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1902 Chicago White Stockings season

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

1902 Chicago White Stockings
Major League affiliations
Other information
Owner(s)Charles Comiskey
Manager(s)Clark Griffith
< Previous season     Next season >

The 1902 Chicago White Stockings season was a season in American baseball. The White Sox had a record of 74–60, finishing in fourth place in the American League.

YouTube Encyclopedic

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  • ✪ Tinker to Evers to Chance: The Chicago Cubs & the Dawn of Modern America
  • ✪ Why the Chicago Cubs are Named After a Baby Bear and The Long, Weird History of Their Mascot
  • ✪ Byron G. Harlan "Can't You See" Edison Standard Record 10347 (1910)
  • ✪ 1. Introduction (2007)
  • ✪ Casey at the Bat


>> Susan Reyburn: Okay are we ready to roll? All right. Hello and thank you all for coming. I'm Susan Reyburn, Curator of Baseball Americana, an exhibition currently running here in the Jefferson Building and continuing through July of 2019. If you haven't had a chance to check it out yet, I hope you will soon. Perhaps even this afternoon after you've gotten your new Tinker to Evers to Chance book, had it signed by the author and it's available for purchase behind you in the entryway there. So today as we close out our 3-part series on new baseball publications and prepare to watch the Los Angeles Dodgers win their third World Series, win their first World Series in 30 years, the library is delighted to have with us David Rapp, author of Tinker to Evers to Chance: The Chicago Cubs and the Dawn of Modern America. David spent more than 20 years at Congressional Quarterly serving as editor and senior vice president. He's a former board member of the National Press Foundation and he mastered his craft as a hard-boiled newspaper beat reporter in Memphis, Cincinnati and Pittsburgh. As the book's title suggests, there's more here than the makings of a story double play trio made immortal in 1910 through the poetic musings of New York newspaper columnist Franklin Pierce Adams. In addition to seeing what made the threesome tick and the dynamics of the Cubs early 20th Century dynasty, the book illumines for us the City of Chicago in the years after it grabbed the world's attention as host of the World Columbian Exposition. This is a fascinating read whether you are a baseball fan who likes history on the side or a history buff who likes a large helping of baseball. After the talk there will be time for questions. So ladies and gentlemen, David Rapp. [ Applause ] >> David Rapp: Thank you. I've lost the, let's try this again here. That'll work. These are the saddest of possible words, Tinker to Evers to Chance. A trio of bear cubs and freer 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. So that's the way most of us know about these three guys is through this poem that Susan mentioned written in 1910 by a newspaper columnist in New York, who actually is from Chicago and was a lifelong Cubs fan. And that's also obviously the top, the reason I wrote the book was to find out a little bit more about them. As Susan said, I'm a journalist by training and profession. I'm not, I'm going to have to back off here. I worked at Congressional Corley and Roll Call [phonetic] for 30 years. I started out as a sports writer for my hometown newspaper in Evansville, Indiana, and went on and have been trying to cover sports ever since. I got sidetracked into politics for about 40 years and I tell you this is a lot more fun, but I've also been a Chicago Cubs fan since I was 10 years old. My dad got his PhD in University of Wisconsin over the course of 13 summers. So I took the family up there every year and we lived across the hall the first year from a lawyer, law student from Chicago, who brainwashed me right then and told me I needed to be rooting for Ernie Banks not Mickey Mantle or any of the things that all the other kids were. Little did I realize that my passion and loyalty of the Cubs would never be requited through most of my lifetime until just 2 years ago, but that's what got me into this topic to begin with. These 3 guys, Joe Tinker, Johnny Evers or Evers as they say it up in Troy, New York, where he's from, and Frank Chance where the shortstop, second baseman and first baseman player/manager of the Chicago Cubs from 1903 to 1912 was there period of time. They're immortalized by Frank Adams, Franklin P. Adams, who was a member of the, a charter member of the Algonquin Roundtable, which included people like Robert Benchley and Dorothy Parker, but at the time 1910 he was just a, wrote a humor column for the New York Evening Standard and included a lot of poetry and things like that including his own, and the story goes that he had finished up his column one day and was on his way up to catch a ballgame in the Polo Grounds where the American League Highlanders were playing. And he got a call from the composing room just as he was about to leave saying his column was 8 lines short. So he had to come up with 8 lines and there was on his desk a newspaper from about the game the day before in Chicago between the Cubs and the Giants and deep down, the Cubs had won the game 4 to 2 with the help of a rally killing play in the 7th inning and deep down the box score he saw it said double play Tinker to Evers to Chance. And so that led to this little piece of doggerel he produced, which turned out to be probably the second most famous poem about baseball after Casey and the Bat, Casey at the Bat. And caused a sensation, a viral media sensation of 1910. The newspapers would reprint it all over the country and then sports editors would write their own versions of it from there and then he'd reprint those and it went on all summer long, but became quite a sensation. A couple things about it you may know it as baseball lexicon. This is actually a scan of the original version from the Evening Standard in 1910. A librarian friend of mine, Jack Bales down at Mary Washington University, found for us. Adams renamed it Baseball Lexicon shortly after it came out. And then I'm sure you're wondering about this phrase, our gonfalon bubble. Anybody know what a gonfalon is? It's a, a banner, medieval Italian banner or pennant especially one with streamers hung from a cross bar as you're going into battle. And so if you look at that ruthlessly pricking our gonfalon bubble means our pennant fever essentially. So these are the 3 guys, Tinker, Evers and Chance and I want to talk a little bit about them but also what I think is a marvelous way of looking at baseball at the time and how baseball became our national pastime. For most of the time up until they played it was the phrase used most often for baseball was the national game and that was a product of its history and it's kind of way it evolved from different games. It was a Massachusetts game, a New York game and was pretty much during the Civil War that the rules coalesced around one game. So somebody from Troy, New York, like Johnny Evers or Kansas City like Joe Tinker or Fresno, California, like Frank Chance, could all play the same game if one showed up and they'd be