Sunday, December 21, 2014


Hall of Famers talk at Leatherstocking
By MIKE LEVIN


COOPERSTOWN, N.Y. (WKTV) - As Hall of Fame Induction Weekend continued Saturday morning, a number of former inductees took to the links at the Leatherstocking Golf Course.  A few of the legends spoke at the first tee about playing the course and why it was so important to be in Cooperstown for Induction Weekend, even though there's no one living going in this year.

"It's almost like my second home," said 1997 Inductee Phil Niekro.  :"I've been here two, three times every year, I got some good partners here, so we're looking to have a good day and enjoy this great weather up in Cooperstown."

"We get to play it every year," added 2002 Inductee Ozzie Smith.  "This is probably the first year I've played it, well I thought I would play it dry.  It's a little wet out this morning, but it's always great, it's a beautiful course and I enjoy it."

"This is our weekend and this is our piece of heaven and to come back even when no one goes in," said 2005 Inductee Wade Boggs.  "For us not to come, I wouldn't treat it any other way, I look forward to it every year and it's an honor and a pleasure to be in Cooperstown."

2011 Inductee Bert Blyleven was hoping for more than the 40 or so Hall of Famers who are scheduled to appear at Sunday's Induction.  "I'm a little disappointed on the overall turnout of the hall of famers," Blyleven said.  "To me, I want to be here every year.  It took me 14 years to get in and you realize you're such a small fraternity of guys.  I know health reasons and other reasons always prevent a lot of the hall of famers from attending.  But with Deacon White going in and Hank O'Day and Jacob Ruppert, I'm looking forward to their family members talking about them a little bit."

"It's a little different this year, but we still are hall of famers, we get a chance to celebrate up here and the people to be inducted this year we didn't play against them," said 1987 Inductee Billy Williams.  "But we're going to have some people that were in service, they were serving their country at the time and they couldn't come back to have a ceremony, so it's great for the Hall of Fame officials to do this and just let the families have a lot of fun."

Sunday's Induction at the Clark Sports Center, begins at 1:30.