Mike Palagyi

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Mike Palagyi
Born: (1917-07-04)July 4, 1917
Conneaut, Ohio
Died: November 21, 2013(2013-11-21) (aged 96)
Conneaut, Ohio
Batted: Right Threw: Right
MLB debut
August 18, 1939, for the Washington Senators
Last MLB appearance
August 18, 1939, for the Washington Senators
MLB statistics
Win–loss record 0–0
Earned run average infinite
Strikeouts 0

Michael Raymond Palagyi (July 4, 1917 – November 21, 2013)[1] was a Major League Baseball pitcher who pitched for the Washington Senators. He is in a group of nearly 1,500 players who have appeared in exactly one Major League game. At the time of his death, he was the oldest of those one-game players.

Early life[edit]

Palagyi was one of ten children born to Joseph and Anna Palagyi. His seven brothers were Jim (Jenny), John, George (Hazel), Lewis (Pauline), Andrew (Margret), Peter (Jane), and Joseph (Pauline). Mike's sisters included Anna Yosko, Ethel (Frank) Vento, and Helen who died at birth and twin to brother Andrew. Mike was not the only member to play professional baseball in the family. His brother George Palagyi played minor league ball for the Cleveland Indians as a pitcher. Mike would later go on to marry his wife Margret. They had one child Michael, who died in a plan crash in the 1970s. Mike was a devote catholic and belonged to Corpus Christi Parish in Conneaut. At his time of death he was the only male still alive out of the original seven brothers. Mike's youngest sister Ethel was the only Palagyi sibling left til she died in 2014. Mike was also surrounded by his nephews, nieces, great nieces and nephews and caretaker Carol Harris at the time of death.[2]


Standing 6 feet 2 inches (1.88 m) and weighing 185 pounds (84 kg), Palagyi made his major league pitching debut August 18, 1939 for the Washington Senators as a relief pitcher in a game against the Boston Red Sox.[3] During the game, he faced three future Hall of Fame members: Ted Williams, Joe Cronin and Jimmy Foxx.[4] He hit Foxx with a pitch and walked Williams, Cronin and a fourth batter (Doc Cramer).[4][5] Three of those runners would score. The Senators would change pitchers before Palagyi was able to retire a batter. The Senators would lose the game, but Palagyi did not receive credit for the loss in that game. He would never play in another major league game. In an interview for Richard Tellis's book, Once Around the Bases, Palagyi said that he "threw but 2 strikes out of 15 pitches — a very short big league career".[4]

After leaving baseball, Palagyi served during World War II.[6] Palagyi lived in Conneaut until his death in 2013.


Since Palagyi allowed three earned runs without retiring a batter, his career earned run average (ERA) is infinite. He is one of at least 19 pitchers with an infinite ERA.[7]

Palagyi and Mark Wagner are the only major-league players born in Conneaut. Both players pitched in exactly one game in relief. Wagner, however, appeared in other games as a shortstop.


  1. ^ Michael R. Palagyi - Obituary
  2. ^ "Northeast Ohio Obituaries". Star Beacon. Retrieved 2007-12-19. 
  3. ^ "1939 Washington Senators". BaseballLibrary.com. Retrieved 2007-12-14. 
  4. ^ a b c Margolick, David (1999-04-04). "New Season for Stars and One-Game Wonders". New York Times. Retrieved 2007-12-14. 
  5. ^ Retrosheet.org – Boston Red Sox 6, Washington Senators 2. Game Played on Friday, August 18, 1939 (D) at Griffith Stadium
  6. ^ Shpigel, Ben. "THOSE WHO SERVED". TheDeadBallEra.com. Retrieved 2007-12-14. 
  7. ^ Shpigel, Ben (2007-02-28). "A Debut to Remember, and One to Forget". New York Times. Retrieved 2007-12-14. 

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