Manny Ramírez, Dale Mitchell named to Cleveland Guardians Hall of Fame

Cleveland Indians v New York Yankees
Cleveland Indians v New York Yankees / Focus On Sport/GettyImages

For the first time since 2016, the Cleveland Guardians will be welcoming new members into their team Hall of Fame. Manny Ramírez and Dale Mitchell will be formally inducted into the Hall of Fame as part of the 18th induction class prior to the Guardians’ August 19 game against Detroit, Cleveland announced on Twitter Monday afternoon.

Ramírez was a first-round pick of Cleveland in the 1991 MLB draft out of George Washington High School, where he was a standout player and led his team to three straight division championships. He was inducted into the New York City Public School Athletic League Hall of Fame in 1999. After receiving a $250,000 signing bonus, he began playing for the Burlington Indians and was named the Appalachian League MVP and the short-season Player of the Year by Baseball America.

Less than two years after getting drafted, Ramírez made his major-league debut with Cleveland, going 3-for-4 with two home runs in his second game with the Indians. He went on to play seven seasons with the club until 2000, helping the Indians to two American League Championships and five Central Division titles. He was runner-up for AL Rookie of the Year in 1994 and won three Silver Sluggers while representing Cleveland in four All-Star Games. His slugging percentage and OPS rank first in club history, while his 236 home runs rank third. He finished with a .407 on-base percentage, which is fourth-best in team history, and his 165 RBIs in 1999 is a franchise record.

After the 2000 season, Ramírez declined a seven-year, $119 million extension offer from the Indians and signed with the Boston Red Sox for eight years and $160 million. Ramírez played seven seasons with the Red Sox before three years with the Los Angeles Dodgers, one with the Chicago White Sox and another with the Tampa Bay Rays before pursuing a career overseas and attempting to come back with a few teams.

Mitchell played with Cleveland for 11 seasons from 1946-56 and was a vital part of the 1948 World Series win, the last time the organization has won a championship. He was a stud at the University of Oklahoma, finishing with a batting average of .467 and began his career with Cleveland in September of 1946. Mitchell went to two All-Star Games and led the American League in triples and hits in 1949, a year after he finished third in the batting race behind Ted Williams and Lou Boudreau. 

Though he fell off at the end of his career, having his contract purchased by the Brooklyn Dodgers at the end of the 1956 season, he finished his career in Cleveland with a .312/.368/.416 slash line, garnering 1,244 hits, 403 RBIs and 346 walks. He ranks as the seventh-toughest hitter to strike out, ending his career with a 34:1 BB:K ratio. Mitchell, who was also an Army Air Force quartermaster, died in 1987. Oklahoma’s baseball stadium is named after him.

This is the first class since Jim Thome, Albert Belle and Charlie Jamieson were inducted in 2016.