1910 National League All-Star Team

P-Christy Mathewson, NYG

P-Nap Rucker, BRO

P-Earl Moore, PHI

P-King Cole, CHC

P-Doc Scanlan, BRO

P-George Suggs, CIN

P-Mordecai Brown, CHC

P-Cy Barger, BRO

P-Buster Brown, BSN

P-George Bell, BRO

C-Larry McLean, CIN

C-Roger Bresnahan, STL

1B-Ed Konetchy, STL

2B-Johnny Evers, CHC

2B-Larry Doyle, NYG

3B-Bobby Byrne, PIT

SS-Honus Wagner, PIT

SS-Joe Tinker, CHC

SS-Al Bridwell, NYG

SS-Mickey Doolin, PHI

LF-Sherry Magee, PHI

CF-Solly Hofman, CHC

CF-Fred Snodgrass, NYG

CF-Dode Paskert, CIN

CF-Johnny Bates, PHI

 

mathewson9P-Christy Mathewson, New York Giants, 29 Years Old, 1909 ONEHOF Inductee, 2nd MVP

1901 1902 1903 1904 1905 1907 1908 1909

27-9, 1.89 ERA, 184 K, .234, 1 HR, 10 RBI

Hall of Fames:

ONEHOF: Yes

Cooperstown: Yes

Ron’s: Yes

 

Led in:

 

Wins Above Replacement-8.8 (4th Time)

WAR for Pitchers-8.0 (5th Time)

Wins-27 (4th Time)

Complete Games-27 (2nd Time)

Strikeouts/Base on Balls-3.067 (5th Time)

Adjusted ERA+-158 (4th Time)

Fielding Independent Pitching-1.96 (6th Time)

Adj. Pitching Runs-36 (3rd Time)

Adj. Pitching Wins-4.0 (3rd Time)

Assists as P-114 (4th Time)

Range Factor/Game as P-3.32

9th Time All-Star-It took making nine All-Star teams, but at the still young age of 29, Christy Mathewson is the 1910 One-A-Year Hall of Fame Inductee. The ONEHOF picks the one greatest player every year who hasn’t already been inducted into its hallowed halls. Next year’s nominees are Hardy Richardson, Jimmy Collins, Elmer Flick, Eddie Plank, Vic Willis, Charley Jones, Fred Dunlap, George Gore, Ned Williamson, Bid McPhee, Sam Thompson, Jack Clements, Amos Rusie, Cupid Childs, Clark Griffith, Jesse Burkett, Joe McGinnity, Sam Crawford, and Roger Bresnahan.

New York again fell short in its pennant hunt, finishing 13 games behind the Cubs. It had the league’s best hitting, led by centerfielder Fred Snodgrass and the league’s second best pitching, led by Big Six, but it wasn’t enough.

Mathewson finished first in WAR (8.8); first in WAR for Pitchers (8.0); third in ERA (1.89), behind two Chicago pitchers, King Cole (1.80) and Three Finger Brown (1.86); second in innings pitched (318 1/3), trailing Brooklyn’s Nap Rucker (320 1/3); and first in Adjusted ERA+ (158).

Larry Brunt writes in a Hall of Fame page, “Baseball in the beginning of the 20th century was considered an undignified game, played by ruffians for the pleasure of gamblers. In fact, many players did come from tough backgrounds, swinging out of coal mines and pitching out of farmlands to eke out a living at baseball. Few had college educations. Even fewer were seen as virtuous. Mothers (Mathewson’s included) did not want their sons to grow up to be baseball players.

“Christy Mathewson changed all that. And the combination of his talent on the field and charisma off it helped him become one of the first five members of the Hall of Fame in 1936.”

rucker4

P-Nap Rucker, Brooklyn Superbas, 25 Years Old

1907 1908 1909

17-18, 2.58 ERA, 147 K, .209, 0 HR, 3 RBI

Hall of Fames:

ONEHOF: No

Cooperstown: No

Ron’s: No (Would require three more All-Star seasons. Sure thing)

 

Led in:

 

Innings Pitched-320 1/3

Games Started-39

Complete Games-27

Shutouts-6

Hits Allowed-293

Batters Faced-1,261

4th Time All-Star-It would be interesting to see what Rucker would have done in his career on a good team. Playing for the pathetic Brooklyn Superbas, he struggled to win more than he lost, but you can’t blame him. He started just about every fourth game for seven straight years and was one of league’s best pitchers every single one of those seasons. This season, he finished second in WAR (7.3), behind only New York’s Christy Mathewson (8.8); second in WAR for Pitchers (7.0), again trailing only Big Six (8.0); 10th in ERA (2.58); and first in innings pitched (320 1/3).

Bill Dahlen took over the managing duties from Harry Lumley, but the team still finished sixth, though its record improved to 64-90. The team was a terrible 40 games out of first, but it wasn’t because of the pitching, which features four All-Star hurlers. It all had to do with the worst hitting in the league.

Despite rarely pitching for a good team, Rucker didn’t complain. SABR says, “Still, the gentlemanly Rucker loved pitching for the blue-collar borough. ‘It’s got New York beaten by three bases,’ he told a reporter in 1912. ‘You can get a good night’s rest in Brooklyn. You meet more real human beings in Brooklyn. Your life is safer in Brooklyn.’

“His record improved to 17-18 in 1910, the year he led the NL with 320 innings pitched, 27 complete games, and six shutouts.” He was the Ernie Banks of his day, the best player on a bad team.

moore3

P-Earl Moore, Philadelphia Phillies, 32 Years Old

1901 1909

22-15, 2.58 ERA, 185 K, .230, 0 HR, 6 RBI

Hall of Fames:

ONEHOF: No

Cooperstown: No

Ron’s: No (Would require nine more All-Star seasons. Impossible)

 

Led in:

 

Strikeouts-185

Shutouts-6

3rd Time All-Star-Moore is a fascinating study in resilience, as he had a terrible injury in 1905, but is now back as one of the top pitchers in the National League. Not only that, but he’s not making it through guile, as evidenced by his league-leading 185 strikeouts. This was Crossfire’s best season ever, finishing fourth in WAR (5.8); third in WAR for Pitchers (5.6), behind New York’s Christy Mathewson (8.0) and Brooklyn’s Nap Rucker (7.0); ninth in ERA (2.58); sixth in innings pitched (283); and ninth in Adjusted ERA+ (120).

