signing to follow
Bullpen Theater
2 p.m.

Saturday, July 21

Author Series: Erardi and Greg Rhodes discuss Barry Larkin’s career and look back at the early 1990s Cincinnati Reds
Bullpen Theater
11 a.m. 

Hall of Fame Game Show Pitch Count: Featuring Hall of Famers Bert Blyleven and Phil Niekro
Doubleday Field
3 p.m.

Hall of Fame Awards Presentation
Doubleday Field
4:30 p.m.

Hall of Fame Parade of Legends
Main Street
6 p.m.

Sunday, July 22

Authors Series: “If You Love This Game…An MVP’s Life in Baseball” with Hall o f Famer Andre Dawson. Book signing to follow.
Bullpen Theater
9 a. m. 

Induction Ceremony
Clark Sports Center
1:30 p.m.

Monday, July 23

Voices of the Game – Inductee Memories: Featuring Barry Larkin, Tony Pérez and Billy Williams
Clark Sports Center                           
10:30 a.m.

PLAY Ball with Ozzie Smith - special guests Johnny Bench and Paul Molitor:  Ozzie Smith returns in a fundraiser for the Hall of Fame’s education and public programs with a unique opportunity for fans, featuring fellow Hall of Famers Johnny Bench and Paul Molitor. This two-hour event features non-stop interaction at each station with a living legend and includes special mementos. Spaces are limited to 40 participants. The donation is $800 per person, with Hall of Fame Members admitted for $600. To reserve your spot, please call 607-547-0397. 8 a.m., Friday.

First Day Issue MLB All-Star stamps: Hall of Famer Tony Gwynn will celebrate the lives of four Hall of Fame teammates during the First-Day-of-Issue Major League Baseball All-Stars stamps dedication ceremony in Cooperstown. The new Baseball Legends Stamps will be unveiled at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. The dedication ceremony, which is an invitation-only event, will be shown for fans via closed-circuit television in Cooper Park adjacent to the Museum. Available nationwide that day, the stamps can also be purchased at the Museum and the Cooperstown Post Office. Four of baseball’s most revered Hall of Famers will be immortalized on 45-cent First-Class Forever stamps. Appearing on the Major League Baseball All-Stars sheet of 20 stamps will be Joe DiMaggio of the New York Yankees; Larry Doby of the Cleveland Indians; Willie Stargell of the Pittsburgh Pirates; and Ted Williams of the Boston Red Sox. 10 a.m., Friday

Hall of Fame Parade of Legends: Join the pageantry and excitement as the Hall of Famers ride in trucks provided by Ford Motor Company down Main Street on their way to a private reception at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. Staging for the Parade takes place at Doubleday Field and fans are encouraged to attend the Awards Presentation prior to making their way to the Parade. Main Street, 6 p.m., Saturday.

Voices of the Game: Inductee Memories: The Hall of Fame’s newest member, Barry Larkin, participates in a Voices of the Game event along with his new Hall of Fame teammates Tony Pérez and Billy Williams. This event is for Members only and tickets are currently available by visiting the Membership desk in the Museum or by calling 607-547-0397. Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for children under 12. Clark Sports Center, 10:30 a.m., Monday.

The Class of 2012 features two of the most dominant players any era.

Larkin, a shortstop who spent his entire 19-year big league career with the Reds, was named on 86.4 percent of ballots cast on his third try on the BBWAA ballot. Larkin was listed on 495 ballots, and his jump of 24.3 percent from the 2011 election was the biggest jump in any Hall of Fame election in which at least 400 ballots were cast (at least 400 ballots have been cast in every BBWAA Hall of Fame election since 1986).

A five-time Gold Glove Award winning third baseman with the Cubs and White Sox, Santo received 15 of 16 votes from the Golden Era Committee.

The 2012 Award winners will receive their recognition and deliver brief speeches during the Awards Presentation on Saturday at 4:30 p.m. at Doubleday Field.

