The careers of pitchers Jack Quinn and Howard Ehmke began in the
Deadball Era and peaked in the 1920s. They were teammates for many
years, with both the cellar-dwelling Boston Red Sox and later with
the world champion Philadelphia Athletics, managed by Connie Mack.
As far back as 1912, when he was just twenty-nine, Quinn was told
he was too old to play and on the downward side of his career.
Because of his determination, work ethic, outlook on life, and
physical conditioning, however, he continued to excel. In his
midthirties, then his late thirties, and even into his forties, he
overcame the naysayers. At age forty-six he became the oldest
pitcher to start a World Series game. When Quinn finally retired in
1933 at fifty, the "Methuselah of the Mound" owned numerous
longevity records, some of which he holds to this day. Ehmke,
meanwhile, battled arm trouble and poor health through much of his
career. Like Quinn, he was dismissed by the experts and from many
teams, only to return and excel. He overcame his physical problems
by developing new pitches and pitching motions and capped his
career with a stunning performance in Game One of the 1929 World
Series against the Chicago Cubs, which still ranks among baseball's
most memorable games. Connie Mack described it as his greatest day
in baseball.Comeback Pitchers is the inspirational story of these
two great pitchers with intertwining careers who were repeatedly
considered washed up and too old but kept defying the odds and
thrilling fans long after most pitchers would have retired.