In Black America Podcast: Former MLB Pitcher Scipio Spinks
On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Scipio Spinks, former major league pitcher. Spinks has played baseball all his life. As a child he played little league, but when he got to high school, his school didn’t have a team. No problem – he played semi-pro ball on the weekends through his high school days, until he signed with the Houston Astros in 1966, becoming the first African American high school player to sign out of the Chicago area. In 1969 the big call came, and he pitched his first game as a major leaguer. He was traded to the St. Louis Cardinals in 1972 where he played two years before being traded to the Chicago Cubs. In 1972 he slid into home plate, where Johnny Bench was waiting and injured his knee – basically a career ending injury. He retired in 1979 – but baseball was by no means over. Now, and for the past thirty-three years, he travels the country as a much-respected scout for the Houston Astros.