Red Dooin took over managing the Phillies and the team improved from fifth to fourth with 78-75 record, 25-and-a-half games out of first. Besides Moore, their pitching wasn’t too good, but the team had some good hitting.

From SABR: “He followed it up with an electrifying 1910 campaign, pacing the league in shutouts (6) and strikeouts (185), and finishing third in wins (22). Phillies catcher–manager Red Dooin used Moore wisely, yanking him at the first sign that his pitches were not finding the plate (he lasted just one inning in a loss to the Cubs on September 16). Other times, Dooin permitted him to go the distance and even well into extra innings when Earl found a groove. Like fellow workhorses Mathewson and Three Finger Brown, he also received occasional relief assignments.

“Future Hall of Fame umpire Bill Klem marveled at Moore’s mound mastery: ‘…I believe that Earl Moore, of the Phillies, has more stuff on his ball than any other pitcher I worked behind during the summer,’ he said in January 1911.”

cole

P-King Cole, Chicago Cubs, 24 Years Old

20-4, 1.80 ERA, 114 K, .231, 0 HR, 9 RBI

Hall of Fames:

ONEHOF: No

Cooperstown: No

Ron’s: No (Would require 50 more All-Star seasons. Impossible)

 

Led in:

 

1910 NL Pitching Title

Earned Run Average-1.80

Hits Per 9 IP-6.534

1st Time All-Star-Leonard Leslie “King” Cole was born on April 15, 1886 in Toledo, IA. The six-foot-one, 170 pound pitcher pitched one game with the Cubs in 1909, before having his breakout year, not to mention only good year, this season. He finished fifth in WAR (5.3); fourth in WAR for Pitchers (5.2), first in ERA (1.80); and second in Adjusted ERA+ (158), behind only New York’s Christy Mathewson (158).

After missing out on the National League pennant in 1909, the Cubbies were back, finishing 104-50 under Frank Chance. Chicago had some of the best hitting and pitching in the league and finished 13 games ahead of the second-place Giants. However, in the World Series, they were mowed over by the Philadelphia Athletics, four games to one.

Cole started the fourth game of the series, the only one Chicago won, and pitched decently if not great, allowing three runs in eight innings. Except for Jack Pfiester, none of the Cubs’ pitchers could contain the Athletics.

After this season, Cole’s career declined quickly. Though he had an 18-7 record for Chicago in 1911, he had a high ERA. Then in 1912, he moved to mainly relief pitching for the Cubs and Pirates. He didn’t play in the Majors in 1913 and then finished his career for the Yankees in 1914 and 1915. He finished 54-27 with a 3.12 ERA and a career 5.9 WAR, which mainly came from this one season. He died of tuberculosis after the 1915 season at the age of 29.

scanlan

P-Doc Scanlan, Brooklyn Superbas, 29 Years Old

9-11, 2.61 ERA, 103 K, .203, 0 HR, 6 RBI

Hall of Fames:

ONEHOF: No

Cooperstown: No

Ron’s: No (Would require 23 more All-Star seasons. Impossible)

 

Led in:

 

Fielding % as P-1.000

1st Time All-Star-William Dennis “Doc” Scanlan was born on March 7, 1881 in Syracuse, NY. The five-foot-eight, 165 pound pitcher started his career with the Pirates in 1903 and got traded to Brooklyn in 1904. He pitched decently for many years, but this was his best season ever as Scanlan finished eighth in WAR (5.2) and fifth in WAR for Pitchers (5.1). All of this despite walking more than he struck out (116-103). That was something Scanlan would do throughout his career as he finished with 608 walks and 584 whiffs.

Scanlan did pitch well enough to be in the Greater Syracuse Sports Hall of Fame, which writes of him, “They didn’t call them the Daffy Dodgers. And they weren’t yet referred to as ‘Dem Bums. But the Brooklyn teams of the early 1900s fit either nickname. William Dennis ‘Doc’ Scanlan pitched for those early-20th century Dodgers. And pitch well he did. So well, in fact, that in 1906 he became only the fourth pitcher in modern major league history to win two complete games that day – beating St. Louis, 4-0 and 3-2.

“Those who previously performed the feat? ‘Big Ed’ Walsh, ‘Iron Man’ Joe McGinnity and Grover Cleveland Alexander, Hall of Famers, all. Scanlan is not enshrined in Cooperstown. But his performance during the 1905-06 seasons was rather amazing when one considers how bad those Dodgers teams were.

“‘Doc’ Scanlan was a native son of Syracuse, living on Turtle Street and attending Sacred Heart Academy. Collegiately, he played for Manhatten, Fordham and Syracuse (going from campus to campus in those days was not unusual).”

suggs

P-George Suggs, Cincinnati Reds, 27 Years Old

20-12, 2.40 ERA, 91 K, .165, 0 HR, 6 RBI

Hall of Fames:

ONEHOF: No

Cooperstown: No

Ron’s: No (Would require 13 more All-Star seasons. Impossible)

 

Led in:

 

Base on Balls per 9 IP-1.624

1st Time All-Star-George Franklin Suggs was born on July 7, 1882 in Kinston, NC. The five-foot-seven 168 pound pitcher started with Detroit in 1908 and 1909, pitching just a handful of games each season. He didn’t get to pitch in the World Series either year. In the middle of 1909, he was traded by the Detroit Tigers with Frank Allen and $2,800 to Mobile (Southern Association) for Bill Lelivelt. Before the 1910 season, the Reds picked him up and they were happy they did, because Suggs finished 10th in WAR (4.8); seventh in WAR for Pitchers (4.7); sixth in ERA (2.40); ninth in innings pitched (266); and eighth in Adjusted ERA+ (121).

