Ohio Legislature OKs bill honoring 1st black major leaguer

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — A bill designating Oct. 7 as Moses Fleetwood Walker Day in honor of the first black major league baseball player has cleared Ohio's Legislature and is headed to Gov. John Kasich's (KAY'-sihks) desk.

Walker was born in Mount Pleasant, Ohio, in 1856. After a college career at Oberlin College and the University of Michigan, Walker was signed by the American Association's Toledo Blue Stockings as a catcher. He played 42 games in 1884 before being cut because of an injury.

He subsequently played in the minor leagues but never got a chance to return to the majors when both the American Association and National League banned black players in 1889.

Democratic state Rep. David Leland, of Columbus, says a day honoring Walker celebrates "the fight for equality in our society."