Negro League Legend Bobo Smalls Announces New Memorabilia Product Line
Nathan “Bobo" Smalls Junior's Negro League Baseball Career spanned an impressive 22 seasons (1965 - 1986). Smalls played for the Indianapolis Clowns, the last Negro Baseball Barnstorming Team. His tenure as a Clown was the longest in the team's history.
Smalls, a left handed pitcher, threw some serious heat in his heyday. His fastballwas consistently clocked in the high 90's mph on the radar gun. Even more impressive was his ability to hold four baseballs at once and pitch them to four different batters with one throw. He is the only ball player on record known to have accomplished this impressive feat.
Looking to cash in on the multi billion dollar Sports Memorabilia Industry, Bobo recently announced the creation of his own Baseball Memorabilia Product Line. He has opted to bypass all middle men by selling his product line directly through his website. The site lists a number of different low cost memorabilia items autographed by Bobo. Some of the items available for purchase on the site include Autographed Bobo Smalls baseball cards ($5), Autographed Bobo Smalls T-Shirts ($25), Autographed Bobo Smalls Baseball Caps ($28), and Autographed Bobo Smalls Baseball Jerseys.
“It's about recognition," he said, “for a handful of players that never got mentioned. It's some of my legacy I can leave behind for everyone. So they can all have a piece of black baseball."
Bobo carries the torch for black baseball. When Negro Baseball broke up, the Clowns were the last team left. They continued on as a barnstorming team performing exhibition matches. They were often referred to as the Harlem Globetrotters of baseball. He says that his line of products helps preserve the history of Negro League Baseball. Several other veterans of the Negro Leagues have created a line of their own, but none of them have done a line personalized like this.
I-Deal Casuals is producing the items for Bobo. Owner Chad Wallace created the Web site and also designed the logo of the hand holding the four baseballs.
“There is a lot of interest in Bobo," Wallace said. “I'm trying to bring his ideas to light so people can see him and black baseball and what it was all about."
Bobo has more items in mind he would like to eventually include. There has been a great response to the line so far and he has gotten several letters from all over the world inquiring about it. “We'll see if everything goes well," he said. “Then the sky's the limit."
To further keep the memory alive, there is a book currently in the works about Bobo's memories and the last chapter of black baseball. The book, entitled The Last One, is scheduled for release this summer.