COOPERSTOWN, NJ. – There was almost every turn one. Deficiencies identified Mike Mussina's career.
Good, but not great.
He never won a World Series, though he reached the last round of postseason twice. He has never won a Cy Young Award, although he finished nine times in the top six. He could not win 300 games, 30 victories remained.
Mussina said he might be waiting for the right moment to reach the mountaintop Last Push, "said the pitcher on Sunday when he teamed up with Mariano Rivera, Lee Smith, Harold Baines, Edgar Martinez and the late Roy Halladay Clark Sports Center was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame. "This time I did it."
Mussina, 50, walks in with an empty hat after playing 1
"For the longest time in Baltimore I've told myself that I've never played in New York. I'm a small town person and this place was just too much for me, "Mussina said. "Of course I changed my mind. Most of all, because Joe Torre called me over the Mets two or three days after winning the 2000 World Series, and Joe simply said, "I just wanted you to know that we're interested in you coming to New York to to promote us. "Well, that first impression was great."
The seven-time gold-glove winner won the bid in his sixth year of voting and received 76.9 percent of the vote in January, just enough to anchor himself. He was admittedly surprised when he came in – Mussina only got 20.3 percent of the vote in his first year of election – and could not help making fun of himself now that he's part of such an elite club.
I stand here with the best that have ever played the game, "said dry-minded Mussina. "Some are my former teammates, others are former opponents and some grew up on TV. The obvious question is, what am I doing up here and how on earth did that happen?
"First a big thank you to the voters. To those who voted for me in my first year and kept me up to date, I thank you. To all those who continue to rethink my career and ultimately feel that I deserve this honor, I wholeheartedly thank you. "