Rays Unveil Inaugural Class for Team Hall of Fame
The Rays have yet to retire any numbers again, but the team announced the inaugural class of the Rays Hall of Fame yesterday.
This year's group will feature three former members of the ball club from different eras of the team's 25 seasons, as Hall of Famer Wade Boggs, All-Star Carl Crawford, and legendary coach Don Zimmer will all be inducted throughout the course of the season.
Each member will receive their own induction day during the season, and according to sources, "there will be special giveaways" to represent each inaugural member.
The first member to be inducted will be Don Zimmer, whose No. 66 is retired by the team. His induction ceremony will be held on opening weekend, April 2nd, versus the Detroit Tigers.
The second inductee, 3B Wade Boggs, will have his ceremony on July 9th, when the Rays take on the Braves before the All-Star break, concluding with Carl Crawford's ceremony on August 26th, when the Rays play the New York Yankees
Of the three inductees, both Boggs and the previously mentioned Zimmer have their numbers retired by the team, with Boggs being the only one in this inaugural class to be inducted in Cooperstown.
Beyond the stats, the Rays made a smart move with the players chosen for the first class.
By featuring three different players from three different eras of the team's history, it allows for fans to encapsulate the team's history on these three different induction days that are scheduled and even allows younger fans to connect with the past.
It will be interesting to see if the Rays will make this a yearly tradition by inducting new members, as the team has had many memorable members of the club over the past 25 seasons, but we will have to wait and see.
Something to also maybe keep an eye out for is if the Rays will retire Crawford's number on the day of his induction ceremony.
As previously stated in a previous article, the Rays have not retired a number since 2014, following the death of Don Zimmer, but the question is, will Crawford be the next?
Crawford is up there as one of the best to wear a Rays uniform and would be highly deserving of getting his number in the Trop retired, but only time will tell.