1983 Induction t-shirt donated

1983 Induction t-shirt donated

Our good friend Tony Frangis purchased this t-shirt off ebay in December 2020 and then donated it to us here at the Hall of Fame. The t-shirt is from our inaugural induction ceremony on August 3, 1983 at the Queen Elizabeth Building at Exhibition Place in Toronto.

The 1983 inductees were John Ducey, James “Tip” O’Neill, Phil Marchildon, George Selkirk, Lester B. Pearson and Frank Shaughnessy.

Involved in the presentations were Senator Keith Davey, Robert Hunter, Pat Gillick, Metro Chairman Paul Godfrey, Neil MacCarl, Dick Beddoes and Phil Rizzuto.

Ted Bowsfield

HALL OF FAMER TED BOWSFIELD

With no Little League program in his hometown of Penticton, B.C., Ted Bowsfield played just six to eight games a year for much of his youth. As he reached his teens, the southpaw’s potential began to emerge. His big break came at a rotary tournament in Lethbridge, Alta., as a 17-year-old, when he pitched against a team of Cuban All-Stars and recorded 17 strikeouts to catch the eye of scouts in attendance.

Bowsfield would sign with the Boston Red Sox in 1954, and after minor league stints in San Jose, San Francisco, Oklahoma City and Minneapolis, the big league club called him up in July 1958. The Penticton native’s debut – a relief appearance – was overshadowed by the performance of Jim Bunning, who tossed a no-hitter for the opposing Tigers that day, but the talented lefty would deliver a number of solid performances of his own that season, including three wins against the archrival New York Yankees. His mastery of the Bronx Bombers would earn him the Bosox Rookie of the Year Award that year.

Read more HERE.

2006 Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum inductee Tommy Lasorda passes away

2006 Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum inductee Tommy Lasorda passes away

We are deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Tommy Lasorda, who was elected to the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame in 2006. Not only did he have a remarkable career as a World Series-winning manager with the Los Angeles Dodgers and as a beloved baseball ambassador, he was also an outstanding pitcher with the International League’s Montreal Royals for nine seasons between 1950 and 1960. He retired as the Royals’ all-time franchise leader in wins. When he came to St. Marys for his induction ceremony in 2006, he arrived with the same kind of energy and enthusiasm that endeared him to baseball fans all over the world and he reminisced fondly about his time in Montreal. He was a true baseball legend who won’t be forgotten in Canada. We would like to express our condolences to his wife, Jo, daughter Laura and grand-daughter, Emily Tess.

Reno Bertoia

HALL OF FAMER RENO BERTOIA

Born in Italy, Reno Bertoia moved with his family to Windsor, Ontario when he was just 18 months old. With fellow Canadian Baseball Hall of Famer, Father Ronald Cullen, as his coach and mentor, Bertoia developed into a local baseball star and top big league prospect while playing at Assumption High School.

On August 31, 1953, he inked a deal with the Detroit Tigers that included an $11,000 signing bonus. Bertoia, who had never played a game in the minors, was added to the Tigers roster almost immediately and would room with future Hall of Famer Al Kaline. Bertoia’s best season was in 1957 when, thanks to a torrid early stretch, he was leading the American League with a .383 batting average on May 16. In 1959, after being dealt to the Washington Senators, Bertoia would club a career-high eight homers. He would follow that up by recording seven triples (third in American League) and 13 sacrifice hits (5th in league) in 1960.

Read more HERE.

Peter Hardy

HALL OF FAMER PETER HARDY

It was largely through Peter Hardy’s efforts, as chairman of the board at Labatt’s, that the city of Toronto was able to land a major league franchise. The vice-chairman of the Blue Jays’ initial board in 1976, Hardy was directly involved in the hiring of Peter Bavasi, Pat Gillick and Paul Beeston. He would later become board chair, and, in 1981, the club’s chief executive officer (CEO).

