- By David O'Brien The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Braves icon Chipper Jones became a first-ballot Hall of Famer on Wednesday when the retired third baseman was elected with overwhelming support from voting writers in his initial year of eligibility.
The writers also elected Vladimir Guerrero, Jim Thome and Trevor Hoffman for the Class of 2018 to be inducted July 29 at Cooperstown, N.Y., with Jones named on 97.2 percent of the ballots, one of the highest percentages in history. The class also includes Alan Trammell and Jack Morris, who were elected by the Hall of Fame’s Modern Era committee after falling short for 15 years with the writers.
An eight-time All-Star and 1999 National League MVP, Jones is considered to be one of the three greatest switch-hitters along with Mickey Mantle and Eddie Murray. He was a mainstay on the Braves’ powerhouse teams of the mid- to late-1990s.
Jones, 45, spent his entire 19-year career with Atlanta through 2012 and is the sixth Brave from the team’s greatest era to be elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in a five-year span, joining pitchers John Smoltz, Tom Glavine and Greg Maddux; manager Bobby Cox, and longtime general manager John Schuerholz.