One-on-one: Alan Trammell 'a proud Tiger' ahead of Hall of Fame induction

Posted at 8:34 PM, Feb 20, 2018
and last updated 2018-02-20 20:34:02-05

Life for Alan Trammell is different.

It's been different since he found out the news he'd be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame late last year.

"Hectic, but a good hectic. I mean, gosh, what a phone call," Trammell said Tuesday in Lakeland.

The Tigers legend is set to enter the Hall of Fame on July 29 with longtime teammate Jack Morris.

"I can tell you this, I'm a proud Tiger going in," he said as he patted the Old English 'D' on his chest.

Trammell is serving as a special assistant to the general manager, but can't stay away from the field. He's working with infielders and spends much of spring training workouts with Ron Gardenhire.

He admitted there was a point years ago where he lost hope in his Hall of Fame dreams.

"I don't remember when that started, but it's at least been a few years, and when I say this, I was being totally honest: if I came up a little bit short, I was okay with that," Trammell said.

The 59-year-old felt there was a big group of players in the game who are good enough to get into the Hall, but for one reason or another, won't get the votes. He began assuming he would forever be in that group.

"Getting it, gosh, obviously it's better," Trammell pointed out.

The reverence Tigers fans show Trammell in Lakeland, Detroit, and beyond is evident every time he walks by men, women, and kids wearing the Old English 'D.' He's begun signing baseballs with the 'HOF' next to his name, but it's taking Trammell a minute to get used to that.

"The fans in Detroit, in Michigan, and all over have treated me like a Hall of Famer forever. And this is kind of a repayment, because I think I think that now my name will never be forgotten."

The notion of being immortalized goes beyond Cooperstown, although that's a heck of a start.

"Having your number retired at Comerica Park, it hasn't sunk in totally. It really hasn't," he added.

Trammell said he constantly thinks about his speech during the induction ceremony. He has repeated that idea since his first press conference in the Hall of Fame cap and jersey. 

When he finally gets to deliver his words to the Cooperstown crowd, Trammell said he'll look first for his wife of 40 years, then he'll think of his late mother and father.

Next on the list is another legend and fellow Hall of Famer, Sparky Anderson.

"I know they're watching, and they will be watching, and they'll have smiles on their faces. They're gonna be very proud of me as well."