Negro Leagues Pioneer/Executive Sol White

Sol White wrote “Sol White’s History of Colored Base Ball: With Other Documents on the Early Black game”. Not only did he write it he wrote much of its history. White was born in 1868 and played his first professional game in 1883. Not only was he only 15, but he played it against future American League President and fellow Hall of Famer Ban Johnson. This might be the earliest professional game with two Hall of Famers.

Early in his career White played in integrated games. However, by 1887 those opportunities were going away as most whites refused to play with black ballplayers. However, White was still able to play in the white minors leagues until 1895. I am guessing he made more money there. He never hit below .324, according to his SABR biography. I’m thinking he had the ability to play in the majors, with the only thing keeping him out was the color of his skin.

Sol White’s page on Baseball Reference doesn’t make him look good. It shows him managing 31 games in 1924 and winning only 11. He was also apparently let go during the season. This managerial stent was 41 years after playing his first professional game.

In 1901 White co-owned a black baseball team called the Philadelphia Giants. White managed the team, and it was successful a lot because they had the great pitcher, Rube Foster. After the 1907 season White wrote a history of Colored Baseball. He updated it in 1936. Sol White lived until 1955 getting to see Jackie Robinson play. That was a proud moment for White as he helped keep black baseball going in the early days.  

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