Josh Gibson

Joshua "Josh" Gibson (December 21, 1911 – January 20, 1947) was an American Negro league baseball catcher. He played for the Homestead Grays from 1930 to 1931, moved to the Pittsburgh Crawfords from 1932 to 1936, and returned to the Grays from 1937 to 1939 and 1942 to 1946. In 1937, he played for Ciudad Trujillo in Trujillo's Dominican League and from 1940 to 1941, he played in the Mexican League for Rojos del Aguila de Veracruz. Gibson served as the first manager of the Santurce Crabbers, one of the most historic franchises of the Puerto Rico Baseball League. He stood 6-foot-1 (185 cm) and weighed 210 pounds (95 kg) at the peak of his career.

Baseball historians consider Gibson to be among the very best power hitters and catchers in the history of any league, including Major League Baseball (MLB). Gibson was known as the "black Babe Ruth", in fact, some fans at the time who saw both Ruth and Gibson play, called Ruth "the white Josh Gibson". Gibson never played in the major leagues because of an unwritten "gentleman's agreement" policy that prevented non-white players from participating. In 1972, he was the second player after Satchel Paige who had played in the Negro leagues to be inducted in the National Baseball Hall of Fame.

By Dean Hanley

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