Don Larsen dies, the only perfect game in the World Series

Posted by shahzaib Ali on February 29th, 2020


Don Larsen, a multi-team serpentine player who achieved baseball glory in 1956 with the New York Yankees when he pitched the only perfect no-hitter in World Series history, died Wednesday at age 90.

He died of esophageal cancer in Hayden, Idaho, his agent Andrew Levy reported.

In a Christmas message posted on social networks, his son Scott Larsen said the former pitcher was diagnosed with cancer shortly after his annual trip to St. Louis in August. He had recently finished radiation therapy.

Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred said in a statement released Thursday that Larsen's perfect game has "remained unique for 63 years and counting.

"In a team of many stars, Don illustrated that anyone can make history, even achieve perfection, on the biggest stage of our sport," Manfred said.

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Larsen was an unusual player who achieved what no Hall of Famer ballplayer ever did in the fall classic. He had a record of 81-91 in his life, never won more than 11 games in a season and ended up with a 3-21 record for Baltimore in 1954, a year before he was sent to the Yankees as part of an operation involving 18 players.

In the 1956 World Series, which the Yankees won in seven games, he came off the mound in the second inning of the second game against the Brooklyn Dodgers and didn't think he'd have another chance to pitch. But when he arrived at Yankee Stadium on the morning of October 8, he found a baseball bat in his shoe, the sign from driver Casey Stengel that he would be the opener in game five.

"I have to admit I was shocked," Larsen wrote in his autobiography. "I knew I had to do better than last time, keep the game closed and somehow give my team a chance to win. Casey bet on me and I was determined not to let him down this time.

Born on August 7, 1929, in Michigan City, Indiana, Larsen moved with his family to San Diego and entered Point Luma High School, the same school as Yankee pitcher David Wells, who had another perfect game. Larsen played basketball and baseball and was hired by the St. Louis Browns for a bonus of 0 and 0 per month.

After two years in the minor leagues, Larsen injured his shoulder and spent the next two years in the army. He was promoted to the Browns in 1953 and moved with the team to Baltimore the following year.

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shahzaib Ali
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