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Manfred enjoys Negro Leagues Museum visit

Commissioner appreciates historical impact to game of baseball

NEW YORK -- The Negro Leagues Baseball Museum is a must-see for any fan visiting Kansas City, and now the Commissioner of Major League Baseball can be counted among the droves who have visited the historic building.

Commissioner Rob Manfred spent part of his afternoon on Wednesday, prior to Game 2 of the World Series, touring the museum with NLBM president Bob Kendrick, who gave Manfred a special guided tour.

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"I thoroughly enjoyed my visit to the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum while we were in Kansas City for the start of the World Series," Manfred said. "The legacy of the Negro Leagues represents such an important part of our game's history, and Bob Kendrick and his staff have done a fantastic job of keeping that legacy alive, especially among the many young people who walk through their doors every year."

The Negro Leagues Baseball Museum, located in the heart of the 18th and Vine historic district that was the center for black culture and life in Kansas City from the late 1800s through the 1960s, tells the story of the formation and existence of the Negro Leagues, established in 1920 and a showcase for some of the best players to ever wear a baseball uniform.

The last Negro Leagues teams folded in the early 1960s, but their legacy lives on through the surviving players and the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum.

Kendrick, who has welcomed scores of athletes and celebrities to the museum, said the Commissioner told him it was "one of the most enjoyable hours" that he had during his trip to Kansas City. Kendrick also said Manfred was amused by the story of Hank Aaron being nicknamed Pork Chops by his Indianapolis Clowns teammates.

"'I can't wait to ask Hank about that when I see him in New York on Saturday,'" Kendrick recalled Manfred telling him.

Manfred also told Kendrick he was looking forward to making a return visit in the future.

"I'm thrilled that Commissioner Manfred took time out of his busy scheduled and accepted my invitation to tour the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum," Kendrick said. "There's no doubt that his presence sends a powerful message about the importance of this chapter of baseball and American history, and the important role the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum plays as the caretaker of this history."

Alyson Footer is a national correspondent for Follow her on Twitter @alysonfooter.
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