The charter member of the Little League® Hall of Excellence, Little League International remembers and celebrates the life and legacy of baseball great, Tom Seaver.
Mr. Seaver, a graduate of the Spartan Little League (Fresno, Calif.) was one of Major League Baseball’s most accomplished pitchers, earning the nicknames of Tom Terrific and The Franchise, for his role in helping the New York Mets first World Series title in 1969.
Throughout his 19-year career he accumulated 311 wins, a no-hit game, three Cy Young Awards, the National League Rookie of the Year Award, and a World Series Championship with the New York Mets. He was awarded baseball’s highest honor, selection into the Baseball Hall of Fame, in 1992. He earned his Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Southern California in 1974, seven years after his Major League career began.
“When we decided to establish the Little League Hall of Excellence in 1988, we wanted to create a way to recognize Little League alumni who, in their adult life, have dedicated themselves to being a role model to current Little Leaguers. No one exemplified that more than Tom Seaver,” said Stephen D. Keener, Little League President and CEO. “Tom’s on-field accomplishments were certainly worthy of recognition, but it was his work off the field, his character, his passion for the Little League program, that made him truly terrific. Arguably, no one in MLB was a better friend to Little League than Tom. Our deepest condolences to his wife, Nancy, their daughters, and all his family, friends, and fans.”
Mr. Seaver was an active member of the Little League Museum Board and served a 5-year term as chairman. He also threw the ceremonial first pitch at the inaugural Little League Baseball Intermediate (50/70) Division World Series in Livermore, California, in 2013.
“Beyond the multitude of awards, records, accolades, World Series Championship, All-Star appearances, and just overall brilliance, we will always remember Tom for his passion and devotion to his family (and) the game of baseball,” said Fred and Jeff Wilpon, New York Mets Owners, in a statement.
His No. 41 was retired by the Mets in 1988, and Mr. Seaver and Mike Piazza – the only other player to wear a Mets cap on his Hall of Fame plaque — took part in ceremonies to close Shea Stadium in September 2008 and open Citi Field in April 2009. After his playing career, Mr. Seaver worked as a television analyst for the Mets and Yankees and on national broadcasts for NBC.
Mr. Seaver passed peacefully in his sleep of complications of Lewy body dementia and COVID-19, on Monday, August 31. He was 75. He is survived by his wife (Nancy), two daughters (Sarah and Anne), and four grandsons (Thomas, William, Henry, and Tobin).