February 11 – Happy Birthday Louie Paz

1951 was not a good year for Amsterdam sports fans. It marked not only the end of the Amsterdam Rugmakers as a New York Yankee farm team but also the dissolution of the Canadian American (Can-Am) League the team competed in. Amsterdam finished in third place that farewell season, with a 62-56 record. They had the best hitting lineup in the Can-Am circuit that year, scoring 114 more runs than any other team. Their achilles heel was pitching. Rugmaker hurlers surrendered more runs per game (6.48) than any staff in the league but you couldn’t blame today’s Amsterdam Birthday Blog celebrant for that.

Louie Paz was a Queens, NY-born left-hander who led that last Rugmaker team with a 3.93 ERA while compiling a very productive 10-5 won-loss record. Those numbers impressed the Yankee organization and they were ready to bring Paz up another level in their well-stocked and heavily talented farm system. The 20-year-old southpaw however, would never again pitch in a professional ball game…

You can read the rest of this story of this former Amsterdam Rugmaker in my new book “A Year’s Worth of Amsterdam Birthdays.” To order your copy, click here.

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