View Full Version : Bill James NL 1910-1919 All Decade Team
04-13-2011, 07:58 AM
NATIONAL LEAGUE 1910 - 1919
First Team Second Team Third Team
C - Chief Meyers Art Wilson Bill Rariden
1B - Ed Konetchy Jake Daubert Fred Merkle
2B - Larry Doyle Johnny Evers Miller Huggins/George Cutshaw (tie)
3B - Heinie Zimmerman Heinie Groh Red Smith
SS - Art Fletcher Honus Wagner Buck Herzog
LF - Zack Wheat Sherry Magee George Burns
CF - Dode Paskert Max Carey Benny Kauff
RF - Gavvy Cravath Wildfire Schulte Chief Wilson
P - Grover Cleveland Alexander Claude Hendrix Rube Marquard
P - Hippo Vaughn Christy Mathewson Lefty Tyler
P - Slim Sallee Babe Adams Dick Rudolph
04-14-2011, 03:13 AM
First Team Catcher Chief Meyers
John Tortes "Chief" Meyers (July 29, 1880 - July 25, 1971) was a Major League Baseball catcher for the New York Giants, Boston Braves, and Brooklyn Robins from 1909 to 1917. He played on the early Giants teams under manager John McGraw and was the primary catcher for Hall of Famer Christy Mathewson. Meyers hit over .300 for three straight years as the Giants won three straight National League pennants from 1911 to 1913. Overall, he played in four World Series - the 1911, 1912, and 1913 Series with the Giants, as well as the 1916 Series with the Robins. Meyers, a Cahuilla Indian from California, was educated at Dartmouth College.
Meyers had his greatest success in the 1912 season, hitting .358 and finishing third in the MVP award voting. His .441 on-base percentage led the league. Meyers was also a key player in that year's World Series versus the Boston Red Sox, which featured the infamous "Snodgrass Muff" as well as captivating performances by Mathewson and Smoky Joe Wood. In 1919, Meyers was hired as manager of the New Haven entry in the Eastern League.
Meyers was interviewed by Lawrence Ritter for The Glory of Their Times in March 1964. This brought him a great deal of fame years after he had left baseball.
New York Giants (1909-1915)
Brooklyn Robins (1916-1917)
Boston Braves (1917)
Career highlights and awards
Third in NL batting average (1911)
Second in NL batting average (1912)
Third in NL MVP voting (1912)
Appeared in the 1911, 1912, 1913, 1916 World Series
04-14-2011, 03:18 AM
First Team First Baseman Ed Konetchy
Edward Joseph Konetchy (September 3, 1885 - May 27, 1947), nicknamed "Big Ed" and "The Candy Kid", was an American first baseman in Major League Baseball for a number of teams, primarily in the National League, from 1907 to 1921. He played for the St. Louis Cardinals (1907-1913), Pittsburgh Pirates (1914), Pittsburgh Rebels of the Federal League (1915), Boston Braves (1916-1918), Brooklyn Robins (1919-1921), and Philadelphia Phillies (1921). He batted and threw right-handed.
Konetchy was born in La Crosse, Wisconsin. While he was considered an above-average hitter (he batted over .300 four times) he was more known around the league for his supreme consistency, his never-faltering speed, and his high degree of defensive skill at first base.
Konetchy made his Major League debut with the St. Louis Cardinals in 1907, and went on to acquire 25 stolen bases in 1909, hit .302 in 1910, and pick up 88 RBIs in 1911. He also had a 20-game hitting streak in 1910. In 1911, with the Cards only three games out of first place in early July, the team was involved in a train crash on its way from Philadelphia to Boston. 47 passengers were injured, while twelve died. None of the Cardinals were seriously injured, due to a pre-trip change in the location of their car to the rear of the train. Konetchy and Cards manager Roger Bresnahan led the rescue effort, carrying many passengers to safety, some of whom may have died. Despite posting their first winning season since 1901, the Cardinals never recovered from the incident, finishing a distant fifth; but Konetchy led the NL with 38 doubles, and his own team with six home runs and 88 RBIs. When Konetchy moved to the Pirates in 1914, he had a below-average season, followed by an above-average one in the same city, but on a different team in a different league. Playing for Pittsburgh of the Federal League, he tied his career high with a .314 average, with 10 home runs and 93 RBIs.
Soon, he was back in the National League, and he was picking up hits in droves. In 1920 with Brooklyn, Konetchy got his only shot at postseason play during his career, although Brooklyn (93-61) lost the World Series in seven games to the 98-56 Cleveland Indians. In the Series, Konetchy picked up four hits in 23 at bats, a .174 average. However, he did have 2 RBIs in the Series, and three walks.
By the end of 1920, he had surpassed 2000 career hits and was quite high on the all-time leaderboard (into the top 25). His final season was spent in Brooklyn and then Philadelphia, when the Phillies selected him off waivers on July 4, 1921.
Konetchy's major league career ended there. Besides playing first base, he had tried out pitching, having thrown in 3 games. One of them was a fairly bad start in which he pitched a complete game and allowed 8 runs (6 earned). However, in one of his two relief appearances, he went 4 and 2/3 innings and gave up no runs on one hit to get the win.
In 2085 games, he batted a solid .281 with 74 home runs and 992 RBIs. He had 2150 career hits in 7649 at bats. Konetchy also picked up 255 career stolen bases. He ended with a total of 344 doubles, and after having reached doubles figures in triples ten times, retired with 182, tying him for the 11th highest total in history.
After leaving the majors, he played with Fort Worth of the Texas League from 1922 through 1927, batting .345 with 41 home runs in 1925. After retiring, he went into business with pitching star Joe Pate.
He died in Fort Worth, Texas at the age of 62. The cause was heart disease. He was posthumously inducted into the Wisconsin Athletic Hall of Fame in 1961. His interment was located at Fort Worth's cemetery Greenwood Memorial Park.
St. Louis Cardinals (1907-1913)
Pittsburgh Pirates (1914)
Pittsburgh Rebels (1915)
Boston Braves (1916-1918)
Brooklyn Robins (1919-1921)
Philadelphia Phillies (1921)
Career highlights and awards
National League pennant: 1920
04-14-2011, 03:21 AM
First Team Second Baseman Larry Doyle
Lawrence Joseph Doyle (July 31, 1886 - March 1, 1974), nicknamed "Laughing Larry," was an American second baseman in Major League Baseball from 1907 to 1920 who played almost his entire career for the New York Giants. The National League's outstanding second baseman during the 1910s, he was awarded the 1912 Chalmers Award as the league's best player, and won the 1915 batting title with a .320 average. The team captain and top everyday star on three consecutive pennant winners (1911-13), his .408 career slugging average was the top mark by an NL second baseman when he retired, as were his career totals in hits (1887), doubles (299), triples (123), total bases (2654) and extra base hits (496). He ended his career among the major league leaders in career games (5th, 1730), putouts (9th, 3635), assists (9th, 4654), total chances (9th, 8732) and double plays (5th, 694) at second base, and set Giants franchise records for career games, at bats and doubles, each of which was broken by Bill Terry.
Born in Caseyville, Illinois, Doyle was a third baseman in the minor leagues before his contract was purchased by the Giants for a then-record $4,500. He debuted with the Giants on July 22, 1907, arriving late after taking the wrong boat across the Hudson River; he cost his team the game with a ninth-inning error, though he also had a pair of hits. Doyle moved to Breese, Illinois, where his family owned a motel next to the current city hall. He expected to be returned to the minor leagues; instead, he was retained by manager John McGraw, who named him the team's field captain in 1908 – a year in which he finished third in the batting race with a .308 average. Doyle, who also became the roommate of Christy Mathewson for several years, followed up with a 1909 season in which he led the NL in hits (172) and was among the league's top four players in batting (.302), slugging (.419), home runs (6) and total bases (239). 1910 saw a slight dropoff, though he was still third in the NL in home runs (8) and fourth in runs scored (97). He then entered the strongest part of his career; in 1911 he finished third in the voting for the initial Chalmers Award after hitting .310 and finishing second in the league with a .527 slugging average – the highest by an NL second baseman since Ross Barnes slugged .590 in the league's inaugural 1876 campaign. Doyle also led the league with 25 triples, the most by an NL player since 1899; it remains the highest total by a Giant since 1900. He stole 30 bases for the third consecutive year, and finished fourth in the league in home runs (13) and fifth in runs (102). In the 1911 World Series against the Philadelphia Athletics, he batted .304; with the Giants facing elimination in Game 5, he went 4 for 5, doubling and scoring an intensely disputed run in the 10th inning for a 4-3 victory. He again doubled and scored for a 1-0 lead in the first inning of Game 6, but the Giants lost the game 13-2, and with it the Series.
Doyle then had a 1912 season which was perhaps even better, winning the Chalmers Award after hitting a career-high .330 as the Giants repeated as NL champions. In the 1912 World Series against the Boston Red Sox he only hit .242, though he scored the first run in a Game 6 victory and was 3 for 4 with a home run in an 11-4 rout in Game 7. But he was 0 for 5 in Game 8 as the Red Sox won 3-2 in ten innings, after New York took a 2-1 lead in the top of the 10th, to capture the title. In 1913 the Giants won their third straight pennant; although he batted only .280, he stole 30 bases for the fifth year in a row and was eighth in the NL with 73 runs batted in. That year, he became the first player to hit a home run out of the Polo Grounds. He had an even more dismal 1913 World Series, hitting only .150 against the Athletics as the Giants lost in five games, though he did drive in the first run of the Series. In 1914 he slipped to a .260 average, but was fourth in the league in runs. On July 17, he hit a home run in the top of the 21st inning to defeat the Pittsburgh Pirates 3-1.
He enjoyed renewed success in 1915, however, winning the batting crown with a .320 average; it was the first title won by an NL second baseman since Barnes in 1876. He also led the league in hits (189) for the second time, and in doubles with 40 – a Giants franchise record until George Kelly hit 42 in 1921. Doyle was also second in the NL in runs (86) and fifth in slugging (.442). He began 1916 with a .278 average before being traded to the Chicago Cubs in late August, a painful move for the fiercely loyal player who had famously said in 1911 that it was "great to be young and a Giant." After hitting .395 for the Cubs in nine games that year, he batted .254 for the team in 1917, finishing fourth in the league with 6 home runs, before a pair of January 1918 trades brought him back to New York. He hit .261 in his return to the Giants before having his last outstanding season in 1919; that year he again was league runnerup in slugging with a .433 average, and was fifth in home runs (7). He batted .285 in his final season in 1920, and was granted his release so he could manage the Toronto Maple Leafs of the International League. At the time, he was within five games of Johnny Evers' league record for career games at second base.
Doyle ended his career with a .290 batting average, putting him behind only Nap Lajoie (.338), Eddie Collins (then at .329) and Cupid Childs (.306) among players with 1000 games at second base. His 74 home runs placed him third at his position behind Fred Pfeffer (94) and Lajoie (83). He also had 960 runs and 793 RBI in 1766 games, as well as 300 stolen bases including 17 steals of home plate; he held the Giants club record for career steals from 1918 to 1919, when teammate George Burns passed him. Baseball Magazine selected Doyle as the second baseman on their NL All-America Team in 1911 and 1915.
Doyle contracted tuberculosis in 1942, and entered the Trudeau Sanitorium in Saranac Lake, New York. When the institution closed in 1954 due to the development of an effective antibiotic treatment, he was the last resident to leave; Life Magazine photographers covered his last meal and his departure, on foot, from the grounds.  He stayed on in Saranac Lake, and died there twenty years later, at age 87.
New York Giants (1907-1916, 1918-1920)
Chicago Cubs (1916-1917)
Career highlights and awards
National League pennant: 1911, 1912, 1913
National League MVP: 1912
Led NL in Hits in 1909 (172) and 1915 (189)
Led NL in Triples (25) in 1911
Led NL in At Bats per Strikeout (27.9) in 1912
Led NL in Batting Average (.320), Doubles (40) and Singles (135) in 1915
04-14-2011, 03:23 AM
First Team Third Baseman Heinie Zimmerman
Henry Zimmerman (February 9, 1887 - March 14, 1969), known as "Heinie" or "The Great Zim," was a Major League Baseball player in the early 20th century. Zimmerman played for the Chicago Cubs and New York Giants. He was born and died in New York, New York.
In 1912, Zimmerman led the National League in batting and in home runs, but failed to win the triple crown, as Honus Wagner led the league in RBIs. He was also an important member of the 1908 Cubs, the last Cubs team to win the World Series. Zimmerman was #98 on the "Top 100 Cubs of All Time" list as compiled by the web site Bleed Cubbie Blue. 
Zimmerman was suspended from the New York Giants in 1919, along with his friend Hal Chase for allegedly attempting to convince other players to fix games. Based on testimony by Giants manager John McGraw during the Black Sox Scandal hearings, Zimmerman and Chase were both indicted for bribery. Zimmerman denied McGraw's accusations, and neither he nor Chase was ever proven to be directly connected to the Black Sox, but based on a long-term pattern of corruption both were permanently banned from baseball by Judge Kenesaw Mountain Landis, Commissioner of Baseball. According to some historians, he had been informally banned after the Giants released him. Baseball statistician Bill James has suggested that the Giants' loss to the Chicago White Sox in the 1917 World Series may have been partial motivation for Zimmerman's suspension. Zimmerman batted .120 in the Series.
However, he is best-known for an infamous rundown in the decisive game. In the fourth inning, the game was scoreless when Chicago's Eddie Collins was caught between third base and home plate. Catcher Bill Rariden ran up the line to start the rundown, expecting pitcher Rube Benton or first baseman Walter Holke to cover the plate. However, neither of them budged, and Collins blew past Rariden to score what turned out to be the Series-winning run (the White Sox won 4-2). Third baseman Zimmerman ran behind him pawing helplessly in the air with the ball. As pointed out by researcher Richard A. Smiley in SABR's 2006 edition of The National Pastime, Zimmerman was long blamed for losing the game, although McGraw blamed Benton and Holke for failing to cover the plate--a serious fundamental error in baseball. The play was actually quite close, as action photos show Zimmerman leaping over the sliding Collins. A quote often attributed to Zim, but actually invented by writer Ring Lardner some years later, was that when asked about the incident Zim replied, "Who the hell was I supposed to throw to, Klem (umpire Bill Klem, who was working the plate)?"
Chicago Cubs (1907-1916)
New York Giants (1916-1919)
Career highlights and awards
World Series champion: 1907, 1908
National League pennant: 1910, 1917
National League batting champion: 1912
National League home run champion: 1912
National League RBI champion: 1916, 1917
National League doubles leader: 1912
1 200-hit season
1 season with 100+ RBI
04-14-2011, 03:25 AM
First Team Shortstop Art Fletcher
Arthur Fletcher (January 5, 1885 - February 6, 1950) was an American shortstop, manager and coach in Major League Baseball. Fletcher was associated with two New York City baseball dynasties: the Giants of John McGraw as a player; and the Yankees of Miller Huggins and Joe McCarthy as a coach.
Born in Collinsville, Illinois, Fletcher came to the Giants in 1909 and became the club's regular shortstop two years later. He played in four World Series while performing for McGraw (1911, 1912, 1913 and 1917). Traded to the Philadelphia Phillies in the midst of the 1920 season, he retired after the 1922 campaign with 1,534 hits and a .277 batting average. He batted and threw right-handed. Fletcher is the Giants' career leader in being hit by pitches (132) and ranks 21st on the MLB career list (141) for the same statistic.
