Main Content Region

Latino Baseball History Project

Chayo Rodriguez and Los Chicanos
Chayo Rodriguez and Los Chicanos

The History:

The project began as a collaboration between Terry Cannon, Executive Director of the Baseball Reliquary, and Cesar Caballero, who was then an Associate Library Dean at California State University, Los Angeles. Initially they planned an exhibit to educate students about the history of Mexican American baseball in the Los Angeles area and, perhaps, to host a related event. The response from students, faculty, and the community was nothing short of amazing. Men who played on the Mexican American teams had fascinating stories to tell and soon California State University faculty developed an oral history class around Latino baseball history.

Timeline Accomplishments
  • 2004: Terry Cannon and Cesar Caballero collaborate to create a library exhibit on Mexican American baseball history.
  • 2005: Francisco Balderrama, a history professor at California State University, Los Angeles, creates an oral history class around the history of Mexican American baseball. Student interest is so intense that the class must be expanded to accomodate more students.
  • 2006: The project receives a $5,000 grant from the California Council for the Humanities to fund the exhibit.
  • March 26-June 9, 2006: The exhibit, Mexican-American Baseball in Los Angeles: From the Barrios to the Big Leagues, debuts at the John F. Kennedy Memorial Library at California State University, Los Angeles. The exhibit then travels to other California venues including the Los Angeles Trade-Technical College, the Pomona Public Library, and a community organization in Brawley.
  • 2008: The project moves to California State University, San Bernardino and expands. It is renamed: The Latino Baseball History Project: The Southern California Experience to bring in materials on all Latinos involved in baseball in Southern California.
  • 2009: Pfau Library at California State University San Bernardino, hosted a Latino Baseball Reunion.
  • 2010: California State University professor Cherstin Lyon taught an oral history class in which students did research on Latino baseball history, conducted oral histories with players, and created exhibits to inform the campus community about Latino baseball history.
  • July 7, 2010: Pfau Library at California State University San Bernardino hosts the 2nd Latino Baseball Reunion.
  • February 21, 2011: Mexican American Baseball in Los Angeles, by Francisco E. Balderrama and Richard A. Santillan, forward by Samuel O. Regalado is published by Arcadia Publishing.
  • July 6, 2011: Pfau Library at California State University San Bernardino hosts the 3rd Latino Baseball Reunion.
  • March 19 - June 23, 2012:California State Polytechnic University at Pomona hosts the exhibit: Mexican American Women and Softball 1930-1959: A League of Their Own and the Struggle for Gender Equality.
  • May 5, 2012: First pitch ceremony at Fiscalini Field in San Bernardino to honor players from the Latino Baseball History Project.
  • May 7, 2012: Mexican American Baseball in the Inland Empire by Richard A. Santillan, Mark A. Ocegueda and Terry A. Cannon, forward by Jose M. Alamillo is published by Arcadia Publishing.
  • May 29, 2012: California State Polytechnic University at Pomona hosts a luncheon, panel discussions, and a first-pitch ceremony honoring Mexican American women in baseball and softball from 1930-1959.
  • May 31, 2012: California State Polytechnic University at Pomona library hosts a panel discussion of current research on Mexican American women, softball, and issues of gender.
  • August 1, 2012: California State University San Bernardino hosts the 4th Latino Baseball History Project Reunion!
  • August 28, 2012: Mitla Café in San Bernardino hosts a reception in honor of Mexican American baseball in the Inland Empire.
  • August 28, 2012: First pitch ceremony in honor of former Inland Empire barrio teams at San Manuel Stadium in San Bernardino.
  • March 1-31, 2013: Latina Baseball History Exhibit at California State University San Bernardino.
  • April 8, 2013: Mexican American Baseball in Orange County by Richard A. Santillan, Susan C. Luevano, Luis F. Fernandez and Angelina F. Veyna, forward by Gustavo Arellano is published by Arcadia Publishing.
  • June 28 - September 10, 2013:California State Polytechnic University at Pomona exhibit on Mexican American men and women who played ball in the armed forces, especially during World War II and the Korean War.
  • August 27, 2013: California State Polytechnic University at Pomona hosts a luncheon, panel discussions, and a first-pitch ceremony focused on Mexican American men and women who played baseball while serving in the armed forces.
  • September 2013: California State Polytechnic University at Pomona hosts the exhibit: Mexican Americans in the Military, 1930s to 1970s: From the Battle Fields to the Baseball Fields.
  • September 4, 2013: California State Polytechnic University at Pomona hosts an event in honor of Mexican American veterans who played ball while in the military.
  • October 2013: California State University San bernardino hosts the exhibit: Mexican Americans in the Military, 1930s to 1970s: From the Battle Fields to the Baseball Fields.
  • October 30, 2013: California State University San Bernardino hosts an event in honor of Mexican American veterans who played ball while in the military.
  • Fall 2013: Chapman University's Leatherby Libraries hosts the exhibit: Mexican American Women in Softball: A League of Their Own.
  • December 9, 2013: Mexican American Baseball in the Central Coast by Richard A. Santillan, Christopher Docter, Anna Bermudez, Eddie Navarro and Alan O’Connor, forward by Jorge Iber is published by Arcadia Publishing.
  • June 23 - September 14, 2014:California State Polytechnic University at Pomona hosts the exhibit: The Boys and Girls of Summer: Mexican American Baseball and Softball in the Pomona Valley, 1930s-1970s.
  • August 5, 2014: California State Polytechnic University at Pomona hosts the 4th Annual Baseball Exhibit with a luncheon, panel discussions, and a first-pitch ceremony focused on Mexican American teams and players of the Pomona Valley and East Los Angeles.
  • September 1, 2014: Mexican American Baseball in the Pomona Valley by Richard A. Santillan, Mark A. Ocegueda, Alfonso Ledesma, Sandra L. Uribe and Alejo L. Vasquez, forward by Vicki Ruiz is published by Arcadia Publishing.
  • March 2, 2015: Exhibit on Latina baseball and softball players opens at Broome Library in California State University Channel Islands.
  • March 25, 2015: Broome Library in California State University Channel Islands hosts a panel discussion, certificate presentation and first-pitch ceremony honoring Latina softball and baseball players.
  • July 20, 2015: Mexican American Baseball in the Alamo Region by Grace Guajardo Charles, Gregory Lyndon Garrett, Jorge Iber, Alberto Rodriguez and Richard Sandillan, forward by Arnoldo De Leon was published by Arcadia Publishing.
  • October 1, 2015: California State University San Bernardino hosts an exhibit: Mexican American Baseball and Softball in the High Desert.
  • October 19, 2015: Mexican American Baseball in the San Fernando Valley by Richard A. Santillan, Victoria C. Norton, Christopher Docter, Monica Ortez, and Richard Arroyo, forward by Everto Ruiz is published by Arcadia Publishing.

