Bill (a.k.a. Willie) Foster, a former Negro Leagues star and a National Baseball Hall of Fame member since 1996, was known to have grown up around Lorman and to have served as the Dean of Men at Alcorn State for many years. He died in Lorman in 1978. Foster’s place of birth at the time of his Hall of Fame induction was listed as Calvert, Texas. Date of birth: June 12, 1904. Apparently, some new information surfaced. The Hall of Fame currently lists Foster’s place of birth as Rodney, Miss., which is now a virtual ghost town located along the Mississippi River between Fayette and Port Gibson. So, it seems like a welcome is in order for the third Mississippi native in the Hall of Fame. Negro Leagues outfielder Cool Papa Bell (Starkville) and broadcaster Red Barber (Columbus) are the other two. Foster, a left-hander, pitched for some of the great Negro Leagues clubs of the 1920s and ’30s.
Make it four different organizations in four years for Jarrett Hoffpauir. The former Southern Miss star from Natchez recently signed a minor league deal for 2012 with the Washington Nationals. He spent last season in the San Diego system, batting .281 in 91 games at Triple-A Tucson while battling injuries. He came up with St. Louis, which drafted the right-handed hitting infielder in 2004. He got some big league time with the Cardinals in ’09, then was claimed off waivers by Toronto after that season. The Blue Jays also gave him a look in The Show, but he was taken by the Padres off waivers after 2010. He is a .285 career minor league hitter and has some power. Plus, he’s a versatile infielder. He has a chance to claim a roster spot with a rapidly improving Nationals club.