Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Paige Sets MLB Record

On Sept. 25, 1965, Hall of Fame pitcher Satchel Paige becomes the oldest person to play in an MLB game.
At age 59 (or 60 depending on where you read it) Paige was brought in by the last-place Kansas City Athletics, who figured he could attract some fans. Satchel played the part of the old man in style, sitting in the bullpen in a rocking chair as a nurse rubbed his arm. Then he went out and shutout the Red Sox for three innings, striking out one and allowing a sole hit to Carl Yastrzemski. He exited to a standing ovation from the 9,289 faithful, with "The Old Gray Mare" playing in the background.

Paige continued to play minor league ball for several years before he became a Braves assistant in 1969. The position allowed him to qualify for pension, and Paige did most of his coaching from his living room in Kansas City.
Two years later, a special committee selected him as the first Negro League star to be inducted in the Hall of Fame. He was a Hall of Famer at age 65, even though he was only six years removed from pitching. But as Paige himself once said, "Age is a question of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter."