5 Other Players and Coaches Were Also Inducted Into The HoF
Frank Thomas was one of six inductees on Sunday to the MLB Hall of Fame before a cheering crowd of 48,000 fans in the field behind the Clark Athletic Center.
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Thomas was known for his physically imposing strength in the game of baseball, and towered at 6-foot-5, and weighed in at 240 pounds during his playing days on the field.
Immortalized along with Thomas -- nicknamed "The Big Hurt" -- were pitchers Greg Maddux and Tom Glavine and managers Tony La Russa, Bobby Cox and Joe Torre.
Thomas was seen trying to hold back tears as he voiced his inductee speech in front of his fellow peers.
"I wear my emotions on my sleeve," Thomas said. "I knew I was going to choke up as soon as I started talking about my father. As many times as I practiced it and got all the way through the speech without getting emotional, I knew when it was time for the real thing that it would be hard to get through."
"He was the one that told me as a kid that you can be special if you really work at it," Thomas said during the most emotional moment of his speech. "I took that heart, Pops, and look where are today."
"To all you kids out there, just remember one thing from today: There's no shortcuts to success. Hard work, commitment, dedication, stay true to who you are," Thomas said.
Maddux won 355 games, eighth-most in history, during his 23-year career with the Chicago Cubs, Atlanta Braves and Los Angeles Dodgers. Maddux had a run of four consecutive National League Cy Young Awards from 1992-95 and also won 18 Gold Gloves, more than any player at any position.
"I never gave a thought to the Hall of Fame as I was going through my career," Maddux said. "My goal as a baseball player was very simple: All I wanted to do was try to get better for my next start.
"And to think it all ended here, it's pretty cool."
"I played in Chicago for 11 years and I played in Atlanta for 12 years," Maddux said. "I learned how to pitch in Chicago and I learned how to win and raise my family in Atlanta. I love both cities and fans equally, and I'd never be able to choose one over the other."
Glavin gave a heart spoken speech while speaking about his 22-year long career with the Braves and Mets, including 305 wins, the fourth-most among left handed pitchers.
Glavine also won the NL Cy Young in 1991 and 1998 and was MVP of the 1995 World Series when the Braves beat the Cleveland Indians for what remains the only major professional team sports championship in Atlanta history.
Glavine called being inducted "the ultimate honor of a career in baseball."
"My career saw a lot of ups and downs, a lot of sacrifices on and off the field and more than a few times when I questioned what I was doing," Glavine said. "There are no more questions now, only gratitude towards those who were so helpful along the way."
The 48,000 strong crowd was the third-largest to see an induction ceremony for the MLB Hall of Fame.