HALL-OF-FAMERS: BASEBALL THAT IS
TAKE ME OUT TO THE HALL GAME
Which institution of higher learning can claim association with the most students in the Baseball Hall of Fame? Columbia seems to be tied with the University of Michigan for the most number of inductees in the Baseball Hall-of-Fame. Michigan’s five Hall-of Famers are George Sisler, Al Spaulding, Charlie Gehringer, Larry MacPhail, and Barry Larkin. Columbia’s five are Lou Gehrig, Eddie Collins, John Montgomery Ward, Walter O’Malley, and Sandy Koufax.
Gehrig and O'Malley attended Columbia but did not graduate. John Montgomery Ward, a player-manager in the latter part of the 19th century, went to Penn State at age 13 but was kicked out for an infraction. He later graduated from Columbia Law School. Walter O'Malley (damn his eternal soul, say those Dodger fans) attended Columbia Law School but switched to Fordham Law School. Sandy Koufax took classes at Columbia in his rookie season of 1955 when he pitched for the Brooklyn Dodgers.
Jacob Ruppert, Jr., who was the owner of the New York Yankees who acquired Babe Ruth, attended Columbia Grammar School, was accepted into Columbia College, but went into the family brewery business instead. By the way, Ruppert hired Columbia chemistry professor Harold A. Fales to put the "dead ball" claim to rest.
The New York Yankee’s Derek Jeter, who attended the University of Michigan but did not graduate, is very likely to be inducted in 2020. Then, Michigan will have more baseball Hall of Famers than Columbia.