On Sept. 14 at NYC's Citi Field, the New York Mets recognized the life work of lesbian baseball pioneer Maybelle Blair, 96, with the inaugural Amazin' Mets Foundation Legacy Award, according to a Major League Baseball item.
"This award means something that you'll never realize to me," Blair said. "They have opened the door up to us women. We are now executives, we are the owners. We are a little bit of everything in baseball, and if a girl is as good as a man, we should be able to perform that duty."
The honor "celebrates the people and organizations in the baseball community that are making a difference and driving impactful change, on and off the field." The Amazin Mets Foundation presented Blair with a $5,000 check to Athlete Allya "nonprofit organization that educates athletic communities on how to understand obstacles for LGBTQ+ people in sports and build inclusive environments."
After posing for photos with Mets manager Buck Showalter, Amazin' Mets Foundation president Alex Cohen and a group of women Mets employees, Blair took part in a series of meet-and-greets with the Mets' women and LGBTQ+ employee resource groups. (Blair came out as part of the LGBTQ+ community in 2022, at age 95.)
Blair debuted in the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League as a pitcher for the Peoria Redwings in 1948, leaving after an injury but later returning; she played until the league folded in 1954. Also, she was a consultant for the Amazon Prime show A League of Their Own, an updated adaptation of the 1992 film that was recently cancelled; and she works tirelessly for the International Women's Baseball Center.