Luther Dummy Taylor: Deaf Baseball Player

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Luther Dummy Taylor, a deaf baseball player left his impact on the game through not only his lightheartedness and team morale, but also through his pitching performances and obstacles he overcame. Luther Dummy Taylor was born in Oskaloosa, Kansas in the year 1875. Taylor’s father’s name was Arnold B. Taylor and mother was Emaline Taylor. He lived in Jefferson county with four siblings and his parents. It is not entirely known if Luther was born deaf or became deaf but by the age of 10 he was living at the Kansas School for the Deaf. Luther played baseball all throughout high school here and also did boxing. He wanted to be a great boxer in the future but his parents did not allow this. Luther graduated from the school for the deaf and began…show more content…
He had chance to prove himself as a great pitcher, regardless of him being able to hear or not. His major league debut happened on August 27th, 1900. Players from Boston knew he was deaf and tried to use this to their advantage to steal bases. Taylor recalled ,”I nailed every one.” Luther’s record this rookie year was 4-3 and his Earned Run Average was a 2.45. His second season he was very impactful for the Giants. He had 37 complete games and maintained a 3.18 ERA. Luther left the Giants for one season but was persuaded by catcher Frank Bowerman to come back. Frank sat in the crowd and signed to Taylor during the game. Luther stayed with the Giants until 1908. He was traded to the minor leagues in 1909 and played there until 1915. His final season he held an 18-11 record for the Utica Utes. His overall record in the majors was 116-106 with 767 strikeouts. Luther communicated to his team mates in sign language and is credited with helping expand the universal use of sign language on and off the ball field. Dummy wanted to be a part of the ‘family’ so he taught the team sign and got in on all of their experiences. He was a role model to the deaf community and baseball players alike. When Taylor retired from baseball he became a teacher and coach back at the Kansas School for the Deaf and was also an umpire on the side. He was involved in baseball until the 1950s and opened up his own barbershop in his late years. He died at Our Savior’s Hospital in Jacksonville, Illinois in
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