Little Inducted into AFL Hall of Fame

The Arizona Fall League (AFL) Hall of Fame inducted Dodger Manager Grady Little in ceremonies held November 11. Also induced in the class of 2006 were Toronto Blue Jays' right-handed pitcher Roy Halladay and Washington Nationals' left fielder Alfonso Soriano,

"This year's three inductees epitomize the contributions the Arizona Fall League is making to Major League Baseball," offers long-time baseball executive Roland Hemond, the "Architect of the Arizona Fall League" who chairs the AFL Hall of Fame selection committee. "Roy Halladay, Alfonso Soriano, and Grady Little all catapulted to major-league prominence after developing their skills in Arizona."

Little joins previous Dodger inductees Dusty Baker, Nomar Garciaparra, Shawn Green, Mike Piazza and Mike Scioscia.

Little managed the Grand Canyon Rafters during the Arizona Fall League's inaugural season of 1992 en route to becoming the first former AFL manager to win 1,000 games in the minor leagues. He just completed his 34th year in professional baseball as a manager, coach, or player and as the first-year manager of the Dodgers took his team into post-season play after tying for the top spot in the National League West Division. He also skippered the Boston Red Sox in 2002–03.

Little's 93 wins with the 2002 BoSox were the most by a rookie major-league manager since Jim Frey won 97 games at the helm of the 1980 Kansas City Royals. Little's two Boston squads posted a cumulative record of 188–136 (.580 winning percentage).

In 16 years managing in the minor leagues, Little compiled a composite record of 1,054–903 (.539). He managed eight teams to the postseason, compiling a 22–15 (.595) record in postseason play. He won league postseason titles with Hagerstown (1981), Pulaski (1986), Greenville (1992), and Richmond (1994).

Little, a former six-year minor league catcher, was named minor league manager-of-the-year by Baseball America and The Sporting News in 1992. He received his respective league manager-of-the-year awards four times — Hagerstown (1981), Durham (1989), Greenville (1992), and Richmond (1994).

In six seasons as a major-league coach, the former Texas cotton farmer's teams reached the postseason four times, including a National League West Division title as the bullpen coach in San Diego (1996), an American League Central Division title as the bench coach in Cleveland (2001), and two American League wild-card berths as a bench coach in Boston (1998–99).

The Arizona Fall League, founded in 1992, formed its Hall of Fame in 2001 to honor the top major-league players and managers who honed their skills in the AFL.

The selection committee's appointments are based upon individual achievement at the major-league level since participating in the AFL. Each inductee will be honored individually prior to an AFL game this season.

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