playing the same game 9 innings, 9 men to a side, 4 balls, 3 strikes, you know, all the rules we know today but what happened in this first [inaudible] of the 20th Century was that baseball transformed into something completely different and that's what I'll talk a little bit about today. So first of all let me talk a little bit about Joe Tinker, the short stop. As I said, he's from Kansas City. Actually he was born in Muscotah, Kansas, Atchison County, just west of Kansas City, to an unwed mother. He was actually one of a, a pair of twins but his twin sister died or who knows what happened very early on. He didn't have any memory of her. It was some talk that he had an Italian father. You can kind of tell from his looks he has that kind of swarthy Mediterranean good looking, he's actually the most popular player of the 3. He was a real crowd pleaser in his day and he ended up going on into vaudeville as a vaudevillian actor in uniform during his playing days. So he made a lot of money in the winters, in the off season [inaudible]. Anyway his mother moved to Kansas City was essentially shunned out of Muscotah, moved to Kansas City when he was 3 or 4 years old and hooked up with an itinerant butcher and short-order cook named Tinker. And they lived in Kansas City through this childhood. Johnny Evers or Evers as I said Evers himself said it's pronounced Evers in Troy but everyone else pronounces it Evers. So you can do it either way as far as he was concerned. Specifically he's from south Troy, which was the Irish/American enclave of Troy and his nickname was the human crab. For one reason because he played second base side to side like a crab moving sideways but also because as one reporter says he's just a jangled up bundle of nerves. Always barking at the umpire, constantly haranguing anybody on the other team or the umpire. Frank Chance, who played next to him at first base, once said, told Tinker he says I wish I played in the outfield so I wouldn't have to listen to Evers all day long. But he also had an amazing baseball IQ and became famous for it. He went to bed with the rule book every night and so he was a spindly little kid, you know, he was 5 feet 5, 120 pounds or something when he started playing. Very different from Frank Chance who was a big, one of the biggest players of his day at 6 feet, 190 pounds. Again, he's from Fresno, California. He was an amateur boxer. When he was growing up, he played football, he was a mountaineer, anything he could do in terms of proving his physical prowess he was willing to do. His nickname out in California was Husk for tough as a corn husk, but Chicago sports writers eventually would refer to him as the perilous leader because he was a man totally in charge. So what we've got here is kind of a map of America in these 3 guys from Troy in Upstate New York to Kansas City to Fresno. As you can see, this is a demographic map from 1890. The country kind of ends around Kansas City and then picks up again on the West Coast at that time. So America was essentially a composite of very distinct regional cultures and each of these men reflected that especially when they came to Chicago together in 1903. Evers was a product of a classic Irish stem family. This is a family photo. He's the young boy in the middle in the back row he was about 14. His father was an iron monger. His grandfather was an immigrant came across in 1840s as a penniless immigrant from Ireland. John Evers, Sr got a job at the iron works in Troy. Troy was probably the biggest iron center of the country in the middle of the 19th Century. And eventually got hooked up with the Democratic political machine. Became quite a successful political operative. His father was actually the, became president and chairman of the school board even though he sent all of his kids to parochial schools. Kansas City at the time was a boom town on the west thanks to railroads and the stockyards that they had and things like that. In fact, it was such a boom town it was considered too crowded for its own good. Families wouldn't move there because there was just no space to run around and we'll talk a little bit about that in a minute too. And then Frank Chance each of his parents came across to California on the Oregon Trail as children. The young boy there in the middle is about the age of William Chance when he came across and as this shows they came across on foot. It was 2000 miles. Those wagons weren't for people. The wagons was for their stuff. And it was an obviously arduous ordeal through mountains, desert and snow storms in the upper mountains. Dennis Chance, Frank's grandfather, was part of a party that came over in one of the first 1846 and they were just about a week or two ahead of the Donner Party as they crossed the Sierra Nevadas. So, it was, it was essentially the defining moment of that, not just that family but that state and the culture that was developing out in California through the second half of the century. So baseball as I said was still a formative sport. There was many different games and rules. The Civil War helped foster this national game. This is a picture of a prisoner of war camp in North Carolina where union soldiers were playing baseball. Then they all came back home after the war and started developing the game pretty much as we know it today. the 1880s is when professional baseball really took off. The National League was founded in 1876. The 1880s were a free-wheeling, fun for fun sake kind of time for baseball. It was personified by this guy Mike King Kelly who played for the Chicago White Stockings and then eventually for Boston. It was free spirited, lots of showmanship, lots of gamesmanship, but it was all in fun and everybody sort of took it that way. This is a classic painting that hung on a lot of barroom walls called Slide, Kelly, Slide. He was the Babe Ruth of his day. In fact, some people said he was more popular in his day than Babe Ruth was in his. Hard for us to believe but this was a witness who saw both men play. In the meantime, baseball was kind of developing also regional interests. This is a picture of the old Troy Haymakers. Troy was just a baseball mad town and all the Evers, brothers and uncles and cousins everybody played baseball in Troy. And Kansas City as I said was very crowded, overcrowded place, but the city fathers realized that and remarkably started one of the first of the City Beautiful Movements that came across the United States and hired a protege of Frederick Long Olmsted to come and design a whole system of parks and boulevards that still exist in the city today. So this is where Joe Tinker grew up playing baseball was in these kind of parks. There was also a center for an organization called the Society of Christian Endeavor. It was a youth Christian organization, ecumenical. It was developed to try to get boys back into the church frankly and one of the things that emerged out of that was because kind of Victorian protestant society of the 19th Century discouraged child's play and emphasized hard work and applying yourself. The YMCA and the Christian Endeavor groups started promoting something they called muscular Christianity, which was encouraging people to