Cooperstown Crier - Your Source for Hometown News - Cooperstown, Baseball Hall of Fame

May 9, 2013

Five Hall of Famers to serve as judges for coin design competition

Staff Report
Cooperstown Crier

---- — Five Baseball Hall of Famers will help select the design of the coin that will commemorate the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum.

The Hall of Fame and the United States Mint recently announced the names of the judges — all Hall of Famers who represent more than half of the nine positions on the diamond. The judges will be Joe Morgan (second baseman, elected 1990), Brooks Robinson (third baseman, elected 1983), Ozzie Smith (shortstop, elected 2002), Don Sutton (pitcher, elected 1998) and Dave Winfield (outfielder, elected 2001).

The design competition, which began April 11 and runs through May 11, is open to U.S. citizens and permanent residents ages 14 and older. The winner of the design competition will be awarded $5,000 and the winner’s initials will appear on the minted coins.

“This is a Hall of Fame lineup that’s sure to produce a winner,” Jeff Idelson, Hall of Fame president, said in a media release. “Our Hall of Fame members show year-round support for our efforts to fulfill our mission to preserve history, honor excellence and connect generations, and this is yet another example of the legends of the game stepping to the plate for the museum. We are so appreciative of the efforts of Joe, Brooks, Ozzie, Don and Dave and we all look forward to the final design selection.”

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand and Representative Richard Hanna sponsored the National Baseball Hall of Fame Commemorative Coin Act, which was signed into law by President Barack Obama in 2012.

The act calls for a three-coin program of $5 gold, $1 silver and half-dollar clad coins, and requires a competition to select a common obverse design emblematic of the game of baseball. 

“The Hall of Fame Commemorative Coin creates a lasting legacy for baseball and our national pastime,” Winfield said in the release. “It is an honor for me to be a judge in this competition, to review submissions and help select the winning design that will appear on these coins. This program will ensure that the Hall of Fame can reach new audiences through its award-winning educational programs from Cooperstown for audiences around the world.”

In addition, the $5 gold and $1 silver coins will be the first “curved” coins minted and issued by the United States Mint, with the reverses (tail sides) being convex to more closely resemble a baseball and the obverses being concave to provide a more dramatic design. The winning design will be unveiled later this year. 

A Kids’ Baseball Coin Design Challenge for children ages 13 and under is also being held separately through May 23. Winners of the Kids’ Baseball Coin Design Challenge will receive a $1 silver National Baseball Hall of Fame Commemorative Coin and a certificate. The winning children’s designs will also be showcased on the Department of the Treasury, United States Mint and National Baseball Hall of Fame websites. The Kids’ Baseball Coin Design Challenge is being hosted on Challenge.gov. For more information, visit www.usmint.gov/kids/kidsbatterup. 

For both the design competition and the kids’ challenge, the United States Mint will be working with the U.S. Government website, www.challenge.gov. For guidelines, rules and entry instructions, visit www.baseballhall.org/coin-design and www.usmint.gov.

The United States Mint was created by Congress in 1792. It became part of the Department of the Treasury in 1873. It is the nation’s sole manufacturer of legal tender coinage and is responsible for producing circulating coinage for the nation to conduct its trade and commerce. The United States Mint also produces numismatic products, including proof, uncirculated and commemorative coins; Congressional Gold Medals; and silver and gold bullion coins. The United States Mint’s numismatic programs are self-sustaining and operate at no cost to the taxpayer.