Clark Griffith continued to manage Cincinnati as it dropped from fourth to fifth with a 75-79 record, 29 games out of first. Its hitting and pitching weren’t too good. It was a typical Reds season.

From ncpedia.org: “George Franklin Suggs, professional baseball player, was the first North Carolina–born major league star of the modern era. Born and raised in Kinston, he was the son of John and Winifred Aldridge Suggs. He was educated locally and later attended Oak Ridge Academy.

“After the 1909 season his contract was purchased by the Cincinnati Reds of the National League. Given the chance to pitch, Suggs became one of the outstanding pitchers in the league. Only five feet, seven inches tall, he was a finesse pitcher, with unusually good control and a fortunate facility for picking runners off base. In 1910 he won 18 games against only 11 losses, with a superb earned run average (ERA) of 2.40, and the best walk-perinning ratio in the league.”

brown6P-Mordecai Brown, Chicago Cubs, 33 Years Old

1903 1906 1907 1908 1909

25-14, 1.86 ERA, 143 K, .175, 0 HR, 6 RBI

Hall of Fames:

ONEHOF: No

Cooperstown: Yes

Ron’s: Yes

 

Led in:

 

Walks & Hits per IP-1.084 (3rd Time)

Saves-7 (3rd Time)

Complete Games-27 (2nd Time)

Shutouts-6 (2nd Time)

6th Time All-Star-Unless you were on the Yankees for a decent stretch of time, it wasn’t easy to play in a World Series. However, Three Finger Brown is back in this fourth World Series after yet another good year. He finished sixth in WAR for Pitchers (5.0); second in ERA (1.86), behind teammate King Cole (1.80); fifth in innings pitched (295 1/3); and third in Adjusted ERA+ (153), trailing New York’s Christy Mathewson (158) and Cole (158).

Unfortunately, he had a brutal World Series. In Game 2, Brown allowed nine runs, seven earned, in seven innings, giving up 13 hits as the Cubs lost, 9-3. Four days later, he relieved for King Cole and pitched two scoreless innings, getting the win in Chicago’s 4-3 victory. He then pitched the next day and struggled again, giving up seven runs, four earned, in a complete game loss to Philadelphia as the Athletics took the Series, 4-1. Brown ended up 1-2 with a 5.50 ERA and in his four World Series combined, Miner finished 5-4 with a 2.97 ERA.

After this season, he pitched two more seasons with Chicago, going 21-11 in 1911 and dipping to 5-6 in 1912. He then went to the Reds in 1913, finishing 11-12. In 1914 and 1915, Brown pitched for the Federal League, then finished off his career with the Cubs in 1916. For his career, he finished 239-130, with a 2.06 ERA and 58.3 WAR. His ERA ranks sixth all-time. He wasn’t good for as consistently long as Mathewson, but he still was one of the National League’s best pitchers for a long time.

barger

P-Cy Barger, Brooklyn Superbas, 25 Years Old

15-15, 2.88 ERA, 87 K, .231, 0 HR, 7 RBI

Hall of Fames:

ONEHOF: No

Cooperstown: No

Ron’s: No (Would require 49 more All-Star seasons. Impossible)

 

1st Time All-Star-Eros Bolivar “Cy” Barger was born on May 18, 1885 in Jamestown, KY. The six-foot, 160 pound pitcher started with the Highlanders in 1906-07 and then didn’t pitch in the Majors in 1908 or 1909. This season, his best ever, he finished ninth in WAR for Pitchers (4.3) and eighth in innings pitched (271 2/3). Brooklyn didn’t have a lot going for it, but it did feature four All-Star pitchers. Barger would stick with Brooklyn through 1912 and then pitch in the Federal League in 1914 and 1915 for the Pittsburgh Rebels. He would finish with a career 46-63 record with a 3.56 ERA and a career WAR of 6.0, most of which was garnered this season.

Wikipedia says, “A native of Jamestown, Kentucky, Barger was a dead-ball era pitcher who also played first base and shortstop as well as the outfield. He went to college at Transylvania University and debuted in the majors on August 30, 1906. With the Highlanders, he had a 0–0 record in 11 innings pitched over parts of two seasons.

“In 1909, Barger led Rochester to the Eastern League title with 23 wins and minuscule 1.00 earned run average. Again in the majors with the 1910 Superbas, Barger enjoyed a career year with 15 victories and a 2.88 ERA, winning 11 games the following season. With the Rebels, he won 19 games from 1914 to 1915.” Barger died 69 days before I was born, on September 23, 1964 in Columbia, Kentucky at the age of 79.

brownb

P-Buster Brown, Boston Doves, 28 Years Old

9-23, 2.67 ERA, 88 K, .198, 1 HR, 3 RBI

Hall of Fames:

ONEHOF: No

Cooperstown: No

Ron’s: No (Would require 23 more All-Star seasons. Impossible)

 

1st Time All-Star-Charles Edward “Buster” or “Yank” Brown was born on August 31, 1881 in Boone, IA, 114 years before my niece, Chiara. The six-foot, 180 pound pitcher started with St. Louis from 1905-07, then played for Philadelphia from 1907-09, before coming over to the Doves. All of this was in the National League. This season, his best ever, he finished 10th in innings pitched (263) and sixth in Adjusted ERA+ (123).

Fred Lake took over the Doves this season, but it didn’t help as they still finished last with a 53-100 record, 50-and-a-half games out of first. Their pitching wasn’t too bad, but their hitting was awful as they scored the least amount of runs in the NL.

Brown would continue pitching for the Doves through 1913. Because he pitched on so many bad teams, he ended up with a 51-103 record, despite a decent ERA of 3.21. His career WAR was 12.5.

