Ian Kinsler and John Blake will be inducted into the Texas Rangers Hall of Fame, it was announced today. The ceremony will take place on August 13, 2022, before the game between the Rangers and the Mariners.
If you’re reading Lone Star Ball, you are well aware of who these two folks are, and you probably already know they are very deserving.
Kinsler was a 17th round draft pick of the Rangers in the 2003 MLB Draft. He was actually traded to the Colorado Rockies in July, 2004, by then-g.m. John Hart, along with pitcher Erik Thompson, in a deal that would have brought Larry Walker to Texas. In one of the best strokes of fortune this cursed franchise has ever experienced, Walker exercised his 10/5 rights to veto the deal, meaning Kinsler stayed in Texas, and became one of the best players in Rangers history.
Kinsler spent eight years with the Rangers, being named to three All Star teams while with the club and being a key part of the franchise’s two A.L. Championship teams. He accumulated 35.0 bWAR with the Rangers, fifth highest in team history among position players, behind only Pudge Rodriguez, Rafael Palmeiro, Adrian Beltre and Buddy Bell, and his 54.1 career bWAR is 20th all time among second basemen.
Ironically, after Walker saved the Rangers from a disastrous Ian Kinsler trade, Jon Daniels ended up making a disastrous Ian Kinsler trade almost a decade later, sending him to the Detroit Tigers for Prince Fielder. That trade resulted in hard feelings between Kinsler and the club, as well as working as extremely poorly for the team. Kinsler also played for the Angels, the Red Sox, and the Padres before retiring after the 2019 season.
Blake joined the Rangers as the team’s Director of Media Relations after the 1984 season, moving up to Vice President of Public Relations and then Senior Vice President of Communications before leaving the organization after the 2004 season due to John Hart and Buck Showalter shenanigans. Blake returned after the 2008 season as Executive Vice President of Communications, and held that role until this year, when became Executive Vice President of Public Affairs.