Since at California State University San Bernardino the Latino Baseball History Project has been very busy:

  • Tuesday, May 12, 2009 Inaugural Reception of the Latino Baseball History Project
  • Wednesday, July 29, 2009 1st Annual Old Timers Reunion
  • Friday, October 9, 2009 Pasadena Central Library - Pasadena Art Night
  • Saturday, March 20, 2010 Highland Little League 50th Anniversary
  • Sunday, March 21, 2010 Highland Softball Opening Night
  • Monday, March 29, 2010 LEAD Conference Information table
  • April, 2010 Project passed its review by CSUSB Institutional Review Board
  • May, 2010 CSUSB Introduction to Oral History class begins researching
  • May-June, 2010 CSUSB Introduction to Oral History class collects new interviews
  • July 7, 2010 2nd Annual Latino Baseball Reunion
  • November 1 — December 22, 2010 Exhibit at Cal State San Bernardino: “Legends of Mexican American Baseball: Jim ‘Chayo’ Rodriguez.” San Bernardino County Sun article
  • January 28, 2011 Article in the Press-Enterprise
  • January 29, 2011 Event: Baseball Memorabilia Needed!
  • February 21, 2011 Mexican American Baseball in Los Angeles by Francisco E. Balderrama and Richard A. Santillan, with a foreword by Samuel O. Regalado is published.
  • March, 2011 Exhibit at Palm Desert Campus Mary Stuart Rogers Gateway Building : “Legends of Mexican American Baseball: Jim ‘Chayo’ Rodriguez.”
  • March 2 - 31, 2011 The Baseball Reliquary and Latino Heritage Presents a Collaborative Exhibition at the Pasadena Central Library (See article Barrio Baseball: The Los Angeles Story) More Information for the Pasadena Central Library event
  • March 13, 2011 A Landmark Event in East Los Angeles Baseball History (See Mexican American Baseball in Los Angeles Discussion and Book Signing)
  • July 6, 2011 Third Latino Baseball History Project Reunion with a panel discussion that included Al Vasquez, Jose Felipe, Al Padilla, Marcelino Saucedo, Danny Carrasco, and Jim Segovia. Event Flyer Riverside Press Enterprise interview with Danny Carrasco
  • March 19—June 23, 2012 Exhibit at Cal Poly Pomona: Mexican American Women and Softball 1930-1959: A League of Their Own and the Struggle for Gender Equality.
  • May 5, 2012 Tribute to the players who make up southern California’s Latino baseball history, including a First Pitch Ceremony and a between innings slide show of images at Fiscalini Field.
  • May 7, 2012 Mexican American Baseball in the Inland Empire by Richard A. Santillan, Mark A. Ocegueda, and Terry A. Canon, with a foreword by Jose M. Alamillo is published.
  • May 19, 2012 Beaumont’s local youth baseball/softball closing ceremonies include speakers from the Latino Baseball History Project as well as a book signing.
  • May 29, 2012 Panel discussion of players followed by a First Pitch Ceremony at Cal Poly Pomona.
  • July 25, 2012 San Gabriel Valley Tribune News article: Books Tell Stories of Mexican American Baseball in the San Gabriel Valley and Beyond.
  • August 1, 2012 Fourth Latino Baseball History Reunion.
  • August 19, 2012 Premiere of Not Exactly Cooperstown, a documentary which includes a segment on the Latino Baseball History Project.
  • August 28, 2012 Mitla Cafè reception for Mexican American Baseball in the Inland Empire, followed by a San Manuel Stadium First Pitch Ceremony.
  • March 1—31, 2013 Exhibit: Mexican-American Women if Softball: A League of Their Own at Pfau Library California State University San Bernardino.
  • April 8, 2013 Mexican American Baseball in Orange County by Richard A. Santillan, Susan C. Luevano, Luis F. Fernandez, and Angelina F. Veyna, with a foreword by Gustavo Arellano is published.
