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Scioto County – Ohio House Passes Bill to Designate Al Oliver Highway Two Baseball Legend


COLUMBUS—June 12, 2024 – The Ohio House of Representatives has passed House Bill 380, which will designate twenty-nine roads and bridges throughout the state, announced State Rep. Justin Pizzulli (R-Scioto County).

Included in the bill is House Bill 320, sponsored by Pizzulli, which will name a portion of OH-125 in Portsmouth, Ohio as Al Oliver Highway in Scioto County. Al Oliver, a Portsmouth native, is best known as a Major League Baseball (MLB) legend.

“Naming this memorial highway is a small way to honor Mr. Oliver’s legacy and remind our kids they too can achieve greatness,” said Pizzulli during his floor speech.

In addition to his MLB accomplishments, Oliver is also a registered minister and ordained deacon. His legacy is celebrated on the Portsmouth Floodwall Murals.

The legislation now heads to the Ohio Senate for consideration.

About Al Oliver:

Albert Oliver Jr., born on October 14, 1946, in Portsmouth, Ohio, grew up in a family where sports were a significant part of life. His father, Albert Oliver Sr., was a professional basketball player in the 1940s and later worked in a brickyard, while his mother, Sallie Jane, was known for her exceptional cooking. Oliver’s siblings, Paula and James, also grew up in Portsmouth.

Al Oliver’s journey in baseball began early, with his Little League team winning a championship when he was nine, earning them a trip to Cincinnati to see the Brooklyn Dodgers play the Reds at Crosley Field. Inspired by seeing Jackie Robinson play, Oliver realized his potential in baseball.

He attended Notre Dame High School and later Portsmouth High School, where he began to attract attention from big-league scouts. His remarkable talent was evident when he broke a car windshield with a powerful line drive during an American Legion game, capturing the interest of MLB scouts.

Oliver had a basketball scholarship offer to attend Kent State University but chose to pursue a career in baseball. At 17, he signed with the Pittsburgh Pirates for $5,000 after attending a tryout camp in Salem, Virginia. This decision led to a stellar MLB career spanning 18 years, where he batted .303, made the All-Star team seven times, and won Silver Slugger awards as an outfielder, designated hitter, and first baseman.

Al Oliver’s legacy extends beyond his baseball achievements, serving as a testament to his impact on and off the field. The designation of the Al Oliver Highway aims to honor this legacy and inspire future generations in Portsmouth and beyond.