In 1923 he replaced Kaiser Wilhelm as manager of the seventh-place Phillies and led the club through four losing seasons, bookended by last-place finishes in 1923 and 1926. In October 1926, he was replaced by Stuffy McInnis.
Fletcher then began a 19-year tenure (1927-45) as a coach for the Yankees, where, beginning with the 1927 team, he would participate on ten American League pennant winners and nine World Series champions. On a tragic note, he served as the acting manager of Yankees for the last 11 games of the 1929 season when Huggins was fatally stricken with erysipelas. He won six of those 11 games, to compile a career major league managing record of 237-383 (.382).
Fletcher retired after the 1945 season and died from a heart attack in 1950 in Los Angeles, California, at the age of 65.
Arthur Fletcher Field, located in Collinsville, Illinois, is named for him. The field is home of the Collinsville High School Kahoks, the Collinsville Miners American Legion team, and the Collinsville Herr Travelers junior legion team.
New York Giants (1909-1920)
Philadelphia Phillies (1920, 1922)
Philadelphia Phillies (1923-1926)
New York Yankees (1929)
Career highlights and awards
Batted .319 in 1911
04-15-2011, 05:30 AM
First Team, Left Fielder, Zack Wheat
Zachariah Davis "Zack" Wheat (May 23, 1888 – March 11, 1972), nicknamed "Buck", was an American Major League Baseball left fielder. He was elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1959.
A consistent hitter throughout his 19-year career, he still holds many Dodger franchise records. His brother McKinley "Mack" Wheat also played in the major leagues, and the two were teammates in Brooklyn for five seasons.
Born in Hamilton, Missouri, Wheat began his professional baseball career in 1906 for Enterprise in the Kansas League, followed by Wichita in 1907, Shreveport Pirates of the Texas League in 1908, and finally, to round out his minor league career, he played for the Mobile Seas Gulls of the Southern Association in 1909. It was during that 1909 season that the Brooklyn Superbas of the National League purchased Wheat for $1200, and he made his Major League debut in September. He batted with a corkscrew type of swing, and held his hands down near the end of the bat, unlike most hitter during his time, a time noted as the "Dead Ball Era". Even with his consistent high levels of hitting, he was also noted for his graceful and stylish defense.
Wheat played his first full season in 1910. He played every game for the Superbas that season as the regular left fielder, leading the league in games played. He batted .284 that season, the second lowest average of his career, which led the team, and was among the league leaders in hits, doubles, and triples. It was in 1911 that his reputation as a slugger began to take hold. Along with hitting .287, he finished eighth in the league with 13 triples, he also slugged five home runs. In an era when players rarely hit double digit home runs for a season, five was notable enough for people to take notice.
Wheat continued his steady and consistent climb up the batting charts in 1912, hitting .305, and finished the season among the league leaders in home runs and slugging percentage. Over the next four seasons, he continued to be among the leaders of many offensive categories; such as home runs, batting average, slugging, hits, doubles, triples, and RBIs. It was during the 1912 season that Wheat married Daisy Kerr Forsman, and she became his default agent, encouraging him to hold out for a better contract each season. Players in his day signed one-year contracts before every season. Each time he held out, he received more money, the club not wanting to lose one of its best players and the team's most popular player. This tactic of threatening to hold out served him well during throughout his career, including during the World War I era, when he raised and sold mules to the United States Army as pack animals. He claimed that he did so well, that he didn't need to play during the summer. The team, fearing that they migh lose a great player during the prime of his career, would succumb to his demands every year.
In 1916, he topped off the string of seasons with a finish in the top ten in all the above categories, topping the league in total bases and slugging. He also had a career high hitting streak, which reached 29 games. The Brooklyn Robins won the National League pennant that season. In the World Series, they faced the Boston Red Sox, which had the formidable pitching rotation of Ernie Shore, Dutch Leonard, Carl Mays, and Babe Ruth. The Red Sox won the series 4 games to one, holding the Robins to a .200 batting average, and Wheat to a paltry .211.
During the 1917 and 1918 seasons, Wheat hit well, but missed many games due to injuries. He had tiny feet, size 5, and this is believed to be the cause of the many nagging ankle injuries that caused to miss many games in his career. He did, however, lead the league in batting average for the first and only time in his career with a .335 batting average, his highest average up to that point. Interestingly, for a player known as a slugger, and consistently in the top ten in most offensive categories including home runs, he hit zero that season, and just one the season prior.
Starting in 1919, Wheat returned to the league slugging leaders once again, as the baseball began to become livelier, proved by the offensive output by the likes of Ruth, and Rogers Hornsby. The Robins made their second World Series appearance in 1920, this time facing off against the Cleveland Indians. The Robins lost this series as well, 5 games to 2, although Wheat's hitting greatly improved this time around, batting .333. Wheat statistics climbed during this new live era of baseball, topping the double-digit home run totals for the first time with 14 in 1921, and again three more times in the next four years. Wheat hit .320 or higher every season from 1920 through 1925, topping out with .375 in consecutive seasons. He failed to lead the league in hitting those two seasons, not getting enough at bats in 1923 to qualify, and Hornsby topped the league with .384, and in 1924, his .375 finished a distant second to Hornsby's .424.
A subtle, but longstanding friction existed between Wheat and his manager, future Hall of Famer Wilbert Robinson. The friction reportedly stemmed from Robinson's belief that Wheat seemed to pursue the manager's job behind his back. When owner Charles Ebbets died in 1925, new team president Ed McKeever re-assigned Robinson into the front office and named Wheat as player-manager. Newspapers confirm that he managed the Dodgers for two weeks. McKeever caught pneumonia at Ebbets' funeral, and died soon afterward, and Robinson quickly returned to the managers position. As it turned out, Wheat never again managed in the majors, much to his disappointment. To add insult to injury, Wheat's 1925 managerial stint never made it into the official records. In 1931, Steve McKeever, Ed's brother, hired Wheat as a coach, leading to widespread speculation that Zack was being groomed for the manager's spot, threatening Robinson's job for a second time in seven years, and he treated his former star as coldly as ever.
Wheat was signed by the Philadelphia Athletics after his release from Brooklyn in 1927. After the season, he was released again; this time he signed and played for the minor league Minneapolis Millers of the American Association. He played very little that season due to an injury to his heel, and retired from playing for good following the season. He still holds the Dodger franchise records for hits, doubles, triples and total bases.
After Wheat retired from baseball, he moved back to his 160-acre (0.65 km2) farm in Polo, Missouri, until the Great Depression forced him to sell it in 1932. He moved to Kansas City, Missouri, where he operated a bowling alley and later became a police officer. It was during his duties as an officer in 1936, that he was chasing a fleeing felon in his vehicle, when he crashed and nearly died. Wheat spent five months in hospital after the accident, and after he was discharged, he moved his family to Sunrise Beach, Missouri, a resort town on the Lake of the Ozarks, to recuperate. It was here that he opened a 46-acre (190,000 m2) hunting and fishing resort.
Wheat was first voted into the Baseball Hall of Fame by the Veterans Committee in 1957, but could not be inducted, due to the fact that he had not been officially retired for the required 30 years. In 1959, the committee unanimously elected him. In 1981, Lawrence Ritter and Donald Honig included him in their book The 100 Greatest Baseball Players of All Time. In 2006, the stretch of Route 13 that runs through Caldwell County, Missouri was named the Zach Wheat Memorial Highway.
Brooklyn Superbas / Dodgers / Robins (1909–1926)
Philadelphia Athletics (1927)
Career highlights and awards
Led NL in batting average in 1918 with .335
HOF, 1959, Veterans Committee
04-15-2011, 05:32 AM
First Team, Center Fielder, Dode Paskert
George Henry "Dode" Paskert (August 28, 1881 in Cleveland, Ohio - February 12, 1959 in Cleveland, Ohio), was a professional baseball player who played outfield in the Major Leagues from 1907 to 1921. He played for the Philadelphia Phillies, Cincinnati Reds, and Chicago Cubs.
Huh? Not much of a write for a 1st teamer?
04-15-2011, 05:34 AM
First Team, Right Fielder, Gavvy Cravath
Clifford Carlton "Gavvy" Cravath (March 23, 1881 – May 23, 1963), also nicknamed "Cactus", was an American right fielder and right-handed batter in Major League Baseball who played primarily for the Philadelphia Phillies. One of the sport's top power hitters of the dead-ball era, in the seven years from 1913 to 1920 he led the National League in home runs six times, in runs batted in, total bases and slugging average twice each, and in hits, runs and walks once each. He led the NL in several offensive categories in 1915 as the Phillies won the first pennant in the team's 33-year history, and he held the team's career home run record from 1917 to 1924.
Born in Escondido, California, Cravath was the first baseball player from the San Diego area to play in the major leagues. He began his career during a time of independent minor leagues, when not all great players moved quickly to the majors. He entered professional baseball in 1903 with the Los Angeles Angels of the Pacific Coast League; during 5 seasons with the team, he helped them win two pennants. He batted .274, .270, .259, .270, and .303, with 7, 13, 9, 6, and 10 home runs, and with 51, 50, 32, 39, and 45 doubles. He led the league in doubles twice (1906 and 1907) and also finished third twice. Although he never led the PCL in home runs, he was second in the league three times, third once, and fourth once during his 5 seasons.
While playing in California, Cravath reportedly picked up his nickname of "Gavvy" by hitting a ball that killed a seagull ("gaviota" in Spanish) in flight. The reporters spelled the nickname "Gavvy" to emphasize that it rhymes with "savvy," but Cravath himself spelled it "Gavy."
Boston, Chicago, Washington, and Minneapolis
At the end of 1907, Cravath's contract was sold to the Boston Red Sox, where he would be a 27-year-old rookie in 1908. His lack of speed was compared unfavorably to Tris Speaker and other swift outfielders of the time; Cravath once said, "They call me wooden shoes and piano legs and a few other pet names. I do not claim to be the fastest man in the world, but I can get around the bases with a fair wind and all sails set. And so long as I am busting the old apple on the seam, I am not worrying a great deal about my legs." He was hitting .256 with 11 triples in 277 at bats when his contract was sold to the Chicago White Sox in August 1908. After a slow start in Chicago in 1909, he was traded to the Washington Senators, who moved him to the Minneapolis Millers of the American Association after only four games.
In Minneapolis, Cravath learned to hit to the opposite field to take advantage of the short (279 ft) right-field line at Nicollet Park. That ability would also serve him well with the Phillies, who had a similar short right-field porch only 272 feet from home plate at the Baker Bowl. The 1910–11 Millers were one of the great minor league teams of all time, and Cravath was their biggest star. In 1910 he led the league in batting average (.326), hits (200), home runs (14), doubles (41), and triples (13). In 1911 he again led the league in the same categories except for triples, with an average of .363, 221 hits, 53 doubles, 13 triples, and 29 home runs.
The rules of the time did not make it easy for Cravath to move back to the majors. Reportedly, it took a clerical error — the Millers inadvertently left out the word "not" in a telegram — to get Cravath back to the major leagues. In his second chance with the Phillies at age 31 in 1912, he proved he was there to stay by hitting .284 with 11 home runs and 70 RBI. He was also a more than adequate outfielder, sharing the league lead with 26 assists.
In 1913 he enjoyed an even better season, leading the NL in hits (179), home runs (19), RBI (128), total bases (298), and slugging (.568); he also placed second in batting with a career-high mark of .341. He placed second in the voting for the Chalmers (MVP) Award behind Jake Daubert, though many historians think Cravath should have won. He repeated as home run champion in 1914, hitting all of his 19 homers in home games, while again sharing the league lead in assists and finishing second in RBI and slugging.
1915 saw his best season as he hit 24 home runs, 11 more than any other player, leading the Phillies to their first pennant; he had a 3-run home run in the pennant-clinching game on September 29. He also led the league in runs (89), RBI (115, leading the NL by 28), total bases (266), walks (86), on base percentage (.393), and slugging (.510, leading the NL by 53 points), and led the NL in assists for the third time. His 24 home runs were the most in the major leagues since Buck Freeman hit 25 for the 1899 Washington Senators; he also broke Sam Thompson's Phillies franchise record of 20, set in 1889. He later broke Thompson's career franchise record; Cravath's single-season club mark was surpassed by Cy Williams in 1922, and his career record was broken by Williams in 1924. In the low-scoring 1915 World Series against the Red Sox he hit only .125, though he drove in the winning run on a ground out in Game 1, the only Phillies victory. He scored Philadelphia's only runs in Games 2 and 4 (both 2–1 losses), and Boston won in five games, outscoring the Phillies 12–10. In Game 5, after the first three Phillie batters reached base, manager Pat Moran gave Cravath the bunt sign on a 3–2 count for unknown reasons; the slugger rolled the next pitch to the pitcher, resulting in a double play.
Regarded as one of the sport's pioneer sluggers of the 20th century, Cravath went on to become the first player to win more than five home run titles. However, his home run total was influenced by the hitter-friendly dimensions of his home park with the Phillies, the Baker Bowl; Cravath hit 92 of his 119 career homers in the Baker Bowl. Although his level of play declined gradually after 1915, he again won the home run title in 1917 and 1918. In 1919, at age 38, he had his last outstanding season, winning his sixth home run title with 12 homers in just 214 at-bats while hitting .341. In last place midway through the season, the Phillies fired manager Jack Coombs, and Cravath took his place. After he was invited to return as player-manager in 1920, the Phillies improved to 62–91, but ended up in last place again. Cravath was criticized for his easygoing style and was released, ending his major league career; he became player-manager for the Salt Lake City Bees of the Pacific Coast League in 1921. He played his final professional games in 1922 with the Minneapolis Millers.
Cravath had a career .287 batting average with 119 home runs, then the fourth most in history, and 719 RBI in 1220 games. Mel Ott eventually tied his NL record of six home run titles; Ralph Kiner broke the record in 1952 with seven; and Mike Schmidt now holds the record of eight titles, set with the Phillies in 1986. Cravath's 20th-century record of 119 homers was broken by Babe Ruth in 1921. Cravath returned to California, where he went into real estate and was elected magistrate judge (Justice of the Peace) in September 1927 in Laguna Beach, California; he died there at age 82. His nephew Jeff Cravath was head football coach at the University of Southern California from 1942–1950.
In a June 27, 2004 interview with the Washington Post, 7-time Jeopardy! champion Tom Walsh, who set the record for wins on the program in January 2004 before Ken Jennings came along later that year and won 74 games in a row, said, "I feel like 'Cactus Gavvy' Cravath. Do you know who that is? Right. Nobody does. He's the guy who had the home run record before Babe Ruth came along."
In 1985, Cravath was also inducted by the San Diego Hall of Champions into the Breitbard Hall of Fame honoring San Diego's finest athletes both on and off the playing surface.
