Larry Walker becomes First Rockies Player elected to Hall of Fame

File-This June 23, 2018, file photo shows retired Colorado Rockies outfielder Larry Walker during picture day for the Rockies before a baseball game in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski, File)
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DENVER It was announced Tuesday evening that Larry Walker has been elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame after receiving 76.6% of the vote in his 10th and final year on the ballot. The announcement was made by National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum President Tim Mead live on MLB Network.

Walker becomes the first player in Rockies history to be elected to the Hall of Fame. He is the seventh player in the modern voting era (since 1966) to be elected in his final year of eligibility and the third player over the past four years to be elected in his 10th and final year on the ballot (also Tim Raines in 2017, Edgar Martinez in 2019).

Eligible candidates must be named on 75% of the ballots from voting members of the Baseball Writers Association of America in order to be elected. Walker received 54.6% of the vote in 2019, marking an improvement of 22.0% in his final year on the ballot. That is the largest year-to-year percentage increase to earn election to the Hall of Fame in the modern voting era.

The Class of 2020 also includes shortstop Derek Jeter, catcher Ted Simmons and executive Marvin Miller. They will be inducted on Sunday, July 26 at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown, N.Y.

Born on December 1, 1966 in Maple Ridge, B.C., Canada, Larry Walker played parts of 17 Major League seasons from 1989-2005, including parts of 10 seasons with the Rockies from 1995-2004. In his career, he batted .313 (2,160-for-6,907) with 1,355 runs, 471 doubles, 62 triples, 383 home runs, 1,311 RBI, 230 stolen bases and 913 walks. As a Rockie, Walker batted .334 (1,361-for-4,076) with 297 doubles, 44 triples, 258 home runs, 848 RBI, 126 stolen bases and 584 walks. He ranks first in Rockies history in batting average, on-base percentage (.426) and slugging percentage (.618). He ranks second, behind Todd Helton, in runs, hits, doubles, home runs and RBI.

In 1997, Walker became the only player in Rockies history to win the National League Most Valuable Player Award after leading the Major Leagues with a .720 slugging percentage, a 1.172 OPS and 409 total bases. His 49 home runs that season led the National League, and remain tied with Todd Helton’s 2001 total for the most single-season home runs in Rockies franchise history.

He was named a National League All-Star five times (1992, 1997-99, 2001) and earned seven Gold Gloves in right field (1992-93, 1997-99, 2001-02) in addition to his three Silver Sluggers (1992, 1997, 1999). Additionally, he was a three-time National League Batting Champion (1998-99, 2001) as a member of the Rockies.

Prior to signing with Colorado before the 1995 season, Walker played parts of six seasons with the Montreal Expos (1989-94) and batted .281 (666-for-2,366) with 368 runs, 147 doubles, 16 triples, 99 home runs, 384 RBI across 674 games. He concluded his Major League career with parts of two seasons for the St. Louis Cardinals (2004-05), where he batted .286 (133-for-465) with 95 runs, 27 doubles, two triples, 26 home runs, 79 RBI, six stolen bases and 65 walks across 144 games.

“I know I speak for the whole Rocky Mountain Region in congratulating Larry for his election into the Hall of Fame,” said Rockies Owner/Chairman & CEO Dick Monfort. “Larry blessed our region for parts of 10 seasons and we feel extremely fortunate to be a part of his incredible career. Congrats, Larry.”