Tom McAvoy

Thomas John McAvoy (August 12, 1936 – March 19, 2011) was a professional baseball pitcher. He appeared in one game in Major League Baseball for the Washington Senators in 1959. Listed at 6 ft 3 in (1.91 m), 200 lb, he batted and threw left-handed. He was born in Brooklyn, New York.

Tom McAvoy was signed by the Senators in 1956 and played four seasons in the minor leagues before joining the big team on the final day of the 1959 season.

McAvoy was a player whose baseball career can be loosely described as a cup of coffee. He debuted against the Boston Red Sox on September 27, 1959, at Fenway Park as a replacement for starter Jim Kaat in the second inning, scattering one hit and two walks without strikeouts over 2⅔ shutout innings and did not have a decision. In that game, McAvoy retired Ted Williams on a grounder to second base.

McAvoy never appeared in a major league game again. His career was cut short when he broke his arm during a winter ball game in Nicaragua in 1959. The following year, he broke his arm again while warming up in the bullpen. After a long rehabilitation he was released by the Minnesota Twins in 1961 (the Senators had moved to Minnesota that year).

In seven minor league seasons, McAvoy posted a 38–72 record and a 4.74 ERA in 176 pitching appearances.

In the early 1960s, McAvoy moved onto fastpitch softball and was eventually inducted into the International Softball Congress Hall of Fame, class of 2009, as a manager.

McAvoy died in Stillwater, New York, at the age of 74, following complications from pancreatic cancer.

By Dean Hanley

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