Des Moines, IA - Former Iowa Cubs pitcher Greg Maddux was one of three players elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame today, receiving 97.2% of the vote from the Baseball Writers Association of America. Maddux, Tom Glavine, and Frank Thomas will join Tony LaRussa, Bobby Cox, and Joe Torre in this year's class. The three managers were selected on December 9 by the National Baseball Hall of Fame Expansion Era Committee. LaRussa played for the Iowa Oaks from 1969-71 and again in 1976. He also managed the Oaks in 1979. Previously, the only former Iowa triple-A player in the Hall of Fame was Rich "Goose" Gossage, who pitched for the Oaks in 1973.
Maddux pitched for Iowa in 1986 and his first four starts in 1987. He was 13-1 with a 2.65 ERA (46ER/156.0IP) in 22 career starts in an Iowa uniform. In those 22 starts, he tossed seven complete games and four shutouts. His 10-1 record in 1986 is an Iowa franchise record for best winning percentage (.909) in a single season. He also holds the franchise record for winning 12 consecutive decisions over his two years. Maddux pitched 23 seasons in the major leagues and was 355-227 with a 3.16 ERA (1756ER/5008.1IP). He struck out 3,371 batters and walked 999. He won four consecutive National League Cy Young Awards from 1991-95, was an eight-time All-Star, and won 18 Gold Gloves.
LaRussa hit .277 (211-for-762) with 32 doubles, 12 home runs, and 77 RBI in 224 career games with Iowa. He split the 1969-71 seasons between Iowa and the Oakland A's before spending the entire 1976 season with Iowa as part of the Chicago White Sox organization. LaRussa managed the Oaks to a 54-51 record in 1979 before the White Sox fired Don Kessinger in Chicago and brought up LaRussa to finish the season. Des Moines was LaRussa's last minor league stop before embarking on a 33-year major league managing career with the White Sox, A's, and St. Louis Cardinals that concluded with a 2,728-2,365 record, six pennants, and three World Series titles. His win total ranks third all-time behind Connie Mack and John McGraw.
Gossage was 5-4 with a 3.68 ERA (38ER/80.0IP) in 12 games with Iowa in 1973. He had five complete games among nine starts and recorded two saves before going to the big leagues. Gossage was elected to the Hall of Fame in 2008.
Ryne Sandberg was a Hall of Famer before he managed the I-Cubs in 2010. He was inducted in 2005. Red Faber pitched for the Des Moines Boosters in the Western League in 1912 before starting a 20-year big league career with the White Sox in 1914. He went 254-213 with a 3.15 career ERA and was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1964.