It must have been frustrating to be a player on Cincinnati, Brooklyn, Boston, Philadelphia, or St. Louis during the 1900s and early 1910s, when only three teams, the Cubs, Giants, and Pirates dominated the National League. It was rare any of these teams even cracked the top three. The Phillies and Superbas were second and third in 1901; Brooklyn and Boston were second and third in 1902; Cincinnati was third in 1904; Philadelphia was third in 1907; and then none of them would crack the top three until Boston won it all in 1914. There was definitely a harsh dividing line between top teams and bottom dwellers in the old National League.

bell

P-George Bell, Brooklyn Superbas, 35 Years Old

10-27, 2.64 ERA, 102 K, .134, 0 HR, 4 RBI

Hall of Fames:

ONEHOF: No

Cooperstown: No

Ron’s: No (Would require 37 more All-Star seasons. Impossible)

 

Led in:

 

Losses-27

1st Time All-Star-George Glenn “Farmer” Bell was born on November 2, 1874 in Greenwood, NY. The six-foot, 195 pound pitcher started with Brooklyn as a 32-year-old in 1907. This was his best season ever as he finished eighth in WAR for Pitchers (4.5) and third in innings pitched (310), behind teammate Nap Rucker (320 1/3) and New York’s Christy Mathewson (318 1/3). Farmer would pitch one more season in 1911 to wrap up his career. He finished 43-79 with a 2.85 ERA and a career WAR of 8.1.

I like old-time newspaper articles. The New York Times on April 7, 1910 wrote “The Washington Americans took the first game of the series with Bill Dahlen’s Dodgers to-day by score of 4 to 1. George Bell’s bad form on the slab was entirely responsible for the Brooklyn defeat, the visitors looking all over winners until he relieved Scanlon.”

There are some things worth noticing here. Since Brooklyn is playing Washington, this has to be before the season began. Also, what’s with the nicknames? Baseball Reference is calling Washington the Senators, but here they’re the Americans. Meanwhile, it looks like Brooklyn has already adopted the Dodgers nickname. According to BR, they will be the Dodgers in 1911 and 1912, go back to being the Superbas in 1913, then will be the Robins until 1931. Starting in 1932, they will officially be the Dodgers. Nicknames at this point were unofficial and teams were called by many different monikers. It’s almost like people calling the modern-day Angels the Halos.

mclean

C-Larry McLean, Cincinnati Reds, 28 Years Old

.298, 2 HR, 71 RBI

Hall of Fames:

ONEHOF: No

Cooperstown: No

Ron’s: No (Would require 27 more All-Star seasons. Impossible)

 

Led in:

 

Double Plays Turned as C-18

1st Time All-Star-John Bannerman “Larry” McLean was born on July 18, 1881 in Fredericton, Canada. He was the biggest player of his day as he stood at six-foot-five, weighing 228 pounds. He would get a couple Hall of Fame votes, though he wasn’t really Hall quality. This season, he finished sixth in Defensive WAR (1.3) and was a good hitter for a backstop, slashing .298/.340/.378 for and OPS+ of 113. He possibly has one more All-Star season left. It’s always hard to tell with catchers.

PSA Cards writes, “John Bannerman “Larry” McLean (1881-1921) was giant when it came to catchers and at 6’5” tall; he remains the tallest Major League catcher in history. McLean was a solid hitter at the plate and posted a career .973 fielding percentage making him an above average backstop as well. Larry played 12 seasons, primarily for the Cincinnati Reds (1906-1912) and the New York Giants (1913-1915) with short stints with the Red Sox, Cubs and Cardinals. He won a National League pennant as a member of the 1913 Giants. His off-field antics and frequent barroom brawls, however, overshadowed his playing career. In 1915, in a drunken state, McLean challenged Giants coached including John McGraw to a fistfight outside a St. Louis hotel. Exhausted by his drunken fights, McGraw cut McLean the following day. Larry McLean retried with a .262 career batting average adding 694 hits, 183 runs, 90 doubles and 298 RBI. Larry McLean was shot at the age of 39 by a Boston bartender amidst yet another brawl.”

bresnahan7

C-Roger Bresnahan, St. Louis Cardinals, 31 Years Old

1903 1904 1905 1906 1907 1908

.278, 0 HR, 27 RBI, 0-0, 0.00 ERA, 0 K

Hall of Fames:

ONEHOF: No

Cooperstown: Yes

Ron’s: No (Would require one more All-Star season. 1 percent chance)

 

7th Time All-Star-I want my Hall of Fame to be based solely on numbers because I don’t want to make those hairy decisions about who’s in and who’s out. I wish I had another Hall of Fame which would be based on emotion to allow people like Bresnahan, Rube Waddell, and Sandy Koufax in. However, I already have the ONEHOF, which admits one player per year, and Ron’s Hall of Fame in which the number of All-Star teams is multiplied by Career WAR and all with over 300 are admitted. I can’t keep inventing Hall of Fames. I have a full-time job, you know!

In his second year of managing St. Louis, Bresnahan again finished in seventh place, with a 63-90 record, 40-and-a-half games out of first. The Cardinals’ pitching was awful, finishing with a 3.78 ERA in a league which had a 3.02 ERA.

The Duke of Tralee did what he always did, hit decently and get on base. He slashed .278/.419/.368 and has some good seasons left, but he just doesn’t play too many games in a season which makes it hard to judge whether or not he’s going to make another All-Star team and thus make my Hall of Fame.

Wikipedia says, “The Giants obtained younger and faster players in 1909; McGraw had Chief Meyers ready to succeed Bresnahan at catcher. Stanley Robison of the St. Louis Cardinals became interested in hiring Bresnahan to be a player-manager. As McGraw did not want to block Bresnahan from the opportunity, the Giants traded Bresnahan to the Cardinals for Red MurrayBugs Raymond and Admiral Schlei after the 1908 season. Bresnahan led the Cardinals, who won only 49 games in 1908, to 54 wins in 1909 and 63 wins in 1910. Attendance increased from 205,000 fans in 1908 to 299,000 fans in 1909, and 355,000 fans in 1910.”

konetchy2

1B-Ed Konetchy, St. Louis Cardinals, 24 Years Old

1909

.302, 3 HR, 78 RBI, 0-0, 4.50 ERA, 0 K

Hall of Fames:

ONEHOF: No

Cooperstown: No

Ron’s: No (Would require five more All-Star seasons. 60 percent chance)

 

Led in:

 

Putouts-1,499 (2nd Time)

Putouts as 1B-1,499 (2nd Time)

Assists as 1B-98 (3rd Time)

Range Factor/9 Inn as 1B-11.54 (2nd Time)

Range Factor/Game as 1B-11.09 (2nd Time)

Fielding % as 1B-.991

2nd Time All-Star-Konetchy made his second consecutive All-Star team as he continued to be a solid and steady player for the Cardinals. He finished ninth in WAR (5.1); fourth in WAR Position Players (5.0); fourth in Offensive WAR (4.3); ninth in batting (.302); sixth in on-base percentage (.397); eighth in slugging (.425); and fourth in Adjusted OPS+ (144). Like I said, a very solid season for the National League’s best first baseman.