Hardy fostered a family atmosphere while he was CEO, offering minor league managers time off during the regular season and ensuring that minor leaguer players were afforded nutritional meals. During his reign, he also endorsed decisions to hire Bobby Cox, Jimy Williams and Cito Gaston as field managers. After the Blue Jays captured their first division title in 1985, Sports Illustrated selected Hardy as Major League Baseball’s top executive.

Read more HERE.

George Selkirk

HALL OF FAMER GEORGE SELKIRK

Dubbed “Twinkletoes” for his distinct running style, George Selkirk was arguably the greatest Canadian baseball player of the first half of the 20th century. Suiting up alongside baseball immortals like Lou Gehrig, Joe DiMaggio and Bill Dickey, the Hunstville native is best known as the man that replaced Babe Ruth in right field for the Bronx Bombers.

Wearing the Bambino’s famous No. 3, Selkirk excelled during his nine-year big league career with the Yankees. His major league resume boasts two all-star selections, five .300+ seasons and two 100-RBI campaigns. Selkirk was equally impressive in the postseason, belting a home run in his first World Series at bat in 1936. In all, the talented outfielder was part of five World Series-winning teams, the most of any Canadian.

Read more HERE.

Sherry Robertson

HALL OF FAMER SHERRY ROBERTSON

Montreal native Sherry Robertson made his big league debut with the Washington Senators on September 8, 1940 in the second game of a doubleheader against the Philadelphia Phillies. After enjoying stints with the Senators in 1941 and 1943, Robertson served in the military for two years, prior to resuming his major league career and becoming a fixture in Washington for close to seven seasons.

His finest big league season was 1949, when he belted 11 home runs and stole 10 bases (5th best in the American League). The versatile Canuck – who played outfield, second base, third base and shortstop – would suit up for two more seasons in the U.S. capital, before finishing his playing career with the Philadelphia Athletics in 1952. Robertson’s 597 big league games remain the second-most by a player from Quebec.

Read more HERE.

Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum Board Member Derek Aucoin passes away

Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum Board Member Derek Aucoin passes away

We mourn the passing of Derek Aucoin, former Montreal Expos pitcher and member of our Board of Directors since 2018. A gentle giant, Derek was a dedicated and passionate supporter of baseball on all levels and we will miss his infectious smile and enthusiasm for the game. Our heartfelt condolences to Isabelle and their son Dawson. Derek, you will live on in our hearts and we look forward to honouring your legacy in the coming year. 

Tom Henke, Paul Beeston

HALL OF FAMER TOM HENKE

Tom Henke’s 217 saves rank him first all-time with the Blue Jays, and his 311 career saves are 17th best all-time in the major leagues.  He played eight seasons for Toronto, pitching in 446 games, winning 29, and compiling a 2.48 earned run average.  He finished his career playing two seasons for the Texas Rangers and one with the boyhood favourite team, the St. Louis Cardinals.  Henke also began his career with the Rangers, who drafted and signed him in 1980.  On January 24, 1985, 26 years exactly from the day of this announcement, he was chosen by the Blue Jays as a free agent compensation pick.

An imposing figure on the mound standing 6’5” and wearing large-rimmed glasses, Henke’s best season with the Blue Jays was 1987, when he was named to the All-Star team and led the American League with 34 saves.  In 1992, his final season with the Blue Jays, he chalked up a pair of saves and pitched in three of the Blue Jays four amazing one-run victories over the Atlanta Braves, bringing home the Canada’s first World Series title.  Henke, who also made the All-Star team as a Cardinal in 1995, struck out an average of 9.8 hitters per nine innings over his career.

Read more HERE.

Gord Ash

HALL OF FAMER GORD ASH

Gord Ash

Born in 1951 in Toronto, Ont., Gord Ash began his career with the Toronto Blue Jays working in the ticket office in 1978. He would serve in several positions as he rose through the organization’s ranks, including assistant director of operations from 1980 to 1983 and player personnel administrator from 1984 to 1988, before he was promoted to assistant general manager in 1989.

Read more HERE.