Joe Nuxhall Dies At 79

Retired Cincinnati Reds player and announcer Joe Nuxhall has died at 79.

The beloved Nuxhall, who spent more time working for the Cincinnati Reds than any player in the club's history, died shortly before midnight at Mercy Hospital Fairfield, near his Butler County home.

Nuxhall had been in the hospital a few days after complaining of shortness of breath.  Doctors wanted to install a pacemaker but couldn't proceed because his heart was beating weakly.  He was surrounded by his family when he passed away.

Nuxhall, affectionately known as "Hamilton Joe" and "The Old Lefthander", made history when he became the youngest player ever in the major leagues, pitching briefly for the Reds at age 15 when the team roster was depleted by World War II.  That stint lasted only a couple of months, but after a few years he returned as a full fledged major leaguer and had a lengthy career, almost all with the Reds.

Upon retiring as a player, he went straight into broadcasting, continuing full time until 2004 and sitting in occasionally after that.