Cal League Hall of Fame
In 1941, the California League was founded to provide Major League Organizations a venue in which to develop their baseball players. Over the years, the League has been not only a place to watch the next generation of baseball superstars but also as a place that provides family friendly entertainment at affordable prices. The purpose of the California League Hall of Fame is to honor those individuals who have helped to make the League a main stay of Minor League Baseball whether it be on the field of play, as a member of the media, as a team or league executive or owner, or simply anyone who has contributed to the success of the League.
|George Brett||San Jose|
George Brett ended his Major League career with 3,154 hits and is the only player in history to lead the league in hitting in three different decades. He was inducted into the MLB Hall of Fame in 1999. He hit .274 with 10 home runs for the San Jose Bees in 1972.
|Jose Cruz Jr.||Lancaster|
Cruz Jr. played 12 seasons in the Major Leagues before retiring. The former first-round pick played for the 1996 Lancaster team where he hit .325 in 53 games.
This former Cy Young Award winner was the first Cal Leaguer to be inducted into the Major League Hall of Fame. He went 8-5 with a 3.45 ERA with the 1954 Bakersfield Indians.
|Darin Erstad||Lake Elsinore|
Darin Erstad played 14 Major League seasons and won the 2002 World Series as a member of the Angels. With the 1995 Lake Elsinore Storm, Erstad hit .363 with 41 hits and 24 RBIs in only 25 games before getting promoted. He was a 2-time All-Star and won 3 Gold Gloves during his long career.
|Ken Griffey Jr.||San Bernardino|
Before Griffey Jr. won the AL MVP in 1997, he was a Cal League All Star. In 1988 with the San Bernardino Spirit, Griffey Jr. hit .338 with 11 home runs and 42 RBIs in only 58 games. He ended his career 5th on the all-time home run list with 630. Griffey Jr. will be inducted into the Major League Hall of Fame in 2016 with the highest voting percentage of all time. He appeared on 437 out of 440 ballots.
For the 1977 Modesto A's, Henderson led the league in stolen bases with 95 while hitting .345. He then went on to play 25 Major League seasons and holds various Major League records including runs scored (2,295) and stolen bases (1,406). He was inducted into the MLB Hall of Fame in 2009.
Known as "Mr. October," Jackson was inducted into the Major League Hall of Fame in 1993. He won five World Series rings during his MLB career. For the Modesto Reds in 1966, Jackson hit .299 with 21 home runs in only 56 games.
Lynn was a local Bakersfield resident who owned a Coca-Cola plant but donated much of his money to youth baseball leagues in the area. The current Bakersfield team now plays in the stadium named after him (Sam Lynn Ballpark).
Martinez was perfect for Bakersfield in 1991, going 8-0 in 10 appearances. He then went on to win three Cy Young Awards in the Major Leagues and was a first-ballot Hall of Famer in 2015.
|Xavier Nady||Lake Elsinore|
Nady was part of a 2001 Lake Elsinore team named by Baseball America as Minor League Team of the Year. He hit .302 in 137 games while driving in 100 runs and hitting 26 home runs. Nady was named MVP and Rookie of the Year for the Cal League that year. Nady then played 12 seasons in the Major Leagues.
Pinson had arguably the best Cal League season of all time in 1957. For the Visalia Redlegs, he hit .367 (with a Cal League record 209 hits) while stealing 53 bases, had 165 runs scored, 40 doubles, 20 triples, and 20 home runs. He then went on to play 18 years in the Major Leagues ending with 2,757 hits.
The 22-year Major League outfielder was a shortstop in 1987 for the Stockton Ports. That year he hit .277 with 17 home runs and stole 25 bases. In the Major Leagues, Sheffield hit .292 with 509 home runs and almost 2,700 hits.
Bob Talbot was a Visalia native who served in World War II despite being younger than draft age. He then returned to Visalia and played for the franchise's inaugural teams in 1946 & 1947 before reaching the Major Leagues with the Chicago Cubs. Talbot has lived in Visalia since his retirement from baseball, where he has been a humble, beloved, and highly respected member of the community.
Valenzuela pitched for the first time on US soil in the Cal League. In 1979, Fernando went 1-2 with a 1.13 ERA for the Lodi Dodgers. A year later he would debut in the Major Leagues and the next year win both the Cy Young and Rookie of the Year awards.
Vizquel played over 2,700 games at shortstop during his 24 year Major League Career. He had 2,877 hits and stole 404 bases while capturing 11 Gold Gloves (2nd all time for a shortstop). In 1987 for the Salinas Spurs, he hit .263 with 8 triples and 25 stolen bases.