Virnett “Jackie” Mitchell may have only pitched in one pro baseball game, but she made it count, striking out legends Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig in quick succession. A tomboy who excelled at all sports, Mitchell's wickedly accurate southpaw curveball made her a sandlot legend. The owner of a minor league team recruited the 17-year-old — likely as a publicity stunt — and immediately had her take the mound in a 1931 exhibition game against the Yankees. Although it was probably one of the most impressive pitching debuts on record, the commissioner promptly voided her contract after hearing about the game, declaring baseball “too strenuous for women.” [Mental Floss]
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