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Claire Smith gets inducted into the Philadelphia Sports Hall of Fame

Jean Fruth / National Baseball Hall of Fame

Claire Smith, the legendary baseball writer, knew that it would not be easy venturing into a field which was dominated by male caucasians. After more than four decades, she finally got the recognition she deserved and was inducted to the Philadelphia Sports Hall of Fame on November 1, a little over a year after she was honored in Cooperstown.

She was the first woman writer who covered Major League Baseball. This was such an accomplishment for her and all African-American women everywhere. If you are into sports betting and have already tried your hands with the top online sportsbook, you would know just how popular baseball is as a game. Most sports bettors do not shy away from betting on their favorite matches.

Claire Smith and her story

On many occasions, Smith has gone ahead to be compared to Jackie Robinson. It was her father William Smith who gave her the insight to become what she is today. When she was enrolling in school Smith wanted to be a lawyer and also take a course in politics. However, after a few courses, politics was no longer a choice for her.

Smith had a love for baseball and sports. Her father gave her the financial backing she needed for her to pursue her dreams. She first enrolled to Temple to pursue PR as a major but later switched up to journalism.

Smith grew up looking up at her idol Jackie Robinson. She got her first job at Bucks County Courier Times. She was still a part-time student at the moment. She was able to grow and she covered government meetings and concerts.

She later moved to the Philadelphia Bulletin in the 1970s after the sports editor made it clear that women could not cover sports. At the new station, she was able to make it clear to the new sports editor that she wanted to write about baseball.

She was given the opportunity and soon she was covering Penn football and men and women’s basketball. She stayed with the Philadelphia Bulletin until the paper folded in 1982. Sadly she had only written two baseball stories during her time there.

A few months later she joined the New York Times. Although she faced a lot of hurdles it was here that she was able to go write her bet story. In 1982 she ended up on the New York Yankees’ beat where she remained for the next seven years.

One of the most memorable moments was when she was excluded from the San Diego clubhouse during the 1984 playoffs. She was physically pushed out because she was only a woman.

However, former first baseman Steve Garvey stood up for her and so did Padres pitcher Rich Gossage. They all advocated that whoever had the proper credentials had access to the clubhouse.

Last year she became the first woman to receive the prestigious J.G Taylor Spink Award. She was later inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame. Smith has gone through a lot but she has become a trailblazer for sportswomen everywhere.

 


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