Happy Birthday, Buck!

So this is purty cool: the fledgling Chicago Baseball Museum is hosting a party on February 3 to celebrate the 100th birthday of the great Buck O’Neil, who passed away in 2006. The details can be found in the link above, but, really, they had me at “Doug Glanville, guest speaker” and “cocktails.”

I can say little about O’Neil’s grace, dignity and historical import that hasn’t already been said much better by Joe Posnanski in his wonderful book, but I’d be pretty pleased if my son grew up to be a fraction of the man Buck O’Neil was (hope is long lost for yours truly).

O’Neil was born in Florida and spent his playing career in Kansas City; however, he spent time as a scout with the Cubs, and Chicago was in many ways the nerve center of Negro League baseball. So it’s fitting in some way that Chi-town play host to an event celebrating the man who’s mostly responsible for the revived interest in the Negro Leagues.

Also, since I live in Chicago, all NotGraphs readers who attend the Buck O’Neil gala are welcome to stay in my home and drink my beer.*

(* – Although my love for all of you is both boundless and without bound, this is absolutely not true. Hope to see you there, though.)

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Handsome Dayn Perry can be found making love to the reader at CBSSports.com's Eye on Baseball. He is available for all your Twitter needs.

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Navin V.

I’ll never forget O’Neil’s advice in The Soul Of Baseball: Never pass up an opportunity to talk to a woman in a red dress.


I hope the Negro League Baseball Museum does something in his honor, as well. If not, I’ll be there anyway. Perhaps NotGraphs readers could meet up for lunch at Arthur Bryant’s and celebrate the life of Kansas City’s favorite son.
Buck used to say, “Good Black Don’t Crack!” (I have decidedly less success with it, however. I guess it’s a generational thing.)

Wilfredo Widmaier

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