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Guthrie sports museum helps honor baseball pioneer

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The Oklahoma Territorial Sports Museum, Oklahoma City RedHawks and Hertz recognized and honored Patty Cox Roloff last Friday evening at the Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark for her career in baseball.

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Patty Cox Roloff signs an autograph for a fan during the OKC RedHawks game with the Iowa Cubs.

The event was part of the Hertz Grand Slam Mission, combining youth, teamwork, and education in an initiative to provide opportunities for coaches and students in Oklahoma City and surrounding communities, as well as serving to honor the city’s rich baseball history.

“We’re glad Hertz has given us this opportunity to recognize Patty Cox Roloff and her groundbreaking career,” RedHawks President/General Manager Michael Byrnes said. “Patty was a pioneer not only in Oklahoma, but within the entire sports industry.”

Roloff received an award from Hertz and the RedHawks. She delivered the ceremonial first pitch and later signed autographs on the concourse following an on-field presentation.

The Territorial Capital Sports Museum, located in Guthrie, added to the festivities as fans visited a variety of memobrilla on the stadium’s concourse throughout the game. Fans were able to take in baseball uniforms, baseball bats statues from former Oklahoma players.

Richard Hendricks with the Territorial Sports Museum accepts a $500 donation from Hertz.

Richard Hendricks with the Territorial Sports Museum accepts a $500 donation from Hertz.

In addition, Hertz donated $500 to the Guthrie museum.

Roloff was born in Kansas City, Mo., but graduated from Classen High School in Oklahoma City, as well as from the University of Oklahoma.

She owned an advertising agency with her future husband Bing Hampton and eventually was hired by the 89ers as advertising manager in 1975. Roloff quickly moved up the team’s ranks, and was named general manager in 1977 to become the first female general manager in minor league baseball. She and her husband were part of a group that purchased the team in 1978, and Roloff went on to be named baseball’s “Woman of the Year” that season. In 1978 and 1979, she was voted American Association Executive of the Year.

Roloff, 87, currently lives in Oklahoma City with her husband, Bob. She has three sons and one daughter.

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Categories: Community, Sports
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