get out and exercise and develop their bodies as well as their spirit. And so this became kind of the cultural turning point for a lot of young boys in particular and Kansas City was one of the places that was happening. And then California in the 1880s was obviously still very rural place. There was barely a Los Angeles at the time. The center of activity was San Francisco and the Bay Area, but every town was, had its own baseball, amateur baseball team. And they started developing a routine what they called Sunday baseball. They'd take one day off a week and 2 towns would challenge each other and play baseball. So baseball was really much more of an amateur sport until 1900s when the Pacific Coast League really got off the ground. Professional baseball never really did before then. Frank Chance was one of the early kids who got involved. This is a picture of the Fresno Expositors named after the newspaper that sponsored them. Frank is the 12-year old lying on the bottom left on the floor there. He was the youngest player on the team and they would, again, they would go around challenging kids from other leagues but the newspaper bought them these fancy uniforms. So, these are the 3 young men as the century turned from 1890s to the 2000s. Each bringing with them kind of their own reason for getting involved in baseball, which was not necessarily what young men were supposed to do at the time. For Tinker I think it was very much a desire for middle class acceptance, acceptability rising from the kind of lower rungs of the social order he grew up in. He saw baseball as a way to get that kind of acceptance. Johnny Evers it was, there was an expression in south Troy called south Troy against the world. And there was a strong Irish/Catholic sense of grievance against the Anglo-Saxon overlords from England as well as in the United States. This was, again, the period where the No Irish Need Apply signs were hung on shop walls. So baseball, the Irish were incredible baseball players. In fact, they almost took over the game. In the 1890s, there was 4 or 5 Irish players on every team at the time and I go into the book a little bit why I think that is, but part of it is because they realized that was one way they could beat the protestant Anglos they were up against. For Chance I think it was for him a question of proving himself worthy of his parents and grandparent's legacy. There wasn't a way to cross the country like the Oregon Trail was but sports in particular and baseball ultimately became a way for him and baseball competition to prove himself on the field. There was only one problem at the time the 1890s professional baseball had turned really sour. It was no longer fun and carefree. In fact, it was dirty and mean and vicious. One woman writer would later call it the rough and tumble game played by 9 rowdies for the benefit of a crowd of hoodlums. And not surprisingly not too many women and children would show up for these things. In fact, even the kids games these were cartoons from several papers printed called The Usual Windup, which is how baseball games would end up at the time. So there was essentially 3 reasons baseball was turning sour in the 1890s, professional baseball. I don't know if you've heard of these words, hoodlumism, which is essentially the idea of dirty baseball anyway, cheating, anything you could do to get a competitive edge whether it's spiking your opponent to, the trick was to, because there was only one umpire. If an umpire was looking the other way, you could round a base and miss third base by 10 or 20 feet as you were heading home. Anything you could do to get away, but it was also very foul mouthed, which is what billingskate [phonetic] means. That's essentially cursing, swearing, vulgarity. It got so bad that the National League had to issue an edict against this kind of language and they printed a memo, which I can't read to you in mixed company, but I put it in the book. And just put memo saying these are the words you cannot say on the field. And by penalty of suspension from the game for life. Of course no one would suspend anybody for life for a curse word. So it was honored in the breach. So anyway that was [inaudible]. And then there was this called syndicate baseball, which the National League would try to monopoly in the 1890s essentially adopted the practice of the owners of encouraging each other to buy minority stakes in the other's franchises. And so toward the end of the season if one team that you were part of was winning the other team was losing, you'd trade the good players on the losing team immediately to the better team and give yourself a competitive edge. Sports writer saw through that. They're the ones who came up with this term syndicate baseball, but some of the fans I mean attendance in National League games was really plummeting particularly compared to other sports that were emerging in the gay 90s. Bicycling, big, huge craze for bicycling in the 1890s and bicycle competitions. Another thing called pedestrianism. I don't know if anybody has heard of that, but these are walking races sometimes very absurd walking races like weeks long or things like that, but people would show up, hundreds and thousands of people would show up for these things. So baseball had a problem and it was personified by this guy, John Mugsy McGraw, who was the third baseman for the Baltimore Orioles. He was the one famous for grabbing the runner's belt as he rounded third base and keeping him from running into home. In fact, McGraw is, then he became manager of the New York Giants in the 1900s. And his name McGrawism became synonymous with dirty baseball and that's what the sports writers used to call it. Fortunately, there was a visionary out in the Midwest by the name of Ban Johnson, Byron Bancroft Johnson. He was the president of the Western League, a minor league at the time. He saw an opportunity and so he renamed his league the American League, moved the headquarters to Chicago, set up franchises in Boston and Philadelphia and New York right up against the National League teams, which had been prohibited before then with the agreement that had operated between the major and minor leagues. And promoted what he called clean baseball that people could not be afraid to bring their wives and children to the game, where the umpires had the rule of law and he would back them up. There would be none of the cheating, cursing and dirty play that characterized the National League. And lo and behold the American League teams started outdrawing National League teams or outdrawing National League teams. The White Sox, which had set up in the Southside of Chicago was outdrawing the Colts as they were called in the National League. So, essentially Johnson declared war on the National League and the National League sued for peace and they came up with what's called the National Agreement of 1903 or the two leagues agreed to abide by the same rules of recruiting and payments and things like that and then the NL itself had to respond with its own kind of discipline, interdiscipline, and fortunately in Chicago they found a guy named Frank Sealey [phonetic] who had been the manager, very successful