Baerga, Hart to join Indians Hall of Fame
GOODYEAR, Ariz. (AP) — They were a major part of Cleveland's baseball rebirth — the steady second baseman and the architect.
Carlos Baerga and John Hart helped make history with the Indians, and they're linked again.
Baerga, a three-time All-Star whose acquisition in a trade with catcher Sandy Alomar Jr. sparked Cleveland's rise to an AL power, and Hart, the crafty general manager who got the Indians to two World Series in the 1990s, were named Wednesday as the newest members of the club's Hall of Fame. They will be inducted on June 22 during a ceremony before the Indians host Minnesota at Progressive Field.
"This is special," said Baerga, working this spring as an infield instructor at training camp. "There were so many great moments I had with the Indians. I never thought I would even make this team as a utility guy. But when I did, from that day on, it was magic."
Baerga was one of the key members of those brash Indians teams in the mid-1990s who piled up runs and wins while leaving pitchers in their wake. With Kenny Lofton, Baerga, Alomar, Albert Belle, Manny Ramirez and Jim Thome, the Indians could intimidate an opponent simply by showing up. They were fearless and fearsome.
"How I hit third in that kind of lineup, I don't know," Baerga said. "Every time we stepped on the field, we thought we would win. And it wasn't just the nine starters. Our bench was unbelievable."
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