On This Day in Baseball: One-Armed Pete Gray Shined
Baseball is widely considered one of the most difficult sports you can play. Between trying to square up a round ball with a round bat and how much of a mental grind it can be surrounded by so much failure.
Imagine, playing Major League Baseball with guys throwing as hard as they do with all of the nasty pitches that they have now and had back in the day. Now, take a second and try to imagine taking one of your arms away and having to play with only one arm.
Enter, Pete Gray.
During the 1945 MLB season, the St. Louis Browns rostered a thirty-year-old rookie who played with only one arm that was lost when he was six-years-old due to a truck accident according to an article on Pete's life on SABR.
On this day 75 years ago, Gray had one of his best days as a Major Leaguer. He hit lead-off and played leftfield against the New York Yankees. In the game, he had three hits and drove in two runs as St. Louis downed New York 10-1.
Gray spent two years in the Minors before being called up for the 1945 season and it was the only season he played in the Majors. During his Major League career, he played in 77 games, recorded 51 hits, scored 26 runs, hit six double/two triples, drove in 13 runs, stole five bases, struck out just 11 times while walking 13 and hit .218.
Such a feel-good and unique story. It just goes to show you that no matter your disabilities or how high the odds are stacked against you, you can achieve incredible feats if you have the correct mindset.