manager of the Boston Bean Eaters in the early 1890s and had brought Sealey in to manage the Colts in 1902 and he's very cerebral, soft spoken leader. He never played baseball himself unlike McGraw, but he did manage very successful teams in the Midwest, and he also had a secret weapon, which is his wife, May Sealey. This is a feature story from the Chicago Tribune where they featured her as the wife of Chicago's manager is a real baseball fan. She was an Irish immigrant herself, came over when she was 18. Very free spirited as I said rabid baseball fan, she was a horsewoman in her own right. She's also I discovered what I think is the first female sports writer. She went out with the Colts to California during spring training in 1903 and got hired by a couple of newspapers in Chicago to send back dispatches of how the team is doing. These were unsigned, but you could definitely tell just from the tone and kind of sunny disposition she was not the grizzled sports writers of the day. She was sending back signs of hope for Colts fans to Chicago. So together the Sealey's kind of spearheaded a revival of baseball in Chicago from 1903 through 1905. The Colts started gradually going up, moving up the standings. In 1905, it looked like they might even get close to winning the pennant but then Sealey's own health problems caught up to him and he became very ill and was ultimately diagnosed as tuberculosis and he had to leave the team and the city and go out to Denver to try to get better. And so they turned the team over to Frank Chance as player/manager on an interim basis that year and then he took over in 1906 and 1906 was the big turning point in Chicago baseball for two reasons. One, the Colts now being called the Cubs, which is the term France Chance preferred. Went on to win 116 games that season. The Boston Red Sox this year won 108, which is as much as anybody has won in a long time. One hundred and sixteen is still a record. The Seattle Mariners tied it in 2001 in 162 games. This was in 153 I think the Cubs played that year or 152. So they were a juggernaut, but across town down to Southside the White Sox known as the hitless wonders back then because they had an anemic offense actually won the pennant on the last day of the season. And so the two Chicago teams were going to meet in the World Series. First across town World Series 1906. During that year, Chance had gone out and decided they needed a new third basemen, which has become one of the great trivia questions in baseball who was the fourth member of the Cubs infield and there are two right answers to this. One is I don't know. If anybody knows why that is the right answer? That's Abbott and Costello's third baseman is I don't know. [Laughter] The other is Harry Steinfeld was his name. He's a young man from Ft. Worth, Texas, where he was a bicyclist in the 1890s. He also was, got hooked up with a black-faced minstrel group that toured Texas, which is almost like a circus back then but he would play baseball during his off hours and was discovered doing that and signed to a minor league contract and ended up in Detroit. Chance had known about him and decided he wanted him and so they got him in 1906 and he turned out to be, this is Steinfeld on the left, the best hitter on the team and then the Cubs also had one of the great pitchers of all time Mordecai Peter Centennial Brown was his name from Nyesville, Indiana. He had a nickname also 3 Finger because as a boy when he was about 5 years old he was in a farming accident and his hand got mauled by a kind of chopper and so he only, this is what his pitching hand looked like. It enabled him to throw the most bizarre and unhittable curve ball you could ever image. [Laughter] So he and Christian Matheson were probably the two greatest pitchers of their era. Mordecai is in the Hall of Fame now. As I said, Chance became manager. Here's a picture of him with Hugh Jennings of the Detroit Tigers. As I said, Chance was a monster in the field. He probably was the one player who everyone rallied around. He was kind of like a platoon sergeant in the war. Everyone was willing to go into battle with him because he led by example. Anyway something happened in Chicago that summer nearly everyone in Chicago is crazy about baseball and this is a picture of the Westside grand stands where the Cubs played. Instead of getting a few hundred or a few thousand fans out for an afternoon game, they were now drawing tens of thousands to the games particularly when the World Series came around. In fact, the Tribune ran a tongue and cheek column here called the only man in Chicago who doesn't know the Cubs and Sox are fighting for a world's championship. [Laughter] He's a butcher with 3 daughters. [Laughter] So what happened is also part of baseball history. Any Sox fans, White Sox fans in the audience? [Laughter] You don't know them, right? Cubs as I said had 116 wins that season, the Sox had 93 or 94 or something like that. They kind of snuck in and everyone assumed the Cubs were just going to roll over the Sox in the World Series except for one man, Hugh Fullerton was the sports writer for the Chicago Tribune who sat down and he was kind of the first sabermetric writer in his day. He sort of lined up all the pros and cons, field conditions, the weather, the attributes of each team and wrote a column that predicted that the Sox would win the pennant, the World Series, in 6 games. Well, would have predicted that except his editor wouldn't print the column. He was afraid everyone in town would think they were crazy. And what happened? Well, the Sox won the series in 6 games. The Tribune editor finally ate crow and ran the column a week later after the fact, but Hugh Fullerton was, became later known as the man who sniffed out the 1919 Black Sox scandal. He was played by Studs Terkel in the movie Eight Men Out if you've seen that one. He didn't look anything like Studs Terkel. I didn't bring a picture with me but he was very urbane intellectual. As I said, one of the first sabermetric sports writers became one of the great magazine writers of his day. But anyway baseball was back here and back to such an extent this is a picture from the Tribune of the corner of Dearborn and Madison Streets in Chicago and all these people are looking up at the Chicago Tribune Building that afternoon. I don't have, they don't have a picture of what was on the Tribune Building that day, but this is what it was here in Washington the same thing. It was an electric scoreboard in which they would by telegraph they would feed every pitch and play to operators of the scoreboard and they would use electric lightbulbs to signify the runners who were on base, the count and every play. So basically you're following the game in realtime play by play from downtown Chicago to across the country. These electric scoreboards became a real thing in this part of the century before radio came along in 1920s. It wasn't until the 1920s that the radio took that away. So baseball was I said back. It was even invading popular culture. Back in those days Tin Pan Alley produced sheet music because every home had a piano. Again, no radio, no phonographs, people played their own