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SANCHEZ, GENEVIEVE

SANCHEZ, GENEVIEVE (9 Oct. 1918-9 Aug. 1993) was one of Cleveland's greatest sandlot stars.

Born in Cleveland to John and Mary Shnel Peck, Genevieve grew up in the SLAVIC VILLAGE neighborhood and graduated from South High School. In high school she lettered three times in track.

Following graduation in 1934 she switched from track to softball and joined a team in the industrial fast pitch league and began an outstanding pitching career. Her team won the city championship.

In 1936 her prowess on the mound led her National Screw and Manufacturing Company team to the national softball championships and she was named the Most Valuable Player in the national tournament in Chicago. In 1937 the team again won the national championship.

In 1939 she switched teams and began commuting between Cleveland and New Orleans where she pitched for the Jax Brewery team, leading it to world championships in 1942 and 1943. Her last year as a softball pitcher came in 1946 when joined by two of her sisters, she helped capture the Greater Cleveland metropolitan title for her Puritas Springs Park team.

Altogether in her 13-year mound career, she hurled six no-hit games and 24 one-hitters. Seldom did opposing batters garner more than three hits. Her best record was 27-3, and she achieved several twenty-win seasons.

Genevieve married John Penkowski on 22 Feb. 1941, and they had one child, John. The first marriage ended in divorce. On 19 Sept. 1969, she married Daniel Sanchez.

Sanchez is buried in CALVARY CEMETERY in Cleveland.