Let's evaluate this year's Hall of Fame class based purely on their fashion choices
July 24 marks the start of HOF induction weekend, which, as we all know, stands for Hall of Fashion. Some might tell you that it's an abbreviation for "Hall of Fame" (specifically the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown), but we know that iconic style is a big part of the balloting process. Don't just take it from us -- ask HOF Class of 1988 Willie Stargell and his amazing cap:
Or Class of 2011's Bert Blyleven and his clogs:
But the incoming Class of '15 can certainly hold its own when it comes to style on the diamond. Let's take a look:
You could say that Craig Biggio is being inducted into the Hall of Fame because, over the course of his 20-year career, he was a seven-time All-Star at two different positions, led MLB in doubles two years in a row and became the 28th player to reach 3,000 hits (and the first Astro ever to reach that milestone).
OR you could say it's because of the way he rocked this very '90s-tastic jersey, with a logo that makes his team look like it might be a new Tomorrowland ride:
Even when he set a National League record for leadoff home runs (with 31), he was looking fly in pinstripes:
Plus, he has a look-a-like with close ties to the fashion world:
Do you see the mustache Smoltz was sporting in '91?
Can you doubt that, as short-lived as its reign may have been, it had something to do with his career 3.33 ERA and postseason dominance? Not only did he go 15-4 over 209 innings of postseason play, along with a 2.67 ERA, he also managed to swipe three bases. As a pitcher.
Smoltz is wearing stirrup socks in the video above and he's swiping second while wearing a Braves jacket. He's probably wearing it because it's cool, but also because it's cool.
You know Johnson was a historically dominant pitcher, but did you know he was also a historically dominant '90s fashion icon?
In one photo alone, we get long hair, a Gen-Xer-esque soul patch and the most important colors in the '90s palette -- teal and purple. If only he was also wearing one of those stretch choker necklaces.
He won four Cy Young Awards in that uniform and one in Mariners gear in '94. That, too, had its fair share of eye-popping color:
But perhaps the most important element overall is the soul patch. Uniforms may change, but the patch saw him through a 20 K game, a no-hitter and a perfect game:
It was there for him for all of his 4,875 strikeouts, for each of the 16 seasons in which his batters struck out per nine innings was above 10 and every one of his 303 wins. Really, this weekend is for the soul patch, most of all.
When you think "Pedro Martinez" you think of one thing -- the Jheri curl:
OK, maybe you think of the absolute terror he was on the mound in '99, when he was striking out 13.2 batters per nine innings and leading MLB with a 2.07 ERA. Or '00, when his ERA somehow got even lower (1.74). Maybe you're even thinking about how great he looked (and still looks) in his Expos uniform:
After all, it's what he was wearing in 1997 when he won the first of three Cy Young Awards and pitched 13 complete games, while striking out 11.4 batters per nine innings and maintaining a 1.90 ERA.
But back to the Jheri curl! Even Pedro himself acknowledges how important it was, telling TMZ he wished it would be included on his Hall of Fame plaque. After all, this is what he looked like as he struck out six in Game 3 of the 2004 World Series, en route to helping the Red Sox capture their first championship title in 86 years:
Live coverage of Hall of Fame induction day begins at 11 a.m. ET Sunday on MLB Network, simulcast live on MLB.com.