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January 15, 2007

 Baseball Reliquary Announces Candidates for
2007 Election of the Shrine of the Eternals

            The Baseball Reliquary, Inc. has announced its list of fifty eligible candidates for the 2007 election to the Shrine of the Eternals, the membership organization’s equivalent to the Baseball Hall of Fame. This year marks the ninth annual election of the Shrine, which has become a major national component of the Baseball Reliquary, a Southern California-based organization dedicated to fostering an appreciation of American art and culture through the context of baseball history. The twenty-four individuals previously elected to the Shrine of the Eternals are, in alphabetical order: Jim Abbott, Dick Allen, Moe Berg, Ila Borders, Jim Bouton, Roberto Clemente, Rod Dedeaux, Dock Ellis, Mark Fidrych, Curt Flood, Josh Gibson, William “Dummy” Hoy, Shoeless Joe Jackson, Bill “Spaceman” Lee, Marvin Miller, Minnie Minoso, Satchel Paige, Jimmy Piersall, Pam Postema, Jackie Robinson, Lester Rodney, Fernando Valenzuela, Bill Veeck, Jr., and Kenichi Zenimura.
            The Shrine of the Eternals is similar in concept to the annual elections held at the Baseball Hall of Fame, but differs philosophically in that statistical accomplishment is not a criterion for election. Rather, the Shrine’s annual ballot is comprised of individuals – from the obscure to the well known – who have altered the baseball world in ways that supersede statistics.
            On a procedural level, the Shrine of the Eternals differs significantly from the Baseball Hall of Fame in the manner by which electees are chosen. While the Baseball Hall of Fame’s electees are chosen in voting conducted by a closed group of sportswriters or committees, the Baseball Reliquary chooses its enshrined by a vote open to public membership. A screening committee appointed by the Reliquary’s Board of Directors prepares an annual ballot consisting of fifty candidates, on which the membership votes annually. The three candidates receiving the highest percentage of votes gain automatic election.
            Among the fifty eligible candidates for 2007, ten individuals appear on the Shrine of the Eternals ballot for the first time, while two others (Roger Maris and Luis Tiant) return after an absence of several years. The newcomers and returnees, in alphabetical order, are:

 EMMETT ASHFORD (1914-1980) – the first black umpire in the majors, the sartorially splendid Ashford enlivened American League games in the late 1960s with an animated array of calls and gestures, while off the field he became a genial advocate for numerous social and community issues, with a special interest in youth educational and sports programs.
(1908-1987) –
the most colorful player on many bland 1930s White Sox clubs, Zeke (from “physique”) Bonura slugged his way into the hearts of fans as a rookie in 1934, and unwittingly emerged as an early argument for the implementation of the DH thanks to his comically inept play at first base; his knack for annoying management and his unalloyed joie de vivre hastened his departure from the majors, but he soon found a new home as head of all baseball operations in North Africa during World War II.
(1929- ) –
consistent relief pitcher of the 1950s and ‘60s, the scholarly “Professor” Brosnan penned two successful autobiographical books, The Long Season and Pennant Race, insightful works that revealed the frailties and insecurities of professional ballplayers in a manner more explicitly explored in Jim Bouton’s Ball Four.
(1962- ) –
Adonis-like backstop for the gnarly ’93 Phillies and improbable World Series champ 1997 Florida Marlins, “Dutch” Daulton garnered bizarre headlines after his retirement for a series of inexplicable actions illustrative of either a mental breakdown or a sublime self-willed transcendence of reality hitherto available only to long-term residents of a Zen monastery.
(1942- ) –
prodigious slugger and perennial home run threat, Horton grew up in Detroit’s public housing projects, one of 19 children, and later starred as outfielder and DH for six teams between 1963 and 1980, including his hometown Tigers, with whom “Willie the Wonder” emerged as a bona fide folk hero after the Kitties captured the 1968 World Series championship.
(1884-1929) –
destined to excel primarily with the underachieving Phillies, Magee is among the most overlooked stars of the Deadball Era, a rare five-tool player who assembled a stellar career as batsman and base stealer, overshadowed only by the true giants of the era and undermined by a series of on-field smackdowns with umpires.
(1897-1949) –
recognized by his peers as the greatest third baseman in Negro League history, the handsome Louisiana loner Marcelle wowed fans with his fielding gems during the 1920s, but a rancid temper and frequent brawling severely tarnished his reputation, both during his career and after.
(1934-1985) –
two-time AL MVP whose campaign to break Babe Ruth’s single-season home run record of 60 in 1961 led to official controversy and personal anguish, effectively damaging a career and diminishing a life; sadly, it wasn’t until after steroidal hulk Mark McGwire established a new single-season tater record in 1998 that the magnitude of Maris’ feat was clearly and indisputably recognized.
(n.d.) –
Boston saloon proprietor, early memorabilia collector, and ubiquitous member of the boisterous Royal Rooters – a rollicking, near-rabid group of turn-of-the-century fans – Hub legend Michael T. McGreevey acquired his nickname via the habit of ending every verbal argument with an emphatic “Nuf Ced” (“Enough said”), thus rendering further discussion moot.
(1888-1956) –
The Great American Scapegoat, the intelligent 19-year-old Merkle entered baseball history unfairly as the game’s supreme bonehead, thanks to his base running gaffe (or was it?) in a critical game between the Chicago Cubs and New York Giants late in the 1908 season; instead of a Giant win, the game was ultimately declared a tie and the Cubs then beat the Giants in the makeup contest, thus securing the NL pennant by a single game over New York in one of the greatest pennant races ever.
(1953-1998) –
always good for a pithy observation or memorable quip, the Kansas City Royal relief ace was among the most dominant closers of the 1980s, combining a unique submarine-style delivery with an affable poetic sensibility that enabled “Quiz” to consistently frustrate batters and continually amuse fans and teammates with his wit and good humor.
(1940- ) –
son of a former Cuban pitching star, the cigar-chomping Tiant bewitched batters with a bewildering variety of gyrations, body movements, and release points on the mound, leading to a breakthrough season with the Indians in 1968 and superstardom with the Red Sox of the mid-1970s, where he bewitched the ladies of Boston with his hip leisure suits, ultra-mod hairpieces, and ever-ready cigar.