Boston Red Sox (1908)
Chicago White Sox (1909)
Washington Senators (1909)
Philadelphia Phillies (1912–1920)
Career highlights and awards
NL On base percentage leader: 1915–16
NL Slugging percentage leader: 1913 and 1915
NL OPS leader: 1913–15
NL runs leader: 1915
NL hits leader: 1913
NL total bases leader: 1913 and 1915
NL home run leader: 1913–15 and 1917–19
NL RBI leader: 1913 and 1915
NL walks leader: 1915
NL runs created leader: 1913 and 1915
NL extra base hits leader: 1913, 1915, 1917–18
NL times on base leader: 1913 and 1915
NL at bats per home run leader: 1912–15 and 1917–18
04-15-2011, 05:48 AM
A subtle, but longstanding friction existed between Wheat and his manager, future Hall of Famer Wilbert Robinson. The friction reportedly stemmed from Robinson's belief that Wheat seemed to pursue the manager's job behind his back. When owner Charles Ebbets died in 1925, new team president Ed McKeever re-assigned Robinson into the front office and named Wheat as player-manager. Newspapers confirm that he managed the Dodgers for two weeks. McKeever caught pneumonia at Ebbets' funeral, and died soon afterward, and Robinson quickly returned to the managers position.
04-17-2011, 09:37 AM
First Team, Pitcher, Grover Cleveland Alexander
Grover Cleveland Alexander (February 26, 1887 – November 4, 1950), nicknamed "Old Pete", was an American Major League Baseball pitcher. He played for the Philadelphia Phillies, Chicago Cubs, and St. Louis Cardinals and was elected into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1938.
Alexander was born in Elba, Nebraska, one of thirteen children. He played semi-pro ball in his youth, signing his first professional contract at age 20 in 1907 for $50 per month. In 1909 he played for the Galesburg (IL) Boosters in the Class D Illinois-Missouri League and went 15-8 that year. He had a good season, but his career was almost ended when he was struck by a thrown ball while baserunning. Although this ended his 1909 season, he would recover by 1910 to become a star pitcher again, finishing with a 29-11 record for the Syracuse Stars in the Class B New York State League, before being sold to the Philadelphia Phillies for $750.
Alexander made his Philadelphia debut during the pre-season 1911 City Series, pitching five-innings of no-hit, no-run baseball against the Athletics. He would make his official Major League debut on April 15, 1911. He would be joined on the Phillies that year by catcher Bill Killefer, who went on to become Alexander's favorite receiver, catching 250 of his games.
In his rookie year, Alexander led the league with 28 wins (a modern-day rookie record), 31 complete games, 367 innings pitched, and seven shutouts, while finishing second in strikeouts and fourth in ERA. From 1912 to 1920, Alexander led the league in ERA five times (1915, 1916, 1917, 1919, and 1920), wins five times (1914–17, 1920), innings six times (1912, 1914–17, 1920), strikeouts six times (1912, 1914–1917, 1920), complete games five times (1914–1917, 1920), and shutouts five times (1915, 1916 [a single-season record 16], 1917, 1919). He won pitching's Triple Crown in 1915, 1916, and 1920. In 1915, he was instrumental in leading the Phillies to their first pennant, and he also pitched a record four one-hitters. Although Alexander would pitch for 10 more seasons, he would only lead the national league one more time (shutouts in 1923) in a major statistical category.
After the 1917 season, the Phillies sold Alexander to the Cubs, ostensibly fearful that he would be lost to the army in World War I, but as Phillies owner William Baker admitted later, "I needed the money". Sure enough Alexander was drafted, and spent most of the 1918 season in France as a sergeant with the 342nd Field Artillery. While there he suffered from shell shock, partial hearing loss, and increasingly worse seizures. Always a drinker, Alexander hit the bottle particularly hard after the war. He still gave Chicago several successful years, however, and grabbed another pitching triple crown in 1920. Finally tiring of his increasing drunkenness and insubordination, the Cubs sold him to the Cardinals in the middle of the 1926 season for the waiver price. Then-Cubs manager, Joe McCarthy, said that the reason for the sale was, "The Cubs finished last last year and if they finish last again, I'd rather it be without [Alexander]."
The Cardinals won the National League pennant that year and met the New York Yankees in the World Series, where Alexander had arguably his finest moment. He pitched complete game victories in Games 2 and 6. According to teammate Bob O'Farrell in The Glory of Their Times, after the game six victory, Alexander managed to get drunk throughout the night and was still feeling the effects when he was sent out to pitch. Alexander came to the game in the seventh inning of Game 7, after starter Jesse Haines developed a blister, with the Cardinals ahead 3–2, the bases loaded and two outs. Facing Yankee slugger Tony Lazzeri, Alexander struck him out and then held the Yankees scoreless for two more innings to preserve the win and give St. Louis the championship. He had one last 20-win season for the Cardinals in 1927, but his continued drinking finally did him in. He left major league baseball after a brief return to the Phillies in 1930, and pitched for the House of David until 1938.
Alexander attended game three of the 1950 World Series at Yankee Stadium where he saw the Phillies lose to the Yankees. He died less than a month later on November 4, 1950 in St. Paul, Nebraska at the age of 63.
Alexander's 90 shutouts are a National League record and his 373 wins are tied with Christy Mathewson for first in the National League record book. He is also third all time in wins, tenth in innings pitched (5190), second in shutouts, and eighth in hits allowed (4868). At the time of Alexander's final victory, in August 1929, the news media reported that he had broken Mathewson's career victories record of 372. In the 1940s, Mathewson was discovered to have qualified for an additional victory (May 21, 1902) and his total was officially upped to 373 and into a tie with Alexander.
In 1915, he won his first World Series game, for the Philadelphia Phillies. It would be 62 years before the Phillies won another postseason game, a record for futility that has yet to be equaled.
In 1999, he ranked number 12 on The Sporting News list of the 100 Greatest Baseball Players, and was a nominee for the Major League Baseball All-Century Team.
Alexander was elected to Baseball's Hall of Fame in 1938, the 3rd year of the Hall. Alexander was the only player elected that year.
Names / nicknames
Alexander was born during the first term of U.S. President Grover Cleveland.
Newspapers often mentioned his full name when writing about him, in addition to just "Grover". He was also sometimes called "Alec", and on occasions when he succeeded in grand fashion (as with the 1926 World Series), they would call him "Alexander the Great".
The origin of the nickname "Old Pete" is something of a mystery. It is uncertain how frequently Alexander was publicly called by that nickname during his playing days. On his 1940 Playball baseball card he was referred to as "Ol' Pete." In The World Series and Highlights of Baseball, by Lamont Buchanan, published in 1951, the year after Alexander died, on pp. 106–107 the author refers to "Pete Alexander" and "Ol' Pete" in a matter-of-fact way, suggesting the nickname was well-known. When he won his 373rd game on August 10, 1929, one newspaper had called him "old Pete", indicating that the nickname was in public circulation. (The Scrapbook History of Baseball, by Deutsch, Cohen, Johnson and Neft, Bobbs-Merrill, 1975, p. 131).
His nickname among old family friends in Nebraska was "Dode." (see "Grover Alexander and Bride Visit Home Folks," St. Paul Phonograph, St. Paul, Neb., April 24, 1919)
"Grover Cleveland Alexander wasn't drunk out there on the mound, the way people thought. He was an epileptic. Old Pete would fall down with a seizure between innings, then go back and pitch another shutout." -Ty Cobb ("Cobb", by Al Stump)
Alexander was the subject of the 1952 biographical film The Winning Team, in which he was played by Ronald Reagan. Baseball commentator Bill James called the film "an awful movie, a Reader's Digest movie, reducing the events of Alexander's life to a cliché." Nevertheless, Alexander has the distinction of being the namesake of one President of the United States and having been portrayed on film by an actor who later became President. At Warner Bros.' insistence, the word "epilepsy" was not mentioned in the film.
Philadelphia Phillies (1911–1917)
Chicago Cubs (1918–1926)
St. Louis Cardinals (1926–1929)
Philadelphia Phillies (1930)
Career highlights and awards
373 career wins (3rd all-time)
2.56 career ERA (48th all-time)
1.121 career whip (32nd all time)
Won 20 games or more 9 times, won 30 games or more 3 times.
Pitched 90 shutouts (2nd all time)
Won NL Pitcher's Triple Crown in 1915, 1916, and 1920
World Series champion (1926)
National League pennants (1915), (1918)
hof, 1938, BBWAA 80.92%
The block-letter "P" from the 1915 season uniforms was retired by the Phillies in 2001 to honor Alexander's Phillies career.
04-17-2011, 09:39 AM
First Team, Pitcher, Hippo Vaughn
James Leslie "Hippo" Vaughn (April 9, 1888 – May 29, 1966) was an American left-handed pitcher in Major League Baseball for the Chicago Cubs during the 1910s. He had some good years for the Cubs during a time when they were not always competitive, winning over 20 games in five seasons, including a National League-leading 22 in 1918, when the season was ended a month early due to government restrictions brought about by World War I.
Vaughn was born in Weatherford, Texas. Aside from the unflattering nickname (at 6-foot-4 and 215 pounds, he was only slightly less heavy than 1970s Cubs star Rick Reuschel), he is best remembered for his participation in what the record books used to refer to as a "double no-hitter". On May 2, 1917, at the ballpark now known as Wrigley Field, Vaughn dueled with Fred Toney of the Cincinnati Reds for nine hitless innings. In the top of the 10th, the Reds scored on a couple of hits after Vaughn had retired the first batter, while Toney continued to hold the Cubs hitless in the bottom of the inning, winning the game for the Reds. With changes to the scoring rules in recent years, this game is no longer considered as a no-hitter for Vaughn; but it is still the only occasion in major league history in which a regulation nine innings was played without either team logging a hit.
Vaughn died at age 78 in Chicago, Illinois.
 Stabbing incident
Hippo Vaughn was residing in Kenosha, Wisconsin when he was stabbed by his father-in-law at midnight on November 24, 1920, during an argument at the Vaughn home. At the time he was in divorce proceedings with a hearing set in a few days. His wife's father, former Kenoshan Harry DeBolt who now lived in the east, returned to Kenosha to attend the hearing. Newspaper reports at the time said DeBolt was angered over charges made by Vaughn that his wife had been friendly with other men.
However, James and Mrs. Vaughn had already effected a reconciliation before the case was to be heard. Their 9-year-old son was with them.
As Vaughn was returning to his home he was met on the street by his father-in-law, and an argument followed. DeBolt, according to the police report, slashed at the pitcher with a razor, cutting through his overcoat and inflicting a wound to the stomach. Vaughn was taken to the Kenosha Hospital and was able to leave the facility within a few days. Following the stabbing incident, DeBolt fled the city and was sought by police in several jurisdictions.
New York Highlanders (1908, 1910-1912)
Washington Senators (1912)
Chicago Cubs (1913-1921)
Career highlights and awards
National League pennant: 1918
1918 National League Pitching Triple Crown
National League ERA champion: 1918
National League wins champion: 1918
National League strkeout champion: 1918, 1919
2-time National League innings pitched leader
5 20-win seasons
04-17-2011, 09:41 AM
First Team, Pitcher, Slim Sallee
Harry Franklin "Slim" Sallee (February 3, 1885 - March 23, 1950) was a former professional baseball player. He was a left-handed pitcher over parts of fourteen seasons (1908–1921) with the St. Louis Cardinals, New York Giants and Cincinnati Reds. For his career, he compiled a 174-143 record in 476 appearances, with an 2.56 earned run average and 836 strikeouts. In Cardinals franchise history, Sallee ranks 3rd all-time in earned run average (2.67), 7th in innings pitched (1905.3), 8th in games started (215), and 7th in losses (107).
Sallee pitched in two World Series, both against the Chicago White Sox, and was a member of the victorious Reds in the infamous "Black Sox" 1919 World Series. He produced the best season of his career for the 1919 Reds, going 21-7 with a 2.06 earned run average. He lost a World Series to the White Sox as a member of the 1917 Giants. In World Series play, Sallee compiled a 1-3 record in 4 appearances, with a 3.45 earned run average and 6 strikeouts.
Sallee was born and later died in Higginsport, Ohio at the age of 65.
St. Louis Cardinals (1908-1916)
New York Giants (1916-1918, 1920-1921)
Cincinnati Reds (1919-1920)
Career highlights and awards
World Series champion: 1919
National League pennant: 1917
20-win season: 1919
Led the National League in bases on balls per 9 innings pitched (0.82) in 1918
Led the National League in strikeout-to-walk ratio (2.75) in 1918
2.56 career ERA is 49th on all-time list
1.83 career bases on balls per 9 innings pitched is 55th on all-time list
1.17 career WHIP is 85th on all-time list
04-19-2011, 12:15 AM
First Team, Catcher, Art Wilson
Arthur Earl "Dutch" Wilson (December 11, 1885 - June 12, 1960) was a catcher in Major League Baseball.
Wilson was the catcher for Cubs pitcher Hippo Vaughn during the "double no-hitter" game in 1917. The Cubs lost the game on an error by Wilson in the 10th inning.
New York Giants (1908-1913)
Chicago Whales (1914-1915)
Pittsburgh Pirates (1916)
Chicago Cubs (1916-1917)
Boston Braves (1918-1920)
Cleveland Indians (1921)
04-19-2011, 12:18 AM
First Team, First Baseman, Jake Daubert
Jacob Ellsworth Daubert (April 7, 1884 – October 9, 1924) was an American first baseman in Major League Baseball who played for the Brooklyn Superbas and Cincinnati Reds. His career lasted from 1910 until his death in 1924.
Daubert was recognized throughout his career for his performances on the field. He won the 1913 and 1914 National League batting titles, as well as the 1913 Chalmers Award. Between 1911 and 1919, The Baseball Magazine named him to their All-American team seven times. Baseball historian William C. Kashatus observed that Daubert was "a steady .300 hitter for 10 years of the Deadball Era", who "never fielded below the .989 mark" during the same period. His exceptional fielding record distinguishes him as "the most outstanding first baseman not in the Hall of Fame".
Daubert was born in Shamokin, Pennsylvania, to Jacob and Sarah Daubert. The lack of child labor laws enabled Daubert to go to work early in his life. In 1895, at the age of eleven, the young Daubert joined his father and two brothers at work in the local coal mines.
In 1906, Daubert left his job at the mines and signed a contract with a baseball team in Lykens, Pennsylvania. He was originally a pitcher on the team before he converted to first base. At the end of the 1906 season, Daubert left Pennsylvania and traveled west to Ohio. There, he spent the 1907 season on teams in Kane, Pennsylvania and Marion, Ohio.
In 1908, Daubert was signed by the Cleveland Indians. However, Daubert never played for Cleveland as they released him shortly thereafter. He left Cleveland and signed with the Nashville club of the Southern Association. He spent the remainder of the season with Nashville.
Daubert returned to Ohio for the start of the 1909 season. After playing the first part of the season with Toledo of the American Association, Daubert went back to Tennessee and joined the Memphis club. Like Nashville, Memphis' team played in the Southern Association. While playing for Memphis, Larry Sutton, a scout for the Brooklyn Dodgers, observed his play. Shortly thereafter, the Dodgers purchased Daubert's contract and brought him to Brooklyn for the 1910 season.
While Daubert hit just .264 in 1910, he hit over .300 in each of the next six seasons. On May 6, 1910, Daubert recorded 21 putouts in a single game, one short of the major league record.
In 1911 and 1912, Daubert placed ninth and eighth in the Chalmers Award voting. The following year, he won the award. In 1916 he batted .316 and Brooklyn won their first NL pennant; but he hit only .176 in the 1916 World Series and Brooklyn lost the series to the Boston Red Sox.
