Thursday, January 20, 2011

Camilo Pascual starred in the majors and with Cienfuegos

Jan. 20: On this day in 1934, Camilo Pascual was born in Havana.

Pascual (being handed a trophy by a member of Fidel Castro's revolutionary regime during the 1959-60 season in this photo that recently sold on eBay) was elected to the Cuban Baseball Hall of Fame in 1983.

A major-league pitcher for 18 seasons -- mostly with the Washington Senators and Minnesota Twins -- Pascual won 174 games, which ranks fourth behind Luis Tiant  (229), Adolfo Luque (194) and Mike Cuellar (185) for career wins by Cuban-born pitchers. Pascual was a seven-time all-star.

In the Cuban League, he compiled a 58-32 record with a 2.04 ERA, mostly with Cienfuegos, according to Who's Who in Cuban Baseball, 1878-1961. Pascual the league's MVP in 1955-56, twice led the league in strikeouts (108 in 1958-59 and 163 in 1959-60) and twice won 15 games in a season (1956-57 and 1959-60).

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