  • May 31, 2013 Panel discussion of scholars who are researching women in Mexican American baseball.
  • June 1—31, 2013 Exhibit on Mexican-American baseball history in the greater Pomona Valley from the 1920s-1960s at the Pomona Public Library. Daily Bulletin article
  • June 8, 2013 the Pomona Public Library hosts a book signing, a First Pitch Ceremony, and a panel discussion on Mexican-American baseball history in the greater Pomona Valley.
  • June 22, 2013 The Neighborhoods of Baseball Symposium, a joint project of the Baseball Reliquary, the Latino Baseball History Project, and Plaza de la Raza (made possible with support from Cal Humanities) is held at the Plaza de la Raza in Los Angeles.
  • June 28—September 10, 2013Exhibit: Mexican Americans in the Military, 1930s to 1970s: From the Battle Fields to the Baseball Fields at Cal Poly Pomona. Cal Poly Pomona PolyCentric University News Center exhibit article
  • August—September 2013 Exhibit: Mexican Americans in the Military, 1930s to 1970s: From the Battle Fields to the Baseball Fields at Pfau Library, Cal State San Bernardino.
  • August—September 2013 Exhibit: Mexican American Women in Softball: A League of Their Own at Chapman University’s Leatherby Libraries.Leatherby Libraries flyer
  • August 27, 2013 Panel discussion followed by First Pitch Ceremony at Cal Poly Pomona.
  • September 1, 2013 Mexican American Baseball in the Pomona Valley by Richard A. Santillan, Mark A. Ocegueda, Alfonso Ledesma, Sandra L. Uribe, and Alejo L. Vasquez, with a foreword by Vicki Ruiz is published.
  • September 4, 2013 Mexican Americans in the Military, 1930s to 1970s: From the Battle Fields to the Baseball Fields program held at Cal Poly Pomona. Stars and Stripes article
  • October 30, 2013 Mexican Americans in the Military, 1930s to 1970s: From the Battle Fields to the Baseball Fields program held at Cal State San Bernardino.
  • Dec. 9, 2013 Mexican American Baseball in the Central Coast by Richard A. Santillan, Christopher Docter, Anna Bermudez, and Alan O’Connor, with a foreword by Jorge Iber is published.
  • June 23—September 14, 2014Exhibit: Mexican American Baseball in the Pomona Valley. Cal Poly Pomona PolyCentric University News Center article
  • August 5, 2014 Celebration of Pomona Valley players and their families at Cal Poly Pomona.(Includes a luncheon, panel discussions, and a first-pitch ceremony featuring players from Pomona and East Los Angeles.)
  • September 1, 2014 Mexican American Baseball in the Pomona Valley by Richard A. Santillan, Mark A. Ocegueda, Alfonso Ledesma, Sandra L. Uribe, and Alejo L. Vasquez, with a forward by Vicki Ruiz is published.
  • March 2, 2015 Exhibit: Latina Baseball and Softball Players opens at Broome Library in California State University Channel Islands.
  • March 25, 2015 Celebration of Latina baseball and softball players: including a panel discussion, presentation of certificates, and first pitch ceremony is held at Broome Library in California State University Channel Islands.
  • July 20, 2015 Mexican American Baseball in the Alamo Region by Richard A. Santillan, Jorge Iber, Grace G. Charles, Alberto Rodriguez, and Gregory Garrett, with a foreword by Aroldo De Leon will be published!
  • October 1, 2015 Exhibit: Mexican American Baseball and Softball in the High Desert.
  • October 19, 2015 Mexican American Baseball in the San Fernando Valley by Richard A. Santillan, Victoria C. Norton, Christopher Docter, Monica Ortez, and Richard Arroyo, with a forward by Everto Ruiz is published by Arcadia Publishing.