HOUSTON -- Astros manager Bo Porter was honored in his home state of New Jersey on Thursday, when Essex County proclaimed Dec. 13, 2012 as, "Essex County Bo Porter Day," and presented the manager with the key to Essex County.
Porter, a native of Essex County who was named Houston's manager in September, was born in raised in Newark, N.J., and graduated from Weequahic High School. He is the first Essex County native to be hired as manager of a Major League Baseball team in the modern era (since 1900).
"Today is exceptionally rewarding to me because I have watched Bo Porter mature and grow from the time he played Little League baseball with our All-Star team that traveled to Puerto Rico to being the first Essex County resident chosen to lead a professional baseball team," Essex County executive Joseph N. DiVincenzo said in a statement. "He persevered throughout his career, and to be the first Essex County resident named as manager of a Major League team is quite an honor. Highlighting his career and achievements today will inspire our youth to follow his example of hard work and determination to reach their goals."
In addition to receiving the key to Essex County, Porter received proclamations from assembly speaker Sheila Oliver and New Jersey state Sen. Teresa Ruiz, had his No. 1 jersey retired by Weequahic High School and was presented with a jacket from the North Ward Little League.
Porter was a standout athlete while at Weequahic High School, reaching all-state status in baseball, football and basketball. He attended the University of Iowa, where he earned a bachelor's degree in communications studies while starring in baseball and football.
Brian McTaggart is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, Tag's Lines. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.