music so it was a big market for songs, sing-a-long songs and tunes and things like that. Baseball was never a topic of those tunes until now. This was one of the first. Cubs on Parade, which was described as a 2-step march, but this, I love this picture and that's Frank Chance and the Cub's owner Charles Murphy in the photograph. So that was 1907 right after the Cubs won their first World Series. In 1908, a guy named Jack Norworth was looking around and realized baseball might be a good topic. He was not a baseball fan himself, but he wanted to write his, a tune about baseball and he came up with the lyrics and signed up a buddy of his named Albert Bontilsand [phonetic] to do the music. This is the verse. So all these tunes, you know, before you got to the course they would have a verse that was kind of half sung, half spoken. Katie Casey was baseball mad. Had the fever and had it bad. Just to root for the hometown crew every sou, Katie blew. On a Saturday her young beau called to see if she'd like to go to see a show, but Miss Kate said no. I'll tell you what you can do. Take me out to the ball game. So that was the hit piece of music, sheet music in 1908 and spawned a whole raft of imitators and things like that. Dozens of baseball songs started coming about, which tells you that this is no longer just a game for cranks as they called fans back in the day and bugs, but women, children. In fact, lady's day became a big thing back then. At the same time that a craze swept through fashion, American fashion based on operetta that had opened in London the year before and now is coming to New York called the Merry Widow. And this was the star of the show. I got her name wrong down here, but this hat became a craze when the show moved to New York to the extent that every woman middle class and upper class women in the country wanted one of these hats and they were very elaborate. This is actually a modest one by comparison. Some would have fruit, stuffed birds and things like that. The brims would be, well, these women started showing up to baseball games and caused quite a stir for anybody sitting behind them trying to watch the game. One sports writer says you can tell a real lady is the one who takes off her hat at the game. [Laughter] But the Cubs were now kings of the world. They had won the World Series in 1907 and 1908. Adopted the Cubs as their nickname. This is their mascot at the time. Not all was sweetness and light, of course. In fact, these 2 guys, Joe Tinker and Johnny Evers, maintained a feud that they had started a couple of years before and refused to talk to each other on field or off. You can kind of tell. They don't really look like they like each other here even though they were, they could wordlessly they were the best keystone combination in baseball at the time. They had a feud that lasted now just through their playing days but even long after. But baseball was like I said affecting the culture. Feature stories were showing up not just in sports magazines but in the magazines of today, which was the Internet of the day because everyone had their own magazine. Players started turning up as product spokesmen for things like socks and underwear and other things like that not just tobacco. As I said, Tinker was recruited to perform in Vaudeville. In 1909 just after winning election of the presidency, William Howard Taft took a tour across the country, a 13,000-mile tour by train. Stopped in Chicago for a few days and insisted on taking in a baseball game. In fact, they rescheduled the game for the day he was available and he showed up at Westside Grounds, this is a close up of that picture, and just held court all day long and a couple of things happened. When they showed up, it was a band kind of roving band of musicians they immediately started playing the Star Spangled Banner when he showed up, which was not the National Anthem at the time. It was just a popular march and the whole crowd stood up at the same time. And then later on during the game he decided he wanted to stretch his legs. Obviously he's a big man about 300 pounds and it was the middle of the 7th inning. He stood up and everyone in the field stood up with him. It was the first instance I can find of the 7th inning stretch. The thing about this the Cubs I wanted to show this because this shows their record for the 10 years that the 3 players, Tinker, Evers and Chance played together in the infield almost unheard of that 3 players would be together for 10 years, but each of these ones highlighted here on the right the win totals 116 wins in 1 year, 223 in 2 years, 530 in 5 years, 980 in 10 years, it's still a record. No one, not the Yankees of Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig or Mantle and Marris or Jeter and other. Not the big red machine, the Cincinnati Reds, no team in baseball history has surpassed any of these win totals, which makes you realize one reason they're in the Hall of Fame all 3. They were elected in 1946 together by a veteran's committee. Still controversial in some cases. A lot of people question if they have the individual player statistics that merit Hall of Fame consideration. I argue 2 things. One, I'm not the only one who argues that the win totals justifies their existence because they were definitely the leaders of the team, but what they did for baseball, what this team did for baseball at the time. In fact, a word used most often to describe the Chicago Cubs of this era and this is the Chicago Cubs I'm talking about, the word most used to describe the cubs was invincible. So these 3 young boys, again, spent the first decade of the 20th Century essentially remaking baseball and they did it through a work ethic of teamwork, relentless pursuit of excellence. Here's a famous picture by George Conlin, he's here in the Library of Congress. Obviously these guys did not want to be pulled into the dugout and have their picture taken at the time. They were in the middle of their practice, but those are the ones that turned into these incredible baseball cards which we were able to use for the cover of the book. But, again, I think by the time they left the scene baseball really was the national pastime and would continue to be and grow in many different ways throughout the year, but they, one of the things I wanted to do was to kind of reclaim the origin story of the Chicago Cubs because they didn't quite fit the narrative of the past 100 years, but I think they deserve to be now so. Thank you very much. I'll be happy to answer any questions. [ Applause ] Anybody have any questions or comments? Sir? [ Inaudible ] What was the reasons they didn't win? Well, strangely the White Sox started hitting. They didn't expect that. The White Sox had a very good pitching core a couple of Hall of Famers, and the weather was, it was a lousy weather situation. So there's one reason. If you go through each game and, well, White Sox won, Cubs won, White Sox won, Cubs won and the White Sox won too. It was a strange kind of sequence that no one expected to happen, but that's what happens in 7-game series as every baseball fan knows. Sometimes the best teams don't actually come out. >> So what's the story about the