Loek van Mil, tallest pro baseball player ever, dies at 34

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Some sad news: Loek Van Mil, the Dutch pitcher who spent ten seasons in the minors and who starred for the Netherlands in the World Baseball Classic, has died at age 34. The Netherlands baseball and softball association, KNBSB, said that his death was due to injuries sustained in an accident. Standing at seven feet one inch tall, van Mil was most notable for being the tallest man ever known to have played professional baseball.

van Mil joined the Twins as a non-drafted free agent at age 20 in 2005 and also played in the systems of the Angels, Indians and Reds, topping out at Triple-A. He would later pitch in Japan and Australia. We last took note of van Mil during the 2017 World Baseball Classic when he faced off against Nate Freiman of Israel, who is 6’8″. That plate appearance was believed to constitute the tallest batter-pitcher matchup in baseball history.