Gaylord Perry Before the Spitball

Gaylord Perry, 1959This photo, from the 1959 Pine Burr, shows Gaylord Perry, one of North Carolina’s greatest baseball players, and a member of the Campbell College (now Campbell University) class of 1960. The Hall of Famer, a native of Williamston, N.C., is probably baseball’s best-known spitballer (his 1974 autobiography is called Me and the Spitter: An Autobiographical Confession). I wondered whether it was the folks at Campbell who taught him the illegal pitch, but according to Perry, he didn’t learn how to throw a spitball until 1964.

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