Charles Radbourn

Charles Gardner Radbourn (December 11, 1854 – February 5, 1897), nicknamed "Old Hoss", was an American professional baseball pitcher who played 12 seasons in Major League Baseball (MLB). He played for the Buffalo Bisons (1880), Providence Grays (1881–1885), Boston Beaneaters (1886–1889), Boston Reds (1890), and Cincinnati Reds (1891).

Born in New York and raised in Illinois, Radbourn played semi-professional and minor league baseball before making his major league debut for the Buffalo Bisons in 1880. After a one-year stint with the club, Radbourn joined the Providence Grays. During the 1884 season, Radbourn won 60 games, setting an MLB single-season record that has never been broken. He also led the National League (NL) in earned run average (ERA) and strikeouts to win the Triple Crown, and the Grays won the league championship. After the regular season, he helped the Grays win the 1884 World Series, pitching every inning of the three games.

In 1885, when the Grays team folded, the roster was transferred to NL control, and Radbourn was claimed by the Boston Beaneaters. He spent the next four seasons with the club, spent one year with the Boston Reds, and finished his MLB career with the Cincinnati Reds. Radbourn was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1939.

Charles Radbourn
Radbourne charles 1
Born: December 11, 1854
Rochester, New York
Died: February 5, 1897 (aged 42)
Bloomington, Illinois
Batted: Right Threw: Right
MLB debut
May 5, 1880, for the Buffalo Bisons
Last MLB appearance
August 11, 1891, for the Cincinnati Reds
MLB statistics
Win–loss record310–194
Earned run average2.68
Career highlights and awards
Member of the National
Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg Baseball Hall of Fame Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg
Election MethodVeterans Committee

Early life

Radbourn was born on December 11, 1854, in Rochester, New York, the second of eight children to Charles and Caroline (Gardner) Radbourn.[1] Charles Radbourn (the elder) had immigrated to the United States from Bristol, England, to find work as a butcher; Caroline followed soon after.[2]

In 1855, the Radbourn family moved to Bloomington, Illinois, where Radbourn was raised. As a teenager, Radbourn worked as a butcher with his father, and as a brakeman for the Indiana, Bloomington and Western Railway company.[3]

Early baseball career

In 1878, Radbourn joined the Peoria Reds, a barnstorming team, as their right fielder and "change pitcher". No substitutions were allowed at the time so if the starting pitcher became ineffective in the late innings the change pitcher, usually playing right field, would exchange positions with the starter to try to save the game. In 1879 he signed with Dubuque in the newly formed Northwest League. Radbourn made the major leagues in 1880 as second baseman, right fielder and change pitcher for the Buffalo Bisons of the National League. He played in six games, batted .143, and never pitched an inning, but practiced so hard he developed a sore shoulder and was released. When he recovered, he pitched for a pick-up Bloomington team in an exhibition game against the Providence Grays. He impressed everyone so much that Providence signed him on the spot for a salary variously reported as $1,100 or $1,400.[4]

Providence Grays

1881–1883 seasons

During Radbourn's first season with the Grays in 1881, he split pitching duties with John Montgomery Ward. Radbourn pitched 325.1 innings and compiled a win-loss record of 25-11. He became the team's primary pitcher in 1882, pitching 466 innings and going 33-19 with a 2.11 earned run average. He led the NL with 201 strikeouts and six shutouts and was second-best in wins and ERA. In 1883, he pitched 632.1 innings and led the league in wins, going 48-25. His 2.05 ERA and 315 strikeouts both ranked second in the NL.[5]

1884 season

The 1884 Providence Grays. Radbourn is standing at the far left.

When Providence failed to win the pennant in 1883, the franchise was on shaky financial ground. Ownership brought in a new manager, Frank Bancroft, and made it plain: win the pennant or the team would be disbanded.

