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Hector Lopez, Died At 93 Of Lung Cancer After A Distinguished Career In Baseball



Hector Lopez

(CTN News) – It has been announced that Hector Lopez, a former New York Yankee and one of the first black managers in the history of American professional baseball, has passed away. He was 93 years old when he passed away.

A Hudson, Florida hospital reported that Hector Lopez, a Panamanian native, died from complications related to lung cancer Friday, Sept. 30.

In multiple ways, Hector Lopez, a utility player for the Yankees from 1959 to 1966, contributed to the team’s dominant run of five consecutive World Series appearances. In addition to playing infield, he also played outfield, according to the outlet.

As Hector Lopez said in an interview for the 2002 book

“That Was Part of Baseball Then,” just being able to play in the big leagues for as long as I did is something I’m proud of.

During the 1950s and 1960s, there was a lot of competition and many talented players. Additionally, there weren’t that many Black ballplayers at the time.

This is especially true in the American League. My opportunities were maximized, so I guess I made the most of them.

When Lopez joined the Yankees in 1969 as one of the team’s first Black players, he was already laying the foundation for future generations. Lopez continued to do so when he was hired as manager of the Buffalo Bisons in 1969.

The Cleveland Indians appointed Frank Robinson, the first Black manager in the major leagues in six years, after Lopez served just one season in the position.

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