SEATTLE — Sorry, Mariners fans, left-hander Randy Johnson’s Hall of Fame plaque will display an Arizona Diamondbacks’ cap.
That’s not unexpected.
Johnson won four of his five Cy Young Awards while pitching for the Diamondbacks — and he was recently hired by the club as a special assistant to club president and chief executive officer Derrick Hall.
Still, the decision, announced Friday by the Hall of Fame, stings a little bit in the Northwest, where Johnson blossomed into a star over 10 seasons from 1989-98.
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“After reflecting the last week and conferring with the Hall of Fame,” Johnson said, “we’ve come to the decision that the Diamondbacks’ logo on my Hall of Fame plaque makes the most sense.
“I want to express my most sincere thanks to all the teams I played for — Montreal, Seattle, Houston, the New York Yankees and San Francisco — and particularly all of the fans for supporting me.
“I’m very humbled by this honor.”
Johnson, now 51, was one of four players elected Jan. 6 to the Hall of Fame by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America. He is the first player elected who spent a substantial portion of his career with the Mariners.
The BBWAA also elected second baseman Craig Biggio and pitchers Pedro Martinez and John Smoltz. Oddly, perhaps, the Hall said it won’t announce their cap selections until Jan. 22.
There seems little debate for those players.
Biggio spent his entire career with Houston, and Smoltz spent 20 of his 21 seasons in Atlanta. Martinez pitched for five clubs, but nearly all of his top achievements came in Boston.
“The Museum staff works with each inductee by suggesting an appropriate logo option, or no logo at all,” Hall president Jeff Idelson said. “For those whose most compelling contributions clearly took place with one team, a logo makes sense.
“For those whose careers were built significantly among multiple teams, not having a team logo is equally acceptable.
“Regardless of the selection, a Hall of Famer belongs to every team for which he played or managed, as well as every fan who followed his career.”
The induction ceremony for all four players is July 26 in Cooperstown, N.Y.