SABR says, “’I know I tried to play baseball as soon as I was big enough to raise a bat from the ground,’ Ed remembered. ‘I used to play all the time that I could get a chance with some little scrub team or other, but the first real serious experience I had along this line was after I’d gone to work.’ After attending school until age 14, Konetchy began working in a LaCrosse candy factory. ‘I used to get up and walk the two miles to the factory, carrying my dinner pail, and work ten hours,’ he recalled. ‘After that we’d all get together and walk two miles in another direction to the ball field. There we’d play baseball until it was too dark to see, and then we’d walk home. We did this not once or twice, but five times a week on average. Sunday we’d gather the club together and go off to some one-horse place maybe three or four hours ride away on a slow train to play baseball with some other club.’

“It wasn’t until Konetchy was 16 that he joined the competitive factory team.”

evers6

2B-Johnny Evers, Chicago Cubs, 28 Years Old

1904 1906 1907 1908 1909

.263, 0 HR, 28 RBI

Hall of Fames:

ONEHOF: No

Cooperstown: Yes

Ron’s: No (Would require one more All-Star season. Sure thing)

6th Time All-Star-Evers continued to be the best second baseman in the National League despite his diminutive, five-foot-nine, 125 pound size. He was scrappy and mean, but very few people wanted to win more than Crab. This season, he finished third in on-base percentage (.413), behind Philadelphia leftfielder Sherry Magee (.445) and New York centerfielder Fred Snodgrass (.440). This was because he walked a career-high 108 times. However, he wasn’t able to play in the World Series. As Wikipedia explains, “Evers drew 108 walks during the 1910 season, trailing only Miller Huggins. However, Evers missed the end of the season with a broken leg. Without Evers, the Cubs won the NL pennant, but lost the 1910 World Series to the Philadelphia Athletics, four games to one. Evers agreed to manage the Navy Midshipmen, a college baseball team, in 1911, despite the opposition of Cubs’ manager Frank Chance. He experienced a nervous breakdown in 1911; returning to the Cubs later in the season, he played in only 46 games that year. Evers indicated that this was a result of a business deal that cost Evers most of his savings.”

This was also the year “Baseball’s Sad Lexicon” was written by Franklin P. Adams in the New York Evening Mail. Part of it read, “These are the saddest of possible words: ‘Tinker to Evers to Chance.’ Trio of bear cubs, and fleeter than birds, Tinker and Evers and Chance. Ruthlessly pricking our gonfalon bubble, Making a Giant hit into a double – Words that are heavy with nothing but trouble: ‘Tinker to Evers to Chance.’”

doyle2

2B-Larry Doyle, New York Giants, 23 Years Old

1909

.285, 8 HR, 69 RBI

Hall of Fames:

ONEHOF: No

Cooperstown: No

Ron’s: No (Would require five more All-Star seasons. 80 percent chance)

 

Led in:

 

Errors Committed as 2B-53 (2nd Time)

2nd Time All-Star-Doyle continued to be one of the best power hitters at any position this year as he finished seventh in Offensive WAR (4.3); eighth in steals (39); and 10th in Adjusted OPS+ (127). He’s still young and has many good season left.

Have I mentioned how much I like the newspaper writing of this era? Look at this article from the New York Times on April 28, 1910: “PHILADELPHIA, April 28.—The trusty bat of Capt. Larry Doyle, whacking forth a whistling two-bagger which sent in two runs in the thirteenth inning, won for the Giants to-day in a seething battle with the Phillies. Again the New Yorks demonstrated that no matter how badly the storm is raging against them there is still a whirlwind finish in them, which is brought out at the crucial moment. And here is the place to slap the erratio Raymond on his broad back, for his Buglets went the route like a thoroughbred, never slipping a cog in his flinging and taming the opposition whenever they threatened disaster.”

I know what you’re saying. What? If you need a translation, Raymond is Giants’ pitcher Bugs Raymond, which also explains the Buglets comment. Apparently, he pitched well, flinging as it were, and Doyle was able to get the game-winning hit in the 13th inning. Nowadays, newspaper writing is an inverted pyramid, with all of the crucial information in the lede (the opening paragraph) and then getting less important as the story goes on, but if you notice here, there’s not even a mention of the final score in the first paragraph. As a matter of fact, if you click on the link, they don’t put the final score in the text, but let you figure it out by looking at the box score.

byrne

3B-Bobby Byrne, Pittsburgh Pirates, 25 Years Old

.296, 2 HR, 52 RBI

Hall of Fames:

ONEHOF: No

Cooperstown: No

Ron’s: No (Would require 21 more All-Star seasons. Impossible)

 

Led in:

 

Hits-178

Doubles-43

1st Time All-Star-Robert Matthew “Bobby” Byrne was born on New Year’s Eve, 1884 in St. Louis, MO, and would also go out from this mortal coil on that same day in 1964, 30 days after yours truly was born.

The five-foot-seven, 145 pound third baseman started with St. Louis in 1907 and then on August 19, 1909, he was  traded by the St. Louis Cardinals to the Pittsburgh Pirates for Jap Barbeau and Alan Storke. Then this season, he had his best year ever, finishing seventh in WAR Position Players (4.0); fourth in Offensive WAR (4.3); 10th in slugging (.417); and ninth in steals (36). He was the National League’s best third baseman this season, but he’s only got a slight chance of making another All-Star team.

