Henderson, Rice Join Hall of Fame

By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jul 26, 2009 5:22 PM CDT
Inductees Rickey Henderson, left, and Jim Rice hug after Henderson's induction speech at the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, N.Y., Sunday, July 26, 2009.   (AP Photo/Mike Groll)
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(Newser) – Jim Rice's icy glare melted into a wide smile. Brash, flamboyant Rickey Henderson was humbled by it all. The former left fielders were inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame today along with the late Joe Gordon, and Henderson, baseball's all-time leading base stealer, was briefly overcome before evoking some hearty laughs. "My journey as a player is complete," he said.

"I am now in the class of the greatest players of all time, and at this moment I am very humbled." While Henderson, now 50, was just the 44th player elected to the Hall in his first year of eligibility, Rice had to wait until his final year of eligibility to be selected. "It doesn't matter that the call came 15 years later," said Rice, the only major leaguer to knock 35 homers and 200 hits in three straight seasons. "What matters is that I got it."