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Hall of Fame - 2003

Hall of Fame - Class of 2003


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A.B.

A.B. "Happy" Chandler

Served as Commissioner of Baseball, succeeding Kennesaw Mountain Landis and helped to change the face of modern athletics with the integration of baseball by supporting the entry of Baseball's first African-American player, Jackie Robinson in 1947 as a member of the Brooklyn Dodgers. Encouraged and supported the reorganization of the South Atlantic League and its designation as a Class A League during the Minor League Meetings in Columbus, Ohio on December 5, 1945 following the league's suspended operations during World War II.

Branch Rickey

Branch Rickey

Provided financing to start the Western Carolinas League. Responsible for starting the modern baseball farm system, pioneered the use of baseball statistics and became the first baseball executive to break baseball's color line by signing Jackie Robinson who became the Major League's first African-American player.

Phil Niekro

Phil Niekro

Pitched 38 Games for Jacksonville in the South Atlantic League finishing with a 6-4 record, a 2.79 ERA and 52 strikeouts. Had a 24-year Major League career relying on the knuckleball to compile a 318-274 lifetime record pitching for the Atlanta Braves, the New York Yankees, the Cleveland Indians and the Toronto Blue Jays with a .537 Winning Percentage. A five-time All-Star and threw a no-hitter against the Padres on August 5, 1973.

Don Beaver

Don Beaver

Owner of the 2002 South Atlantic League Champion Hickory Crawdads for their 12 years of existence. A leader in both Minor League and Major League Baseball with ownership interest in the Pittsburgh Pirates, the Charlotte Knights, and the New Orleans Zephyrs. Beaver also had previous ownership in the Tennessee Smokies and the Winston-Salem Warthogs.

Doug Flynn

Doug Flynn

A coach for the Capital City Bombers in 1996 helping the team to a playoff berth. Part of one of greatest baseball teams in history as a member of the Cincinnati Reds famed Big Red Machine where his timely hitting and late inning defensive work helped the Reds capture back-to-back World Championships in 1975 and 1976.


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