Redmond: PJ Conlon’s dream debut revives Irish role in baseball history

From Patrick Redmond at on May 13, 2018:

It should have been another mundane baseball night in Cincinnati on Monday, as the New York Mets rolled into town to play the Reds. And the debut of a 24-year-old leftie pitcher wouldn’t normally make this fixture any more noteworthy.

Except this rookie, Belfast native Patrick Joshua “PJ” Conlon, was making history: The first Irish-born 21st Century Major League Baseball player; the first for 73 years; and only the second such debutant in over a century.

Conlon, who follows the last Irish-born major-leaguer, Joe Cleary, was ecstatic, hailing his supporters in the Cincinnati’s half-full Great American Ball Park.

“It means a lot,” he told after just over three innings of game play.

“You could see them in the stands, waving the Irish flags. They’re proud of it, and I’m proud of it.”

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Originally published: May 14, 2018. Last Updated: May 14, 2018.