December 4, 2014

excerpt from "Maybe I'll Pitch Forever"

LeRoy "Satchel" Paige was born in 1906. In 1922, he pitched his first professional baseball game and he was still pitching in 1961 when his book: Maybe I'll Pitch Forever was published.  He was forty-two years old when he finally broke the color barrier in 1948 to become the first black pitcher in the American League. This book tells the incredible story of his life story, covering 2500 professional baseball games - mostly in barnstorming baseball across the country and the Negro League.  Age did not matter much Satchel but baseball mattered a whole lot.  The following excerpt comes from the closing of the book:

It seemed funny that after better than thirty years of professional pitching, I was back to barnstorming.  ... Nobody seemed to care about Satch being an old man. He could still throw that bee ball for a couple or three innings and folks still wanted to see him throw... And the old arm still had more pitches in it. I could tell.

Someday it'll end, maybe before I even figure it will.  Then I'll have to look for something new.  I won't be able to just retire when that happens. ... But Ol' Satch ain't worried about finding something new.  There's bound to be people who'll want a man who's done what I've done, who's got that big name like Ol' Satch.

And until they want me, I'll just keep pitching - maybe forever.  Some folks say I already have.

from Maybe I'll Pitch Forever by LeRoy (Satchel) Paige, pp.254-255