If the Indians ever built a statue in honor of former shortstop Omar Vizquel, he envisions it featuring one of his patented barehanded throws.
Close your eyes for a few seconds to envision what it’d look like: Vizquel’s right arm raised, cocked back by his side with a baseball gripped in his bare hand destined to end in a spectacular out that often brought fans at Progressive Field to their feet in appreciation for defense at its finest.
Alas, it’s former Tribe slugger Jim Thome whose statue will be unveiled at Progressive Field in August - a Vizquel teammate whose stunning home runs had the same effect on Indians fans that Vizquel’s slick fielding did.
So for now, Vizquel is happy to be recognized by his former team in another way - during a June 21st induction into the Indians Hall of Fame that will take place six weeks before Thome is honored.
“It’s a great piece of history for me to be inducted,” Vizquel said Sunday during Tribe Fest at Progressive Field. “When (fans and media) talk about Omar Vizquel, they always relate the Indians to it. I played in Seattle for five years and I played with the (San Francisco) Giants for four years. But I played 11 seasons (in Cleveland) - and this is where I really established myself.”