Thursday, April 30, 2009
Ending The Discrimination Of The Negro Leagues?
Back in 1950, Clarizio and pitcher Lou Chirban, also white, were plucked out of "industrial league" ball in Chicago and signed to play for the Giants and their legendary manager, Ted "Double Duty" Radcliffe.
By 1950, the Negro Leagues were dying, victims, ironically enough, of the integration of the major leagues, begun in 1947 by Jackie Robinson.
Looking for players, and partially answering critics who claimed that while organized ball was integrating, the Negro Leagues were all black, the Giants sought out white players.
"When Jackie Robinson went into baseball, people kept saying, 'There are no white players in the Negro Leagues,'" Clarizio said in his living room recently. "Once he signed up and (Roy) Campanella and (Larry) Doby, it started to break up the black league because of the quality, and people stopped going.