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Roger Connor, New York’s first Irish baseball star, wore a green shamrock patch on his uniform shirt. He was baseball’s all-time home run leader before Babe Ruth.

The Irish stars in the early history of baseball

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Roger Connor, New York’s first Irish baseball star, wore a green shamrock patch on his uniform shirt. He was baseball’s all-time home run leader before Babe Ruth.

Baseball eventually lost its Irish flavor, and today the game is more ethnically diverse than ever. The Irish made a significant contribution to the national pastime in its formative years, but now, more than 130 years after the first National League game was played, Irish-Americans make up only a tiny percentage of major league players. Irish domination of the game has passed into the realm of history.

 

 

David Fleitz, a writer and sports historian from Royal Oak, Michigan, is the author of The Irish in Baseball: An Early History. 

The book was released by McFarland Publishing in May of 2009.

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