The Baseball Hall of Fame will see two inductees earn their plaques in Cooperstown this summer, both of whom got their starts on Little League® fields growing up. Scott Rolen, a graduate of Jasper (Ind.) National Little League, will join Fred McGriff of Forest Heights Little League (Tampa, Fla.) as the two players to earn the biggest honor in the game as the Class of 2023.
Including the two members of this year’s class, there have been a total of 34 Little League graduates to go on to become National Baseball Hall of Famers. Of those 34, seven graduates have also been enshrined into the Little League Hall of Excellence, the highest honor that Little League can bestow.
Fred McGriff – Forest Heights Little League (Tampa, Fla.)
Unanimously elected by the Contemporary Baseball Era Committee on Dec. 4, receiving all 16 possible votes, Fred McGriff enjoyed 19 major league seasons with the Blue Jays, Padres, Braves, Devil Rays, Cubs, and Dodgers during his MLB career. After being drafted in the ninth round of the 1981 amateur draft by the New York Yankees, Mr. McGriff finished his MLB career just seven homers short of the 500-home run club, tied with Lou Gehrig for 26th all-time. He had a career .284 batting average, 2,490 hits, 441 doubles, and 1,550 RBI. He and fellow Little League graduate, Gary Sheffield, are the only players to hit 30 home runs for five different major league teams. In 10 postseason series, Mr. McGriff batted .303 with 10 home runs, 37 RBI and 100 total bases. He was named to five All-Star Games, finished in the top 10 in MVP voting six times, and ranks 47th all-time in RBI with 1,550.
— National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum ⚾ (@baseballhall) December 5, 2022
Scott Rolen – Jasper (Ind.) National Little League
After 17 seasons as a standout third baseman for the Phillies, Cardinals, Blue Jays, and Reds, Scott Rolen has earned his iconic bronze plaque with a 76.3% vote in his sixth year on the ballot. A two-sport athlete playing baseball and basketball as a kid, Mr. Rolen committed to play basketball at the University of Georgia, but after the Philadelphia Phillies selected him in the second round of the 1993 MLB Draft, he elected to sign and play professional baseball instead. Notably known for the way in which he played the game, Mr. Rolen closed out his 17-year career with a .281 batting average, 316…