Hispanic Heritage Baseball Museum
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The Hispanic Heritage Baseball Museum Hall of Fame was founded in San Francisco on October 24, 1998, by Gabriel "Tito" Avila, Jr. as a way to honor the greatest Hispanic baseball players of all time. It is dedicated to recognizing the contributions made to baseball by Hispanic players. Since its inception, the Museum Hall of Fame has honored 56 players, coaches, broadcasters, Negro Leagues Hispanic players, and Pioneer Executives.
The initial inductees who were inducted at a banquet on February 23, 2002, were Orlando Cepeda, Tito Fuentes, Ted Williams, and Minnie Miñoso. In August 2002, the Museum Hall of Fame was featured at the California State Exposition (Cal Expo). In 2005, the World Series-winning manager, then of the Chicago White Sox, Ozzie Guillén, was honored at US Cellular Field with the Museum's Hall of Fame Pioneer Award for being the first Hispanic foreign-born to win the World Series that year, against the Houston Astros. In April 2007, the Museum Hall of Fame was given a citation by the New York State Senate in Albany, New York. On Saturday, June 23, 2007, former Giant Omar Vizquel, former Giant Matty Alou, and former New York Yankee Héctor López were honored during a home-plate ceremony at AT&T Park for their recent induction to the Hispanic Heritage Baseball Museum's Hall of Fame before a crowd of 43,000 fans at AT&T Park in San Francisco prior to a Giants and Yankees interleague game.
The Hispanic Heritage Baseball Museum Hall of Fame was invited to showcase the "Latino Legends" team and their memorabilia at the 2007 All-Star Fan Fest located at the Moscone Center in San Francisco. The Latino Legends Team was an all-time all-star baseball team selected in 2005 to honor the history of Latin American players in Major League Baseball.
During the 2008 All-Star Game FanFest held at the Javits Center in New York City, the Museum was again invited by Major League Baseball to showcase their memorabilia along with the Chevy "Latino Legends" team.
The Hispanic Heritage Baseball Museum Hall of Fame partnered with Johnny Walker and Events Marketing Services to showcase exhibitions in Phoenix, Miami, Arlington, and Houston during the last couple of months of the 2008 baseball season. In 2011, the Museum participated in its fifth All-Star FanFest, which was held at the Civic Plaza in Phoenix, Arizona. During the FanFest, on July 9, 2011, the Hispanic Heritage Baseball Museum Hall of Fame inducted Luis Gonzalez as its 47th inductee. The former Arizona Diamondbacks player is now a special assistant to the President of the Arizona Diamondbacks. On July 28, 2011, the Museum Hall of Fame had an exhibition at the new Yankee Stadium honoring the six living Hispanic Hall of Famers: Roberto Alomar, Luis Aparico, Rod Carew, Orlando Cepeda, Juan Marichal, and Tony Pérez at the New York Yankees Museum from July 27, 2011, to the entire 2013 season. The Museum Hall of Fame participated in the Major League Baseball's 83rd annual All Star Game Fan Fest in July 2012 for its sixth consecutive year at the Bartle Hall Kansas City Convention Center in Kansas City, Missouri. At the Fanfest, Joe Azcue was inducted into the Museum Hall of Fame as its 55th inductee. Diego Seguí HHBMHOF was presented with the Pioneer Award.
On August 21, 2011, the Museum Hall of Fame inducted into its Hall of Fame former Texas Rangers star player Rubén Sierra at the Ball Park in Arlington, Texas, as its 48th inductee. Currently, the Museum Hall of Fame provides traveling exhibits to both National Major League baseball parks and Minor League baseball parks as well as a way to honor Hispanic players, coaches, managers, pioneer executives, and umpires.
Since 2007, the Museum Hall of Fame has awarded its Pioneer Award to those players who have set the example as true pioneers of the sport. Since 2009, the Jose Uribe Sportsmanship Award has been awarded to a San Francisco Giants Hispanic player who best exemplifies the character and sportsmanship of the late Jose Uribe, a former San Francisco Giants shortstop from the Dominican Republic who was a member of the 1989 National League Champion San Francisco Giants who went on to play the Oakland Athletics during the earthquake-stricken 1989 World Series. The award is presented at the annual September Fiesta Gigantes at AT&T Park at the beginning of that evening's game. The first recipient of the award was former Giants catcher Benji Molina in 2008. In 2009, the award was presented to third baseman Pablo Sandoval and in 2010 was presented to center fielder Andres Torres. In 2012, the award was presented to relief pitcher Javier López.
The Hispanic Heritage Baseball Museum Hall of Fame inductees