Did Y’all Know… Toni Stone

Remembering a legend in baseball during BHM

Toni Stone

One of the names not mentioned enough in baseball is Toni Stone. The Minnesota Sports Hall of Fame recipient is the first woman to play professional baseball as a regular in Major League Baseball.

Born Marcenia Lyle Stone, she battled extreme sexism and racism in America, and still went on to make a big enough name for herself to carve out a place in Black history and history in general. Stone is long praised for her contributions to the baseball world.

Who is Toni Stone?

Stone was born in 1921 in Bluefield, West Virginia, amid an extreme inequality period in America where the color barrier was arguably stronger than ever in American sports.

Stone, in her younger years, moved to St. Paul, Minnesota. Here, she developed her love for the game and evolved athletically and skillfully on local playgrounds and baseball fields.

At 15, she rostered on the all-male semi-pro Twin Cities Colored Giants, breaking gender conventions.

In 1946, Stone marked the start of her professional career after taking an at-bat for the San Francisco Sea Lions.

The greatest moment of her career came in 1953 when she filled the spot of future Hall-of-Famer Hank Aaron as the second baseman for the Indianapolis Clowns, one of the League’s most prestigious teams.

Google recently honored Stone with this animation. / Artist Monique Wray

Why She Deserves To Be Honored

Stone overcame gender and racial discrimination to become a trailblazer in Major League Baseball. In the face of emotionally distressing taunts during her debut season with the Clowns, Stone hit a single off of Satchel Paige, who is widely considered the greatest pitcher in Negro League history. Stone, who played the game alongside greats such as Jackie Robinson, retired from professional baseball in 1954 as a legend.

Stone’s impact on baseball is remembered today and is the reason she deservingly has March 6th declared as “Toni Stone Day” in St. Paul, Minnesota. In 1993 she was inducted into the International Women’s Sports Hall of Fame.

Thank you, Toni Stone!


By Jeremiah Griffith, Junior, Noble Academy

Instagram: theballtalk01

Written by Jeremiah Griffith

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