Charley and Mack Pride


A while back I posted the list of former Negro Leaguers who were “drafted” by Major League Teams in the 2008 MLB Negro Leagues Player Draft. According to MLB.com, the draft was “a continuation of baseball’s effort to fix a historical wrong.” Each team selected a surviving former Negro Leagues player to represent all players who were denied the opportunity to play Major League Baseball. Charley Pride and his brother Mack were drafted by the Texas Rangers and the Colorado Rockies, respectively. This list of “drafted” players appears below.

Yesterday, I summarized the baseball career of country singer Charley Pride. But he wasn’t the only athlete in the family. His older brother, Mack Pride, Jr., also was a pitcher in the Negro Leagues. Mack Pride played for the Memphis Red Sox in 1955 and the Kansas City Monarchs in 1956. According to the Negro Leagues Baseball eMuseum, Mack Pride, “has sung in night clubs, at weddings, funerals and on television ministry programs. He coached little league baseball for six years. He has held various occupations for the past 30 years.”

Mack Pride was featured along with other Negro Leaguers in a traveling exhibit titled, “Pride and Passion: The African-American Baseball Experience” in 2011.

~ baseballrebecca

Player Drafted By
Bob Mitchell Arizona Diamondbacks
James “Red” Moore Atlanta Braves
Bert Simmons Baltimore Orioles
Jim Colzie Boston Red Sox
Walter Owens Chicago Cubs
Hank Presswood Chicago White Sox
Charlie Davis Cincinnati Reds
Otha “Li’l Catch” Bailey Cleveland Indians
Mack Pride, Jr. Colorado Rockies
Cecil Kaiser Detroit Tigers
Enrique Maroto Florida Marlins
Bill Blair Houston Astros
Ulysses Hollimon Kansas City Royals
Neale “Bobo” Henderson Los Angeles Angels
Andrew Porter Los Angeles Dodgers
Joe Scott Milwaukee Brewers
Bill “Lefty” Bell Minnesota Twins
Robert Scott New York Mets
Emilio “Millito” Navarro New York Yankees
Irvin Castille Oakland Athletics
Mahlon Duckett Philadelphia Phillies
James Tillman Pittsburgh Pirates
Walter McCoy San Diego Padres
Carlos Manuel Santiago San Francisco Giants
John “Mule” Miles Seattle Mariners
Walter Lee Gibbons Tampa Bay Rays
Charley Pride Texas Rangers
Harold Gould Toronto Blue Jays
Mamie “Peanut” Johnson Washington Nationals

 

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The Negro Southern League Museum


DSCN7495If you’re ever in Birmingham, Alabama, you must visit the Negro Southern League Museum. In fact, you should just plan on taking a trip to Birmingham specifically to visit this museum. It is simply one of the best baseball museums in the country.

According to the museum’s website, their mission is “to present the history of African-American baseball in an unsurpassed manner by maintaining a world-class facility that recognizes the League’s impact on Birmingham, Alabama and the world of professional baseball.” The museum also states it has the nation’s largest collection of artifacts from the Negro Leagues. A visit just to the website provides links to suggested readings and other resources, such as the Center for Negro League Baseball Research.

DSCN7553The Negro Southern League was established in 1920 and survived for three decades. The original teams were the Atlanta Black Crackers, Birmingham Black Barons, Jacksonville Stars, Knoxville Giants, Montgomery Grey Sox, Nashville White Sox, New Orleans Caulfield Ads, and Pensacola Giants. Other teams included the Memphis Red Sox and the Indianapolis Cardinals. Players such as Willie Mays, Satchel Paige, and Turkey Stearnes played in the league.

Visitors to the Negro Southern League Museum begin their visit in a replica of a stadium dugout that features a video describing the origins of the museum. Along the walls are more than 1,500 baseballs signed by Negro League players. Other exhibits include a game-used uniform belonging to Satchel Paige, a 1907 player contract for the Cuban League, Bullet Joe Rogan’s jacket, memorabilia from the Huntsville Stars, and exhibits dedicated to Jackie Robinson, Bo Jackson, and other Major Leaguers.

To understand the history of baseball in Alabama and the Negro Leagues, all one needs to do is visit this amazing place. And while you’re in Birmingham, check out Regions Field and the Birmingham Barons.

~ baseballrebecca

 

Fire and Flooding in Kansas City


Paseo_YMCA_and_Murials,_Kansas_City,_Missouri.