As for his team, the Pirates, managed by Fred Clarke, finished third with an 86-67 record, 17-and-a-half games out of first. Though they didn’t have any All-Star pitchers, they had good pitching overall, but their hitting lacked this season. Pittsburgh would never win another pennant under Clarke.

Wikipedia says, “The speedy Byrne was a defensive stalwart with excellent range. He started his major league career with the St. Louis Cardinals in the 1907 season. Acquired by the Pittsburgh Pirates in late August 1909, he contributed for his new club down the stretch, including allowing Tommy Leach to stay in center field. Used mainly in the leadoff spot, Byrne made just two errors while hitting .256 with eight stolen bases.

“Byrne enjoyed his most productive season in 1910, when he posted career-numbers in batting average(.296), RBI (52), runs (101), stolen bases (36), slugging percentage (.417), and led the National League with 178 hits and in doubles with 43 (also career highs).”

wagner12

SS-Honus Wagner, Pittsburgh Pirates, 36 Years Old

1899 1900 1901 1902 1903 1904 1905 1906 1907 1908 1909

.320, 4 HR, 81 RBI

Hall of Fames:

ONEHOF: Yes

Cooperstown: Yes

Ron’s: Yes

 

Led in:

 

Hits-178 (2nd Time)

Putouts as SS-337 (2nd Time)

12th Time All-Star-Because this is the great Honus Wagner, you might not notice his decline, but it’s there and it started this year. From 1900-through-1909, the Flying Dutchman never had an OPS+ under 159. Starting this year, he’ll never have one over 156 again. This year, it is 133. Still, he’s not done making All-Star teams, he’s just done being the National League’s best player. This season, Wagner finished seventh in WAR (5.2); third in WAR Position Players (5.2), behind Philadelphia leftfielder Sherry Magee (6.8) and Chicago centerfielder Solly Hofman (5.3); second in Offensive WAR (5.3), trailing only Magee (7.2); eighth in Defensive WAR (0.9); fifth in batting (.320); eighth in on-base percentage (.390); seventh in slugging (.432); and seventh in Adjusted OPS+ (133). See what I mean? It’s good, but not Wagner-good.

Wikipedia agrees, saying, “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.”

It seems most of the internet information on Wagner focuses on his baseball cards. Like this from Forbes, which states, “The two most valuable error baseball cards belong to the same set as the Wagner. The name of Sherry Magee, a fine Phillies pitcher, was misspelled, Magie. The quick correction accounts for the small population of error cards, 107, and high value, $38,500 in excellent condition. The New York Americans pitcher Joe Doyle was erroneously identified as a National Leaguer, owing to confusion with Larry Doyle, a pitcher for the N.L. New York team.  With only nine known, an example in very good condition sold for $425,000. “The card remains more challenging than the Sherry Magee, Eddie Plank or the Honus Wagner,” says PSA, the grading company.”

tinker5SS-Joe Tinker, Chicago Cubs, 29 Years Old

1902 1906 1908 1909

.288, 3 HR, 69 RBI

Hall of Fames:

ONEHOF: No

Cooperstown: Yes

Ron’s: No (Would require one more All-Star season. No doubt)

 

5th Time All-Star-If you’re a basketball player at small forward, you don’t want to be compared to LeBron James, because you’re never going to look better than him. It was the same in the 1900s. If you were a shortstop in the National League, you could be good, but you’d always fall short in a comparison to the Flying Dutchman. Still, Tinker is going to make my Hall of Fame, most likely next season, and had a great career, just not an unprecedented career like Honus Wagner. There really should be levels to the Hall of Fame, because I believe Tinker belongs there, I just don’t believe he belongs in whatever Hall of Fame contains the Pittsburgh shortstop.

This season, Tinker finished eighth in WAR Position Players (4.0); and second in Defensive WAR (2.0), behind Phillies shortstop Mickey Doolin (2.8). As always for the Cubs shortstop, it was his glove which carried him. In the World Series, Tinker shined in a losing cause, hitting .333 (six-for-18) with two doubles. It still wasn’t enough to beat Philadelphia and the Cubs lost, 4-1.

Tinker’s Hall of Fame page talks about the famous Tinker-to-Evers-to-Chance poem, saying, “While the legend grew from the poem, in reality research has shown that the most double plays the trio ever turned in one season was 58, and not all were started by Tinker. But like all good legends, it’s more about the impact on the public than the daily box score.” The page also notes on June 28, 1910, Tinker stole home twice in the same game.

bridwell3

SS-Al Bridwell, New York Giants, 26 Years Old

1908 1909

.276, 0 HR, 48 RBI

Hall of Fames:

ONEHOF: No

Cooperstown: No

Ron’s: No (Would require 13 more All-Star seasons. Impossible)

 

3rd Time All-Star-How do all of the same clubs in the National League keep snatching up all of the good players? Bridwell now made his third consecutive All-Star team, finishing fourth in Defensive WAR (1.3). His offense, which was decent in 1908 and 1909, was okay this year, but continued to decline after this season. Bridwell’s slashline was .276/.374/.335 for an OPS+ of 106.

SABR says, quoting sportswriter Sam Crane, “There was never a more graceful player than Bridwell.” The article also mentioned, “Al Bridwell was a natural in the field, one of finest defensive shortstops of the Deadball Era. Hitting did not come naturally to him, but as a member of the New York Giants, he became a solid hitter under the tutelage of manager John McGraw. In his prime, Bridwell was ‘regarded as being right in the Hans Wagner-Joe Tinker class of shortstops.’” That is, of course, crazy. Both of those players are in Cooperstown and deserve to be, but Bridwell had a good, but not great, three-year stretch.

