Mets Merized Online » Rogers Hornsby Mon, 22 Dec 2014 18:28:33 +0000 en-US hourly 1 This Day In MLB History… Tue, 10 Jan 2012 16:43:00 +0000

January 10th, 1928: The Giants trade Rogers Hornsby to the Boston Braves for Shanty Hogan and Jimmy Welsh. It’s the Rajah’s third team in three years.

Why exactly is this trade monumental? Mostly because I find it hard to believe that any team would want to trade one of the best second basemen in the history of the game, especially when he is still in the prime of his career. In 1927 for the Giants, Hornsby hit .361, slugged 25 home runs, and had 125 RBI.

Apparently, that wasn’t a good enough stat line and New York traded Hornsby within the National League to the Boston Braves. He then proceeded to hit at a .387 clip, hit 21 homers, and 94 RBI. In his 23 year MLB career, Rogers Hornsby played for five different teams. I find it odd that he switched teams that many times during his professional career. In today’s game, we see players switch teams every year due to free agency, but it didn’t always used to be like that.

Before the 1970s, the reserve clause allowed an organization to hold onto a player for as long as they wish. Due to this, it was common for a player to spend his entire career with only one or two teams. That’s why I think it’s so weird that a career .358 hitter with 301 home runs, 1,584 RBI, and almost 3,000 hits would move around to so many teams during a time when players didn’t move around after they were established.

This fact alone makes me wonder what type of player Hornsby was in the clubhouse. I haven’t read anything bad about his character, but with him moving around to so many teams, there must have been some sort of personality conflict, either with Hornsby and his fellow players, his coaching staff, or the front office; especially with Boston and New York since he only spent one year with each organization.

On the other hand, the star second baseman could have have been too expensive for either the Giants or Braves to hold onto because he was at the peak of his game. There are obviously a number of things that caused Rogers Hornsby to play for five teams during a time in which it was unprecedented. He has always been a personal favorite of mine, and one of a few Major Leaguers that I wish I had the chance to watch in person.

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Introducing: The MLB Hall Of Fame Class Of 1942 Sat, 22 Oct 2011 02:03:00 +0000

There was only one player that was inducted into the Hall of Fame from 1940 to 1944 in honor of those that had to put their careers on hold and go abroad to defend the United States in World War II. Who was the one player worthy enough of being inducted during this time? Second baseman Rogers Hornsby, one of the most prolific right-handed hitters in MLB history. During his 23 seasons in Major League Baseball, the majority of his time was spent playing for the St. Louis Cardinals. His statistics are pretty eye-popping:

.358 Average, 1,579 Runs, 2,930 Hits, 301 Home Runs, 1,318 RBI, 135 Stolen Bases.

During his career, Hornsby won seven batting titles; six of these titles were won consecutively, including him eclipsing the .400 mark on three different occasions. He his .424 in 1924, which is a National League record for modern day MLB players, and his career .358 average is first all-time in the NL. Hornsby was accustomed to breaking new ground in his professional career, becoming the first NL player to hit over 300 home runs and was the player-manager during the Cardinals first World Championship in 1926.

From 1924 to 1929, Hornsby was in the top-20 for MVP voting, winning the award in both 1925 and 1929. He was also a two-time Triple Crown winner in 1922 and 1925. A fun fact about the Cardinals second baseman is that on September 13, 1931, he became the first player to hit a pinch-hit grand slam in extra innings.

Since I didn’t have the pleasure of watching Hornsby during the prime of his career, I can only read about him. I’ve used this quote many times already, but I’m going to use it again because it’s one of my favorites. It’s also fitting since we only have about a week of baseball left and it’s getting colder and colder each day:

“People ask me what I do in the winter when there is no baseball. I’ll tell you what I do. I stare out the window and wait for spring.”

Amen, good sir. Amen.

I want to welcome Matt to MMO and look forward to bringing you his unique and insightful baseball posts. I’ve enjoyed reading his material and I am happy to now have him featured on our site as we continue to add more broad-based baseball content to MMO. You can follow Matt on his site On The Way Home, which is part of the MLBlogs Network. – JD

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