Former Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and Charlotte manager Marc Bombard, 1980 League MVP Marshall Brant, and former Buffalo, Syracuse, and Rochester General Manager Don Labbruzzo are this year’s class in the International League Hall of Fame.
The three men were elected to the IL Hall by a vote of living Hall of Famers, longtime executives, broadcasters, and members of the media.
Members of the Class of 2015 have been added to the International League Hall of Fame plaque display. The inductees or their families will be presented with “The Curtain Call” statue during individual enshrinement ceremonies to take place during the coming season. The IL Hall of Fame plaque display does not have a permanent home, but rather serves as a traveling testament to the storied legacy of the International League.
Marc Bombard piloted the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Red Barons to four consecutive playoff appearances from 1999-2002, a run which concluded with a franchise-record 91 wins and honors as the IL Manager of the Year and the Sports Weekly Minor League Manager of the Year. He won 700 games in the IL, including a record of 574 wins with the SWB franchise that stood until being surpassed by Dave Miley in 2014. Bombard was also the International League All-Star Team manager in both 2000 and 2003. He is the last IL manager to lead a team to 90 wins in a single season.
Former first baseman Marshall Brant crushed 122 home runs over five-plus seasons in the International League. After two years with Tidewater, Brant joined Columbus in 1980 and led the League in homers, RBI, and fielding percentage to earn MVP honors. The two-time IL All-Star and two-time Governors’ Cup champion is the only player in Clippers franchise history to have his uniform number retired, and he remains its all-time leader in RBI with 302.
Rounding out the Class of 2015 is former longtime executive Don Labbruzzo, who worked for four International League franchises between 1954 and 1978. He was an Assistant GM in Columbus before serving as General Manager of the Buffalo, Syracuse, and Rochester franchises. Before retiring he also had a stint in the American Association as Executive Vice-President in Louisville. Labbruzzo was recognized during his career as the Sporting News Triple-A Executive of the Year, and in 1959 his Bisons were awarded the prestigious Larry MacPhail Promotional Trophy for excellence in the area of promotions. He passed away in 1999.
The IL Hall of Fame, established in 1947, was dormant from 1964 until the League’s 125th Anniversary season in 2008. Following a three-year transition period (2008-10) in which a total of 50 individuals were inducted after having been selected by a committee, the Class of 2015 was the fifth chosen by what will continue to serve as the annual election process. Each year the top three vote-getters who also receive a vote on the majority of ballots returned will be elected.
Complete statistical data and biographical information on all 116 members of the IL Hall of Fame, along with a copy of the International League Hall of Fame policies, procedures, and guidelines are available at ILBaseball.com.