Daubert hit .261 in 1917, but the following year he hit .308 and led the NL in triples. When the season was cut short due to World War I and the influenza epidemic, major league owners prorated player salaries. Daubert, who had been among the founding members of the Players' Fraternity, sued for the balance of his salary. Eventually, Jake recovered most of the $2,150 he was due. After the dispute started, Brooklyn owner Charles Ebbets traded him to Cincinnati for outfielder Tommy Griffith. Once in Cincinnati, Daubert served as the Reds' captain for the remainder of his career.
In 1919, although he hit only .276, Daubert was second in the league in runs scored and third in triples. The Reds won their first pennant since the inaugural season of the American Association in 1882. In the 1919 World Series, noted for the Black Sox Scandal, he batted .241. In the 9-1 Game 1 victory, he had three hits including a triple, and he had two hits and scored twice in the final 10-5 victory in Game 8.
Daubert hit over .300 in the next three seasons. In 1922, Daubert hit for a .336 average, led the NL in triples and had a career-high 12 home runs. By 1923, at age 39, he was the oldest regular position player in the major leagues, and he hit .292 that season.
Daubert also excelled in sacrifice hits. His career total of 392 sacrifice hits is second in MLB history, behind Hall of Famer Eddie Collins.
In his career, he had 56 home runs, 1117 runs, 722 runs batted in, 250 doubles and 251 stolen bases. When he left Brooklyn for Cincinnati, Daubert held the Brooklyn franchise record for games played at first base (1206). The record was broken by Gil Hodges in 1956.
Baseball unionization efforts
Daubert was a trailblazer in baseball's unionization movement—a controversial role that may have been a factor in his omission from the Hall of Fame. In 1913, he served as vice president of the Baseball Players' Fraternity, which petitioned the National Baseball Commission for improved labor conditions. The petition included the following requests: 1) permission for players to negotiate with any team following their unconditional release, 2) a guarantee that clubs would provide players with 10 days' notice before releasing them unconditionally, 3) a guarantee that clubs would inform players of the terms of their contract when they are sent to another team, 4) a guarantee that a veteran players would not be sent to the minor leagues when his services are of interest to another major league club, 5) a guarantee that clubs would furnish uniforms and shoes to players free of charge, 6) a guarantee that clubs would provide traveling expenses to players between their homes and spring training camps, and 7) that players should receive written notice concerning any fine or suspension levied against them.
Although Daubert was unsuccessful in pressuring the commissioners to accept the terms of the fledgling baseball union's petition, he lobbied continuously for his own interests as a player, thereby earning a reputation as a "troublemaker" within the baseball establishment. A salary dispute with the Charles Ebbets, owner of the Dodgers, was a major factor in Daubert's transfer to Cincinnati in 1919.
Life outside baseball & death
While Daubert was in Brooklyn, he was nominated for city Alderman. He also spent time as a businessman and invested in several business ventures. His holdings included a pool hall, a cigar business, a semi-pro baseball team, a moving picture business, and a coal washery. His most profitable business was reportedly the coal washer, which was located in his hometown.
Daubert left the Reds late in the 1924 season after falling ill during a road trip to New York. Against his doctor's advice, he returned to play in the team's final home game of the season. On October 2, he had an appendectomy performed by Dr. Harry H. Hines, the Reds' team doctor. Complications from the operation arose, and a blood transfusion did not improve his health. He died one week after the operation in Cincinnati, Ohio, with the doctor citing "exhaustion, resulting in indigestion, [as] the immediate cause of death". It has turned out that Daubert suffered from a hereditary blood disorder called hemolytic spherocytosis, which contributed to his death. He was interred at the Charles Baber Cemetery in Pottsville, Pennsylvania. Daubert was survived by his wife Gertrude, his son George, and his daughter Louisa.
During his career, Daubert compiled a .303 lifetime batting average. At the time of his death, he ranked among the major league career leaders in games (4th, 2001), putouts (4th, 19634), assists (5th, 1128), total chances (4th, 20943) and double plays (3rd, 1199) at first base; he was also among the NL's leaders in hits (7th, 2326), triples (9th, 165), at bats (9th, 7673), games played (10th, 2014) and total bases (10th, 3074). Daubert currently holds the NL record for most sacrifice hits (392). He was inducted into the Cincinnati Reds Hall of Fame in 1966 and the Brooklyn Dodgers Hall of Fame in 1990.
Brooklyn Superbas/Dodgers/Robins (1910-1918)
Cincinnati Reds (1919-1924)
Career highlights and awards
1913 National League Most Valuable Player
1913 & 1914 National League Batting Title
Led NL in Triples in 1918 (15) and 1922 (22)
2nd All-Time in Sacrifice Hits (392)
Named to The Baseball Magazine All-American team 7 times.
Dodgers All-Time Leader in Sacrifice Hits (237)
Holds Dodgers single season record for most Sacrifice Hits (39 in 1915)
Holds Reds single season record for most Sacrifice Hits (39 in 1919)
04-19-2011, 12:20 AM
First Team, Second Baseman, Johnny Evers
John Joseph Evers (July 21, 1883 – March 28, 1947) was a Major League Baseball player and manager. He was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame by the Veterans Committee in 1946. He was born in Troy, New York.
Evers' last name originally rhymed with beavers rather than severs, but he came to accept both pronunciations.
Evers, a second baseman, made it to the big leagues with the Chicago Cubs in 1902 and played for the Cubs through 1913. During those years he appeared in four World Series and won two, (in 1907 and 1908). One of the smallest men ever to play in the major leagues, Evers reportedly weighed less than 100 pounds (45 kg) when he first broke in, and generally played at a weight under 130 pounds (59 kg). His combative play earned him the nickname "The Crab."
In 1914 Evers was traded to the Boston Braves, which proved to be a spectacular combination — the Braves won the World Series, and Evers won the Chalmers Award (a forerunner of the MVP award). Evers played with the Braves until 1917, when he was claimed off waivers by the Philadelphia Phillies in mid-season. He retired from playing after that season, having batted .300 or higher twice in his career, stolen 324 bases and scored 919 runs.
Evers is best known to modern-day fans as the pivot man in the "Tinker to Evers to Chance" double play combination, which inspired the classic baseball poem Baseball's Sad Lexicon, written by the twenty-eight-year old New York Evening Mail newspaper columnist Franklin Pierce Adams in July 1910. He was also the player who alerted the umpires to Fred Merkle's baserunning error in the 1908 pennant race, costing the Giants the pennant.
n 1914, he set the single-season record by getting ejected from a game 9 times.
Evers managed three teams, the 1913 Chicago Cubs, the 1921 Cubs, and the 1924 Chicago White Sox. Over his managerial career, he posted a 180-192 record.
He later served as a scout for the Boston Braves and as business manager and field manager of the International League's Albany Senators.
Johnny Evers died of a cerebral hemorrhage in 1947 in Albany, New York, and is interred in St. Mary's Cemetery in Troy, New York.
Chicago Orphans/Cubs (1902-1913)
Boston Braves (1914-1917, 1929)
Philadelphia Phillies (1917)
Chicago White Sox (1922)
Chicago Cubs (1913, 1921)
Chicago White Sox (1924)
Career highlights and awards
World Series champion: 1907, 1908, 1914
National League pennant: 1906, 1910
1914 National League MVP
HOF, 1946, Veterans Committee
04-21-2011, 09:04 PM
Second Team, Third Baseman, Heinie Groh
Henry Knight "Heinie" Groh (September 18, 1889 - August 22, 1968) was an American third baseman in Major League Baseball who spent nearly his entire career with the Cincinnati Reds and New York Giants. He was the National League's top third baseman in the late 1910s and early 1920s, and captained championship teams with the 1919 Reds and 1922 Giants. Renowned for his "bottle bat", he was an effective leadoff hitter, batting .300 four times and leading the league in doubles twice and in hits, runs and walks once each.
He led the NL in double plays six times and in fielding percentage five times, both records, and in putouts three times; his .983 fielding average in 1924 was then a major league record, and remains the top mark in NL history. He set major league records for career fielding average (.967) and double plays (278), and upon retiring ranked third in NL history in games (1299) and assists (2554) and fourth in putouts (1456) and total chances (4146) at third base. His brother Lew played two games for the Philadelphia Athletics in 1919.
Professional playing career
Born in Rochester, New York, Groh was a premier third baseman in the dead-ball era, during a period when both the playing fields and the players were rough. He made his debut as a second baseman with the Giants in 1912, playing for John McGraw and with star pitcher Christy Mathewson. At 5 feet 8 inches and 158 pounds, he appeared younger than his 23 years; in his first major league at bat, umpire Bill Klem questioned whether McGraw had mistakenly sent a batboy to the plate, but Groh came through with a base hit.
It was McGraw who suggested that Groh use a heavier bottle-style bat, though Groh shaved the handle down even further for better weight distribution – his hands were too small to grip the larger bats – and became a skilled bunter. But after just 31 games with the Giants, he was traded to the Reds in May 1913, and finished his rookie year with a .282 average. He improved to .288 in 1914 and led the league in times hit by pitch, but also led the league in errors at second base, and manager Buck Herzog – who had played both second and third base himself – shifted Groh to third base permanently in 1915.
The move was spectacularly successful, as Groh not only hit .290 with 32 doubles and 170 hits, but set a new league record with 34 double plays, breaking Lave Cross' 1899 mark of 32; he also finished within a fraction of a point of Bobby Byrne for the lead in fielding average at .969. On July 5, he hit for the cycle against the Chicago Cubs, becoming the only player to do so between 1913 and 1917; no Red would do so again until 1940. In 1916 he led the league in both walks (84) and double plays (32), and was among the top five NL players in runs and triples. In 1917 he batted .304, with a 23-game hitting streak, and led the NL in putouts (178) and fielding average (.966); his 39 doubles led the NL, and fell just short of Cy Seymour's 1905 club record of 40. He also led the league in hits (182) and on base percentage (.385), and was second in runs (91), walks (71) and total bases (246) and sixth in slugging average (.411).
1918 was an even better season in various ways, as despite a season curtailed by World War I and the influenza epidemic, he tied Billy Nash's 1890 major league record of 37 double plays, also leading the league in putouts (180) and fielding average (.969); Pie Traynor would set a new record with 41 double plays for the 1925 Pittsburgh Pirates.
Groh hit .320 (third in the league), led the NL in runs (86), doubles (28) and on base percentage (.395), and was second in hits (158) and third in walks (54) and total bases (195). He also managed the team for its final ten games (with a 7-3 record) after Mathewson entered the military.
The 1919 team marked the peak of his Cincinnati years, with the team winning its first pennant since its 1882 inaugural season in the American Association. Groh again led the NL with 171 putouts and 22 double plays, was fourth in the league with a .310 batting average, and was among the top five players in runs (79), runs batted in (63), on base percentage (.392), slugging (.431) and walks (56). The Reds went on to defeat the favored Chicago White Sox in the scandal-tainted World Series; after the Chicago players were discredited as having fixed the Series, Groh was famously quoted as saying "I think we'd have beaten them either way." In Game 1, Groh – batting third in the Series – drove in the first run of the Series on a sacrifice fly, and also had an RBI single in the 9-1 win. He scored in the 4-2 Game 2 victory, and also scored a disputed run in the 5-0 Game 5 win; White Sox catcher Ray Schalk was thrown out of the game for complaining about the call. In the final Game 8 (it being a best-of-nine Series), he had a single and scored in the 4-run first inning, and singled and scored again in the second as the Reds cruised to a 10-5 win and their first Series championship.
In 1920 he slipped slightly to a .298 average, posting solid totals in walks, runs and doubles, and led the NL in double plays for the fifth time with 30. He batted .331 in 1921, but was bothered by injuries throughout the year. He had begun the year with a long contract holdout, only joining the team in June for $10,000 (less than the $12,000 he had requested) on the condition that he would be immediately traded to the Giants. A deal was completed to send him back to New York, where McGraw had long been trying to re-acquire him; but Commissioner Kenesaw Mountain Landis cancelled the trade, requiring that Groh complete the year with the Reds. In December, after the Giants had won the World Series, he was finally sent to New York for two players and cash (varying reports give amounts from $100,000 to $250,000).
Although his batting marks were never the same with the Giants as they had been with the Reds, he posted good batting averages with over 20 doubles in each of his three full seasons in New York. In 1922 he led the NL in double plays (25) for the sixth and last time, and also in fielding average (.965) for the third time; in that year he broke Nash's NL record of 220 career double plays. His season highlights came in the World Series against the New York Yankees, as he batted .474 in the five-game sweep (four wins and a tie). Batting second, he was 3-for-3 with a triple in Game 1, singling and scoring in a 3-run eighth-inning rally that propelled the team to a 3-2 win. He singled twice and scored in a 3-0 win in Game 3, and singled and scored again in a 4-run fifth inning in Game 4, with New York hanging on for a 4-3 triumph. In Game 5, he singled with one out in the eighth inning to start a 3-run rally that gave the Giants their final 5-3 lead, although he was thrown out at the plate in the inning. For the rest of his life, Groh maintained the Ohio license plate number 474. He also noted that he had figured out the Yankees' signs, saying, "I knew when they were going to bunt and when they were going to hit away. Which is a very nice thing for a third baseman to know."
Although his fielding range had declined, Groh continued to better his accuracy. In 1923 he set a league record with a .975 fielding average, topping Hans Lobert's 1913 mark of .974; he also hit .290 during the season. The Giants won the pennant again, becoming the first team to remain in first place all season, but lost the World Series in six games to the Yankees, with Groh batting only .182. In 1924 he bettered his own mark by setting a new major league record with a .983 fielding average, breaking Larry Gardner's record of .976 with the 1920 Cleveland Indians. Willie Kamm would set a new record of .984 with the 1933 White Sox, but Groh's mark remains the best by an NL third baseman. In 1924 Groh also broke Nash's major league record of 265 career double plays, and again led the league in times being hit by a pitch. The Giants went to the World Series for the fourth straight year, but lost again to the Washington Senators in seven games. Groh, who had suffered a knee injury late in the season, made just a single pinch-hitting appearance, singling in 11th inning of the final game; the Giants lost 4-3 in the 12th when, with one out and runners on first and second, Earl McNeely hit a ground ball to rookie third baseman Freddie Lindstrom which apparently struck a pebble and bounced over his head for a double.
Groh appeared in a limited role for the Giants in each of the next two years, and ended his career with the Pirates in 1927. His final major league appearance was as a pinch-hitter in the ninth inning of Game 3 of the 1927 World Series against the Yankees, in which the Pirates were swept; he popped up to pitcher Herb Pennock. Groh retired with a .292 batting average, 1774 hits, 918 runs, 566 RBI, 26 home runs, 308 doubles, 696 walks and 180 stolen bases in 1676 games. His career fielding average was later topped by Kamm, and remained an NL record until Ken Reitz surpassed it in 1979; Traynor broke his record for career double plays in 1933. Groh's 1299 games at third base trailed only Harry Steinfeldt (1386) and Milt Stock (1349) in NL history.
 Post professional career
Groh became a minor league manager as well as a scout after retiring as a player. He later worked as a racetrack cashier, and was among the baseball figures interviewed for the landmark 1966 book The Glory of Their Times. His great grandson Steve Groh is currently the starting shortstop on the Hamilton Hess Village Slopitch team Jewish Men's Slopitch Tournament. He was inducted into the Cincinnati Reds Hall of Fame in 1963, and died at age 78 in Cincinnati.
