Cy Falkenberg

Frederick Peter "Cy" Falkenberg (September 17, 1880 – April 13, 1961) was an American baseball pitcher who played fifteen seasons in Major League Baseball (MLB) from 1903 and 1917.

Cy Falkenberg attended the University of Illinois, becoming one of the few university educated ballplayers of the time. He debuted with the Pittsburgh Pirates on April 21, 1903, but struggled his first year in the majors, losing 5 of 6 decisions. He spent 1904 back in the minor leagues. He returned to the majors in 1905, this time with the Washington Senators, but he did not achieve his greatest success until 1913 with the Cleveland Naps.

That year he achieved success by throwing the "emery ball", a baseball that had been scuffed with a piece of emery board hidden in the heel of his glove. Although this practice is currently against the rules of baseball, it was legal through the 1914 season. By scuffing the ball, the ball moves in a less predictable manner, making it harder to hit, giving him a 23–10 record in 1913. By 1915 he was struggling again, and was back in the minors by 1916. He appeared in 15 games in the majors in 1917, and finished his pro career in the minors in 1918 and 1919.

By Dean Hanley

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