McCarver, longtime Fox Sports analyst who also worked for the Phillies, Mets, Yankees and Giants as well as other national networks, will be presented with the 2012 Ford C. Frick Award for major contributions to baseball broadcasting. Elliott, who has covered baseball in Canada for more than 30 years, will be honored with the 2012 J.G. Taylor Spink award for meritorious contributions to baseball writing, presented by the BBWAA.

Hall of Fame Members are afforded special opportunities throughout the Weekend. As a not-for-profit educational institution, membership support advances the Museum's programs and aids in the preservation of artifacts and archival materials that document the rich history of America's game. Additionally, membership packages are wonderful and unique gifts for friends and family. Members enjoy many privileges, including free admission to the Hall of Fame year-round. To learn more about the program and its many benefits, please visit baseballhall.org.

 Additional Hall of Fame Weekend Privileges

  • Free admission to the Museum throughout the year
  • A special members-only entrance to the Hall of Fame to avoid long lines
  • Exclusive early access to the Museum on Saturday, Sunday and Monday
  • VIP reserved seating for the Induction for Benefactor and President's Circle Members
  • Exclusive access to the Legends Series Monday
  • Transportation provided to and from the Museum for special Weekend events

The Museum offers a wide variety of educational programs and special events throughout the summer through the Museum’s KeyBank Summer Programming Series, which provides visitors with even more opportunities for baseball fun. This year’s schedule brings back some old favorites as well as a few new programs, including daily programs like The Plaques in the Gallery (10 a.m. & 3 p.m.), Today’s Kids, Tomorrow’s Legends (11 a.m.), Artifact Spotlights (11:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m.), Visit with a Vendor (2 p.m.) and So You Think You Know Baseball? (4 p.m.). All programs are included with admission to the Museum.

The Museum maintains the following Hall of Fame Weekend hours: Friday: 9 a.m. - 9 p.m.; Saturday: 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. (Plaque Gallery closes at 4:30 p.m. on Saturday); Sunday: 8 a.m. - 9 p.m.; Monday: 9 a.m. - 9 p.m. Advance tickets are not necessary but are available by contacting the Hall of Fame at 888-425-5633. For Hall of Fame Members, doors open at 7 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday. As always, Hall of Fame Members receive free admission. A special Members’ only entrance eliminates the need to wait in line. Interested parties may enroll in the membership program in advance or at the Museum.

Parking will be extremely limited in Cooperstown during Hall of Fame Weekend. As is the case throughout the summer, the village will make parking and trolley service available at two trolley lots in Cooperstown. The Cooperstown Trolley will provide transit to the Baseball Hall of Fame and Doubleday Field from two different locations: the Red Lot on Route 28 (Glen Avenue) at Maple Street; and the Yellow Lot on Route 80 at the upper parking lot of the Fenimore Art Museum.  All-day passes are available for $2 per adult and free for children 5 and under. The Trolley will operate throughout Hall of Fame Weekend daily from 8:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. 

If you need help with accommodations during your stay, you should plan to contact the Cooperstown Chamber of Commerce at 607-547-9983, or visit the Chamber website at www.cooperstownchamber.org. The Chamber of Commerce site provides detailed information about what to see, where to stay, places to eat and where to shop in Cooperstown and nearby towns. For driving directions from major cities, area cities and local airports, visit the directions page at the Hall of Fame’s website for more information: www.baseballhall.org.

The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum is open seven days a week year round, with the exception of Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day. The Museum observes summer hours of 9 a.m. until 9 p.m. from Memorial Day Weekend until the day before Labor Day. From Labor Day until Memorial Day Weekend, the Museum observes daily regular hours of 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. Ticket prices are $19.50 for adults (13 and over), $12 for seniors (65 and over) and for those holding current memberships in the VFW, Disabled American Veterans, American Legion and AMVets organizations, and $7 for juniors (ages 7-12). Members are always admitted free of charge and there is no charge for children 6 years of age or younger.  For more information, visit our Web site at baseballhall.org or call 888-HALL-OF-FAME (888-425-5633) or 607-547-7200.