New York Giants (1912-1913)
Cincinnati Reds (1913-1921)
New York Giants (1922-1926)
Pittsburgh Pirates (1927)
Career highlights and awards
World Series champion: 1919, 1922
National League pennant: 1923, 1924, 1927
Led the National League in walks (84) in 1916
Led the National League in hits (182) in 1917
Led the National League in doubles (39 & 28) in 1917 and 1918
Led the National League in on base percentage (.385 & .395) in 1917 and 1918
Led the National League in runs (86) in 1918
Led the National League in on base plus slugging (.823) in 1919
04-21-2011, 09:06 PM
Second Team, Shortstop, Honus Wagner
Johannes Peter "Honus" Wagner (pronounced /ˈhɒnəs ˈwæɡnər/; February 24, 1874 – December 6, 1955 ), nicknamed "The Flying Dutchman" due to his superb speed and German heritage ("Dutch" in this instance being an alteration of "Deutsch"), was an American Major League Baseball shortstop. He played in the National League from 1897 to 1917, almost entirely for the Pittsburgh Pirates. Wagner won eight batting titles, tied for the most in NL history with Tony Gwynn. He also led the league in slugging six times, and in stolen bases five times.
In 1936, the Baseball Hall of Fame inducted Wagner as one of the first five members. He received the second-highest vote total, behind Ty Cobb and tied with Babe Ruth.
Although Cobb is frequently cited as the greatest player of the dead-ball era, some contemporaries regarded Wagner as the better all-around player, and most baseball historians consider Wagner to be the greatest shortstop ever. Cobb himself called Wagner "maybe the greatest star ever to take the diamond."
Wagner was born to German immigrants Peter and Katheryn Wagner in the Chartiers neighborhood of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania which is now a part of the borough of Carnegie, Pennsylvania.
Wagner was one of five children. As a child, he was called Hans by his mother, which later evolved into Honus. "Hans" was also an alternate nickname during his major league career. Wagner dropped out of school at age twelve to help his father and brothers in the coal mines. In their free time, he and his brothers played sandlot baseball and developed their skills to such an extent that three of his brothers went on to become professionals as well.
Wagner's older brother, Albert "Butts" Wagner, who had a brief major league career himself, is often credited for getting Honus his first tryout. Butts persuaded his manager to take a look at his younger brother. Following his brother, Wagner trained to be a barber before becoming successful in baseball.
In 1894, Wagner married Bessie Baine Smith, and the couple went on to have three daughters, Elva Katrina (born 1918), Betty Baine (born 1919), and Virginia Mae (born 1922).
Career before Major League Baseball
Honus' brother Albert "Butts" Wagner was considered the ballplayer of the family. Albert suggested Honus in 1895 when his Inter-State League team was in need of help. In his first year, Honus played for five teams. Ed Barrow of the Atlantic League liked what he saw in Wagner, and, in 1896, he signed him. In 1896, Wagner hit .313. The next year, Honus hit .375 in 74 games played. Edward Barrow became Honus' bridge to the major leagues.
Recognizing his talent, Barrow recommended Wagner to the Louisville Colonels. After some hesitation about his awkward figure, Wagner was signed by the Colonels, where he hit .338 in 61 games.
By his second season, Wagner was already one of the best hitters in the National League although he came up short a percentage point from finishing the season at .300. Following the 1899 season, the NL contracted from twelve to eight teams, with the Colonels one of four teams eliminated. Along with Wagner, owner Barney Dreyfuss, who had purchased half ownership in the Pirates, took many of his other top players with him to Pittsburg.
The move to the Pittsburgh Pirates signified Wagner's emergence as a premier hitter. In 1900, Wagner won his first batting championship with a .381 mark and also led the league in doubles (45), triples (22), and slugging percentage (.573), all of which were career highs. For the next couple of seasons, Wagner's average did not fall below .330.
Honus Wagner in 1911
In 1901, the American League began to sign National League players, creating a bidding war, which depleted the league of many talented players. Wagner was offered a $20,000 contract by the Chicago White Sox, but turned it down and continued to play with the Pirates.
Prior to 1904, Wagner had played several positions, but settled into the shortstop role full-time that season, where he became a skilled fielder. His biography on BaseballLibrary.com describes his gritty style:
"Bowlegged, barrel-chested, long-limbed... he was often likened to an octopus. When he fielded grounders, his huge hands also collected large scoops of infield dirt, which accompanied his throws to first like the tail of a comet."
In 1898, Wagner won a distance contest in Louisville by throwing a baseball more than 403 feet. In August 1899, he became the first player credited with stealing second base, third, and home in succession under the new rule differentiating between advanced bases and stolen bases. He repeated the feat in 1902, 1907, and 1909. Wagner retired with the National League record for most steals of home (27), which was broken by Greasy Neale in 1922.
In September 1905, Wagner signed a contract to produce the first bat with a player's signature; the Honus Wagner was to become a best-seller for years. One month later, with one point separating him from Reds center fielder Cy Seymour for the batting title, Wagner fell short in a head-to-head matchup on the final day of the season, with Seymour collecting four hits to Wagner's two, as contemporary press reports stated that the fans were far more interested in the Seymour-Wagner battle than in the outcome of the games.
Shortly before the 1908 season, Wagner retired. Starting to panic, owner Barney Dreyfuss offered him $10,000, making him the highest paid player for many years. He returned to the Pirates early in the 1908 season, and finished two home runs short of the league's Triple Crown, leading the league in hitting (for the sixth time)‚ hits‚ total bases‚ doubles‚ triples‚ RBI‚ and stolen bases. Wagner took over the batting lead from the New York Giants' flamboyant outfielder Mike Donlin during a July 25 game against the Giants and their star pitcher Christy Mathewson. Wagner was 5-for-5 in the game; after each hit, he reportedly held up another finger to Donlin, who went hitless, and who had just beaten runner-up Wagner by a wide margin in a "most popular player" poll.
Bill James cites Wagner's 1908 season as the greatest single season for any player in baseball history. He notes that the league ERA of 2.35 was the lowest of the dead ball era and about half of the ERAs of modern baseball. Since Wagner hit .354 with 109 RBI in an environment when half as many runs were scored as today, he asks, "if you had a Gold Glove shortstop, like Wagner, who drove in 218 runs, what would he be worth?"
1903 and 1909 World Series
In 1903, the Pirates played the Boston Americans in Major League Baseball's inaugural World Series. Wagner, by this point, was an established star and much was expected of him, especially since the Pirates' starting rotation was decimated by injury. Wagner himself was not at full strength and hit only .222 for the series. The Americans, meanwhile, had some fans, called the "Royal Rooters" who, whenever Wagner came to bat, sang "Honus, Honus, why do you hit so badly?" to the tune of "Tessie", a popular song of the day. The Rooters, led by Boston bartender Michael "Nuf Ced" McGreevy, even travelled to Pittsburgh to continue their heckling. Pittsburgh lost in the best-of-nine series, five games to three, to a team led by pitchers Cy Young and Bill Dinneen and third baseman-manager Jimmy Collins. Christy Mathewson, in his book "Pitching in a Pinch" wrote: "For some time after "Hans" Wagner's poor showing in the world's series of 1903... it was reported that he was "yellow" (poor in the clutch). This grieved the Dutchman deeply, for I don't know a ball player in either league who would assay less quit to the ton than Wagner... This was the real tragedy in Wagner's career. Notwithstanding his stolid appearance, he is a sensitive player, and this has hurt him more than anything else in his life ever has."
Wagner was distraught by his performance. The following spring, he refused to send his portrait to a "Hall of Fame" for batting champions, citing his play in the World Series. "I was too bum last year," he wrote. "I was a joke in that Boston-Pittsburgh Series. What does it profit a man to hammer along and make a few hits when they are not needed only to fall down when it comes to a pinch? I would be ashamed to have my picture up now."
Wagner and the Pirates were given a chance to prove that they were not "yellow" in 1909. The Pirates faced Ty Cobb's Detroit Tigers. The series was the only meeting of the two superior batsmen of the day, and the first time that the batting champions of each league faced one another (this later occurred twice more, in the 1931 and 1954 World Series). Wagner was by this time 35 years old, Cobb just 22.
This time, Wagner could not be stifled as he outhit Cobb, .333 to .231, and stole six bases, establishing the new Series record. The speed demon Cobb only managed two steals, one of which Cobb himself admitted was a botched call. Wagner recounted: "We had him out at second. We put up a squawk, but Silk O'Loughlin, the umpire, overruled it. We kept the squawk going for a minute or so, making no headway of course, and then Cobb spoke up. He turned to O'Loughlin, an American League umpire, by the way, and said, 'Of course I was out. They had me by a foot. You just booted the play, so come on, let's play ball.' ."
There was also a story that was widely circulated over the years and famously recounted in Lawrence Ritter's The Glory of Their Times, that at one point Cobb was on first; he bragged to Wagner that he was going to steal second; Wagner placed an especially rough tag to Cobb's mouth; and the two exchanged choice words. Cobb denied it in his autobiography, and the play-by-play of the 1909 World Series confirms that the event could not have happened as stated: Cobb was never tagged out by Wagner in a caught-stealing. The Pirates won the series four games to three behind the pitching of Babe Adams.
In 1910, Wagner's average fell to .320, his lowest average since 1898. Nevertheless, he aged exceptionally well; the three highest OPS+ seasons by any shortstop aged 35 or older belong to Wagner, and even his age-41 season ranks 8th on the list.
Wagner won the 1911 batting title by the narrowest of margins. He went hitless in a 1-0 win against the Cubs on May 30, but a successful league protest by the Cubs wiped out the result (and Wagner's at-bats). Wagner ended up edging the Boston Rustlers' Doc Miller, .334 to .333. The Pirates were in contention into August, but an ankle injury sidelined Wagner for 25 games and the team slid from the race.
By 1912, Wagner was the oldest player in the National League. On June 9, 1914, at age 40, Wagner recorded his 3,000th hit, a double off Philadelphia's Erskine Mayer, the second player in baseball history to reach the figure, after Cap Anson, and Nap Lajoie joined them three months later. This accomplishment, however, came during a down period for Wagner and Pirates. Wagner hit only .252 in 1914, the lowest average of his career. In July 1915, he became the oldest player to hit a grand slam, a record which stood for 70 years until topped by 43-year-old Tony Perez. In 1916, Wagner became the oldest player to hit an inside-the-park home run.
In 1917, following another retirement, Wagner returned for his final, abbreviated season. Returning in June, he was spiked in July and played only sparingly for the remainder of the year, batting .265. He briefly held the role of interim manager, but after going 1–4, Wagner told owner Dreyfuss the job wasn't for him. He retired as the NL's all-time hit leader, with 3,430. (Subsequent research has since revised this total to 3,418.) It took 45 years for St. Louis' Stan Musial to surpass Wagner's hit total.
Wagner has been considered one of the very best all-around players to ever play baseball since the day he retired in 1917. Baseball historian and statistician Bill James named Honus Wagner as the second best player of all time after Babe Ruth, rating him as the best major league player in 1900 and each year from 1902 to 1908. Statisticians John Thorn and Pete Palmer rate Wagner as ninth all-time in their "Total Player Ranking". Many of the greats who played or managed against Wagner, including Babe Ruth, Ty Cobb, Rogers Hornsby, and Walter Johnson, list him at shortstop on their All-Time teams.
Life after baseball
He was not done playing baseball after his retirement from the MLB. He managed and played for a semi-pro team.
Honus Wagner's locker on display at the Hall of Fame
After retirement, Wagner served the Pirates as a coach for 39 years, most notably as a hitting instructor from 1933 to 1952. Arky Vaughan, Ralph Kiner, Pie Traynor (player-manager from 1934–1939), and Hank Greenberg (although, Greenberg was in his final major league season, his only season with Pirates in 1947 and very well established) all future Hall of Famers, were notable "pupils" of Wagner. During this time, he wore uniform number 14, but later changed it to his more famous 33, which was later retired for him. His entire playing career was in the days before uniform numbers were worn. His appearances at National League stadiums during his coaching years were always well received and Wagner remained a beloved ambassador of baseball. Wagner also coached baseball and basketball at what is now Carnegie Mellon University.
In 1928, Wagner ran for sheriff of Allegheny County, Pennsylvania but lost. He was made deputy county sheriff in 1942. He also ran a well-known sporting goods company. To this day, a sporting goods store bearing the name "Honus Wagner" operates in downtown Pittsburgh.
The Pirates hosted the 1944 Major League Baseball All-Star Game at Forbes Field. Wagner was invited to be an honorary coach for the National League squad, the first time this honor was bestowed in Major League Baseball's All-Star Game.
Wagner lived the remainder of his life in Pittsburgh, where he was well-known as a friendly figure around town. He died on December 6, 1955 at the age of 81, and he is buried at Jefferson Memorial Cemetery in the South Hills area of Pittsburgh.
Wagner, along with his famous Baseball Card, was one of the earliest athletes to make the cross over into pop culture film. He starred as the sports hero in both 1919's Spring Fever and 1922's In the Name of the Law. More recently he has been depicted as the subject of The Winning Season as well as a brief scene in the movie Cobb.
When the Baseball Hall of Fame held its first election in 1936, Wagner tied for second in the voting with Babe Ruth, trailing Cobb. A 1942 Sporting News poll of 100 former players and managers confirmed this opinion, with Wagner finishing 43 votes behind Cobb and six ahead of Ruth. In 1969, on the 100th anniversary of professional baseball, a vote was taken to honor the greatest players ever, and Wagner was selected as the all-time shortstop. In 1999, 82 years after his last game and 44 years since his death, Wagner was voted Number 13 on The Sporting News' list of the 100 Greatest Players, where he was again the highest-ranking shortstop. That same year, he was selected to the Major League Baseball All-Century Team by the oversight committee, after losing out in the popular vote to Cal Ripken, Jr. and Ernie Banks.
Christy Mathewson asserted that Wagner was the only player he faced that didn't have a weakness. Mathewson felt the only way to keep Wagner from hitting was to not pitch to him.
"A stirring march and two step," titled "Husky Hans", and "respectfully dedicated to Hans Wagner, Three time Champion Batsman of The National League" was written by William J. Hartz in 1904.
Bill James says that Wagner is easily the greatest shortstop of all time, noting that the difference between Wagner and the second greatest shortstop, in James's estimation Arky Vaughan, is roughly the same as the gulf between Vaughan and the 20th greatest shortstop.
Wagner is mentioned in the poem "Line-Up for Yesterday" by Ogden Nash.
Louisville Colonels (1897–1899)
Pittsburgh Pirates (1900–1917)
Pittsburgh Pirates (1933–1951)
Pittsburgh Pirates (1917)
Career highlights and awards
World Series champion (1909)
NL Batting Champion (1900, 1903, 1904, 1906, 1907, 1908, 1909, 1911)
Pittsburgh Pirates #33 retired
Major League Baseball All-Century Team
HOF, 1936, BBWAA 95.13%
04-23-2011, 06:26 AM
Second Team, Left Fielder, Sherry Magee
Sherwood Robert "Sherry" Magee (August 6, 1884 - March 13, 1929) was an American left fielder in Major League Baseball. From 1904 through 1919, Magee played for the Philadelphia Phillies (1904-14), Boston Braves (1915-1917) and Cincinnati Reds (1917-1919). He batted and threw right-handed.
In a 16-season career, Magee posted a .291 batting average with 83 home runs and 1,176 runs batted in in 2,087 games played.
