Delgado, Stairs highlight '15 Canadian Hall class
Former Blue Jays stars joined by Koskie, Alou and sportswriter Elliott
TORONTO -- Former Blue Jays players Carlos Delgado, Matt Stairs and Corey Koskie are among this year's inductees for the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame.
The trio will enter the Hall on June 13 in St. Marys, Ontario, alongside former Expos manager Felipe Alou and legendary Toronto Sun columnist Bob Elliott.
The induction ceremony will be part of the festival of events, which also includes a slow-pitch softball game and the annual charity golf tournament.
"Each of our 2015 inductees has made significant contributions to the history of baseball in our country, and they continue to be great ambassadors for the game," said Scott Crawford, the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame's director of operations. "We're proud and excited to celebrate their careers in St. Marys this June."
Delgado was one of the greatest players to wear a Blue Jays uniform. He signed as an amateur free agent in 1988 and stayed with the organization until 2004, and he is among the franchise's all-time leaders in almost every major statistical category.
The native of Puerto Rico hit at least 30 home runs in 10 consecutive seasons, and he finished with 473 during his career, which ranks 31st on Major League Baseball's all-time list. Despite the impressive accomplishments, Delgado didn't receive much consideration for the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, N.Y., but he was a quick entry into Canada's baseball hall.
"I'm very honored and humbled to be selected into the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame," Delgado said. "This is unbelievable news. I always say that you do not play the game for the awards, but if at the end of the day, you get that recognition from your fans and peers, it means a lot. And this is extra special to me because of the relationship that I have with the Toronto Blue Jays and their fans all across Canada."
Koskie spent nine years in the big leagues before a severe concussion eventually ended his career in 2006. He's best remembered for his time in a Twins uniform, but he also spent the '05 season in Toronto after signing there as a free agent. Koskie ranks seventh all time among Canadians in home runs (124) and on-base percentage (.367).
Stairs spent 19 years in the Majors, which is the most by any Canadian position player. He also ranks second behind Larry Walker on Canada's list for home runs (265), games (1,895) and walks (717). Stairs competed for Canada at the 1988 Summer Olympics and also appeared in two World Baseball Classics.
Elliott has been covering Major League Baseball since the 1970s, and after a lengthy stint in Ottawa and Montreal, he's been on the Blue Jays beat since 1987. Elliott is also well known for his efforts to help grow the game north of the border while promoting Baseball Canada and its developing players whenever possible.