- Neelys Landing man shot, killed by highway patrol trooper after traffic stop (05/01/16)43
- Cape student sues, accuses school officials of slamming her to ground multiple times (04/28/16)49
- Missouri House votes to allow concealed weapons without permits (04/28/16)8
- River Ridge Winery changes hands (05/02/16)
- Police report filed, but no charges in incident at Cape Central (04/29/16)40
- 2016 All-Missourian Boys Basketball (04/29/16)
- Statement: Man says cops’ good work drove him to grow his own marijuana (05/01/16)1
- Bob Evans restaurant in Cape Girardeau among chain's 21 closings (04/26/16)9
- Senator introduces bill for I-57 that would connect Sikeston with Little Rock (04/28/16)4
- Hopper Road to close for months during construction of Veterans Drive (04/27/16)9
Hall opens doors to first female, 16 others from a black heritage
Effa Manley was a co-owner of a team in the Negro Leagues.
TAMPA, Fla. -- Effa Manley became the first woman elected to the baseball Hall of Fame when the former Newark Eagles executive was among 17 people from the Negro Leagues and pre-Negro Leagues chosen Monday by a special committee.
This year's Hall class -- 18, including former reliever Bruce Sutter -- is by far the biggest in history. The previous record was 11 in 1946.
Manley co-owned the New Jersey-based Eagles with her husband, Abe, and ran the business end of the team for more than a decade. The Eagles won the Negro Leagues World Series in 1946 -- one year before Jackie Robinson broke the major league color barrier.
Manley was white, but married a black man and passed as a black woman, said Larry Lester, a baseball author and member of the voting committee.
"She campaigned to get as much money as possible for these ballplayers, and rightfully so," Lester said.
Manley used baseball to advance civil rights causes with events such as an Anti-Lynching Day at the ballpark. She died in 1981 at age 84.
Buck O'Neil and Minnie Minoso, the only living members among the 39 candidates on the ballot, were not elected by the 12-person panel.
Mule Suttles and Biz Mackey were among the 12 players selected, along with five executives.
Ray Brown, Willard Brown, Andy Cooper, Cristobal Torriente and Jud Wilson were the other former Negro League players elected. Five pre-Negro Leaguers -- Frank Grant, Pete Hill, Jose Mendez, Louis Santop and Ben Taylor -- were also chosen.
Alex Pompez, Cum Posey, J.L. Wilkinson and Sol White were the other executives elected.
The new inductees will be enshrined with Sutter -- elected by the Baseball Writers' Association of America last month -- on July 30 in Cooperstown, N.Y. The new group brought the Hall's membership to 278.
Only 18 Negro Leagues players had been chosen for the Hall prior to this election.
The election was the culmination of a Hall of Fame project to compile a complete history of blacks in the game from 1860 to 1960.
A major undertaking
More than 50 historians, authors and researchers spent four years sifting through box scores in 128 newspapers of sanctioned league games from 1920-1954. The result was the most complete collection of Negro Leagues statistics ever compiled, according to the Hall, and a database that includes 3,000 day-by-day records and career leaders.
"What we're proudest of is the broadening of knowledge," Hall of Fame president Dale Petroskey said. "When we started five years ago, we had 20 percent of the stats. We've got 90 percent of the stats now."
Candidates needed nine of 12 votes -- 75 percent -- from the committee of researchers, professors and baseball historians for election.
Former baseball commissioner Fay Vincent chaired the committee, which voted by secret ballot. Vote totals were not released.
O'Neil, now 94, started his playing career in the 1930s and hit .288 lifetime. He became the first black coach in the majors in 1962 with the Chicago Cubs, and played a key role in the building of the Negro League museum in Kansas City. He served on the Hall's Veterans Committee for nearly two decades.
Minoso played in the major leagues for 17 seasons, mostly with the Chicago White Sox, and hit .298 lifetime. He was a seven-time All-Star and won three Gold Gloves in the outfield.
"I know that baseball fans have me in their own Hall of Fame -- the one in their hearts," the 83-year-old Minoso said. "That matters more to me than any official recognition.
"If it's meant to be, it's meant to be, and I am truly honored to be considered. I've given my life to baseball, and the game has given me so much."