"He instinctively can find the shining greatness of our American culture and does a good job of highlighting it (although he also does have those rare lapses when he writes about hockey, but that is something caused by impurities in the Eastern waters or something)." Erik Keilholtz
Under the patronage of St. Tammany
Mark C. N. Sullivan is an editor at a Massachusetts university. He is married and the father of three children. Email
You'd think the National Game would find a place in its shrine for one of its most gracious ambassadors.
Not to take anything away from the late Effa Manley or the late Cumberland Posey of the unfortunate nickname or the rest of the 17 historic Negro League and pre-Negro League inductees, but would it have killed the voting board to recognize the man who is the face of the Negro Leagues and who, at 94, is still here to appreciate the honor?
If you watched the Ken Burns series "Baseball'' on PBS, you saw and heard Buck O'Neil. If you've watched anything having to do with the Negro Leagues in the last three decades, you've seen Buck O'Neil. If you've heard the exploits of most of the legendary Negro Leaguers, from Ted "Double Duty" Ratcliffe to Cool Papa Bell, chances are it was O'Neil doing the talking.
It was Buck O'Neil who was managing Satchel Paige with the Kansas City Monarchs when Paige was finally called up to the major leagues. It was Buck O'Neil who worked tirelessly to get a Negro Leagues Museum up and running in Kansas City. It was Buck O'Neil who argued for the inclusion of more Negro Leaguers in the Hall of Fame as a member of the Veterans' Committee for the last several years.
My God, what more does Buck O'Neil have to do to warrant inclusion?