Paul Algar pitching in the 2011 California Classic. Photo By Bob Otto
LEXINGTON, IL – Some 30 years a go, Paul Algar journeyed from his New Zealand homeland for the fastball-playing shores of the United States. Just 17 at the time in 1982, he was fast making a name for himself as one of the best young pitchers in the world.
But let’s back up for a moment.
Before Paul came along, his older brother Loren was already an established pitcher, and his dad, Ray, was a pretty fair first baseman on the ball diamonds of Wellington and Melrose.
Father and brother had set a path that young Paul eagerly followed. And one that ultimately landed him a seat in the International Softball Congress Hall of Fame.
“Watching my brother pitch, I wanted to follow in his footsteps,” said Algar, 47, adding that Loren is 11 years older. “I would practice on the sidelines while Loren pitched.”
And Paul practiced and practiced, and practiced some more, says his dad, Ray.
“Ever since he was a kid, he practiced hard by himself,” Ray Algar said. “He would gather a whole bunch of balls and throw at targets on a wall. He would spend two to three hours and then come home for a soft drink and then back to his pitching.”