feud between? >> David Rapp: The feud between, I think it was over, I think I pieced it together. So, I think it goes back to, well, I think it goes back to when Evers first showed up in 1902 he was brought down from Troy in September of 1902 in an all-night train ride and fitted out with a uniform that was 10 sizes too big for him. Went out and had a, it was a double header, Labor Day double header, and had a terrible outing, but because he was the rookie the rest of the team was hazing him. So they made him, they used to take these omnibus, horse-drawn omnibus to the park. They would dress in the hotel, take an omnibus to the park and when he came out to get on the bus, they said there's no room on the bus you have to sit on top. So he had to sit on top out to the park and he had a terrible day and he had to sit back on the top on the way back and he knew all the guys down below were making fun of him. Well, one of those guys was the one who was the rookie before showed up, Joe Tinker. And so by a couple years later most of the other people on that team had been reshuffled and Sealey had brought in all kinds of other people, but Tinker was still there and then in 1905 the Cubs were on their way to Cincinnati by train and stopped off in Bedford, Indiana, for an exhibition game with the local minor league team because one of their pitchers was from Bedford. And the town pulled out all the stops and actually had 5 handsome cabs for all the players, to take all the players to the ball park and the last, both Tinker and Evers were kind of late getting dressed and Evers came down first and saw the last cab there hopped on and said take me to the ball park and left Tinker to walk the mile on the hot dusty road to the ball park. So they were warming up before the game and Tinker took the ball and about the distance from me to you threw it as hard as he could at Evers and Evers used to show his hand how mangled it was because of that. Within a few seconds they were on the ground brawling. Well, the pitcher, I forgot his name, for Bedford, turns around and sees his teammates and runs over and tries to break them up and they kind of pull him down into the melee. So the 3000 fans and the fans see their local hometown hero getting beat up and they all rushed to the scene. [Laughter] Order is restored after all of this, they play the game as if nothing had happened, the fight gets mentioned in the newspapers all over the country, but not the reason. It was Hugh Fullerton again a year later who described this cab incident as the cause which started it, but and I think that actually goes back because the Irish, you know, have long memories, you know, never forgive, never forget, and it was almost 3 years that Evers was finally able to get his revenge on Tinker with that cab incident, but they basically had said, look, you know, we can't play together if we're going to talk to each other so we just won't talk to each other. Oddly Tinker said they were the first to defend the other in any fight against another player on another team. It says we're Cubs first, individuals second, you know, they had the team ethic [inaudible]. And, in fact, it was Chance who probably kept them, you know, because when Chance was hurt at the end of the 1912 season and had to leave the team, they named Evers interim manager, which was the last thing Tinker wanted and there were a couple of fights in the dugout that players had to break up the 2 guys and Tinker finally left and jumped leagues to the new Federal League to get away from Evers. They reconciled back in the 1930s, but it was a long time. [ Inaudible ] Okay, so Chance was the first one who had to leave in 1912. He had brain surgery. Another thing about him being touch as a corn husk he never dodged a bullet or a baseball and it was actually this side. He got hit in the head a lot of times to the extent that he lost his hearing and so he had left. He actually came back a year or so later and managed the Yankees or the Highlanders they were called at the time. It was before Babe Ruth joined the team so they were a lousy team and they didn't do much. He ended up in, back in California and helped really get the Pacific Coast League going as vice president and management of the teams and he died young. He was in his 50 years old or something like that when he died. Tinker as I said jumped leagues to the new Federal League, which the Chicago Whales [phonetic] played in a new park called Weeghman Park on the Northside, which Weeghman as the owner of the league of the Whales, the league only lasted a year but Weeghman then bought the Cubs and moved them up to Weeghman Park and then he eventually sold the park and the team to Wrigley, William Wrigley and it's been Wrigley Field ever since. And so he played rough and Tinker jumped around for a few years, managed some, never successfully, and he ended up in Florida as a real estate speculator during the Florida real estate boom and won and lost and won and lost a fortune a couple of times there. Johnny Evers had an interesting kind of second act. He got sold to the Boston Braves in 1914 and was given a $40,000 salary. The highest paid player in baseball at the time. The Boston Braves were in last place in August. Evers was the captain of the team and they're now known as the Miracle Braves because they ended up winning the pennant and the World Series that year. Definitely behind Johnny. He ended up going back and managed for the Cubs a bit, for the White Sox. He jumped around and ended up living out his days in Troy, New York, as owner of a shoe store. That's his things. Sir? [ Inaudible ] No, never. Yeah. They're not known as a double play combination. That's the odd thing, but one reason is because very few runners got to first against their pitching core. They didn't have that many opportunities for double plays, but yeah that one that [inaudible] is one Franklin Adams picked up on and made a thing, yeah. [ Inaudible ] Frank Chance is the best player of the 3 definitely. Johnny Evers I think was, again, showing what he did in Boston I think proved it that he was probably the best on-field captain any team could have, but Tinker, Tinker was probably the hardest one to justify based on his statistics. Although I do want to point out that Christian Matheson [phonetic], again the best pitcher of his day along with three-fingered Brown, on the first page of his autobiography, first page said I could never get Joe Tinker out. He had to get that out of the way right away. Tinker hit like 400 against Christian Matheson. He was one of the clutch hitters especially in that 1907-1908 seasons they won the World Series. [ Inaudible ] So, yeah. So the, I didn't get into that so I'm glad you asked. So the Cubs had won the pennant in 1906, dethroning the Giants who had been the world champions from 1905 and McGraw's Giants, they lost the World Series, in 1907 they came back with a vengeance and won the pennant and the World Series against the Detroit Tigers in 4 games. I think one was a rain out so 5 games, but and then 1908 there was a pennant race of all time and it was actually a great book about just that one season called Crazy 08 if anybody is interested, but it's