Leo Fishel (December 13, 1877 – May 19, 1960) was a pitcher in Major League Baseball who played one game for the New York Giants in 1899. He also attended Columbia University and became a lawyer after his professional baseball career was over. Fishel stood at 6' 0" and weighed 175 lbs.[1]


Leo Fishel was born in Babylon, New York, as the youngest of eight children to Leopold and Theresa Fishel.[2] He entered Columbia in the fall of 1894 and pitched for the baseball team there while also playing for various semi-pro teams around New York and New Jersey. He was once offered US$20 plus expenses to pitch in a game for White Plains.[2]

On May 3, 1899, Fishel made his major league debut for the New York Giants, pitching a complete game and taking the loss.[1] He was the first Jewish pitcher in Major League Baseball.[3][4] Later that summer, he played for the New London Whalers and New Haven Blues of the Connecticut State League. Fishel went 2-4 in the CSL and did not play any professional baseball after 1899.[5]

Fishel graduated from Columbia Law School in 1900 and was admitted to the bar later that year.[2] He became coach of the Columbia baseball team in early 1901[6] and over the next few years played and coached various teams in the area while setting up his law practice. In 1905, he won a championship while coaching the Freeport High School team.[2]

Fishel was married twice. His first marriage to Mary Blossom Searle in 1903 produced one daughter, but it ended in divorce. He later married Laura Duerstein, and his second child, a son, was born in 1917.[2]

Fishel died in Hempstead, New York, in 1960.[1]


  1. ^ a b c "Leo Fishel Statistics and History". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved 2010-12-29.
  2. ^ a b c d e Jacobs, Jane. "Leo Fishel". bioproj.sabr.org. Retrieved 2010-12-29.
  3. ^ Horvitz, Peter S. and Horvitz, Joachim. The Big Book of Jewish Baseball: An Illustrated Encyclopedia & Anecdotal History (SP Books, 2001), p. 62.
  4. ^ Boxerman, Burton Alan and Boxerman, Benita W. Jews and Baseball: Entering the American Mainstream, 1871-1948 (McFarland, 2006), p. 11.
  5. ^ "Leo Fishel Minor League Statistics & History". baseball-reference.com. Retrieved 2010-12-29.
  6. ^ "Will Hear Ball Players". query.nytimes.com. Retrieved 2010-12-29.

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