Cuicchi: New Orleanian Mel Parnell capped Red Sox Hall of Fame career with no-hitter

From SABR member Richard Cuicchi at Crescent City Sports on May 15, 2020:

Mel Parnell was a short, skinny kid when he pitched for S. J. Peters High School in New Orleans for the first time during his senior year in 1941. It was an improbable start of an eventual professional career, yet big-league scouts saw something in his abilities that ultimately earned him a bronze plaque in the Boston Red Sox Hall of Fame.

Parnell’s high school team was a talented group. Seven of its players went on to play professional baseball, including pitcher Ray Yochim and infielder Bo Strickland who reached the majors. Parnell attracted attention from scouts when he struck out 17 batters against Behrman in a prep league matchup. The left-hander followed that game later in the week with a five-inning no-hitter for a local semi-pro team.

While most of his teammates signed with the St. Louis Cardinals, Parnell chose the Boston Red Sox in 1941. He won 16 games for Class C Canton in his second pro season in 1942, but then his career was put on hold while he served three years in the Army Air Corps during World War II.

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Originally published: May 21, 2020. Last Updated: May 21, 2020.