Buck O’Neil Research and Education Center (the Paseo YMCA), Kansas City, MO

In the early hours of Tuesday, May 29, 2018, Kansas City firefighters were called to the former home of baseball great Satchel Paige. Initial news reports stated the house was “destroyed.” The fire is being investigated as arson.

On June 22, 2018, a water pipe was cut in the Buck O’Neil Research and Education Center, also in Kansas City, resulting in flooding on two floors of the building. Police called it “intentional property damage” with “malicious intent.”

Later on June 22, a water fountain pipe burst at the Negro League Baseball Museum (NLBM). At least that one seems to have caused little damage – and it doesn’t seem to have been done intentionally (so far).

At first I thought it was simply the conspiracy theorist in me that saw a connection between the first two events, but yesterday Natalie Wiener of the Bleacher Report asked the question I’d been thinking, “Who’s Trying to Destroy Negro League Landmarks in Kansas City?” While there’s no official word on whether the two incidents are linked, it’s interesting that the thought has crossed more than just one mind. But purposeful vandalism specifically targeting Negro League landmarks is too terrible to fathom. In her article, Wiener quotes Bob Kendrick, President of the NLBM, as saying, “’My gut tells me that there’s not a connection between the two, but I don’t really know. Maybe it’s because the human side of me says that surely nobody would target those two names intentionally to do something of this nature.’”

I certainly hope he’s right.

~ baseballrebecca

 

 

Stat-urday, 5/12/2018


mitchel

Mitchellville Tigers, ca. 1948 (photo courtesy of Prince George’s County, MD)

On April 14, 2009, then-Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley signed a bill into law declaring the second Saturday in May to be Negro League Baseball Day. So, in honor of the day, here are some stats on the Negro Leagues in Maryland:

  • Four Negro League teams played in Maryland: (1) Baltimore Lord Baltimores, National Colored Baseball League, 1887; (2) Baltimore Black Sox, 1922-1934 (independent league, 1916-22 and 1930-31; Eastern Colored League, 1923-28; American Negro League, 1929; East-West League, 1932; Negro National League, 1933-34); (3) Baltimore Stars (independent league, 1933); and (4) Baltimore Elite Giants (Negro National League, 1938-48; Negro American League, 1949-50). In addition, several semi-pro and sandlot teams played throughout the state, such as the Mitchellville Tigers  and the Galesville Hot Sox.
  • At least 10 members of the Baltimore Black Sox were born in Maryland: Blainey Hall, Buddy Burbage, George Grayer, John Stanley, Malcolm Brown, Peter Johnson, Scrappy Brown, Stuart Jones, Tony Mahoney, and Wyman Smith.
  • The Black Sox and the Elite Giants each won two championships: 1929 and 1932 for the Black Sox and 1939 and 1949 for the Elite Giants.

Satchel_Paige_1949_BowmanTwo of the most famous Negro League players in Baltimore were Satchel Paige and Leon Day. Paige, a right-handed pitcher, had an win-loss record of 100-50 in the Negro Leagues, and 28-31 in the Major Leagues. Day, also a RHP, had a 64-29 win-loss record of 64-29 in the Negro Leagues, with an ERA of 2.98.

Happy Negro League Baseball Day!

~ baseballrebecca

 

 

Rube Foster


Rube_Foster_1924To close out African American History Month, let’s remember Rube Foster, the founder of the Negro National League. Born in 1879, Foster began his playing career with the Fort Worth Yellow Jackets in 1897. He would go on to play with the Chicago Union Giants, the Cuban X-Giants, the Philadelphia Giants, the Leland Giants, and the Chicago American Giants. in 1910, Foster became player/owner/manager of the Leland Giants, which were renamed the Chicago American Giants the next year. Below are just a few of his pitching stats from Baseball Reference.

~ baseballrebecca

Year Age Team League Lev W L ERA
1905 25 Cuban X Giants CNCS Fgn 2 2 1.85
1906 26 Fe CUGL Fgn 9 6 2.17
1907 27 Habana CUGL Fgn 5 3 2.28
1910 30 Chicago CNCS Fgn 3 1 1.86
1911 31 Fe CUNL Fgn 0 0 8.31
1914 34 Chicago American Giants INDP Non 5 4 2.48
1915 35 Chicago American Giants INDP Non 2 2 4.05
1916 36 Chicago American Giants INDP Non 1 1 1
1917 37 Chicago American Giants INDP Non 2 1 3.33
NLB (8 seasons) NLB 29 20 2.44
All Levels (9 Seasons) 29 20 2.5