Today we celebrate who many consider the greatest catcher in Negro Leagues history, even over the legendary Josh Gibson, fellow Hall of Fame member Biz Mackey, in my running “Negro Baseball Leagues All-Time Legends”:
Though certainly no slouch at the plate, as evidenced by his .329 career
average in league play including four recorded seasons of batting over
.400, it was at defense that many consider Mackey the superior player
While playing the position full-time even into his 40’s, he was even a
mentor to a young Roy Campanella, who openly stated that Mackey taught
him everything he knew about playing the position.
Mackey put in 24 seasons in Negro League play, while also playing in the
California Winter League for 26 seasons, ranking third all-time in that
league’s home run list, behind only two other Hall members, Turkey
Stearnes and Mule Suttles.
On top of all of his exploits in the Negro Leagues, he even spent a year
traveling in 1932, which took him to Japan where he helped influence
the formation of their professional league.
Quite a baseball life!
Read up on his biography for so much more on the 2006 Cooperstown inductee!