There’s more from SABR, which says, “On June 13, 1910, Bridwell went 3-for-4 facing Mordecai Brown and scored both runs in the Giants’ 6-2 loss to the Cubs, and he fielded 11 chances without error. Sportswriter E.H. Simmons remarked:

“’His playing on short today is unexcelled, if, indeed, it is equalled by any man in either of the two big leagues. He is the most graceful player the writer has ever seen. He is also the best natured and most gentlemanly.’”

doolin

SS-Mickey Doolin, Philadelphia Phillies, 30 Years Old

.263, 2 HR, 57 RBI

Hall of Fames:

ONEHOF: No

Cooperstown: No

Ron’s: No (Would require 22 more All-Star seasons. Impossible)

 

Led in:

 

Defensive WAR-2.8

Assists-500 (3rd Time)

Def. Games as SS-148 (3rd Time)

Assists as SS-500 (3rd Time)

Double Plays Turned as SS-71 (3rd Time)

Fielding % as SS-.948

1st Time All-Star-Michael Joseph “Mickey” or “Doc” Doolin, born Michael Joseph Doolittle, whose adopted surname was sometimes spelled Doolan, was born on May 7, 1880 in Ashland, PA. He attended Bucknell and Villanova Universities and didn’t start playing in the Majors until he was 25, when he started playing regularly for the Phillies. He was always a sensational fielder and this year added just a smidge of hitting to have his best season ever. Doolin finished 10th in WAR Position Players (3.8), first in Defensive WAR (2.8), and slashed .263/.315/.354 for an Adjusted OPS+ of 94.

SABR says, “Becoming Philadelphia’s everyday shortstop in 1905, Doolan responded by hitting .254, 24 points above his eventual major-league career average. Despite his weak bat, the three men who managed the Phillies over the next nine seasons penciled his name into the lineup nearly every day, and in 1909 he was even named team captain, a position he held through 1913. Doolan’s best year at the plate in the majors was 1910, when he logged personal highs for at-bats (536), hits (141), doubles (31), batting average (.263), and on-base percentage (.315). Yet those modest marks represented rarefied air for Doolan, who was one of the truly bad hitters of an offense-starved era, incapable of hitting for average or power. Doolan’s 1911 campaign, in which he batted .238 with a .313 slugging percentage, was more typical of his output. By 1913 his batting average had plummeted to .218 with a woeful .270 slugging percentage.” There’s a slight chance he’ll make another All-Star team.

magee5LF-Sherry Magee, Philadelphia Phillies, 25 Years Old

1905 1906 1907 1908

.331, 6 HR, 123 RBI

Hall of Fames:

ONEHOF: No

Cooperstown: No

Ron’s: No (Would require one more All-Star season. Sure thing)

 

Led in:

 

1910 NL Batting Title

WAR Position Players-6.8

Offensive WAR-7.2

Batting Average-.331

On-Base %-.445

Slugging %-.507

On-Base Plus Slugging-.952

Runs Scored-110

Total Bases-263

Runs Batted In-123 (2nd Time)

Adjusted OPS+-175

Runs Created-114

Adj. Batting Runs-55

Adj. Batting Wins-6.0

Extra Base Hits-62 (2nd Time)

Times on Base-278

Offensive Win %-.817

5th Time All-Star-When I used to play sports in my childhood, I developed quite a bad temper. I was the ultimate picture of a “sore loser.” That would have been bearable if I was a good enough athlete to not lose as much as I did. I got better, but I never shook all of it, even when I was playing slo-pitch softball. I didn’t get mad at others, but I did get mad at myself when I failed.

Sherry Magee did not make the Hall of Fame and it’s baffling. Most experts believe it was because of his temper. Despite that, he was one of the best outfielders of his time who produced mind-blowing stats. Look at all the categories in which he led the league above in this, his best season ever. He’d never have a season like 1910 again, but he was always one of the National League’s best hitters. Well, Magee will just have to make do with being in Ron’s Hall of Fame, though it might take him another three years before being inducted.

SABR says, “In 1909 Magee slumped to .270 (still 26 points above the league average) and played with ‘marked indifference,’ prompting rumors that he would be traded to the New York Giants for holdout slugger Mike Donlin. The Phils refused the deal because of the age difference between the two players (Donlin was six years older), and their patience was rewarded when Magee put together his finest season in 1910. Playing in all 154 games, he broke Wagner’s tenure on the batting throne by hitting .331, and also led the NL with career highs in runs (110), RBIs (123), and on-base percentage (.445). He walloped 39 doubles, 17 triples, and six homers to give him a league-leading .507 slugging percentage, and his 49 stolen bases ranked fourth in the NL.”

hofman2

CF-Solly Hofman, Chicago Cubs, 27 Years Old

1909

.325, 3 HR, 86 RBI

Hall of Fames:

ONEHOF: No

Cooperstown: No

Ron’s: No (Would require 17 more All-Star seasons. Impossible)

 

Led in:

 

Fielding % as CF-.973

2nd Time All-Star-On a team as good as the Cubs, Hofman could be forgotten while the famous infield garnered all of the game. However, Circus Solly contributed his part, having his best season ever, finishing sixth in WAR (5.3); second in WAR Position Players (5.3), behind Philadelphia leftfielder Sherry Magee (6.8); third in Offensive WAR (4.9), trailing Magee and Pittsburgh shortstop Honus Wagner (5.3); third in batting (.325), behind Magee (.331) and Pittsburgh leftfielder Vin Campbell (.326); fourth in on-base percentage (.406); second in slugging (.461), trailing only Magee (.507); and second in Adjusted OPS+ (154), behind Magee’s 175. In the World Series loss to Philadelphia, Hofman hit .267 with four walks.

