BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — The National Bobblehead Hall of Fame and Museum in Wisconsin has unveiled the first bobblehead of one of Alabama’s most important baseball players.
Satchel Paige, a Mobile native, played with the Birmingham Black Barons under the segregated Negro National League from 1927 to 1930. Now, a bobblehead celebrating his time with the Birmingham baseball team is now available as part of the Hall’s “Negro Leagues Special Edition” collection.
The bobblehead commemorates the 100th anniversary of the Negro National League.
“The well-traveled Paige was known for his longevity and attracting record crowds whenever he pitched,” the Hall stated in a statement announcing the Satchel Paige bobblehead. “Larger-than-life thanks to his blistering fastball and legendary showboating, Paige dominated for four decades.”
Following two years with the semi-professional Mobile Tigers, Paige’s professional baseball career began in 1926 when he joined the Chattanooga Lookouts at 19 years old. Over his 24-year career in the Negro National League, Paige played for the Barons, the Baltimore Black Sox, Cleveland Cubs, Pittsburgh Crawfords, Kansas City Monarchs, New York Black Yankees, Memphis Red Sox and Philadelphia Stars.
By 1948, Paige had made it to Major League Baseball, first signing with the Cleveland Indians in 1948 and playing with them for one year. He also played for the St. Louis Browns and the Kansas City Athletics before retiring in 1965.
“We’re excited to be telling the story of the Negro Leagues and its players with these special edition centennial bobbleheads featuring Satchel Paige,” National Bobblehead Hall of Fame and Museum co-founder and CEO Phil Sklar said. “This is the first bobblehead of Paige in the Birmingham Black Barons uniform and we think fans will enjoy it and the history of Paige’s journey through the Negro Leagues to MLB and the Hall of Fame.”
The Birmingham Barons played from 1920 to 1960 at Rickwood Field.
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