On June 10, 1944, Hamilton’s own Joe Nuxhall made history, becoming the youngest player to appear in an MLB game.

The Ol’ Lefthander was 15 years, 10 months, and 11 days old, playing in just one game that season. He returned to the majors in 1952 and spends 14 more seasons with Cincinnati.

It was a solid start 77 years ago today, but it was a rough finish.

Nuxhall entered the ninth inning in the game against the Cardinals. The first batter he faced was shortstop George Fallon, whom he forced into a ground out. However, he also gave up five walks, two hits, threw one wild pitch, and gave up five runs. Nuxhall threw two-thirds of the ninth inning in an 18-0 loss.

During the 50th anniversary of that first outing, Nuxhall told the Associated Press in 1994, “I was pitching against seventh-, eighth- and ninth-graders, kids 13 and 14 years old … All of a sudden, I look up and there’s Stan Musial and the likes. It was a very scary situation.”

Though Nuxhall is the youngest person to ever play in an MLB game, but not the youngest in a professional game. A 12-year-old bat boy, Joe Reliford, was put into a Class D game in 1952, which made him the youngest person to play in a professional baseball game. Roy Campanella, an MLB Hall of Fame catcher, was 93 days younger when he made his debut in 1937 with the Baltimore Elite Giants in the Negro League.

After retiring from playing, Nuxhall started a 40-year announcing career in 1967 for the Reds, the last 31 were spent alongside Hall of Fame announcer Marty Brennaman.

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