NEW YORK - As if being mentioned in the same sentence as Babe Ruth wasn't cool enough, Wilson Valdez is going to the Hall of Fame now.
Actually, only the cap that Valdez wore as the winning pitcher in Wednesday's 19-inning game is headed for Cooperstown, but it is still an incredible achievement for a 33-year-old journeyman from the Dominican Republic who had never played more than 51 games in a season until last year. He became the first player to start a game in the field and win it as a pitcher since Ruth did it 90 years ago.
Valdez flashed a huge smile when asked about the cap. Pitching coach Rich Dubee laughed.
"No way," Dubee said. "Good for him. That's awesome."