Louis Santop Loftin
(1890 – 1942)
Louis Santop Loftin was an American catcher in baseball’s Negro Leagues, who became one of black baseball’s earliest stars. He was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2006.
Santop was born in Tyler, Texas. An amazing .406 lifetime hitter, Santop would often hit long home runs. In 1911, he hit an astonishing .470 and then, three years later, hit .455 for the Lincoln Stars. At this time, he was catching the two players considered the hardest throwing pitchers in the league: Smokey Joe Williams and “Cannonball” Dick Redding. After military service in the U.S. Navy in World War I, Santop went on to have many more powerful years. After the war, he was the league’s biggest drawing card and received $500 a month, one of the highest salaries paid, playing for the Hilldale Daisies.