The Astros Hall of Fame has six new members in the Class of 2020.
Keep your seats, folks — the National Baseball Hall of Fame class of 2020 won’t be announced for another few days. But the Astros Hall of Fame does have a new class, with six new members being added to last year’s inaugural group. Inducted this year are Lance Berkman, Roy Oswalt, Billy Wagner, Cesar Cedeno, Bob Watson and Roy Hofheinz.
These six additions bring the Astros Hall of Fame to total of 22 members. Previous inductees were Bob Aspromonte, Jeff Bagwell, Craig Biggio, Jose Cruz, Larry Dierker, Gene Elston, Milo Hamilton, Joe Morgan, Joe Niekro, Shane Reynolds, J.R. Richard, Nolan Ryan, Mike Scott, Jim Umbricht, Don Wilson and Jimmy Wynn.
There are still more names to be added in future years, but these first two classes are a pretty solid representation of the best of the franchise prior to the current incarnation of the team.
The Astros drafted Berkman in the first round out of Rice University. He spent 12 years in a Houston uniform, hitting .296/.410/.549 with 375 doubles, 326 homers and 1,090 RBIs. He was one of the game’s most feared hitters and a centerpiece of several contending teams.
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Oswalt was a 23rd-round draft pick who blossomed into an ace. In 10 years with the Astros, he was 143-82 with a 3.24 ERA. He had a pair of 20-win seasons, finished in the top five of the Cy Young Award voting five times, and made three All-Star teams.
Wagner could end up in the national Hall of Fame, as there’s a case to be made that he was the best left-handed reliever to ever pitch. In nine years with the Astros, he notched 225 saves with a 2.53 ERA, striking out more than 12 batters per nine innings.
In his prime, Cedeno was a true five-tool player and one of the best all-around talents to ever wear a Houston uniform. He hit .289/.351/.454 in 12 seasons with 343 doubles, 163 homers and 487 stolen bases, winning five Gold Gloves and making four All-Star games in the 1970s.
Watson was the team’s primary first baseman for most of the 1970s, establishing himself as a solid all-around hitter. The right-hander hit .297/.364/.444 in 14 seasons, making a pair of All-Star teams and earning MVP votes three times.
Hofheinz was instrumental in getting Houston a baseball franchise in the first place and in the construction of the Astrodome. It’s safe to say that without him, Houston baseball would not be what it is today.