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Buck O'Neil elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame

Buck O'Neil
Posted at 5:28 PM, Dec 05, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-05 18:54:07-05

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — John Jordan "Buck" O'Neil was elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame Sunday night.

O'Neil will be inducted as a part of the Hall of Fame Class of 2022 on July 24, 2022.

Candidates for the hall of fame needed to receive 75% of the ballots cast by the Early Baseball Era Committee, which O'Neil surpassed with 81.3% — his name was on 13 of 16 ballots.

The 16-member committee is one of four era committees that vote for hall of fame consideration, according to the National Baseball Hall of Fame website. The Early Baseball Era Committee considers candidates whose contributions to the game came before 1950.

O'Neil played in the Negro American League for 10 seasons, mostly with the Kansas City Monarchs. He was named to three All-Star Games.

After his playing career, O'Neil was a scout for the Chicago Cubs, and he was later named the first Black coach in Major League Baseball by the Cubs.

O'Neil also helped found the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum in the 18th and Vine District.

The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum previously honored O'Neil in 2008 with the creation of the Buck O'Neil Lifetime Achievement Award.

A permanent, life-sized bronze statue of O'Neil was placed in the museum following the creation of the award, according to a release. Award recipients receive a miniature version of the statue.

Buck O'Neil Bronze Statue
Buck O'Neil talks about playing in the Negro League in front of a statue of himself at the Negro League Baseball Museum in Kansas City, Mo. Major League Baseball plays its annual All-Star game Tuesday, July 10, 2012, the museum will likely have experienced a significant windfall, financially and in terms of awareness, possibly ensuring its future for years to come. O'Neil, the late Kansas City Monarchs star and one of the museum's founders, traveled the world telling stories of the game's great black players.

"The Buck O'Neil Lifetime Achievement Award is presented by the Hall of Fame's Board of Directors not more than once every three years to honor an individual whose extraordinary efforts enhanced baseball's positive impact on society, broadened the game's appeal, and whose character, integrity and dignity are comparable to the qualities exhibited by O'Neil," the website said. "The award, named after the late Buck O'Neil, was first given in 2008, with O'Neil being the first recipient."

Other candidates considered by the Early Baseball Era for Hall of Fame election for the Class of 2022 were Bill Dahlen, John Donaldson, Bud Fowler, Vic Harris, Grant "Home Run" Johnson, Lefty O'Doul, Dick "Cannonball" Redding, Allie Reynolds and George "Tubby" Scales.