I would have to say William “Dummy” Hoy is my favorite because he showed a lot of Deaf power. He became deaf at the age of 3 because of meningitis. He grew up and graduated from Ohio State School for the Deaf as valedictorian. He started baseball as just a fun thing to do on the weekends, but he soon earned a professional contract in 1886 with the Oshkosh, Wisconsin team.
He is now known for being the most accomplished deaf player in Major League history. You could not have watched him play baseball and think that he was handicapped for being deaf! It is also said that William created the hand signals that are used in baseball even to this day. He is one of the 29 Major League players to have been on 4 different teams. He must have been really good to have had that many teams he had played for!
William was a Major League Baseball player from 1888 to 1902. Hoy retired with a .287 batting average, 2044 hits, 1426 runs, 726 runs batted in, 248 doubles, 121 triples and 40 home runs. He had 487 stolen bases from 1888 through 1897, and 107 more after the statistic was redefined to its present meaning in 1898. His 1795 games in the outfield ranked second to Jimmy Ryan in major league history.
William “Dummy” Hoy was a true influence to not only deaf but also hearing people.