Tuesday, August 08, 2006


A tip of the cap today to the Kansas City T-Bones of the Northern League for aggressively helping advance the potential of the Buck O'Neil Education and Research Center at the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum.

The T-Bones are soliciting donations at their last 16 home games, and that in itself is impressive in that they are among the Independent Baseball attendance leaders, averaging 5,792 fans a game at Community America Ballpark in Kansas City, KS. They also are in the running for an East Division title.

"The Negro Leagues were the original independent baseball, and Buck truly stands as the patriarch of independent baseball," said T-Bones Owner John Ehlert, who has committed $25,000 if the fans donate $50,000.

The T-Bones undertaking will be part of the Museum's "Thanks a Million, Buck", an effort to raise $1 million to kick off a $15 million renovation for the Education and Research Center before O'Neil's 95th birthday, which will be celebrated November 11.

AT&T also deserves a tip of the fedora since it is distributing the fund-raising message to its huge customer base in the Kansas City area. Fans who would like to know more may visit www.NLBM.com or call the museum at 816 221-1920.

We wish O'Neil a speedy recovery, too. He landed in a hospital Monday, and was said to be resting comfortably. "They (doctors) just wanted to slow him down a little," Bob Kendrick, who is marketing director for the Museum, told The Associated Press. That is a major task, as anyone who has seen the dapper O'Neil knows.

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