Black Ice Hockey And Sports Hall Of Fame Announces Inductees for Baseball & Softball

By Tony McClean
Updated: March 13, 2007

NEW HAVEN, Ct. — The 2007 Black Ice Hockey And Sports Hall of Fame Advisory Committee have announced their inductees for the Second Black Ice Hockey And Sports Hall of Fame under the categories of baseball and softball.

A total of 28 players were nominated. Five baseball/softball players will be inducted. This year’s list includes:

Jimmy Claxton

On May 28 1916, Claxton temporarily broke the professional baseball color line when he played one game for the Oakland Oaks of the Pacific Coast League. He was introduced to the team owner by a part-Indian friend as a fellow member of an Oklahoma tribe. A candy company, Zeenut, quickly produced a baseball card for Claxton. Within a week, a friend of Claxton revealed that he had both African American and Native American ancestors, and was promptly fired. It would be nearly thirty more years before another black man played organized white baseball.

Tim “Rock” Raines

Known for his speed and ability to get on base, the Montreal Expos selected Raines in the 5th round of the 1977 amateur draft. He played briefly as a second baseman in 1980, but soon switched to playing the outfield, and rapidly became a fan favorite due to his aggressiveness on the basepaths. By the end of his career Raines entered the very select 800-steals club, becoming the fourth member behind Rickey Henderson, Lou Brock, and Ty Cobb. Brock and Cobb are both members of the Baseball Hall of Fame, and Henderson is widely expected to become one when he becomes eligible. Currently, Raines serves as the hitting coach for the Harrisburg Senators of the Eastern League.

Mark Smith

Smith was a member of Canada’s three Pan American Gold Medal teams (1979, 1983, and 1991), a member of the 1992 Senior Men’s Team that won the World Championship, and in 1996, he was on the team that took home the silver medal from the Worlds. His coaching accolades include a gold medal at the 1999 Pan Am Games (Assistant Coach), a gold medal at the 2003 Pan Am Games (Head Coach), as well as a silver medal at the 2004 World Championship.

Joe Carter

Carter will always be remembered for his World Series clinching homer off Philadelphia’s Mitch Williams in 1992 Fall Classic. During his tenure as a Blue Jay, Carter was involved in the final play of each of the games in which the Jays clinched a championship from 1991-1993: In 1991, he got the game winning RBI single to clinch the American League East Division Championship; In 1992, he caught the final out of the World Series after Mike Timlin fielded Otis Nixon’s bunt attempt; and in 1993, the Series-winning Home Run in Game Six of the World Series.

Dave Winfield

Known more for his tenures with the San Diego Padres and New York Yankees, Winfield proved to be a lightning rod for the Blue Jays en route to the franchise’s first World Series crown. He provided leadership and experience as well as his potent bat. In the postseason, the Blue Jays won the pennant, giving Winfield a shot at redemption for his previous late-season and post-season futility. In Game 6 of the World Series, he delivered with a game-winning two-run double in the 11th inning off Atlanta’s Charlie Leibrandt to win the World Series for Toronto.

The Second Black Ice Hockey and Sports Hall Of Fame Conference scheduled for August 24-25 in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, Canada is designed to be a forum for the celebration, promotion, and understanding of the Black Athlete and his or her role in North American Society.

The Conference offers scholars and students of Black Sports History a chance to come together for the purposes of meeting and networking all the while engaging in intellectual dialogue through comparative discussions and scholarly debate on various topics pertaining to the history of Black Sports.