Juan Marichal makes his final MLB start with the Los Angeles Dodgers
Digital Preservation Project
Marichal had blazed across the diamond in his 16 big league seasons, successfully establishing himself as the standard for countless Dominican baseball players to come. His career record was 243-142, and he retired with the all-time record for wins among Latin American pitchers. A 10-time All-Star, Marichal won 20 or more games six times, recorded 2,303 strikeouts and a career ERA of 2.89.
So by 1975, he felt fulfilled. Unsure of what the future held, Marichal told the Dodgers before the start of the regular season that they should only pay him for games in which he actually pitched – just in case he didn’t last the full year.
With that, Marichal headed back to his 1,065-acre rice and banana farm in the Dominican Republic, where his family resided. The Hall of Fame would come calling in 1983, when he would become the first Dominican player to be elected. But while he waited for that moment in the sun, he was completely content with taking a step back from the limelight.
“I’ll just go back to my farm and listen to the games on the radio,” Marichal said to the Post. “I’m going to be happy on my farm. I was before I came here.”
Alex Coffey was the communications specialist at the National Baseball Hall of Fame