Photograph Bob Gaver

"I am proud to be the first Negro to manage in the International League," said new Bison skipper Hector Lopez. Added President Bob Short of the Senators, "This is baseball, the American game; we don't pick by color." Lopez could have been proud, but certainly he was not happy about what happened. Again trying to play its home games in two parks, the team was unsettled from the beginning. What is more, it was inept. As a team, it batted .256, lowest in the league, and hit only 91 home runs, 62 fewer than in '68. Outfielder Dick Smith hit .325 in 84 games; second baseman Frank Coggins at .296 was the leading regular. Two pitchers, Jan Dukes and George Woodson, each managed to win 11 games. It all added up to another seventh place finish. On July 19, hoodlums, armed with knives, invaded the Buffalo club house at War Memorial, causing management to postpone the scheduled game because of "threatening weather." The players at first refused to play any more games at the East Buffalo park, but later relented and agreed to play Sunday games there". *Buffalo Bisons