Monday, October 19, 2009

PTWSW #16: The 1919 Cincinnati Reds

Manager: Pat Moran
Record: 96-44
Ballpark: Redland Field
Owner: Garry Herrmann
GM: Frank Bancroft

Future Hall of Famers: Edd Roush

Team Leaders, Batting

Edd Roush, .321 (NL leader)
OBP: Heinie Groh, .392
SLG: Heinie Groh, .431 (fractionally better than Roush)
OPS: Heinie Groh, .823 (NL leader)
2B: Edd Roush, 19
3B: Jake Daubert, Greasy Neale, Edd Roush, 12
HR: Heinie Groh, 5
RBI: Edd Roush, 71
BB: Morrie Rath, 64
SB: Greasy Neale, 28

Team Leaders, Pitching

Slim Sallee, 21
SO: Hod Eller, 137
ERA: Dutch Ruether, 1.82
IP: Hod Eller, 248.1
CG: Slim Sallee, 22
SHO: Hod Eller, 7
K/BB: Hod Eller, 2.74
SV: Dolf Luque, Jimmy Ring, 3


Oldest Player: Jake Daubert (b. April 7, 1884)

Youngest Player: Ed Gerner (b. July 22, 1897)

First to Leave Us: Jake Daubert (d. October 9, 1924). Daubert died shortly after the end of the 1924 season due to complications from appendicitis surgery.

Last Survivor: Edd Roush (d. March 21, 1988). The only Hall of Famer on the team was the last one living. This has nothing to do with anything, but 1950's Cincinnati slugger Ted Kluszewski was born a month before Daubert's death and died eight days after Roush's death.

First in Majors: Sherry Magee (debut June 29, 1904)

Last in Majors: Dolf Luque (final game April 26, 1935)

First to Play For the Franchise: Heinie Groh (May 1913)

Last to Play For the Franchise: Edd Roush (September 27, 1931)

Pre-union Team: The 1916-17 Giants (Bill Rariden, Slim Sallee, Edd Roush (1916) and Jimmy Smith (1917)) and 1917 Braves (Sherry Magee, Wally Rehg and Hank Schreiber) each had three.

Reunion Team: The 1921 Phillies with three (Greasy Neale, Jimmy Ring, Jimmy Smith).


Hod Eller, no-hitter on May 11

Season Summary

The 1918-19 offseason was a period of change for the Reds. Pat Moran was hired as pitching coach for the Giants in January, but when the Reds expressed interest in him as their manager the Giants let him take the job. Moran replaced Christy Mathewson as Cincinnati skipper and Mathewson, in turn, took over Moran's intended coaching post with the Giants.

The 1918 Reds were a great offensive team that gave back most of those runs on pitching and defense. For 1919 they picked up pitchers Slim Sallee and Ray Fisher off the waiver wire, upgraded their middle infield defense with the additions of Morrie Rath and Larry Kopf, and replaced malcontent first baseman Hal Chase with former NL MVP Jake Daubert. The result was a team that led the league in fielding percentage and defensive efficiency and finished second in ERA+ at 124. Their offense actually averaged more runs per game than the previous season, finishing second only to the Giants in that statistic and OPS+.

The Reds got off to a solid-but-not-spectacular start. On June 5 they were 20-16 and tied for second, five games behind the Giants. A four-game sweep of Brooklyn immediately followed, which marked the beginning of the Reds' hitting their stride. From June 5 on they went 76-28 and won the pennant by nine games.

The Reds went on to beat the White Sox five games to three in the newly-revived best-of-nine format World Series. There was little drama during the eight games, most likely due to the Black Sox Scandal. Because several members of the White Sox were paid to throw the World Series, the game results are tainted. Members of the Reds insisted they would've won fix or no fix, but obviously, it can never be known for certain. It should be noted though, that the 1919 Reds had the highest winning percentage of any National League team between 1910 and 1941. To assume that the White Sox would've had an easy victory (as many often do) is to be ignorant of what a quality team Cincinnati fielded.


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