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The Ted Williams Museum is honored to announce the first two inductees who will join baseball's greats in the Ted Williams Museum & Hitters Hall of Fame. On February 1st, Craig Biggio and Dwight Gooden will be inducted into the Ted Williams Museum & Hitters Hall of Fame. Be on the lookout each week as we announce more inductees that will join Craig and Dwight in the Class of 2014. Craig Biggio: His career began with being called up as a catcher midway through the 1988 season. In 1989, his first full season, Biggio became the Astros' starting catcher and won the Silver Slugger award in 1989. The Astros finally convinced Biggio to convert to second base in spring training 1992, even though Biggio had made the National League All-Star team as a catcher in 1991. Craig went on to make the All-Star team for the second time in 1992, becoming the first player in the history of baseball to be an All-Star at both catcher and second base. It is remarkably rare for a major league catcher to make a successful transition to middle infielder. He became known as a reliable, hustling, consistent leadoff hitter, with unusual power for a second baseman. He holds the National League record for most home runs to lead off a game, with fifty. Biggio played 1,800 games without a trip to the disabled list until August 1, 2000, when he suffered a season-ending knee injury. After his recovery, Biggio got back on track during the 2003 season, averaging .264 with 166 hits despite moving to center field after the signing of free agent All-Star second baseman Jeff Kent. In 2004, he put up even better numbers, batting .281 with 178 hits, including a career high 24 homers. Biggio moved to yet another new position, left field, midway through the 2004 season to accommodate Carlos Beltrán. For the 2005 season, Biggio moved back to second base after Kent left for the Dodgers. Biggio set a new career high by hitting 26 home runs and during the season hit his 1000th RBI becoming the second Astro with 1000 RBI for Houston (the first being Jeff Bagwell). Biggio played in the World Series in 2005 for the first time in his eighteen-year career. On May 23, 2006, Biggio became the 23rd player in MLB history with 10,000 at-bats. On June 28, 2007, Craig became the 27th player in the history of Major League Baseball to join the 3,000 hit club, with a single against Colorado Rockies pitcher Aaron Cook. With that hit, he became the first player in Astros history to accumulate 3,000 hits. With 668 doubles, he ended his career in 5th place on the all-time list. Biggio also holds the record for the most doubles by a right-handed hitter. Biggio is the only player in the history of baseball with 3,000 hits, 600 doubles, 400 stolen bases, and 250 home runs. During his record setting 20th season with the franchise, Biggio announced his retirement, effective at the end of the 2007 season. The Houston Astros retired his No. 7 jersey on August 17, 2008, prior to the start of a game. Craig became the ninth player in Astros history to have his number retired; most recently, Biggio's longtime teammate Jeff Bagwell had his No. 5 retired in 2007. Biggio has been a supporter and lead spokesperson for the Sunshine Kids Foundation for over a decade and almost the entirety of his playing career. The organization supports children fighting cancer with exciting activities for themselves and their families. Biggio helped the organization by raising awareness of the organization by wearing a small yellow sun on his cap for interviews, batting practice, and spring training games and by holding a celebrity golf tournament in Houston each spring. Biggio is a seven-time All-Star, won four Gold Glove Awards and five Silver Slugger Awards. He ranks 21st all-time with 3,060 career hits, and is the ninth player in the 3,000 hit club to get all his hits with the same team. Biggio is a member of the Astros Hall of Fame, and his lifetime stats are similar to many Baseball Hall of Famers. He is widely considered the best all-around position player in club history. Dwight Gooden: A native of Tampa, Florida, Dwight Gooden was drafted in the first round in 1982, the fifth player taken overall. Dwight only spent one season in the minors, in which he led the Class-A Carolina League in wins, strikeouts and ERA while playing for the Lynchburg Mets. Gooden had 300 strikeouts in 191 innings, a performance which convinced Triple-A Tidewater Tides manager, future Mets skipper Davey Johnson, that he was capable of making the unusual leap to the major league. Gooden made his major-league debut on April 7, 1984 with the New York Mets at the age of 19. He quickly developed a reputation with his 98 MPH fastball and sweeping curveball, which was given the superlative nickname of "Lord Charles". When he took the mound in the fifth inning on July 10, 1984, Gooden became the youngest player to appear in an All-Star Game. That season, Gooden won 17 games, the most by a 19-year-old since Wally Bunker won 19 games in 1964 and the second most for a Mets rookie, after Jerry Koosman's 19 wins in 1968. Gooden won eight of his last nine starts; in his final three starts of the 1984 season, he had 41 strikeouts and 1 walk. Gooden led the league in strikeouts, his 276 K’s broke Herb Score's rookie record of 245 in 1955, and also set the record for most strikeouts in three consecutive starts with 43. As a 19-year-old rookie, Gooden set the then-major league record for strikeouts per 9 innings, with 11.39, breaking Sam McDowell's record of 10.71 in 1965. He was voted the Rookie of The Year. Gooden also became the third Mets pitcher to win the award, joining Tom Seaver (1967) and Jon Matlack (1972). In 1985, Gooden pitched one of the most statistically dominating single seasons in baseball history. Leading Major League Baseball with 24 wins, 268 strikeouts, and a 1.53 ERA (the second lowest in the Live Ball Era, trailing only Bob Gibson's 1.12 in 1968) Gooden earned the major leagues' pitching Triple Crown. He led the National League in complete games (16) and innings pitched (276⅔). From his second start onward, Gooden's ERA never rose above 2.00.[5] That year, Gooden became one of only 14 African-American pitchers ever to win 20 games, the most recent of whom was David Price. Gooden became the youngest-ever recipient of the Cy Young Award and Pitcher of the Year Award. In 1986, he compiled a 17–6 record. Gooden's 200 strikeouts were fifth in the National League, but more than a hundred behind the league leader, Mike Scott of the Houston Astros. In another All-Star record pertaining to youth, in 1986 Gooden became the youngest pitcher to start an All-Star Game at 21 years, seven months and 30 days of age. Gooden was the Mets ace going into the playoffs. He lost a 1–0 duel with Scott in the NLCS opener, then got a no-decision in Game 5, pitching 10 innings of 1-run ball. Gooden signed with the New York Yankees in 1996 as a free agent. Dwight no-hit the Seattle Mariners 2-0 at Yankee Stadium on May 14 for his first ever no hitter. He ended the 1996 season at 11–7, his first winning record since 1991. In 1997, he had one start for the Yankees in the 1997 ALDS against the Cleveland Indians; coincidentally, he again faced his 1988 postseason nemesis Orel Hershiser. Gooden left Game 4 during the sixth inning with a 2–1 lead, but the Yankee bullpen faltered in the 8th and Gooden was left with the no-decision. Gooden retired in 2001 with a record of 194–112 with 2,293 strikeouts. On August 1, 2010, he was officially inducted into the Mets Hall of Fame along with Darryl Strawberry, Frank Cashen, and Davey Johnson. He also threw out the ceremonial first pitch on the same day to Gary Carter.


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