Ernest Gordon Phelps (April 19, 1908 – December 10, 1992) born in Odenton, Maryland, United States was a catcher for the Washington Senators (1931), Chicago Cubs (1933–34), Brooklyn Dodgers (1935–41) and Pittsburgh Pirates (1942). His .367 batting average in 1936 remains the highest for any catcher in the modern era (1901–present).
He began his professional career with the Hagerstown Hubs of the Blue Ridge League in 1930. He set several all-time seasonal marks for the Blue Ridge League that year: at bats (466), hits (175), extra base hits (62) and total bases (300). He appeared briefly (3 games) at the major league level for the Washington Senators in 1931, but he did not stay permanently until he began playing with the Chicago Cubs in 1933.
He played 726 major league games in 11 seasons, batting .310 (657-for-2117) including 19 triples and 54 home runs, 345 RBI, a .362 on-base percentage, and a .472 slugging percentage. Phelps was named to the National League All-Star Team from 1938 to 1940, and helped the Dodgers win the 1941 National League pennant. He died in his hometown at the age of 84.
|Born: April 16, 1908|
|Died: December 10, 1992 (aged 84)|
|September 17, 1931, for the Washington Senators|
|Last MLB appearance|
|September 27, 1942, for the Pittsburgh Pirates|
|Runs batted in||345|
|Career highlights and awards|
The 1931 Washington Senators won 92 games, lost 62, and finished in third place in the American League. They were managed by Walter Johnson and played home games at Griffith Stadium.1933 Chicago Cubs season
The 1933 Chicago Cubs season was the 62nd season of the Chicago Cubs franchise, the 58th in the National League and the 18th at Wrigley Field. The Cubs finished third in the National League with a record of 86–68.1934 Chicago Cubs season
The 1934 Chicago Cubs season was the 63rd season of the Chicago Cubs franchise, the 59th in the National League and the 19th at Wrigley Field. The Cubs finished third in the National League with a record of 86–65.1935 Brooklyn Dodgers season
The 1935 Brooklyn Dodgers finished the season in fifth place, with their third straight losing season.1936 Brooklyn Dodgers season
The 1936 Brooklyn Dodgers fired manager Casey Stengel after another dismal campaign, which saw the team finish in 6th place.1937 Brooklyn Dodgers season
Former Dodgers pitcher Burleigh Grimes was brought in to manage the 1937 Brooklyn Dodgers, but the team continued to struggle, finishing in sixth place.1938 Brooklyn Dodgers season
The 1938 Brooklyn Dodgers season was their 55th season. The team finished with a record of 69–80, finishing in seventh place in the National League. The 1938 season saw Babe Ruth hired as the first base coach, and lights installed by the team at Ebbets Field on June 15.1938 Major League Baseball All-Star Game
The 1938 Major League Baseball All-Star Game was the sixth playing of the mid-summer classic between the all-stars of the American League (AL) and National League (NL), the two leagues comprising Major League Baseball. The game was held on July 6, 1938, at Crosley Field in Cincinnati, Ohio, the home of the Cincinnati Reds of the National League. The game resulted in the National League defeating the American League 4–1.1939 Brooklyn Dodgers season
The 1939 Brooklyn Dodgers started the year with a new manager, Leo Durocher, who became both the team's manager and starting shortstop. They also became the first New York NL team to have a regular radio broadcast, with Red Barber handing the announcers job, and the first team to have a television broadcast (during their August 26 home game doubleheaders against the Reds, both of which WNBT covered for the NBC network). The team finished in third place, showing some improvement over the previous seasons.1939 Major League Baseball All-Star Game
The 1939 Major League Baseball All-Star Game was the seventh playing of the mid-summer classic between the all-stars of the American League (AL) and National League (NL), the two leagues comprising Major League Baseball. The game was held on July 11, 1939, at Yankee Stadium in The Bronx, New York City, the home of the New York Yankees of the American League. The game resulted in the American League defeating the National League 3–1.1940 Brooklyn Dodgers season
The 1940 Brooklyn Dodgers finished the season in second place. It was their best finish in 16 years.1940 Major League Baseball All-Star Game
The 1940 Major League Baseball All-Star Game was the eighth playing of the mid-summer classic between the all-stars of the American League (AL) and National League (NL), the two leagues comprising Major League Baseball. The game was held on July 9, 1940, at Sportsman's Park in St. Louis, Missouri, the home of the St. Louis Cardinals and St. Louis Browns. The game resulted in the National League defeating the American League 4–0.1941 Brooklyn Dodgers season
The 1941 Brooklyn Dodgers, led by manager Leo Durocher, won their first pennant in 21 years, edging the St. Louis Cardinals by 2.5 games. They went on to lose to the New York Yankees in the World Series.
