Thursday, November 03, 2011

New Hall of Fame Consideration for 2 Former Dodgers

This is pretty exciting news for Dodger fans and team history buffs.

Former Dodger GM Buzzie Bavasi and Dodger first baseman Gil Hodges are a part of the 10 man Golden Era Ballot for entrance into the Baseball Hall of Fame. This is for the Class of 2012 and promises to be very competitive. All 10 names on this ballot have merit. Other potential entrants include Ken Boyer, Charlie Finley, Jim Kaat, Minnie Minoso, Tony Oliva, Allie Reynolds, Ron Santo and Luis Tiant.

In my mind, Buzzie Bavasi should not be overlooked here. He easily ranks as one of the most important names in Dodger lore. Often overshadowed by Branch Rickey, he was an important cog that brought about the integration of Baseball and several championships to both the Brooklyn and Los Angeles Dodgers. From 1946 to 1947 he was GM of the Nashua Dodgers which featured both Roy Campanella and Don Newcombe.

from a NY Times obituary:
Bavasi remembered challenging the manager of the Lynn Red Sox to a fight, with all the opposing players sitting nearby on the team bus, after a game in which, according to Bavasi, the manager had hurled racial slurs at Campanella and Newcombe. It was the “first time in my life I had ever challenged anybody,” Bavasi said, “and here I was challenging an entire baseball team.”
Then, from 1948 to 1950 he was the GM for the Dodgers top farm club, Montreal Royals. Soon, he would join the Dodgers to be their longtime GM from 1951 through 1968. The Dodgers first, and only, World Championship in Brooklyn happened under his watch in 1955. By the time he was done leading the 'Boys in Blue' he captured 4 World Titles and 8 League Championships. Of course, his work was not done. He was instrumental in the formation of a expansion team in San Diego.

Per the HOF story:
Any candidate to receive votes on 75 percent of the ballots cast by the 16-member Golden Era Committee will earn election to the National Baseball Hall of Fame and will be inducted in Cooperstown on July 22, 2012, along with any electees who emerge from the 2012 Baseball Writers' Association of America election, to be announced on Jan. 9.

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