A native of Clarendon, Pennsylvania, Magee was one of the premier hitters of the dead-ball era. He could hit, run and field, and played with intelligence and aggressively. Nevertheless, he has been one of the most underrated ballplayers in major league history.
From 1905 through 1914, Magee finished in the National League Top 10 in home runs and RBIs seven times, including leading the NL in RBIs four times. He led the league for a fourth time in the 1918 campaign, which was shortened by World War I and the Spanish flu pandemic. Magee also hit over .300 five times, including a batting title to his credit as well, while also being known as one of the finest defensive outfielders of his day. To top it all off, he collected 2,169 hits and 441 stolen bases, including 23 steals of home.
Magee was obtained by the Philadelphia Phillies in 1904 and remained with them for eleven years. His 85 RBIs in 1905 were an NL high. His most productive season came in 1910, when he led the league in batting (.310), RBIs (123), runs (110), total bases (263), on base percentage (.445), slugging average (.507) and OPS (.952), and finished second in doubles (39) and triples (17).
In 1914 Magee led the league in hits (171), doubles (39), RBIs (103), extra base hits (65), total bases (277) and slugging (.509). A year later, he was traded to the Boston Braves. He remained at Boston until the 1917 midseason, when he was sent to the Cincinnati Reds. In 1918, for the fourth time, he led the league in RBIs (76), and became a member of the Reds team that won its first NL pennant in 1919. In that year Magee was seriously ill for two months, and concluded his major league career by pinch-hitting twice during the 1919 World Series.
Magee later played in the minors and also umpired in the New York-Penn League (1927) and the National League (1928).
A victim of pneumonia, Magee died in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania at age 44. He is buried at Arlington Cemetery Co in Drexel Hill, Pennsylvania.
In August 2008, he was named as one of the ten former players that began their careers before 1943 to be considered by the Veterans Committee for induction into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 2009.
Philadelphia Phillies (1904-1914)
Boston Braves (1915-1917)
Cincinnati Reds (1917-1919)
Career highlights and awards
World Series champion: 1919
National League batting champion: 1910
National League RBI champion: 1907, 1910, 1914, 1918
National League runs scored leader: 1910
2 seasons with 100+ RBIs
2 seasons with 100+ runs scored
04-23-2011, 09:30 PM
Second Team, Center Fielder, Max Carey
Max George Carey (January 11, 1890 – May 30, 1976) was an American center fielder in Major League Baseball who starred for the Pittsburgh Pirates and was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1961. During his 20-year career, he led the league in stolen bases ten times and finished with 738 swipes, a National League record until 1974 and still the 9th-highest total in major league history.
Max Carey was born as Maximillian George Carnarius in Terre Haute, Indiana. He first adopted the name Max Carey when he played his first professional baseball game in order to retain his amateur status at Concordia College; the name would stick with him for his entire career.
Carey played for the Pirates from his arrival in the league in 1910 until 1926, winning a World Series championship in 1925. He was known as a skilled fielder and excellent base stealer. He regularly stole 40 or more bases and maintained a favorable steal percentage; in 1922 he stole 51 bases and was caught only twice. He also stole home 33 times in his career, second best only to Ty Cobb's 50 on the all-time list.
Carey played his final three and a half years with the Brooklyn Robins, but was aging and no longer the same player. He retired in 1929, but went on to manage the Dodgers from 1932 to 1933, as well as the Milwaukee Chicks and the Fort Wayne Daisies of the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League.
He died at age 86 in Miami, Florida, and is buried in Woodlawn Park Cemetery and Mausoleum (now Caballero Rivero Woodlawn North Park Cemetery and Mausoleum).
Pittsburgh Pirates (1910-1926)
Brooklyn Robins (1926-1929)
Brooklyn Dodgers (1932-1933)
Career highlights and awards
World Series Champion: 1925
Managerial record: 146-161
9th-most stolen bases in Major League history (738)
10-time National League stolen base leader
2-time National League walk leader
6 seasons with a .300+ batting average
5 seasons with 100+ runs scored
HOF, 1961, Veterans Committee
Carey (right), and Boston's Bill McKechnie watch as John H. McCooey throws out the first ball of Brooklyn's 1932 season
04-24-2011, 05:23 AM
Second Team, Right Fielder, Wildfire Schulte
Frank M. "Wildfire" Schulte (September 17, 1882 - October 2, 1949) was an American right fielder and left-handed slugger in Major League Baseball who played for the Chicago Cubs (1904-16), Pittsburgh Pirates (1916-17), Philadelphia Phillies (1917) and Washington Senators (1918).
Schulte was born in Cochecton, New York. Signed by Frank Chance after a brief minor league career, Schulte was a part-time player for the Cubs in 1904, playing in 20 games and hitting .286. He enjoyed his best season in 1911, leading the National League in home runs (21), RBI (107), extra base hits (72), total bases (308) and slugging percentage (.534); was 3rd in OPS (.918) and triples (21); 4th in runs (105) and hits (173), and finished with an exact .300 batting average, to became the first player in National League history to win the Most Valuable Player Award. In addition, with his 30 doubles, he became the founding member of the 20–20–20 club.
Schulte is also one of only four players in MLB history in the 20–20–20–20 club (i.e., 20 doubles, 20 triples, 20 home runs and 20 stolen bases). The only other players to accomplish the feat are Willie Mays in 1957, Curtis Granderson in 2007, and Jimmy Rollins, also in 2007.
Schulte died in Oakland, California at age of 67.
In 2008, Frank Wildfire Schulte was portrayed by David Martin Rose, in the feature film "Diminished Capacity," starring Matthew Broderick, Virginia Madsen, and Alan Alda. The film follows the characters as they struggle to hold onto a very rare Schulte Baseball card.
Chicago Cubs (1904-1916)
Pittsburgh Pirates (1916-1917)
Philadelphia Phillies (1917)
Washington Senators (1918)
Career highlights and awards
World Series champion: 1907, 1908
National League pennant: 1906, 1910
1911 National League MVP
National League home run champion: 1910, 1911
National League RBI champion: 1911
04-24-2011, 06:32 PM
Second Team, Pitcher, Claude Hendrix
Claude Raymond Hendrix (born April 13, 1889 - March 22, 1944) born in Olathe, Kansas, USA, is a former professional baseball player who played pitcher in Major League Baseball for the Pittsburgh Pirates (1911–13), Chicago Chi-Feds/Chicago Whales (1914–15) and Chicago Cubs (1916–20).
He helped the Whales win the 1915 Federal League pennant and the Cubs win the 1918 National League pennant.
He finished 20th in voting for the 1912 National League MVP for having a 24-9 Win-Loss record, 39 Games (32 Started), 25 Complete Games, 4 Shutouts, 6 Games Finished, 1 Save, 288 ⅔ Innings Pitched, 256 Hits Allowed, 110 Runs Allowed, 83 Earned Runs Allowed, 6 Home Runs Allowed, 105 Walks, 176 Strikeouts, 9 Hit Batsmen, 7 Wild Pitches, 1,183 Batters Faced, a 2.59 ERA and a 1.251 WHIP.
He led the Federal League in ERA (1.69), Wins (29), Hits Allowed/9IP (6.51), Games (49) and Complete Games (34) in 1914.
He still ranks 62nd on the MLB career ERA List (2.65).
In 10 seasons he had a 144-116 Win-Loss record, 360 Games (257 Started), 184 Complete Games, 27 Shutouts, 82 Games Finished, 17 Saves, 2,371 ⅓ Innings Pitched, 2,123 Hits Allowed, 910 Runs Allowed, 698 Earned Runs Allowed, 41 Home Runs Allowed, 697 Walks, 1,092 Strikeouts, 49 Hit Batsmen, 70 Wild Pitches, 9,651 Batters Faced, 1 Balk, a 2.65 ERA and a 1.189 WHIP.
According to "Striking Out a Baseball Myth", by Amy Geiszler-Jones, "Hendrix was a right-handed pitcher who "could work the spitball to perfection," according to Wichita newspaper reports, he led the National League with his winning percentage in 1912 and 1918 and played in the 1918 World Series. Hendrix had the distinction of being the winning pitcher in the first game in the ballpark later renamed Wrigley Field.
"Hendrix’s link to one of baseball’s most notorious gambling scandals tainted his legacy in baseball.
"The 1919 World Series, it was discovered in grand jury hearings held in 1920, was thrown by several Chicago White Sox players. Eight players were indicted and then banned from baseball for throwing the series.
"Hendrix, the pitcher for the Chicago Cubs, had been linked to the scandal because it was events surrounding the Aug. 31, 1920, game he was scheduled to pitch against the Philadelphia Phillies that led to the hearings. Cubs president Bill Veeck received telephone calls and telegrams saying Detroit gamblers were betting heavily that the Phillies, ranked at the bottom of the league, would beat the Cubs, a top team. The Cubs switched their rotation and went with their better pitcher, Grover Cleveland Alexander, instead but still ended up losing the game.
"A grand jury was convened in Chicago to investigate this particular incident, and during the course of the investigation the Black Sox scandal emerged. It never ruled on whether the Cubs/Phillies game was linked to gambling.
"In the aftermath, federal judge Kenesaw Mountain Landis was appointed baseball’s first commissioner and he banned the White Sox players from the sport.
"Landis never banned Hendrix. But that’s been the popular belief because Landis’ 1947 biography made the false claim.
"Hendrix, an only child and widower with no children, had died three years before the biography was published.
"Hendrix’s career was on a downturn in 1920 and he had announced his retirement at the end of the season, while the grand jury was still convened. In February 1921, the Cubs gave him an unconditional release and Veeck issued a statement that Hendrix’s release had nothing to do with events of 1920, alluding to the Cubs/Phillies game and the rumors that had circulated."
Hendrix moved back to Pennsylvania to play professional ball on the independent "Allentown Dukes" team (named after the team's founder). The Dukes beat a strong N.Y. Yankees team in an exhibition game played in Allentown during the 1930s. Several ex-MLB players were members of the Allentown Dukes team alongside Hendrix. The athlete also owned and operated a tavern located at Sixth and Hamilton streets in downtown Allentown.
He died in Allentown, Pennsylvania at the age of 54.
Pittsburgh Pirates (1911-1913)
Chicago Chi-Feds/Whales (1914-1915)
Chicago Cubs (1916-1920)
Career highlights and awards
Federal League pennant: 1915
National League pennant: 1918
Federal League ERA champion: 1914
Federal League wins champion: 1914
3 20-win seasons
04-24-2011, 09:52 PM
Second Team, Pitcher, Christy Mathewson
Christopher "Christy" Mathewson (August 12, 1880 – October 7, 1925), nicknamed "Big Six", "The Christian Gentleman", or "Matty", was an American Major League Baseball right-handed pitcher. He played his entire career in what is known as the dead-ball era. In 1936, Mathewson was elected into the Baseball Hall of Fame as one of its "first five" inaugural members.
Mathewson was born in Factoryville, Pennsylvania and attended Bucknell University, where he served as class president and played on the school's football and baseball teams. He was also a member of the fraternity of Phi Gamma Delta. His first experience of semi-professional baseball came in 1895, when he was just 14 years old. The manager of the Factoryville ball club asked him to pitch in a game with a rival team in Mill City, Pennsylvania. Mathewson helped his hometown team to a 19–victory, but with his batting rather than his pitching. He continued to play baseball during his years at Bucknell, pitching for minor league teams in Honesdale and Meridian, Pennsylvania. Matthewson was selected to the Walter Camp All-American football team in 1900. He was a drop-kicker.
 Minor league career & early major league career
In 1899, Mathewson left college and signed to play professional baseball with Taunton of the New England League. The next season, he moved on to play on the Norfolk team of the Virginia-North Carolina League. He finished that season with a 20–2 record.
In July of that year, the New York Giants purchased his contract from Norfolk for $1,500. Between July and September 1900 Mathewson appeared in six games for the Giants. He started one of those games and compiled a 0–3 record. Displeased with his performance, the Giants returned him to Norfolk and demanded their money back. Later that month, the Cincinnati Reds picked up Mathewson off the Norfolk roster. On December 15, 1900, the Reds quickly traded Mathewson back to the Giants for Amos Rusie.
Career with the Giants
During his 17-year career, Mathewson won 373 games and lost 188 for an outstanding .665 winning percentage. His career ERA of 2.13 and 79 career shutouts are among the best all-time for pitchers, and his 373 wins is still number one in the National League, tied with Grover Cleveland Alexander. Employing a good fastball, outstanding control, and, especially, a new pitch he termed the "fadeaway" (later known in baseball as the "screwball"), which he learned from teammate Dave Williams in 1898, Mathewson recorded 2,502 career strikeouts against only 844 walks. He is famous for his 25 pitching duels with Mordecai "Three Finger" Brown, who won 13 of the duels against Mathewson's 11, with one no-decision.
Mathewson in NY uniform.
Mathewson's Giants won the 1905 World Series over the Philadelphia Athletics. Mathewson was the starting pitcher in Game 1, and pitched a 4-hit shutout for the victory. Three days later, with the series tied 1–1, he pitched another 4-hit shutout. Then, two days later in Game 5, he threw a 6-hit shutout to clinch the series for the Giants. In a span of only six days, Mathewson had pitched three complete games without allowing a run.
The 1905 World Series capped an impressive year for Mathewson as he had already won the National League Triple Crown for pitchers, and threw the second no-hitter of his career. He claimed the Triple Crown again in 1908, and by the time he left the Giants, the team had captured four more National League pennants, in addition to the aforementioned 1905 appearance in the World Series.
As noted in The National League Story (1961) by Lee Allen, Matty was a devout Christian, and never pitched on Sunday. The impact of this on the Giants was minimized, since, in the eight-team National league, only the Chicago Cubs (Illinois), Cincinnati Reds (Ohio), and St. Louis Cardinals (Missouri), played home games in states that allowed professional sports on Sunday.
Mathewson played with his brother Henry Mathewson, also a pitcher, in 1906 and 1907; Mathewson had 1 win and no losses.
Three years with the Reds
On July 20, 1916, Mathewson's career came full circle when he was traded to the Cincinnati Reds along with Edd Roush. He won one game with the Reds and served as their manager for the next three seasons.
Mathewson and Brown wrapped up their respective careers by squaring off on September 4, 1916. The game was billed as the final meeting between the two old baseball warriors. The high-scoring game was a win for Mathewson's Reds over Brown's Cubs.
WWI and after
In 1918, Mathewson enlisted in the United States Army for World War I. He served overseas as a Captain in the newly formed Chemical Service along with Ty Cobb. While in France, during a training exercise he was accidentally gassed and subsequently developed tuberculosis. Although he returned to serve as a coach for the Giants from 1919–1921, he spent a good portion of that time in Saranac Lake fighting the illness, initially at the Trudeau Sanitorium, and later in a house that he had built. In 1923, Mathewson got back into professional baseball when he served as part-time president of the Boston Braves.
Death and legacy
Bucknell's football stadium is named "Christy Mathewson-Memorial Stadium".
The former Whittenton Ballfield in Taunton, Massachusetts is named in memory of Christy Mathewson who played for the Taunton team in the New England Baseball League before he joined the New York Giants.
Hall of Fame pitcher Tom Seaver has often been compared with Mathewson.
