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They Played the Game
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Lady Baldwin
(1884-90)
As a rookie, "Cannonball" Baldwin set a record for most wins by a southpaw with his 42 victories with the Union Association's Detroit Wolverines in 1886. Baldwin's real name was Charles, but his teammates called him "Lady" because he led such a clean life.
BORN 4.8.1859, Oramel, NY     73-41, 2.85
Ross Barnes
(1871-77, 1879, 1881)
Second baseman Ross Barnes played for the Chicago White Stockings in 1876 (the first major league season), and became the first National League batting champion with a .429 BA, scoring 126 runs in 66 games. At the time, any ball that hit fair and then rolled our bounced into foul territory was considered a fair ball, and Barnes had perfected the art of doing just that. When the rule was changed in 1877 requiring that a hit ball pass a base before being considered fairly struck, Barnes ceased to be an offensive threat.
BORN 5.8. 1850, Mount Morris, NY     .359, 6, 350
Jake Beckley
(1888-1907)
Hall of Famer Beckley, aka Eagle Eye, played more games at first base than anyone in baseball history, had 2,930 career hits, and scored over 100 runs five times during the '90s.
BORN 8.4.1867, Hannibal, MO     .308, 86, 1575
Esteban Bellan
(1871-73)
Believed to have been the first Latin ballplayer, Esteban -- or "Steve" -- was also known "The Cuban Sylph." Bellan was a third baseman for the National Association Troy Haymakers.
BORN 1850, Cuba     .252, 0, 42
Bert Blyleven
(1970-92)
In 1986 Blyleven set a major league record by allowing 50 home runs. The following year he served up 46.
BORN 4.6.51, Holland     287-250, 3.31     All-Star 1973, 1985
Wade Boggs
(1982-99)
Hall of Famer Boggs won the AL batting title five times (1983, 1985, 1986, 1987, 1988) and broke Al Simmons' mark of five consecutive seasons with 200 or more hits by doing it seven straight times between 1983 and 1989.
BORN 6.15.58, Omaha, NE     .328, 118, 1014
All-Star 1985, 1986, 1987, 1988, 1989, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996
Gold Glove 1994, 1995     Silver Slugger 1983, 1986, 1987, 1988, 1989, 1991, 1993, 1994
Tommy Bond
(1874-84)
Bond won 40 of Boston's 41 victories when the Red Stockings won the National League pennant in 1878.
B. 4.2.1856, Ireland     234-163, 2.31     NL Triple Crown 1877
Joe Borden
(1875-76)
Borden has the distinction of being the first pitcher to throw a no-hitter in a professional game when his Philadelphia Whites defeated the Chicago White Stockings 4-0. A year later (1876), Borden recorded the first no-hitter in the National League.
BORN: 5.9.1854, Jacobstown, NJ     13-16, 2.60
George Bradley
(1875-88)
Talk about stamina -- Bradley pitched every inning of every one of the 64 games played by his team, the St. Louis Brown Stockings, in 1876. His record: 45 wins, 19 losses.
"Grin"     BORN: 7.13.1852, Reading, PA     171-151, 2.42
George Brett
(1973-93)
This HOFer and 12-time All-Star became only the second player in AL history to hit 20 or more homers, triples and doubles in the same season (1979). In 1980 he led the league in BA (.390), OBP (.461) and slugging average (.664), winning the AL MVP Award. Brett became the first player in ML history to win a batting average title in three different decades.
"Mullet"     B. 5.15.53, Glen Dale, WV     .305, 317, 1583     1980 ML Player of the Year
All-Star 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1981, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1988
Gold Glove 1985     Silver Slugger 1980, 1985, 1988     1980 ALCS MVP     1980 AL MVP   
Dan Brouthers
(1879-96, 1904)
In 1892 Brouthers became the only player to top two different leagues in batting in consecutive years, hitting .335 in the National League after hitting .350 in the American Association the year before.
"Big Dan"     BORN 5.8.1858, Sylvan Lake, NY     .342, 106, 1296
Pete Browning
(1882-94)
Browning led the American Association in batting average in 1882, 1885 and 1886, and also led the Players' League in 1890 (it's only year of existence).
"Gladiator"     BORN 6.17.186, Louisville, KY     .341, 46, 659
George Brunet
(1956-71)
A pitcher, Brunet spent fifteen years in the majors before moving to the Mexican League, for a total of 33 years in organized baseball. He played for the A's, Braves, Astros, Pilots, Pirates, Cardinals, Senators, Orioles and Angels and ended up with an overall record of 69-93 -- and, for all that, had but one winning season (1970, 9-7).
"Lefty"     BORN 6.8.35, Houghton, MI     69-93, 3.62
Jimmy Burke
(1898-99, 1901-05)
Milwaukee third baseman Burke made four errors in a single inning during a game on May 27, 1901 -- a major league record tied in 1914 by Cleveland's Ray Chapman and in 1942 by Len Merullo of the Chicago Cubs.
"Sunset Jimmy"     BORN 10.12.1874, St. Louis, MO     .244, 1, 187
Mgr. St. Louis (NL) 1905 & St. Louis (AL) 1918, 1919, 1920     Mgr record 172-180
Jesse Burkett
(1890-1905)
This Hall of Famer led the NL in hits four times, scored 160 runs in 1896, and is the only player aside from Ty Cobb and Rogers Hornsby to hit .400 three times. He set a 19th century record with 240 hits in 133 games in 1897. He was nicknamed "Crab" because he griped constantly.
BORN 12.4.1868, Wheeling, WV     .338, 75, 952