International Hero

Angel Macias led Mexico to the World Series title in 1957

September 17, 2012

By Lindsey Hale

The Little League World Series is held every year in Williamsport, Pa., and teams from the all over the world compete to play for the championship.

In 1957, Angel Macias led Mexico to the championship – the first international team to claim the title.

A stellar ambidextrous pitcher, Angel threw four one-hit gems prior to the championship matchup between Monterrey, Mexico and La Mesa, Calif. The Mexican team seemed to be outmatched by the powerful La Mesa team. However, Mexico’s Ricardo Trevino appeared unfazed. When asked about the other team’s size advantage, he replied, “We have to play them, not carry them.”

It was, however, Angel Macias who carried his team to the championship. Angel later revealed that he had no idea he was throwing a perfect game, the first in Little League World Series championship history, because he was just trying to win the game. Mexico beat La Mesa 4-0 and became the first foreign team to achieve their dream of a championship. Angel struck out 11 of the 18 batters he faced. Church bells rang out while people cheered in Monterrey. The love of baseball reached new heights in Mexico.

After the stunning victory, the Monterrey team embarked on an unforgettable journey. They had a shopping spree at Macy’s and met President Dwight Eisenhower and Vice President Richard Nixon. Angel later referred to it as the greatest event of his life. He received scholarship offers and was eventually drafted by the California Angels in 1962. One of his greatest honors was being named Mexico’s Athlete of the Year in 1957, an award normally reserved for adults.

As a Little League inspiration, Angel Macias reinvigorated baseball in Mexico. Monterrey won the Little League World Series again in 1958, and today the city is home to the Mexican Baseball Hall of Fame. 

Check out bios of other Latin Legends here

Lindsey Hale was a 2012 education-public programs intern in the Hall of Fame’s Frank and Peggy Steele Internship Program for Youth Leadership Development