SABR says, “In 1908 and 1909, Hofman was named to Collier’s Magazine‘s All-American teams, picked by Billy Sunday and Cap Anson, but his best season was 1910 when he hit .325 with 86 RBI and 29 stolen bases. On Cubs teams built around stealing bases, sacrificing outs for runs, and advancing runners, Hofman had a reputation as a speedy base runner and one of the game’s best sign stealers. Besides his role in the infamous Merkle play, Circus Solly owns the dubious record of playing eight innings at first base without making a single putout in a June 24, 1910, game against the Pirates.” How do you do that? Every hit must have been a fly ball or a strikeout. Looking it up, the Cubs only struck out five Pittsburgh batters while the outfielders had eight putouts. Strange.

snodgrass

CF-Fred Snodgrass, New York Giants, 22 Years Old

.321, 2 HR, 44 RBI

Hall of Fames:

ONEHOF: No

Cooperstown: No

Ron’s: No (Would require 18 more All-Star seasons. Impossible)

 

1st Time All-Star-Frederick Charles “Fred” or “Snow” Snodgrass was born on October 19, 1887 in Ventura, CA. The five-foot-11, 175 pound centerfielder started his career with the Giants in 1908, but really took off this year. It’s funny, his name seems familiar to me, but this was his only All-Star season, I would guess. He finished fifth in WAR Position Players (4.6); fourth in Offensive WAR (4.3); fourth in batting (.321); second in on-base percentage (.440), behind only Sherry Magee (.445); and third in Adjusted OPS+ (153), trailing Magee (175) and Cubs’ centerfielder Solly Hofman (154).

After this season, he would play five more seasons with New York until he was released by the Giants midseason and then picked up by the Braves. He finished his Major League career with Boston the next season. He’d end up hitting .275 with 11 homers and 353 RBI and a 15.9 career WAR.

Wikipedia says, “From 1911 to 1913, he played in three consecutive World Series, but the Giants lost all three. In the second, the 1912 Series, Snodgrass committed one of the most famous errors in baseball history. In the 10th inning of the deciding game, Snodgrass, who was among the National League‘s best outfielders, dropped a routine fly ball that put the tying run on second base. He proceeded to make a spectacular game-saving catch on the next play, but the Sox went on to score two runs in the inning to win the series.

“His error in the 1912 World Series, however, remained with him to the end. When he died on April 5, 1974, his obituary in the New York Times was headlined ‘Fred Snodgrass, 86, Dead; Ball Player Muffed 1912 Fly.’”

paskert

CF-Dode Paskert, Cincinnati Reds, 28 Years Old

.300, 2 HR, 46 RBI

Hall of Fames:

ONEHOF: No

Cooperstown: No

Ron’s: No (Would require 12 more All-Star seasons. Impossible)

 

Led in:

 

Assists as CF-24

Errors Committed as CF-17

Putouts as OF-355

Range Factor/Game as CF-2.80

1st Time All-Star-George Henry “Dode” or “Honey Boy” Paskert was born on August 28, 1881 in Cleveland, OH. The five-foot-11, 165 pound centerfielder started with Cincinnati in 1907 and this season was his best ever. Paskert finished sixth in WAR Position Players (4.3); ninth in Offensive WAR (3.7); ninth in on-base percentage (.389); and third in steals (51), behind Reds’ leftfielder Bob Bescher (70) and Giants’ rightfielder Red Murray (52).

SABR says, “A second nickname, ‘Honey Boy,’ was more complimentary. So named because he was ‘such a sweet ballplayer,’ the 5’11”, 165 lb. center fielder impressed observers from the start with his speed and superior range, though his offensive skills took longer to mature. After posting on-base percentages of .298 and .327 in 1908 and 1909, respectively, Paskert enjoyed a breakout season in 1910, when he paced all NL outfielders in putouts and finished third in the league with 51 stolen bases. Most impressively, he batted .300 and led the Reds with a .389 on-base percentage. But despite that performance, Cincinnati failed to finish in the first division for the third time in four years, a disappointment that convinced manager Clark Griffith to overhaul his roster. The following February, the Reds shipped Paskert to the Phillies, along with teammates Fred Beebe, Jack Rowan, and Hans Lobert, in exchange for Johnny Bates, Eddie Grant, George McQuillan, and Lew Moren. Cincinnati soon regretted the trade, as Paskert proved to be by far the most valuable of the eight players in the deal.”

bates

CF-Johnny Bates, Philadelphia Phillies, 27 Years Old

.305, 3 HR, 61 RBI

Hall of Fames:

ONEHOF: No

Cooperstown: No

Ron’s: No (Would require 14 more All-Star seasons. Impossible)

 

Led in:

 

Double Plays Turned as CF-7

Double Plays Turned as OF-8

1st Time All-Star-John William “Johnny” Bates was born on August 21, 1882 in Steubenville, OH. He started with Boston in 1906 and then got traded by the Boston Doves with Charlie Starr to the Philadelphia Phillies for Buster BrownLew Richie and Dave Shean on July 16, 1909. Bates finished this season ninth in WAR Position Players (4.0); seventh in batting (.305); 10th in on-base percentage (.385); ninth in slugging (.420); and eighth in Adjusted OPS+ (133).

                Baseball History Daily reports, “In 1911, Victor Munoz, the sports editor for the Cuban newspaper El Mundo spent part of 1911 traveling with the Cincinnati Reds and chronicling the experiences of Armando Marsans and Rafael Almeida during their rookie season with the Reds.

“After several months in the states Munoz shared his observations about baseball in America:…

“Munoz concluded that if America was the world’s melting pot, baseball ‘was the flame which brings the human metal to that state which makes the American citizen possible…’

“Munoz also said he was ‘deeply impressed’ by what a cosmopolitan team the Reds were:

’I found (Hank) Severeid, a Norwegian, (Mike) Balenti, an Indian; Mitchell and other Irishmen,  (Bob) Bescher and other Germans; (Clark) Griffith, of Welsh-Irish descent;  (Johnny) Bates of English parentage; (Harry) Gaspar, whose father was a Frenchman, and my Cuban companions members of the team.’” Of course, the sad part about the whole American melting pot situation is that many of its own citizens, the blacks, weren’t allowed to play baseball in the Majors during this time.

2 thoughts on “1910 National League All-Star Team

  1. There are a lot of people who are terrific players, less who are terrific human beings. Mathewson is one of those that is both. He’s a great player, an even better person.
    Nice list, as usual.
    v

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