Baseball legend O’Neil dead
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Buck O’Neil, baseball’s charismatic Negro Leagues ambassador who barnstormed with Satchel Paige and inexplicably fell one vote shy of the Hall of Fame, died Friday night. He was 94.
Always projecting warmth, wit and a sunny optimism that sometimes seemed surprising for a man who lived in a climate of racial injustice for so long, O’Neil remained remarkably vigorous well into his 90s. He became as big a star as the Negro League greats whose stories he travelled the country to tell.
O’Neil, a good-hitting, slick-fielding first baseman, barnstormed with Paige in his youth, twice won a Negro Leagues batting title, then became a pennant-winning manager of the Kansas City Monarchs.