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The Breitbard Hall of Fame, Class of 2007 will see Emil "Buzzie" Bavasi inducted this evening in San Diego.
Bavasi helped bring Major League Baseball to San Diego when the National League awarded the city a franchise. The Padres began play in the 1969 season with Bavasi the president and part-owner. Bavasi and C. Arnholt Smith, the franchise’s first owner, began efforts in 1967 to land an expansion franchise. He served the Padres as president from 1969 to 1977 and remained a San Diego resident with a home in La Jolla. His baseball career began with the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1939. He came West with the Dodgers as Southern California’s first Major League Baseball team. He was the Dodgers’ vice-president and GM from 1951 until he resigned to join the effort to bring Major League Baseball to San Diego.
Bavasi, now 92 and still living in La Jolla, is being inducted into the Breitbard Hall of Fame tonight for his pioneering role in bringing Major League Baseball to San Diego. He was inducted into the Padres Hall of Fame in 2001.