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MLB set to commemorate 100th anniversary of Negro Leagues

Posted at 10:10 PM, Aug 13, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-14 23:56:22-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Major League Baseball plans to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Negro Leagues league-wide on Sunday.

Bob Kendrick, president of the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum, said not having fans due to COVID-19 precautions is "a llittle bit disappointing, but it doesn't diminish the milestone occasion."

"It really doesn't diminish what is essentially an unprecedented moment in baseball history," Kendrick continued. "What a tremendous platform and what a tremendous occasion for Negro Leagues history, and for this museum as the caretaker of that rich piece of baseball and Americana."

All MLB players, managers, coaches and umpires will wear a Negro Leagues 100th anniversary logo patch during games.

The logo, a derivative of the official logo created by the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum, also will be featured on base jewels and lineup cards.

There are plans for tribute games with throwback uniforms, educational panels and documentary film screenings as well as special auctions to support the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum.

"We wanted to blow it out here in Kansas City obviously, because of the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum, but what we've always wanted was the entire league to embrace this and not just the city that has the museum," Royals spokesperson Toby Cook said. "When the centennial rolled around, the league was ready to throw everything they could at it."

The Royals will celebrate the centennial anniversary throughout 2020.

Royals Charities unveiled a special singing Buck O'Neil bobblehead, the proceeds of which benefit the NLBM.

The local celebration also will include Royals "players wearing Negro Leagues Monarch jerseys and we have giveaways galore, (but) that still remains to be seen because we have to have fans in the stands to be able to do that," Cook said. "It's still on the schedule in September that one way or another, we're going to recognize the Negro Leagues in our own special way."

Kendrick said despite the delay and change of plans, "it;s been so gratifying to see this museum continue to find ways to celebrate this milestone when it looked as if everything, all of our plans, were going to be derailed."