Baseball Legends Coming to Bush Library

By: Joe Brown Email
By: Joe Brown Email

Some of the biggest names in baseball are coming to the George Bush Presidential Library Center next month.

The President's Leadership Forum will host Jeff Bagwell, Bob Costas, Drayton McLane, Tommy Lasorda and Joe Morgan on Monday, March 3 at 5:30 p.m. at the Annenberg Presidential Conference Center

The program will include remarks by President George H.W. Bush and his guests followed by an audience question-and-answer session.

Sponsored by the George Bush Presidential Library Foundation, the President's Leadership Series brings various guests to the George Bush Presidential Library Center with the purpose of exposing the students at Texas A&M and the general public to the leadership challenges and experiences that the officials have encountered.

Jeff Bagwell, the Houston Astros' all-time home run leader, now represents the franchise as special assistant to the general manager. Prior to his retirement, Jeff hit 449 home runs and drove in 1,529 runs in the 15 seasons that he played for the Astros from 1991-2005. He is the only player in Houston franchise history to win the Most Valuable Player Award, earning the honors for the National League in 1994 after hitting .368 with 39 home runs and 116 RBI. He is also the only Astro to win the NL Rookie of the Year Award, capturing that distinction in 1991 by hitting .294 with 15 home runs and 82 RBI. A four-time All-Star, Jeff is the career leader for the club in home runs, RBI, and walks, while ranking second in club history with 2,314 hits.

Bob Costas is a 12-time Emmy Award-winning sportscaster for HBO Sports. He is the host of "Costas Now," a hard-hitting, intelligent and topical sports series. During his early years at HBO, Costas hosted "On The Record With Bob," which established itself as one of the network television's most respected programs. In 2006, Mr. Costas was presented the Sports Emmy for Outstanding Studio Host, marking the fifth straight year that he has received that honor from the National Academy of Arts & Sciences. A 26-year veteran of NBC Sports, he has hosted seven Olympics and been prominently involved in virtually every major sports event, including World Series, Super Bowl and NBA Finals broadcasts. His book "Fair Ball: A Fan's Case for Baseball," spent several weeks on The New York Times bestseller list.

Tommy Lasorda has been with the Dodger organization for 58-plus years. He began his career as a pitcher in 1948 with the Schenectady Blue Jays. He became a Dodger scout in 1961 and then a minor league manager in 1965. He won five pennants and finished second twice and third once. He was promoted to the Dodgers as a coach; and in 1977-78, he became the first NL manager to win pennants his first two seasons. In 1981, Lasorda's Dodgers won their division, beat the Expos in the League Championship Series and then the Yankees in the World Series. He managed the Dodgers to division titles in 1983 and 1985. In 1997, Lasorda was elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in his first year of eligibility.

Drayton McLane, Jr. is Chairman - McLane Group and Chairman & CEO of the Houston Astros Baseball Club. A graduate of Baylor University, Mr. McLane serves as Chairman of the Board of Trustees - Scott & White Memorial Hospital, as Executive Committee Member - Major League Baseball and Vice President of The Executive Board - Boy Scouts of America. He is also active on the Bush School of Government & Public Service Advisory Board at Texas A&M University and serves on the board of the Greater Houston Partnership, the United Way of the Gulf Coast of Texas and the Baylor College of Medicine. Mr. McLane was a member of the Baylor Board of Regents and as the Chairman of the Board from 2002 - 2004. Mr. McLane and the Astros Baseball Club are the sponsors of "Born to Play Ball" - the exhibit in the Ansary Gallery of American History at the George Bush Presidential Library & Museum.

Joe Morgan entered the ranks of professional baseball in 1963 when he signed with the Houston Colt 45's and joined the Houston Astros in 1964. He was named National League Rookie of the Year in 1965. Joe Morgan was traded to the Cincinnati Reds in 1972. Honors bestowed him during this period are Most Valuable Player in the NL in 1975 and 1976, the Commissioner's Award in 1976 for most fan votes for the All-Star Game and, in 1982, was the NL's Comeback Player of the Year. Before ending his career in 1984, Mr. Morgan established a new career home run record for a second baseman and is currently second on that list with 268 home runs. He played in four World Series, winning two championships, and played in seven league championship series. After 22 seasons, Morgan retired with a lifetime batting average of .271 and a fielding average of .981. He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1990 on the first ballot. He is a two-time Sports Emmy Award winner and serves as the analyst for ESPN's season-long exclusive Sunday Night Baseball telecasts.


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