Thursday, February 11, 2010

Paul LaPalme, 86, 1923-2010; Former MLB Pitcher with the Pirates, Cardinals, Reds and White Sox

Paul LaPalme, died in Leominster, MA on Sunday February 7, 2010 at the age of 86 after battling a long illness. LaPalme was a left-handed knuckleball pitcher, who pitched seven seasons with four major league teams including the Pirates, Cardinals, Reds and White Sox. He made his debut at the age of 17 in 1941 with Bristol of the Appalachian League, posting an impressive 20 wins. After moving up to Erie the next season, he lost three years of his career due to his World War II service from 1943-1945.

Upon his return from military service, he clawed his way from Class D ball in 1946 to the big show with the Pirates in 1951. He made an immediate impact, pitching a shutout in his first MLB game, but could not duplicate his hot start, finishing with a record of 24-45 in seven seasons. He retired after the 1959 season with Montreal. After baseball, he entered the engraving business, where he owned and operated LaPalme Engravers in Leominster.


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