In The New Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract, this team was referenced as one of "The Greatest Teams That Never Was", due to the quality of its starting lineup. Dolph Camilli was the slugging star with 34 home runs and 120 RBI. He was voted the National League's Most Valuable Player. Pete Reiser, a 22-year-old rookie, led the league in batting average, slugging percentage, and runs scored. Other regulars included Hall of Famers Billy Herman, Joe Medwick, Pee Wee Reese, and Dixie Walker. Not surprisingly, the Dodgers scored the most runs of any NL team (800).
The pitching staff featured a pair of 22-game winners, Kirby Higbe and Whitlow Wyatt, having their best pro seasons.Al Todd
Alfred Chester Todd (January 7, 1902 – March 8, 1985) was an American professional baseball catcher. A native of Troy, New York, he played 11 seasons in Major League Baseball (MLB) (1932–41; 1943) for the Philadelphia Phillies, Pittsburgh Pirates, Brooklyn Dodgers and Chicago Cubs. Todd threw and batted right-handed; he was listed as 6 feet 1 inch (1.85 m) tall and 198 pounds (90 kg).
Todd's professional playing career began at the advanced age of 26 in 1928 at the lowest level—then Class D—of minor league baseball. He reached the majors as a 30-year-old rookie in 1932, and spent the next nine full seasons in the big leagues. His best years came in 1937 and 1938 as a member of the Pirates. Todd led all National League catchers in games caught each year, batted .307 and .265 respectively, and drove home 86 and 75 runs batted in. But during the 1938 offseason, he was traded to the Boston Bees, then to the Dodgers. In 1939, he platooned with left-handed-hitting Babe Phelps and batted .278 for the Dodgers. He then finished his MLB playing tenure with the Cubs. He was the Cubbies' most-used catcher in 1940, starting 98 games, but it was his last full campaign in the major leagues.
All told, Todd appeared in 863 games played in the major leagues, where he notched 768 hits, with 119 doubles, 29 triples, 35 home runs and 366 runs batted in. He batted .276.
Todd worked as a minor league manager and scout for several years after his playing career ended. He died at age 83 in Elmira, New York.Blue Ridge League
The Blue Ridge League was the name of two minor league baseball organizations that operated in the first half of the twentieth century in the United States.Hagerstown Hubs
The Hagerstown Hubs were a Minor League Baseball team based in Hagerstown, Maryland, United States. The team played predominantly in the Blue Ridge League (1915–1930) and briefly in the Middle Atlantic League (1931). Their home games were in Willow Lane Park from 1915 to 1929 and Municipal Stadium during the 1930 and 1931 seasons.List of Los Angeles Dodgers seasons
The Los Angeles Dodgers are the second most successful franchise in the National League and the third-most successful and second-most wealthy in Major League Baseball after the New York Yankees. The franchise was formerly based in Brooklyn and known originally as the "Grays" or "Trolley Dodgers" after the trams which supporters had to avoid to enter games. Later it became known successively as the "Bridegrooms", "Superbas", "Dodgers" and "Robins"; the present "Dodgers" was firmly established in 1932.
The franchise has won the World Series six times and lost a further 13, and like the Yankees and Cardinals have never lost 100 games in a season since World War I, with their worst record since then being in 1992 with 63 wins and their best records ever being in 1953 with 105 wins and both 1942 and 2017 with 104. Their most successful period, between 1947 and 1966 with ten World Series appearances and only two seasons with 71 or more losses (one of them the year they moved to Los Angeles after a dispute over stadium funding), was famous for the Dodgers becoming the first Major League Baseball team to incorporate African American players, led by Jackie Robinson and Roy Campanella.Parkersburg Parkers
The Parkersburg Parkers were a minor league baseball team based in Parkersburg, West Virginia. They played in the Pennsylvania–West Virginia League in 1909. The team was founded when the Charleroi Cherios relocated to Parkersburg on June 30, 1909. However the team was short-lived and were dropped by the league on July 10, 1909. The club was soon reestablished and played in the Virginia Valley League in 1910. Another team with that name surfaced in the Middle Atlantic League in 1931, when the Hagerstown Hubs relocated to Parkersburg on July 28, 1931. However the team relocated again soon afterwards to Youngstown, Ohio to become the Youngstown Tubers on July 12, 1931.Benny Kauff played for the team in 1910. Babe Phelps and Tommy Thompson were with the squad in 1931.Youngstown Buckeyes
The Youngstown Buckeyes were a minor league baseball team in Youngstown, Ohio that played in the Central League in 1932. In 1929, Joe Cambria purchased the Hagerstown Hubs. In 1931, Hagerstown was playing in the Class C Middle Atlantic League, and Cambria moved the team, first to Parkersburg, West Virginia, and later that summer to Youngstown, where they played as the Youngstown Tubers. In 1932, the Youngstown team joined the Class B Central League and were named the Youngstown Buckeyes.