Leaguer of the Month
Born: August 4, 1925 in Greenwood, Mississippi
Died: April 2, 1970 in Flint, Michigan
HT: 6’-2”; WT: 180
Batted: left; Threw: right
Positions: pitcher, outfield
Years played: 1942-1960
Teams; Indianapolis Clowns, Chicago American Giants, Homestead
Grays, Louisville Buckeyes, Mexico, Cleveland Indians (Major
Hoskins is a fascinating player because he was a dominant outfielder
in the Negro Leagues, but made it to the Major Leagues as a
Hoskins was born in Greenwood, Mississippi, but moved to Flint,
Michigan when he was 11, and made his name by dominating the
Flint City League as a teenager by posting averages of .438,
.395,.350 and .412 in four seasons. His outstanding hitting and
outfield play drew the attention of the Ethiopian Clowns, who
signed him to his first Negro League contract in 1942. Hoskins
was a good right handed pitcher on a Clowns' staff with Roosevelt
greatest fame in the Negro Leagues came with the Homestead
Grays. Hoskins joined the Grays in 1944, mainly as a pitcher,
but he hit so well that he was switched to the outfield and
only had two pitching decisions that season (he won both of
them). Hoskins batted around .350 on the year and became a
full-fledged member of the Grays murderer's row which included
Buck Leonard, Josh Gibson, Sam Bankhead and Jerry Benjamin.
In 1945, Hoskins was arguably the Grays' best pitcher, and
still batted in the heart of the lineup.
In 1947, Hoskins returned to Flint to play for an All-Star team
against the Major Leagues' Detroit Tigers, and Hoskins collected
three hits, and in 1948, Hoskins entered Organized Baseball when
he was signed by Grand Rapids Jets of the Class A Central League,
where he played outfield and nearly batted .400!
1949, Hoskins returned to the Negro Leagues where he joined
the Louisville Buckeyes and made the East-West All-Star game,
pinch hitting once during the game, but at the end of the season
he said good-bye to the Negro Leagues for good.
1950-1952, Hoskins played with several Minor League teams,
and posted some impressive statistics, despite dividing his
time between the mound and outfield; In '50 he went 0-2 but
batted .318, in '51 he went 5-1 and batted .286, in '52 he
went 22-10 and batted .328 for the Dallas Eagles--the first
black player in Texas League history.
1953, Hoskins was signed by the Cleveland Indians; he was 9-3
on the mound, and was the top-hitting pitcher on the team,
batting .259 with two doubles and one homer. Hoskins was 0-1
in '54 and ended his Major League career with a 9-4 record,
3.81 ERA and .227 average.
resumed his Minor League career and became one of the most
popular player in Texas League history. In '58 Hoskins was
17-8 for Dallas and was described in local papers as "magical," "magnificent," and "phenomenal."
the '60 season, Hoskins retired at age 35.
died in 1970, and was survived by his wife Cora, and daughters
Ruchelle, Lynda and Carolyn.
was elected to the Greater Flint Afro-American Hall of Fame in
*some information compiled from
the Flint Public Library
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