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Cooperstown gets a piece of Glavine

Cooperstown gets a piece of Glavine

NEW YORK -- No doubt that Tom Glavine will remember his 300th win for the rest of his life.

Now, others can remember it, too.

Glavine donated a game-used jersey and ball from that 300th victory to the Hall of Fame during a special pregame ceremony in his honor on Sunday afternoon, ensuring baseball fans a piece of that milestone will make its way to Cooperstown.

"He's a Hall of Famer in the making," Hall vice president Jeff Idelson said. "He's part of an elite club of pitchers who have won 300 games -- only 23 in history -- and having his jersey from the night he won 300 in Wrigley Field will allow all Mets fans who appreciate his accomplishments to have a connection back to that special night."

Glavine spoke with the Hall of Fame back in Spring Training -- then 10 wins shy of the feat -- about the possibility of donating items from his 300th win. And since Cooperstown was just one of many places to which Glavine wanted to give to, he changed his jersey every inning throughout the game to have as many bits of history as possible. He also donated one of his souvenir balls, signed by both the lefty and catcher Paul Lo Duca.

"I had a pretty good idea going in they were going to want a jersey, so I tried to make at least one of those available," Glavine said. "And I had a handful of baseballs from that game, and they requested one of those. Fortunately, I hadn't given them all away yet."

The jersey is among friends. Many other 300-game winners have donated items from their historic nights to the Hall, including Nolan Ryan, Tom Seaver and Greg Maddux, Glavine's former teammate and the last player before the lefty to achieve his 300th win.

Glavine has also been here before, donating the spikes he wore while earning World Series MVP honors in 1995.

Glavine has earned 58 of his 300 wins with the Mets, and he became the only pitcher in club history to win his 300th game in a Mets uniform.

Yet, just as much as the on-field accolades, Glavine will be remembered for his demeanor away from the ballpark. And it's that -- more than any ball or jersey -- that signifies his true greatness.

"Tom's a man of great character and integrity," Idelson said. "When you match that with his on-field accomplishments, it's extra special for the fans, extra special for him and extra special for baseball."

Anthony DiComo is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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