             A complete list of all fifty candidates for the 2007 election of the Shrine of the Eternals follows. Election packets, containing ballots and biographical profiles of all candidates, will be mailed to Baseball Reliquary members on April 1, 2007. To be eligible to vote, all persons must have their minimum $25.00 annual membership dues paid as of March 31, 2007.
            The three new inductees will be announced in May, with the Induction Day ceremony scheduled for Sunday, July 22, 2007 in Pasadena, California. In addition to the presentation of plaques to the 2007 inductees, this year’s ceremony will honor the recipients of the 2007 Hilda Award (named in memory of Hilda Chester and acknowledging a baseball fan’s exceptional devotion to the game) and the 2007 Tony Salin Memorial Award (presented annually to an individual dedicated to the preservation or presentation of baseball history).
            For additional information on the Shrine of the Eternals, contact Terry Cannon, Executive Director of the Baseball Reliquary, at P.O. Box 1850, Monrovia, CA 91017; by phone at (626) 791-7647; or by e-mail at


Shrine of the Eternals - 2002  



Shrine of the Eternals - 2002

2007 Candidates
The number to the right of candidates’ names indicates number of years on Shrine of the Eternals ballot.

1. Hank Aguirre (3) 26. Bill James (5)
2. Lee Allen (4) 27. Dr. Frank Jobe (5)
3. Emmett Ashford (New!) 28. Sherry Magee (New!)
4. Eliot Asinof (3) 29. Effa Manley (9)
5. Billy Bean (4) 30. Oliver Marcelle (New!)
6. Yogi Berra (9) 31. Roger Maris (Returnee!)
7. Zeke Bonura (New!)         32. Dr. Mike Marshall (2)
8. Chet Brewer (8) 33. Gene Mauch (2)
9. Rocky Bridges (2) 34. Tug McGraw (4)
10. Jim Brosnan (New!)         35. “Nuf Ced” McGreevey (New!)
11. Bill Buckner (7) 36. Fred Merkle (New!)
12. Helen Callaghan (4) 37. Bobo Newsom (2)
13. Charles M. Conlon (6)   38. Phil Pote (5)
14. Steve Dalkowski (9) 39. Dan Quisenberry (New!)
15. Darren Daulton (New!) 40. Ted Radcliffe (3)
16. Dizzy Dean (7)      41. J.R. Richard (8)
17. Ed Delahanty (4) 42. Hal Richman (2)
18. Eddie Feigner (7) 43. Johnny Sain (2)
19. Lisa Fernandez (7)          44. Rusty Staub (2)
20. Rube Foster (9) 45. Casey Stengel (9)
21. Ted Giannoulas (5)        46. Luis Tiant (Returnee!)
22. Jim “Mudcat” Grant (3) 47. Fay Vincent (6)
23. Pete Gray (9)          48. Rube Waddell (9)
24. Ernie Harwell (4) 49. Sol White (4)
25. Willie Horton (New!) 50. Don Zimmer (3)

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