Monday, December 29, 2014

The Negro League baseball history fact for today - Thomas "Monk" Favors

Thomas “Monk” Favors spent the majority of his baseball career playing for minor league level, independent affiliated black southern teams.  Born on December 29, 1920 in Atlanta, Georgia, Favors came to the Baltimore Elite Giants in 1939 as an 18 year old pitcher.  After going back to Atlanta the following season, Favors returned to the Elite Giants in 1942.

He spent the next three years in the military (1943 – 1946) and first played again with southern black teams when discharged.    However, in 1947 Favors was with the Kansas City Monarchs as a utility infielder and outfielder.

He finished his career playing with minor league level teams in Atlanta.

Which of Favor’s Kansas City Monarch’s teammate became the first African American to play for the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1954?

Friday, December 26, 2014

The Negro League baseball history fact for today - Quincy Trouppe

The baseball career of Quincy Thomas Trouppe gives a clear picture of an African American ballplayer during the 1930s and 1940s before the Major Leagues were integrated.  Trouppe, born on December 25, 1912 in Dublin, Georgia, spent fifteen years in Negro League baseball.  He finally got the opportunity to put on a Major League uniform in 1952.
A 6’2”. 225 pound catcher, Trouppe’s journey through Negro League baseball began in 1930.  He stopped to play with many of the most renowned franchises; the St. Louis Stars, Homestead Grays, Kansas City Monarchs, and Chicago American Giants.  But Trouppe was lured away to play in the Mexican League from 1939 – 1944.  He returned before the 1944 Negro League season to be the player manager of the Cleveland Buckeyes.  
Many of the great Negro League players that have plaques in the National Baseball Hall of Fame were either a teammate or competitor of Quincy Trouppe.  He was elected by fans to play in five Negro League East-West All Star games.
As player manager for the Cleveland Buckeyes (1944 – 1947), Trouppe’s team won the 1945 Negro League World Series championship beating the famed Homestead Grays.  It also won the 1947 Negro American League pennant, but lost the World Series to the New York Cuban Giants.
In 1952, when he was 39 years old, Trouppe signed a minor league contract with the Cleveland Indians.  Brought up from the minors once the season started, he made his Major League debut on April 30 against the Philadelphia Athletics.  Trouppe went hit less in two at bats.  Appearing in six games, he got one hit and was sent back to the minors in May.
What three former Negro League players were in the Indians’ line up when Quincy Trouppe made his Major League debut?

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

The Negro League baseball history fact for today - Bill Simms

Born on December 23, 1908 in Shreveport, Louisiana, Willie “Bill” Simms played Negro League baseball for eight years (1936 – 1943).  In five of them he wore the uniform of the Kansas City Monarchs, one of the most acclaimed franchises in the history of black baseball.  Simms was on three pennant winning Kansas City Monarch teams.
At 6’0” and 170 pounds, Simms was an above average lead-off hitter.  He was good at bunting and hitting behind the runner on hit-and-run plays.  But, he had no home run power.  A speedy outfielder that covered a lot of ground, he also had a strong throwing arm.

Simms spent the first two years of his Negro League career with the Kansas City Monarchs in 1936 and 1937.  The Monarchs won the first Negro American League (NAL) pennant in 1937.   He played the next three seasons (1938 – 1940) for the Chicago American Giants, the Monarchs’ main NAL rival.

But Simms returned to Kansas City after the 1940 season to be on two more Monarch NAL pennant winners in 1941 and 1942.  The 1942 Monarchs won the first Negro League World Series held since 1927 defeating the Negro National League (NNL) pennant winning Homestead Grays four games to none.

He retired from baseball after the 1943 season.

Which 1942 Kansas City Monarch teammates of Willie “Bill” Simms are in the National Baseball Hall of Fame?

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

The Negro League baseball history fact for today - Joseph "Bull" Marbury

Born on December 16, 1938 in Leeds, Alabama, Joseph Marbury began his short Negro League baseball career immediately after leaving high school.  Nicknamed “Bull”, he played right field for the Indianapolis Clowns in 1957 and 1958.  His brother, Rendon, played infield for the Birmingham Black Barons in 1956 and was Bull’s teammate with the Clowns in 1958. 
After 1958, “Bull” went back to Alabama to work in the steel industry and play local semi-pro baseball.
What pitcher for the 1954 Indianapolis Clowns became an All Star relieve hurler for the Kansas City Athletics in 1964?