Extra Innings – News from the Ball Hall

We saw November out with the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame Night with the St. Marys Lincolns and retired MLBer Jeff Francis. Since then our Director of Operations has been busy with announcements of the CBHFM annual honours, among other things. Joey Votto snagged the Tip O’Neill award again for a stellar season, and Larry Millson won the Jack Graney Award. On learning of his award, Votto said, “ It is very humbling, because our country produces some very good baseball players. We all need to thank the Baseball Hall of Fame’s efforts in promoting the sport and our native players.” Larry Millson wrote: “I feel blessed to have covered the Expos at Jarry Park and the Blue Jays in the friendly confines of Exhibition Stadium and it goes on. More than that, there are the people who work at the ballparks in various cities that you get to meet and eventually know over the years, the elevator operators, ushers, press box attendants. To have had all of that and then get this award, it’s kind of overwhelming.” Details of the award presentations will be announced at a later date. Scott took the Christmas Silent Auction on the road to the Stratford Mall on Saturday, December 3. He also appeared at the PitchTalks event held in Tavistock on December 8, along with CBHFM Board Member Mike Wilner. On the 10th, he brought a large group of Ringette players through the Hall of Fame, in concert with the 10th Annual Snipers Ringette Tournament at the Pyramid Centre. Reminders: Our last bingo of the year takes place on Monday, December 12 at 6 p.m. at Stratford Bingo Country. Silent auction bids are still being accepted, with a cut-off of noon EST on Wednesday, December 14th. Call in your bids at 519-284-1838, email them to scott@ baseballhalloffame.ca or drop into our office at 140 Queen St. E. in St. Marys, where we have a lot of baseball merchandise for sale. Our Membership Drive is in full swing. Purchase a new membership between now and Dec 31st and receive a Christmas card signed by 2016 Inductee Pat Hentgen. Also, our year-end annual campaign drive has started, now until Dec 31. The CBHFM tips its cap to Inductee Larry Walker, who celebrated a milestone birthday, his 50th, on December 1. Happy Birthday as well to one of our highest profile inductees and most enduring supporters, Ferguson Jenkins, on December 13. As fans will know, Fergie had a storied career. In 1971, he was the first Canadian and Cubs pitcher to win a Cy Young Award. In the same year, he led the NL in wins, repeating the feat in the AL in 1974. He led the NL in complete games in 1967, 1970, and 1971, and the AL in 1974. He was the NL leader in strikeouts in 1969, had over 3,000 strikeouts during his career and won 20 games in 7 seasons, including 6 consecutive seasons for the Cubs. But the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. At the recent baseball history conference in St Marys, attendees heard about the Chatham Coloured All-Stars, who in 1934 became the first team from Chatham ever to win a provincial baseball championship. They were also the first team made up entirely of black athletes to be in the Ontario Baseball Association playoffs. Ferguson Jenkins Sr. played for the 1935 All-Stars and for the semi-pro Black Panthers. It’s said that he might have competed at the professional level had he played after Jackie Robinson broke the colour barrier.

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