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Irish hall inducts new members

July 31, 2018

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By Irish Echo Staff

 

Slugger Adam Dunn, MLB Network’s Eric Byrnes, Chub Feeney and Katy Feeney – the first father/daughter combo, writer Jack O’Connell, and St. Paul Saints co-owner Tom Whaley will be the 2018 Irish American Baseball Hall of Fame inductees.

And all will be formally inducted on Tuesday, Aug. 7, at 12 noon.

Additionally, veteran MLB umpire Dan Iassogna will receive the annual Pete Caldera-Duke Castiglione “I Didn’t Know He Was Irish” award for individuals whose Irish roots are not widely known.

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The induction ceremony will take place at the hall of fame housed in Foley’s New York Pub & Restaurant at 18 W. 33rd St. in Manhattan.

Said a release from the hall regarding the new inductees:

  • Adam Dunn: During a 14-year career, Dunn hit 462 home runs, 270 of them with Cincinnati, where he is fourth on the club’s all-time list behind Johnny Bench, Tony Perez and Frank Robinson. Dunn was selected for the Reds Hall of Fame in Cincinnati this year.
  • Eric Byrnes: A former player for the Oakland A’s and Arizona Diamondbacks, Byrnes was a hustling outfielder considered one of the top fielders of his era. Today he is an MLB Network personality.
  • Charles Stoneham “Chub” Feeney: A relative of New York Giants owner Horace Stoneham, Feeney served as a front office executive for the Giants and later as President of the National League in his more than 40 years in baseball.
  • Katy Feeney: A beloved figure who was born into the game, she worked on scheduling, organized news conferences at big events and handled an assortment of logistics for Major League Baseball.
  • Jack O’Connell: BBWAA’s secretary-treasurer who makes “The Call” when a new inductee into the National Baseball Hall of Fame is selected.
  • Tom Whaley: Executive Vice-President of the St. Paul Saints, one of Minor League Baseball’s most innovative teams.

“This year’s class includes members of one of baseball’s great families, a feared slugger, one of the best fielding outfielders of the early 2000s, a veteran sportswriter, and the owner of one of the best known Minor League teams,” said Shaun Clancy, owner of Foley’s Pub, which features one of the country’s most extensive public displays of baseball memorabilia.

Voting was conducted among past inductees and a distinguished panel of baseball historians. The plaques are created by Ashburns Engravers, which has served several presidents and is also the maker of the Key to New York City.

With the blessing of the National Baseball Hall of Fame, stated the release, Foley’s, created the Irish American Baseball Hall of Fame to recognize players, managers, executives, journalists, and entertainers of Irish descent.

Inductees are chosen based on a combination of factors, including impact on the game, popularity on and off the field, contributions to society, connections to the Irish community, and, of course, ancestry.

Stated the release: “The game of baseball has welcomed immigrants from its earliest days, when an estimated 30 percent of players claimed Irish heritage.

“Many of the game’s biggest stars at the turn of the 20th century were Irish immigrants or their descendants, including Michael “King” Kelly, Roger Connor (the home run king before Babe Ruth), Eddie Collins, Big Ed Walsh and managers Connie Mack and John McGraw.”

Shaun Clancy, an amateur baseball historian, created the hall after learning about the rich heritage of Irish Americans during the sport’s history. He decided to celebrate his roots and those who helped make the game great by creating a shrine to Irish Americans in baseball which first opened in in 2008.

More at www.foleysny.com.

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