2019 Baseball Hall of Fame: Rivera, Halladay, Martinez and Mussina elected

Credit: Jim McIsaac

Credit: Jim McIsaac

Mariano Rivera, the greatest closer in major league baseball history, locked down a spot in the Hall of Fame by a unanimous vote Tuesday, leading a class that also includes the late pitcher Roy Halladay, former designated hitter Edgar Martinez and former pitcher Mike Mussina.

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Rivera became the first player to be unanimously elected since Hall of Fame balloting began in 1936. Ken Griffey Jr. held the previous record, falling three votes shy of a unanimous election in 2016.

The Hall of Fame election is conducted by the Baseball Writers Association of America. A candidate must appear on 75 percent of all ballots turned in to gain induction.

A total of 425 ballots were cast, with 319 needed for election.

Players will be inducted July 21 in Cooperstown, New York, at the National Baseball Hall of Fame & Museum.

Halladay and Martinez each received 85.4 percent of the vote, while Mussina drew 76.4 percent of the vote.

Rivera, 49, who compiled 652 saves during the regular season and 42 more in the postseason, was elected in his first year of eligibility. He had an 82-60 record and a 2.21 ERA during a 19-year career that ended in 2013. In the postseason, Rivera was nearly untouchable with a 0.70 ERA.

Halladay, who was killed in an airplane crash off the west coast of Florida in November 2017, won 203 games during his 16-season career. This was also his first year on the Hall of Fame ballot.

In 2010, he became the second pitcher in major league history to throw a postseason no-hitter, blanking the Cincinnati Reds to join Don Larsen, who threw a perfect game in Game 5 of the 1956 World Series.

Martinez, 56, becomes the first player to be inducted into the Hall of Fame who was primarily a designated hitter. Martinez, who played his entire 18-year career with the Seattle Mariners, was elected in his 10th and final year of eligibility.

Mussina, 50, was elected in his sixth year of eligibility. He won 270 games during an 18-year career he split between the Baltimore Orioles and New York Yankees.

Mussina won 11 or more games in every season except his rookie year, 1991.

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