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Shterna Gurkow

was born John Arthur Taylor, Jr. in Hartford, Connecticut to John Arthur Taylor, Sr. and Etta Taylor. John Arthur, Sr., a Virginia-born lather in the building trades, came from a large accomplished family of ten children, most of whom excelled in the arts. His mother, Etta, grew up in South Carolina.

Johnny, as the younger Taylor was best known, started his pitching career in Hartford’s Junior League with The Hornets in 1931; however, he later joined the track team at the city’s Bulkeley High School, where he took part in the high jump and pole vault competitions. In his senior year Taylor switched back to baseball under the tutelage of coach Babe Allen. On 2 June 1933 Taylor was pitching perhaps the most famous game of his high school career in which he struck out twenty five batters in nine innings while only giving up one hit In ...