Historic Baseball

Historic Baseball

Bringing Baseball History To Center Field


Larry Doby, the first black player in the American League, died on June 18, 2003 in Montclair, N.J. after a long illness. He was 79.

Doby, a seven-time All-Star, hit .283 with 253 home runs and 969 RBI in his 13-year career in the major leagues. He joined the Cleveland Indians on July 5, 1947, 11 weeks after Jackie Robinson broke baseball’s color barrier with the Brooklyn Dodgers.

Doby played in just 29 games that first season and collected 5 hits in 32 at-bats. The next season, he began to make his mark, hitting .301 with 14 home runs and 66 RBIs.

For more on Larry Doby, Click Here

Gibson Jr., former player,
son of Hall of Famer, dies

Josh Gibson Jr., a former Negro League player and the son of Hall of Famer Josh Gibson, died on Sept. 10, 2003 in Pittsburgh, Penn. He was 73.

Gibson Jr. became interested in baseball after watching his father, a legendary Negro Leagues catcher with the Pittsburgh Crawfords and Homestead Grays. Gibson Jr. served as a batboy for the Pittsburgh team.

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Following in footsteps
of Robinson & Doby

Jackie Robinson integrated baseball in 1947 when he stepped on the field for the Brooklyn Dodgers. Larry Doby was the first black player to appear in the American League.

However, it would take until 1959 for all of the other 15 teams in the league to follow suit. For a list of the first black players by franchise, Click here.