Thursday, January 12, 2006

Former Monroe Monarchs of the Negro Southern League Considered for Baseball Hall of Fame

Former Monarchs considered for Hall
Brown, Parnell make special ballot
By Paul J. Letlow |The News Star Monroe LA

Two players who starred with the Monroe Monarchs of the Negro Southern League in the early 1930s are among the 39 candidates being considered for induction into the Baseball Hall of Fame by a special selection committee next month.

Outfielders Willard "Home Run" Brown and Red Parnell were selected by a screening committee to appear on special Negro Leagues and pre-Negro Leagues ballots for election to the Hall of Fame.

A 12-man selection committee will meet Feb. 27 in Tampa. Thirty people will be on the Negro leagues ballot and nine on the pre-Negro leagues ballot, and to gain election a candidate must receive at least 75 percent of the ballots cast.
Brown, a Shreveport native who joined the Monroe Monarchs in 1934, Brown was one of the most feared hitters in black baseball in the late 1930s and 1940s. He eventually made it to the big leagues in 1947 with the St. Louis Browns when he and Hank Thompson were was signed by Bill Veeck. That same year, Brown became the first black man to ever homer in the American League.

Parnell was a member of the 1932 Monroe Monarchs team that played the Pittsburgh Crawfords in the Negro World Series. He enjoyed a long career that include stints with the Birmingham Black Barons, Nashville Elite Giants, Philadelphia Stars, New York Black Yankees, Pittsburgh Crawfords, New York Cuban Stars and Houston Eagles.

Scott Greer, president of the Monroe Monarchs Historical Foundation, said he and co-founder Jeff Newman are campaigning for the players.

"Jeff and I have both written some of the members of selection committee pushing Willard and Red for inclusion into the Hall," Greer said. "We believe their induction will reinforce the fact that Hall of Fame caliber players made their way through Monroe

and that the Monroe Monarchs played a part in their careers." . . . [more]

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