Widow of McGuff named O'Neil recipient

Widow of McGuff named O'Neil recipient

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Kay McGuff, widow of the prominent Kansas City journalist Joe McGuff, will be the honoree as the eighth season of the Buck O'Neil Legacy Seat program begins in 2014.

The Royals have paid tribute to O'Neil since 2007 by filling "Buck's seat" behind home plate with community members who embody his vibrant spirit. O'Neil played for and managed the Kansas City Monarchs, was a Major League coach and scout and co-founder of the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum as well as ambassador-at-large for the game. He died in 2006.

McGuff, as sports editor and columnist for the Kansas City Star, played an important role in obtaining a Major League expansion team for the city after the A's departed for Oakland in 1967. The Royals began play in 1969 and this will be their 45th season.

After joining the Star in 1948, McGuff became sports editor in 1966. Twenty years later, he was named editor and vice president of the Star, a position he held until retiring in 1992. He was voted into the writers' wing of the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1985, the year the Royals won the World Series. He threw out of the first pitch for the seventh game of the Series. The press box at Kauffman Stadium is named after McGuff.

From 1994 to 2000, McGuff served on the Royals' board of directors. Afflicted with ALS, Lou Gehrig's disease, he died in 2006.

Fans throughout the Midwest can nominate individuals they feel are worthy of filling "Buck's seat" by visiting www.royals.com/buckseat. Honorees receive five game tickets, food vouchers, a commemorative plaque and recognition on the scoreboard and the Fox Sports telecast.

Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.