This week we continue our celebration of Black History Month, looking back at the impact of African Americans on our National Pastime with “Baseball Firsts”.
1959 would see Ernie Banks join the MVP club for black players, but this time becoming the first to win the award in back to back seasons – 1958 & 1959.
1962 – Just 15 years after becoming baseball’s first modern day black player, Jackie Robinson would be enshrined as the first black player in the National Baseball Hall of Fame.
1962 - Buck O’Neil would become the Major Leagues first black baseball coach with the Chicago Cubs.
1966 - Emmett Ashford is the first black umpire in a major league game when Cleveland beats Washington.
9/1/71 – The Pittsburgh Pirates would field the first all black starting lineup Al Oliver (1b), Rennie Stennett (2b), Jackie Hernandez (SS), Dave Cash (3b), Manny Sanguillen (C), Dock Ellis (P), Gene Clines (LF), Roberto Clemente (CF) and Willie Stargell (RF).
1975 – Frank Robinson becomes the majors first black Major League Manager with the Cleveland Indians of the American League. He would also be the National Leagues first Black Manager with the San Francisco Giants.
1977 – Bill Lucas of the Atlanta Braves would become baseball’s first black General Manager (Atlanta Braves).
1992 – Cito Gaston of the Toronto Blue Jays would become the first black Manager to win a World Series in 1992 and then do it again in 1993.