the Giants, the Cubs and the Pirates, Honus Wagner's Pirates, were in a pennant race until, the 3 of them until literally the last day of the season. There was one game in particular it's famous for what's been known as one of the great baseball [inaudible] of all time Merkle's Boner. A young kid named Fred Merkle was on first base in the bottom of the ninth inning with a runner on third base as well and the Giants hit a single up the middle, clean single into center field that scored the run from third base to win the game and 2 weeks before the end of the season everyone thought would be propel the Giants to the pennant. But Johnny Evers who had been studying the rule book as I said at night in bed had tried, the habit was at the time if something like that happened the runner at first base wouldn't go to second, touch second, he would just run to the dugout or in that case into the outfield club house and that's what Merkle did. It was a big game, thousands of fans, he sees the winning run score and the fans start pouring onto the field, his Giants teammates are running out of the dugout toward the right field club house to get away from the fans so Merkle just turned around halfway between first and second and hightailed it with them. Johnny Evers saw this, called for the ball from center field, the ball comes flying in misses him completely and hits Tinker in the back and falls into the middle of the infield. Well, the fans are streaming on him and the first base coach of the Giants, Joe McGinnity was one of the great pitchers but this day was coaching first base sees all this happening and kind of sizes up what Evers is up to and runs on the field and grabs the ball and tries to throw it into the stands, but Joe Tinker has got a bear hug around him so he can't throw it very far and it lands over by the Cubs dugout where there's also a bag of balls and things like that. Everyone races to that ball, a fan picks it up and holds it aloft and one of the Cubs pitchers says give me that ball and he said no. So he just bopped him over the head and the ball dropped and he grabbed it and threw it back to Evers who was standing on second base at this time and there was actually 2 umpires for this game not necessarily a usual thing, but one of them had been, Hank O'Day was the home plate umpire, had seen the same play, Evers pulled the same play 2 weeks before in Pittsburgh. Oh, he didn't see it. That was what Hank O'Day claimed he didn't see the ball being tagged before the runner got there so he disallowed it but the Cubs put up such a stink about it and protested the game that Evers, O'Day finally said, well, you're probably right. If it happens again, I'd call him out. So, 2 weeks later in New York it happened again but here's the thing New York fans have complained about this forever because it was the custom not to touch second base, it's a technicality, it's a force out, the run doesn't score. Well, O'Day admitted and I found a piece, an interview he gave to the Tribune. He hardly ever talked about this thing, but he actually managed the Cubs in 1914 I think it was a year after Evers and he's still living in Evers' shadow and never liked him as you can imagine no umpire would like Johnny Evers. So he was giving and he was basically trying to downplay Evers' role in the Merkle's Boner play. It wasn't Evers he says it was Sully Hoffman out in center field who recognized what was happening and threw the ball in, but then he said, well, and besides it didn't matter. He says I called it interference because McKinney ran onto the field before the play was over and that's what he ruled and, therefore, the play was dead, And it was the bottom of the 9th and it was darkness so they called the game because of darkness. And any Cubs fans, older Cub's fans like me remember if you call a game because of darkness in Chicago, the Cubs didn't have lights until 1988, you have to replay the entire game. You don't just pick it up where it left off. So the National League finally ruled that the game was suspended because of darkness is a tie and would be replayed at the end of the season if necessary and it was necessary just like these last, this last week and the Cubs won that game pretty easily although there was, they figured it was in the [inaudible] Grounds 250,000 people showed up for that game both in the park, on the roof of the stadium but also on Cogan's Bluff overlooking the stadium it was one of the biggest gatherings of humanity in history up until that point, but that's what decided the 1908 season was that one play. I think one more question? [ Inaudible ] I can't, I should know that but I can't, but none of them were over 300 for instance. I would say I think Chance ended up, well, I did look this up. If you look at Chance's numbers from the 5 years they won in 1906, his on-base percentage which is what everyone looks at today, right? So it's hits, walks and hit by pitches. Frank Chance was hit 90 times during those 5 years. [Laughter] Which pushes his on-base average up to 480 or something like that. So that was him but the other 2 were more like 260, 280 hitters essentially in that range, yeah. One more. [ Inaudible ] It was a sports writer. So back in those days team didn't necessarily own their nicknames. It was not like today where they're brand trademarks. The sports writers gave them nicknames and there's so many newspapers that each paper used to come up with its own nickname for the team just to distinguish itself. So, the White Stockings, which is what the original National League franchise was called, kind of lost that moniker when they were rebuilding under Cap Ansen in the 1890s and reporters started calling them the Colts, Ansen's Colts because they were all young kids he had gathered together, but then when Ansen left he was kind of the patriarch of Chicago baseball and he played until he was 48 years old one paper started calling them the Orphans. And then they started writing some other minor league teams and one paper called them the Remnants. But Sealey came in and he liked Colts so he encouraged that, but 1906 one paper called them the Giant Killers. That was the nickname the whole season long, but again when Sealey started bringing in a bunch of young kids, this is what he was he was a great talent scout, including kids like Evers and Tinker 20 years old at the time, one sports writer from the Daily News said it looked like a bunch of cubbies on the field and that was essentially the start of that craze and then Chance made it known that he liked it and then Murphy, Charles Murphy I didn't get into the new owner was a big promoter type and he's the one that came up with the mascot of the bear and things like that. So and then I think the end of the story is the football team, NFL football team, which emerged in the 30s and 40s, wanted to, and they played in Wrigley Field, couldn't use the word Cubs, but they latched on to Bears. I think that's the story. I'll be happy to stick around and answer any other questions, but I think we have to, and then I'll be happy to sign books that are for sale right out here in the lobby if anyone would like, but thank you all very much for coming. [ Applause ]