Singer/pianist/songwriter Dave Frishberg's song "Matty" is a sentimental tribute to Christy. The song may be found on Frishberg's albums "Quality Time" and "Let's Eat Home," plus a live version on "Retromania: At the Jazz Bakery," which contains other baseball related songs. Frishberg's liner notes and occasional commentary to his audience help explain the background to many of these songs.
The band Family Groove Company has a song on their first album Reachin' entitled "Christy" that relates some of Mathewson's achievements.
Career highlights and awards
World Series champion (1905)
373 career wins (3rd all-time)
2.13 career ERA (8th all-time)
1.059 career WHIP (5th all time)
Won 20 games or more 13 times, won 30 games or more 4 times.
Pitched 79 shutouts (3rd all time)
Won NL Pitcher's Triple Crown in 1905 and 1908
Five-time ERA champion (1905, 1908, 1909, 1911, 1913)
Five-time strikeout champion (1903, 1904, 1905, 1907, 1908)
Pitched two no-hitters.
Name honored by the Giants.
Major League Baseball All-Century Team
HOF, 1936, BBWAA 90.7%< one of the first 5, with Ruth, Cobb, Walter Johnson and Honus Wagner.
Mathewson in NY uniform./Mathewson in Giants uniform./Mathewson's private "cure cottage" in Saranac Lake/Statue of Mathewson in Christy Mathewson Park in his hometown of Factoryville, Pennsylvania. Mathewson, warming up before a game.
04-27-2011, 12:36 AM
Second Team, Pitcher, Babe Adams
Charles Benjamin "Babe" Adams (May 18, 1882 – July 27, 1968) was an American right-handed pitcher in Major League Baseball from 1906 to 1926 who spent nearly his entire career with the Pittsburgh Pirates. Noted for his outstanding location control, his career average of 1.29 walks per 9 innings pitched was the second lowest of the 20th century; his 1920 mark of 1 walk per 14.6 innings was a modern record until 2005. He shares the Pirates' franchise record for career victories by a right-hander (194), and holds the team mark for career shutouts (47); from 1926 to 1962 he held the team record for career games pitched (481).
Adams was born in Tipton, Indiana. He made his Major League debut on April 18, 1906 with the St. Louis Cardinals, taking the loss in a 4-inning start, but did not pitch again for them. In September 1907 his contract was sold to the Pirates, with whom he spent the remainder of his career. After going 12-3 with a 1.11 ERA in the 1909 regular season, his first full year, Adams became the star of the 1909 World Series after being named the surprise starter of Game 1 following a tip by National League president John Heydler that Adams' style was similar to that of an AL pitcher against whom the Detroit Tigers had had difficulty. He won three complete game victories – each of them a six-hitter. With a shutout in Game 7, Adams became the first rookie in World Series history to start and win Game 7, which has only been repeated once in baseball history by John Lackey in 2002. He was also the only member of that team who would be on the Pirates' World Series champions in 1925. He later won 20 games in both 1911 and 1913. An off year in 1916 that saw his ERA rise to 5.72 got him farmed out to the Western Association, but late in 1918 he found his stride again and rejoined the Pirates, where he stayed until 1926.
Adams was known as an excellent control pitcher. On July 17, 1914, he pitched an entire 21-inning game against the New York Giants without allowing a single walk, surrendering only 12 hits, but losing 3-1 on Larry Doyle's home run in the top of the 21st; it is the longest game without a walk in Major League history. Rube Marquard also went the distance for New York to gain the victory, allowing two walks. In 1920, Adams allowed only 18 walks in 263 innings.
In his career Adams won 194 games and lost 140. His ERA was 2.76. His last game was on August 11, 1926; he was released days later after joining a group of players who requested that former manager and team vice president Fred Clarke, who had been openly criticizing manager Bill McKechnie, not be permitted to sit on the bench. Adams later managed in the minor leagues, farmed in Mount Moriah, Missouri, and worked as a reporter and foreign correspondent during World War II and the Korean War.
Adams died of throat cancer in Silver Spring, Maryland at age 86.
St. Louis Cardinals (1906)
Pittsburgh Pirates (1907, 1909-1916, 1918-1926)
04-27-2011, 07:12 AM
Third Team, Catcher, Bill Rariden
William Angel Rariden (February 4, 1888 in Bedford, Indiana - August 28, 1942 in Bedford, Indiana), was an American professional baseball player. He played in Major League Baseball as a catcher from 1909 to 1920 for the Boston Doves/Rustlers/Braves, Indianapolis Hoosiers/Newark Pepper, New York Giants, and Cincinnati Reds.
Major League career
A light-hitting defensive specialist, Rariden set the major league record for most assists by a catcher in a season with 238 while playing for the Newark Pepper of the Federal League in 1915. Before Rariden's career, most catchers were large, slow-footed players. Rariden's small size and agility helped him become one of the best catchers in major league baseball. Major League status was retroactively applied to the Federal League in 1968. He also had the second highest total with 215 in 1914. In the Deadball Era during which Rariden played, catchers played a huge defensive role, given the large number of bunts and stolen base attempts, therefore catchers of his era usually accumulated higher assist totals than did those of subsequent eras.
Rariden had his best year offensively with the New York Giants in 1917 when he posted a .271 batting average in 101 games as, the Giants won the National League pennant before being defeated by the Chicago White Sox in the 1917 World Series. Rariden was also a member of the 1919 Cincinnati Reds team that won the scandal-plagued 1919 World Series against the Chicago White Sox.
In a 12 year career, Rariden played in 982 games, accumulating 682 hits in 2877 at bats for a .237 career batting average along with 7 home runs and 272 runs batted in. He ended his career with a .972 fielding percentage. Rariden led Federal League catchers twice in putouts, twice in assists and twice in baserunners caught stealing. He led National League catchers once in putouts.
Boston Doves/Rustlers/Braves (1909-13)
Indianapolis Hoosiers (1914)
Newark Pepper (1915)
New York Giants (1916-18)
Cincinnati Reds (1919-20)
Career highlights and awards
World Series champion: 1919
04-27-2011, 11:44 PM
Third Team, First Baseman, Fred Merkle
Frederick Charles Merkle (December 20, 1888 – March 2, 1956), also known as "Bonehead" Merkle, was an American first baseman in Major League Baseball. Although he had a lengthy career, he is best remembered for a controversial baserunning mistake he made while still a teenager.
Born in Watertown, Wisconsin and raised in Toledo, Ohio, Merkle played his first Major League game at the age of 18, with the New York Giants in 1907. He was still the youngest player in the National League, and used mostly as a pinch-hitter, at the time of his infamous "boner" in 1908. Merkle became the Giants' regular first baseman by 1910 and contributed in that role to three straight pennant-winners from 1911 to 1913. He was traded to the Brooklyn Robins in August 1916 and played in his fourth World Series that year. In April 1917 the Robins sold Merkle to the Chicago Cubs (ironically, the team that had saddled him with infamy back in 1908), with whom he continued as the regular first baseman through 1920. In 1918 with the Cubs, Merkle played in his fifth World Series in eight years, though he never won the championship.
From 1921 to 1925, Merkle was the regular first baseman for Rochester in the International League. He returned to the Major Leagues in mid-1925, when he was acquired by the New York Yankees, but appeared in only seven games with the Yankees that year and one in 1926. After one year back in the International League as player-manager for Reading in 1927, Merkle retired.
Fred Merkle was inducted into the International League Hall of Fame in 1953.
Main article: Merkle's Boner
On September 23, 1908, while playing for the New York Giants in a game against the Chicago Cubs, while he was 19 years old (the youngest player in the National League), Merkle committed a baserunning error that became known as "Merkle's Boner" and earned him the nickname "Bonehead."
In the bottom of the 9th inning, Merkle came to bat with two outs, and the score tied 1-1. At the time, Moose McCormick was on first base. Merkle singled and McCormick advanced to third. Al Bridwell, the next batter, followed with a single of his own. McCormick trotted to home plate, apparently scoring the winning run. The fans in attendance, under the impression that the game was over, ran onto the field to celebrate.
Meanwhile, Merkle, thinking the game was over, ran to the Giants' clubhouse without touching second base. Cubs second baseman Johnny Evers noticed this, and after retrieving a ball and touching second base he appealed to umpire Hank O'Day, who would later manage the Cubs, to call Merkle out. Since Merkle had not touched the base, the umpire called him out on a force play, meaning that McCormick's run did not count.
The run was therefore nullified, the Giants' victory erased, and the score of the game remained tied. Unfortunately, the thousands of fans on the field (as well as the growing darkness in the days before large electric light rigs made night games possible) prevented resumption of the game, and the game was declared a tie. The Giants and the Cubs would end the season tied for first place and would have a rematch at the Polo Grounds, on October 8. The Cubs won this makeup game, 4-2, and thus the National League pennant.
Accounts vary as to whether Evers actually retrieved the game ball or not. Some versions of the story have him running to the outfield to retrieve the correct ball. Other versions have it that he shouted for the ball, which was relayed to him from the Cubs' dugout. And still other versions have it that Giants pitcher Joe McGinnity saw what was transpiring, and threw the game ball into the stands; thus the ball that was picked up by or relayed to Evers was a different ball entirely. The New York Times account of the play recalls that Cubs manager and first baseman Frank Chance was the one who "grasped the situation" and directed that the ball be thrown to him covering second base.
At the time, running off the field without touching the base was common, as the rule allowing a force play after a potential game-winning run was not well known. However, Evers, who was noted as an avid student of the official rules of the game, had previously attempted the same play only a few weeks earlier, in Pittsburgh, with the same Hank O'Day umpiring. In that instance, O'Day had not seen whether the runner tagged second, so he declined Evers' appeal, but he apparently was alert to the possibility in the New York game. The outcome ensured that the rule was known to everyone afterward.
Giants manager John McGraw was furious at the league office, feeling his team was robbed of a victory (and a pennant), but he never blamed Merkle for his mistake.
The Cubs went on to win the World Series in 1908, but have never done so since.
Bitter over the events of the controversial game, Merkle avoided baseball after his playing career finally ended in 1926. When he finally appeared at a Giants old-timers' game in 1950, he got a standing ovation.
 Other sports
In 1906, Merkle played football for the Toledo Athletic Association as an end. That season, the team was defeated by the Canton Bulldogs by a score of 31-0.
New York Giants (1907-1916)
Brooklyn Robins (1916-1917)
Chicago Cubs (1917-1920)
New York Yankees (1925-1926)
04-29-2011, 04:17 AM
Third Team, Second Baseman, Miller Huggins/George Cutshaw(tie)
Third Team, Second Baseman, Miller Huggins
Miller James Huggins (March 27, 1879 – September 25, 1929), nicknamed "Mighty Mite", was a baseball player and manager. He managed the powerhouse New York Yankee teams of the 1920s and won six American League pennants and three World Series championships.
Huggins was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, where his father (an Englishman) was a grocer. Huggins' father was a devout Methodist who was opposed to Sunday baseball. To keep his father from noticing, Huggins played semi-professional baseball under an assumed name. He attended the University of Cincinnati where one of his professors was William Howard Taft. He eventually got a law degree, but realized that he made more money playing baseball.
As a player, Huggins joined the Cincinnati Reds in 1904 as a second baseman. Despite his short stature (5-foot-6-inches)—or perhaps because of it—Huggins proved very adept at getting on base. Over a 13-year career (Cincinnati 1904–09, St. Louis Cardinals, 1910–16) he led the league in walks four times and regularly posted an on base percentage near .400. He scored 100 or more runs three times and regularly stole 30 or more bases. He finished his career with 324 steals.
Player-manager and Manager
Huggins became player-manager for St. Louis in 1913. Serving as the Cardinals' manager until 1917, he didn't find any substantial success (they never finished higher than third place).
Huggins was able to build on his experience as the manager of a budding New York Yankee team beginning in 1918. As the Yankees skipper until his death in 1929, and with one of the finest offenses ever assembled (including Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Tony Lazzeri and Bob Meusel), Huggins presided over six American League championships (1921–1923, 1926–1928) and three World Series championships (1923, 1927 and 1928). He finished his managerial career with a 1413–1134 record. His 1413 wins as a manager ranks 20th all-time.
Huggins died at the age of 50 on September 25, 1929, as a result of erysipelas, visible under his right eye, which progressed into sepsis. The league canceled its games for the following day out of respect; the viewing of his casket at Yankee Stadium drew thousands of tearful fans. He was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1964.
On May 30, 1932, the Yankees dedicated a monument to Huggins, and placed it in front of the flagpole in center field at Yankee Stadium. Huggins was the first of many Yankees legends granted this honor, which eventually became "Monument Park", dedicated in 1976. The monument calls Huggins "A splendid character who made priceless contributions to baseball."
Cincinnati Reds (1904-1909)
St. Louis Cardinals (1910-1916)
St. Louis Cardinals (1913-1917)
New York Yankees (1918-1929)
Career highlights and awards
World Series champion: 1923, 1927, 1928
American League pennant: 1921, 1922, 1926
Managerial record: 1413-1134
4-time National League walk leader
HOF, 1964, Veterans Committee
Huggins, 1910-Huggins's monument at Monument Park.
04-29-2011, 04:19 AM
Third Team, Second Baseman, George Cutshaw
George William Cutshaw (July 29, 1887 in Wilmington, Illinois - August 22, 1973 in San Diego, California), is a former professional baseball player who played second base in the Major Leagues from 1912-1923. He would play for the Brooklyn Dodgers, Pittsburgh Pirates, and Detroit Tigers. He played in the 1916 World Series for Brooklyn.
Brooklyn Dodgers/Robins (1912-1917)
Pittsburgh Pirates (1918-1921)
Detroit Tigers (1922-1923)
04-30-2011, 01:36 AM
Third Team, Third Baseman, Red Smith
James Carlisle "Red" Smith (April 6, 1890 – October 11, 1966) was a Major League Baseball third baseman for the Brooklyn teams of the early 1910s (known by a few different names, Dodgers in 1911 and 1912, Superbas in 1913, and Robins in 1914, now the Los Angeles Dodgers) and the Braves teams of the late 1910s (then located in Boston). He was an interesting player for the time, accumulating a solid .278 career batting average. He was right-handed and stood around 5'11'.
Smith was born in Greenville, South Carolina and attended the Alabama Polytechnic Institute (now known as Auburn University) before making his ML debut with Brooklyn on September 5, 1911.
Smith's best years came in 1913 and 1914 although all his years were quite solid, and in 1918 he had his best season batting average at .298 in 429 at bats. In 1913, he put up good numbers in all categories, including a league-leading 40 doubles, career-high 10 triples, and a tie for a career-high in stolen bases, with 22. He also had 22 the previous year. In 1914, the year in which Smith was sold to Boston, he put up very good numbers including a career-high .395 slugging percentage and career-highs in home runs (7) and RBIs (85). He batted .314 after he was traded on August 10.
Smith was not a very solid fielding 3B, putting up bad fielding percentages (.932 career at 3B) and generally over 30 errors a year. After going to Boston, he finally had the chance to compete for a pennant, and won a World Series with them in 1914, but he didn't play due to broken right leg that he suffered on the final day of the season, and his team never got there again, peaking at a 2nd place finish in 1915 under manager George Stallings. They finished seven games behind the Philadelphia Phillies that year, and dropped off soon after that. Still, Smith is often remembered as a significant part of Boston's climb into first place in 1914.
In an active nine-year career, Smith had a .278 average with 27 home runs and 514 RBIs in 1117 career games. He had a total of 1087 career hits in 3907 at bats. Other stats included 117 career stolen bases, 477 runs scored, 208 all-time doubles and 49 triples.
