Astros: New Hall of Fame opening in Minute Maid Park
By Brian Murray
The Astros’ President of Business Operations, Reid Ryan, announced that a Hall of Fame honoring the best Houston players will begin construction in March.
No Astros were named to be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame this year, but 16 former Houston players, front office personnel and broadcasters will be enshrined in the Astros’ Hall of Fame later this year. After 57 years, a long-awaited and overdue Hall of Fame will open in Minute Maid Park.
The Hall of Fame Alley will replace Home Run Alley and will be located past left field and between the Crawford and center field. They will have display cases with artifacts and memorabilia and the inductees will have their plaques installed on the columns.
The honorees that are on the Walk of Fame on Texas Avenue will be the first class inducted. That will consist of players Joe Niekro, J. R. Richard, Joe Morgan, Shane Reynolds, and Bob Aspromonte, along with broadcasters Milo Hamilton and Gene Elston.
The inaugural class will be the nine players who have had their numbers retired, Craig Biggio, Jeff Bagwell, Nolan Ryan, Mike Scott, Jose Cruz, Jimmy Wynn, Larry Dierker, Jim Umbricht and Don Wilson.
The inductees will all receive a commemorative jacket that will be unveiled at the upcoming Saturday Fanfest. The plagues for each player will be unveiled on Hall Of Fame Weekend to be held Aug. 2 – 4. The inaugural class will be inducted during a pre-game ceremony prior to the game against the Marlins.
Future inductees will be decided by an advisory board made up of past players, historians and media personnel. “We think that group of advisory board members will be a great way to start the process and then each year we will make a recommendation out of that board as to who we think should go in the Hall of Fame, and at the end of the year the Astros will take those recommendations and we’ll select one or two players out of that.” Reid Ryan said.