Regular season

Season standings

American League W L Pct. GB Home Road
Philadelphia Athletics 83 53 0.610 56–17 27–36
St. Louis Browns 78 58 0.574 5 49–21 29–37
Boston Americans 77 60 0.562 43–27 34–33
Chicago White Stockings 74 60 0.552 8 48–20 26–40
Cleveland Bronchos 69 67 0.507 14 40–25 29–42
Washington Senators 61 75 0.449 22 40–28 21–47
Detroit Tigers 52 83 0.385 30½ 34–33 18–50
Baltimore Orioles 50 88 0.362 34 32–31 18–57

Record vs. opponents

1902 American League Records

Sources: [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] [8]
Baltimore 4–16 8–11–1 9–11 10–10 6–13 2–18–1 11–9–1
Boston 16–4 12–8 6–14 11–7–1 9–11 15–5 8–11
Chicago 11–8–1 8–12 12–7 12–7–1 10–10 9–9–1 12–7–1
Cleveland 11–9 14–6 7–12 8–10 8–12 9–10–1 12–8
Detroit 10–10 7–11–1 7–12–1 10–8 4–16 5–15 9–11
Philadelphia 13–6 11–9 10–10 12–8 16–4 9–10–1 12–6
St. Louis 18–2–1 5–15 9–9–1 10–9–1 15–5 10–9–1 11–9
Washington 9–11–1 11–8 7–12–1 8–12 11–9 6–12 9–11


1902 Chicago White Stockings
Pitchers Catchers


Outfielders Manager

Player stats


Starters by position

Note: Pos = Position; G = Games played; AB = At bats; H = Hits; Avg. = Batting average; HR = Home runs; RBI = Runs batted in

Pos Player G AB H Avg. HR RBI
C Billy Sullivan 76 263 64 .243 1 26
1B Frank Isbell 137 515 130 .252 4 59
2B Tom Daly 137 489 110 .225 1 54
SS George Davis 132 485 145 .299 3 93
3B Sammy Strang 137 536 158 .295 3 46
OF Fielder Jones 135 532 171 .321 0 54
OF Danny Green 129 481 150 .312 0 62
OF Sam Mertes 129 497 140 .282 1 79

Other batters

Note: G = Games played; AB = At bats; H = Hits; Avg. = Batting average; HR = Home runs; RBI = Runs batted in

Player G AB H Avg. HR RBI
Billy Sullivan 76 263 64 .243 1 26
Herm McFarland 7 27 5 .185 0 4
Ed Hughes 1 4 1 .250 0 0


Starting pitchers

Note: G = Games pitched; IP = Innings pitched; W = Wins; L = Losses; ERA = Earned run average; SO = Strikeouts

Player G IP W L ERA SO
Nixey Callahan 35 282.1 16 14 3.60 75
Roy Patterson 34 268 19 14 3.06 61
Wiley Piatt 32 246 12 12 3.51 96
Clark Griffith 28 213 15 9 4.18 51
Ned Garvin 23 175.1 10 10 2.21 55
James Durham 3 20 1 1 5.85 3
Sam Mertes 1 4.2 1 0 1.93 0

Relief pitchers

Note: G = Games pitched; W = Wins; L = Losses; SV = Saves; ERA = Earned run average; SO = Strikeouts

Player G W L SV ERA SO
Frank Isbell 1 0 0 0 2.25 1
Dummy Leitner 1 0 0 0 13.50 0
Sam McMackin 1 0 0 0 0.00 2
Jack Katoll 1 0 0 0 0.00 2


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