Smith died on October 11, 1966 in Atlanta, Georgia, the current location of the Braves organization.
Brooklyn Dodgers/Robins (1911-1914)
Boston Braves (1914-1919)
Career highlights and awards
World Series champion: 1914
04-30-2011, 09:03 PM
Third Team, Shortstop, Buck Herzog
Charles Lincoln "Buck" Herzog (July 9, 1885 – September 4, 1953) was an American infielder and manager in Major League Baseball who played for four National League clubs between 1908 and 1920. He played for the New York Giants, the Boston Braves, the Cincinnati Reds, and the Chicago Cubs. He was a lifelong resident of Maryland: he was born and died in Baltimore, but spent a considerable amount of his retirement years in Ridgely. He died at age 68 in Baltimore.
Recently his carriage house was saved from demolition and moved to the center of Ridgely.
New York Giants (1908-1909)
Boston Doves/Rustlers (1910–1911)
New York Giants (1911-1913)
Cincinnati Reds (1914-1916)
New York Giants (1916-1917)
Boston Braves (1918-1919)
Chicago Cubs (1919–1920)
Career highlights and awards
National League pennant: 1911, 1912, 1913, 1917
05-02-2011, 07:48 PM
Third Team, Left Fielder, George Burns
George Joseph Burns (November 24, 1889 - August 15, 1966) was an American left fielder in Major League Baseball who spent most of his career as the leadoff hitter for the New York Giants. A soft-spoken person, he was nicknamed "Silent George" by his teammates, and he was said to be one of the best pool players ever to play major league baseball. He led the National League in runs scored a record five times, later equaled by only Rogers Hornsby and Stan Musial, and also led the league in walks five times and stolen bases twice. He holds the Giants franchise record for stolen bases in a single season (62, in 1914), and held the club's career record from 1919 to 1972. At the end of his career, his 1262 games in left field ranked eighth in major league history, and his total of 1844 games in the outfield ranked sixth in NL history.
Born in Utica, New York, Burns started his baseball career as a catcher, and reached the Giants in the latter half of the 1911 season. Because of his strong throwing arm and outstanding speed, manager John McGraw converted him into an outfielder. He joined the regular lineup in 1913 and, becoming one of the first players to wear sunglassese and using a long-billed cap, came to excel defensively in left field at the Polo Grounds with its difficult angles; the left field bleachers came to be known as "Burnsville," and his teammates would later describe him as the "greatest 'sunfielder' in the history of the game." In his rookie season he hit 37 doubles, bettering Jim O'Rourke's 1889 club record of 36; the mark would stand for only two years, however, before Larry Doyle hit 40 in 1915. 1913 also marked Burns' first World Series appearance, though he only batted .158 as the Giants lost.
In 1914 he led the NL in runs for the first time and batted a career-high .303, and also edged Josh Devore's 1911 club record of 61 steals by one; he finished fourth in the voting for the Chalmers (MVP) Award, in the last year such an award would be given in the NL until 1924. In 1917 he batted .302, led the NL in runs a third time and in walks for the first time, and finished second in the NL in total bases behind Hornsby; he also appeared in his second World Series, but had another poor performance, hitting .227 as the Giants again lost. In 1919 he led the league in runs, walks and steals again, and also led NL outfielders in fielding percentage for the first time. He surpassed his teammate Doyle's franchise record for career stolen bases; his eventual record of 334 was broken by Willie Mays in 1972. Burns hit for the cycle on September 17, 1920, and led the NL in runs for the fifth time that year.
In the 1921 World Series, Burns finally had a successful postseason; he had four hits in Game 3 as the Giants rolled to a 13-5 win, and had a 2-run double in the 8th inning of Game 4, breaking a 1-1 tie as New York evened the Series at two games each. He scored the deciding run in Game 6, and batted .333 for the Series as the Giants won their first title since 1905. Two months later he was sent to the Cincinnati Reds in a trade that brought third baseman Heinie Groh to the Giants. In 1922 Burns set an NL record with his 28th steal of home, surpassing the old mark held by Honus Wagner; Max Carey broke his record later in the decade. He also set a Reds club record with 631 at bats (Hughie Critz broke the mark in 1928). In the Reds' first game at New York that season, he was given a day in his honor and presented with a diamond-studded watch.
Burns ended his major league career with the Philadelphia Phillies in 1925. In a 15-season career, he was a .287 hitter with 1,188 runs, 41 home runs and 611 runs batted in in 1853 games played. He collected 2,077 hits with a .366 on base percentage, and his 383 stolen bases ranked 12th all-time at that point. Although he never had more than 181 hits in a season, playing in an era of diminished hitting, he was among the league's top five players six times. His NL record of leading the league in outfield games six times was later matched by Billy Williams and Dale Murphy; his Giants record of 1184 games in left field was broken by Jo-Jo Moore in 1941.
In 1927 he became a player-coach with Williamsport in the New York-Penn League, and he returned to the Giants in 1937 as a coach. He later worked for a tannery, and retired in 1957.
Burns died in Gloversville, New York at age 76.
New York Giants (1911-1921)
Cincinnati Reds (1922-1924)
Philadelphia Phillies (1925)
Career highlights and awards
World Series champion: 1921
National League pennant: 1913, 1917
5-time National League runs scored leader
5-time National League walk leader
2-time National League stolen base leader
3 seasons with a .300+ batting average
5 seasons with 40+ stolen bases
6 seasons with 100+ runs scored
05-04-2011, 01:33 AM
Third Team, Center Fielder, Benny Kauff
Benjamin Michael Kauff (January 5, 1890 – November 17, 1961) was a professional baseball player, who played centerfield and batted and threw left-handed. Kauff was known as the “Ty Cobb of the Feds.” He is the only player to be permanently banned from baseball (without being reinstated) for reasons other than gambling. Though he appears on many lists of Jewish baseball players, such as Harry Stein's 1976 Esquire magazine article "All Time All-Star Argument Starter," Kauff was not Jewish.
 Early career (1912-15)
Kauff played his first game in the majors with the New York Highlanders on April 20, 1912. He played only five games with the Highlanders before being sent down to the minors.
After spending the 1913 season in the minors, Kauff appeared with the Indianapolis Hoosiers of the short-lived third major league, the Federal League. Behind the offense of Kauff, Indianapolis won the first Federal League Crown in 1914. Kauff was traded to the Brooklyn Tip-Tops for the 1915 season. The Tip-Tops were unable to capitalize on Kauff’s offense, and finished seventh in the Federal League’s second, and last, season.
Kauff earned the moniker “Ty Cobb of the Feds” with his dominance of offensive categories during both years of the Federal League’s existence. In 1914, he led the league in batting average (.370; still the rookie record for league-leading batting average), on base percentage (.447), runs (120), hits (211), total bases (305), doubles (44), and stolen bases (75; which remained the rookie record until Vince Coleman broke it and stole 110 bases in 1985), while finishing 2nd in slugging percentage (.534) and 3rd in RBIs (95) and walks (72).
He followed with an almost equally impressive season in 1915. That year he led the Federal League in batting average (.342), obp (.446), slugging percentage (.509), and steals (55). Meanwhile he finished 2nd in walks (85), 3rd in home runs (12), and 4th in RBIs (83), runs (92), and hits (165).
New York Giants (1916-20)
When the Federal League folded after just two seasons, the New York Giants of the National League purchased his contract from Brooklyn for $35,000 ($704,000 in current dollar terms). Kauff played with the Giants from 1916 until 1920. However, he never found the stroke he had had in the Federal League.
On May 26, 1916, Kauff earned the dubious distinction of being the only player in the 20th century to be picked off first base three times in one game.
In 1916 he was 2nd in the NL in stolen bases (40) and triples (16), 4th in RBIs (74), home runs (9), and walks (68), and 9th in slugging percentage (.408).
His best season in the National League was 1917, when he came 3rd in runs (89) and stolen bases (30), 4th in batting average (.308), 5th in obp (.479), 6th in hits (172), and 7th in RBIs (68) and walks (59). That year the Giants made it to the World Series. The Giants lost four games to two to the Chicago White Sox, in Chicago’s last World Series victory until 2005. Kauff had a strong performance in Game 4, hitting two home runs and driving in three runs in the Giants’ 5-0 victory.
Kauff was at the same time a high-living dandy, and at times a trash-talking hothead. Kauff was famous among his teammates for chewing tobacco, smoking a cigar, and drinking a beer all at the same time, without stopping.
His 1918 campaign was shortened by service in World War I.
In 1919 he led the NL in extra base hits (44), and was 2nd in home runs (10), 4th in RBIs (67) and doubles (27), 5th in runs (73), and 7th in slugging percentage (.422).
In December 1919, Kauff was implicated in a car theft ring along with his brother. After only playing 55 games in 1920, the Giants traded Kauff to Toronto of the International League, and his major league days were over.
Acquittal and banishment
On May 13, 1921, Kauff was acquitted of auto theft. However, then Baseball Commissioner, Judge Kenesaw Mountain Landis banned Kauff from baseball for life. He said that Kauff had an “undesirable reputation and character.” Kauff appealed his banishment in court on account of his acquittal, but to no avail. On January 17, 1922, an appellate court denied his appeal. Judge Landis was never convinced of his innocence. Landis said, “That acquittal was one of the worst miscarriages of justice that ever came under my observation."
Banned, he was a baseball scout for 22 years, and then became a clothing salesman for John R. Lyman Company. Kauff died November 17, 1961, in Columbus, Ohio, still banned from baseball.
New York Highlanders (1912)
Indianapolis Hoosiers (1914)
Brooklyn Tip-Tops (1915)
New York Giants (1916-1920)
Career highlights and awards
Federal League batting champion: 1914, 1915
Federal League runs scored leader: 1914
Federal League stolen base leader: 1914, 1915
Federal League hits leader: 1914
Federal League doubles leader: 1914
Nice for Landis to be Judge and Jury, for his own personal conviction.
05-05-2011, 06:51 PM
Third Team, Right Fielder, Chief Wilson
John Owen "Chief" Wilson (August 21, 1883 - February 22, 1954) was a Major League Baseball player for the Pittsburgh Pirates (1908–1913) and the St. Louis Cardinals (1914–1916).
Born in Austin, Texas, Wilson was an outfielder with a strong throwing arm. He broke into the majors in 1908 with the Pirates and helped them win the pennant and World Series the following year.
In 1912, Wilson hit 36 triples, and hit a triple in five consecutive games (June 17–20). Both accomplishments still stand as major league records and are likely unbreakable in the modern era. Not particularly fast, Wilson hit most of the triples (24 of 36) at his cavernous home park of Forbes Field.
Wilson died at age 70 in Bertram, Texas.
Pittsburgh Pirates (1908-1913)
St. Louis Cardinals (1914-1916)
Career highlights and awards
World Series champion (1909)
Hit for the cycle on July 3, 1910
National League RBI leader (1911)
Holds record for most triples in a season (36 in 1912)
^^^Those 36 triples in one season is one of the few I can remember. Found it on my little ol' Franklin and thought, wow.
05-06-2011, 02:15 AM
Third Team, Pitcher, Rube Marquard
Richard William "Rube" Marquard (October 9, 1886 – June 1, 1980) was an American left-handed pitcher in Major League Baseball in the 1910s and early 1920s. He achieved his greatest success with the New York Giants.
Born in Cleveland, Ohio, his playing rights were acquired for $13,000 – a then unheard-of sum to pay for a baseball player's contract – and his lack of success early on led to his being tagged "the $13,000 lemon". According to both Marquard himself in The Glory of Their Times and the Baseball Hall of Fame's entry on him, the price paid for his contract was actually $11,000, not $13,000. Later, however, he was to make baseball history by winning 19 decisions in a row. He allegedly celebrated by buying an opal stickpin to reward himself. Upon being told by a friend that opals were a jinx, he threw the pin into a river; but apparently the curse had already done its work, as he lost his next decision.
Despite his nickname, he was a city kid. As he told it in The Glory of the Their Times, a writer in his minor league days compared him favorably with Rube Waddell, and very soon Marquard was being called "Rube" also. He retired in 1925 with a record of 201–177 and a 3.08 ERA; his 1,593 strikeouts, at the time, ranked third in major league history among left-handers (behind Rube Waddell and Eddie Plank), and stood as the NL record for southpaws until his total was surpassed by Carl Hubbell in 1942.
Marquard was a performer in vaudeville, appearing with Blossom Seeley and later marrying her. He died in Baltimore, Maryland at age 93. Marquard is interred in Baltimore Hebrew Cemetery in Baltimore, Maryland.
He was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1971. His selection has often been criticized by the sabermetrics community, since Marquard's career adjusted ERA+ was only slightly better than league average. Bill James described Marquard as "probably the worst starting pitcher in the Hall of Fame."
Marquard had been interviewed for the popular baseball book, The Glory of Their Times, in the early 1960s, and his chapter is thought to be one of the primary reasons for his election. However, most of the stories that he "recounted" were later found to be false.
New York Giants (1908–1915)
Brooklyn Robins (1915–1920)
Cincinnati Reds (1921)
Boston Braves (1922–1925)
Career highlights and awards
National League pennant: 1911, 1912, 1913, 1916, 1920
National League wins champion: 1912
National League strikeout champion: 1911
Three 20-win seasons
Pitched a no-hitter on April 15, 1915
HOF, 1971, Veterans Committee
^^^Prime case of "who you know" it's what goes on between the lines, Mr Veterans Committee.
05-06-2011, 10:15 PM
Third Team, Pitcher, Lefty Tyler
George Albert "Lefty" Tyler (December 14, 1889 – September 29, 1953) was a professional baseball pitcher from 1910 to 1921. From 1910 to 1917 Tyler played with the Boston Doves/Braves. Tyler performed well, Having an earned run average (ERA) under 3 in all but two years. In 1918, Tyler was traded to the Chicago Cubs for Larry Doyle, Art Wilson, and $15,000. Tyler did well in Chicago as well, having ERA's under 4. Tyler's career earned run average was 2.95. His brother, Fred Tyler, played in the major leagues in 1914 as a catcher.
In 1914, Tyler was a member of the Braves team that went from last place to first place in two months, becoming the first team to win a pennant after being in last place on the Fourth of July. The team then went on to defeat Connie Mack's heavily-favored Philadelphia Athletics in the 1914 World Series.
Boston Doves/Braves (1910 - 1917)
Chicago Cubs (1918 - 1921)
Career highlights and awards
Most Complete Games - 1913
05-06-2011, 10:17 PM
Third Team Pitcher, Dick Rudolph
Richard Rudolph (August 25, 1887, in New York, New York - October 20, 1949, in Bronx, New York), was a pitcher in the Major Leagues from 1910-1927. He played for the New York Giants and Boston Braves. He was an alumnus of Fordham University. Rudolph was known for throwing the spitball, and he was one of the 17 pitchers allowed to continue throwing the pitch after it was outlawed in 1920.
In 1914, Rudolph was a member of the Braves team that went from last place to first place in two months, becoming the first team to win a pennant after being in last place on the Fourth of July. The team then went on to defeat Connie Mack's heavily favored Philadelphia Athletics in the 1914 World Series.
New York Giants (1910-1911)
Boston Braves (1913-1920, 1922-1923, 1927)
Career highlights and awards
World Series Champion: 1914
2 20-win seasons
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