Asked about his commitment to fielding, the soft-spoken Maddux said: “I just wanted it really. I think that’s the biggest thing. I cared enough to get better at it. That’s really it. That’s all you need.”
As Maddux won four straight Cy Young Awards, the first coming with the Chicago Cubs in 1992 and the last three after joining the Braves, he went 75-29 and had ERAs during those seasons of 2.18, 2.36, 1.56 and 1.63. In addition to Glavine, Maddux also pitched in a rotation in Atlanta that included John Smoltz, who very likely will be elected into the Hall this coming January.
“I used to say being a professional baseball player is the best job in the world, but if you take it a step further, the best job in baseball is being a starting pitcher for the Atlanta Braves,” said Maddux, whose big-league career started as a 20-year-old with the Cubs in 1986 and ended with the Dodgers in 2008. “It was a privilege and an honor to play for Bobby those 11 years.”
Cox garnered all 16 votes in an Expansion Era Committee vote in December to punch his ticket to Cooperstown. He managed 29 major-league seasons — four with the Toronto Blue Jays and the last 25 with the Braves — in a career that ended in 2010.
His record of 2,504-2,001 includes 11 seasons of at least 95 victories and six seasons with triple-digit win totals. He was named American League Manager of the Year in 1985 and earned the honor in the NL three times — 1991, 2004 and 2005.
“I couldn’t play very well, so I needed another job and that was manager,” said Cox, who played mostly as a third baseman for the New York Yankees in 1968 and 1969. He had a career average of .225 and hit nine home runs.
Cox’s managerial career started in the Yankees organization. He managed New York’s Triple-A team in Syracuse from 1973-76. He then joined Billy Martin’s staff in New York the following season.