Early in the season, Radbourn shared pitching duties with Charlie Sweeney. Radbourn, who had a reputation for being vain, became jealous as Sweeney began to have more success, and the tension eventually broke out into violence in the clubhouse. Radbourn was faulted as the initiator of the fight and was suspended without pay after a poor outing on July 16, having been accused of deliberately losing the game by lobbing soft pitches over the plate. But on July 22, Sweeney had been drinking before the start of the game and continued drinking in the dugout between innings. Despite being obviously intoxicated, Sweeney managed to make it to the seventh inning with a 6–2 lead; when Bancroft attempted to relieve him with the change pitcher, Sweeney verbally abused him before being ejected and storming out of the park, leaving Providence with only eight players. With two men to cover the outfield, they lost the game.[6]

Afterward, Sweeney was kicked off the Grays, and this left the team in a state of disarray with the consensus view that the team should be disbanded. At that point, Radbourn offered to start every game for the rest of the season (having pitched in 76 of 98 games the season before)[7] in exchange for a small raise and exemption from the reserve clause for the next season. From that point, July 23 to September 24 when the pennant was clinched, Providence played 43 games and Radbourn started 40 of them and won 36. Soon, pitching every other day as he was, his arm became so sore he couldn't raise it to comb his hair. On game day he was at the ballpark hours before the start, getting warmed up. He began his warm up by throwing just a few feet, increasing the distance gradually until he was pitching from second base and finally from short center field.[8]

Radbourn finished the season with a league-leading 678.2 innings pitched and 73 complete games, and he won the Triple Crown with a record of 60-12, a 1.38 earned run average, and 441 strikeouts. His 60 wins in a season is a record which is expected never to be broken because no starter has made even as many as 37 starts in a season since 1991.[9] Also, his 678.2 innings pitched stands at second all-time, behind only Will White (680 in 1879) for a single season.

After the regular season ended, the NL champion Grays played the American Association champion New York Metropolitans in the 1884 World Series. Radbourn started each game of the series and won all three, while allowing just three unearned runs.[10]

Statistical notes

There is a discrepancy in Radbourn's victory total in 1884. The classic MacMillan Baseball Encyclopedia, the current Sporting News Baseball Record Book, his National Baseball Hall of Fame biography, and all credit Radbourn with 60 wins (against 12 losses).[11] Other sources, including Baseball Almanac,, and Edward Achorn's 2010 book, Fifty-nine in '84, give Radbourn 59 wins. Some older sources (such as his tombstone plaque) counted as high as 62. There is no dispute about the 678⅔ innings pitched, only over the manner in which victories were assigned to pitchers; the rules in the early years allowed more latitude to the official scorer than they do today.

According to at least two accounts, in the game of July 28 at Philadelphia, Cyclone Miller pitched five innings and left trailing, 4–3. Providence then scored four runs in the top of the sixth. Radbourn came in to relieve, and pitched shutout ball over the final four innings, while the Grays went on to score four more and win the game, 11–4. The official scorer decided that Radbourn had pitched the most effectively, and awarded him the win. Under the rules of the day, the scorekeeper's decision certainly made sense. However, under modern scoring rules, Miller would get the win, being the "pitcher of record" when he left the game, and Radbourn would have been credited with a save for closing the game and "pitching effectively for three or more innings". Some modern sources retroactively awarded the win to Miller.

1885 season

Radbourn pitched effectively in the majors for several more years but was not able to duplicate his success of 1883 and 1884. In 1885, he pitched 445.2 innings and went 28-21. The Grays folded after the season, and the roster was transferred to NL control.

Later baseball career

Radbourn was claimed by the Boston Beaneaters, and he spent the next four seasons with the club, winning 27, 24, 7, and 20 games. He then spent 1890 with the Boston Reds and 1891 with the Cincinnati Reds before retiring. Radbourn's career record was 310–194.

Later life and legacy

After retiring from baseball, Radbourn opened up a successful billiard parlor and saloon in Bloomington, Illinois. He was seriously injured in a hunting accident soon after retirement, in which he lost an eye, and spent most of his remaining years shut up in a back room of the saloon, apparently too ashamed to be seen after the injury. He died in Bloomington in 1897 and was interred in Evergreen Cemetery.

Radbourn was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1939. In 1941, a plaque was placed on the back of his elaborate headstone, detailing his distinguished career in baseball. In the 2001 book The New Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract, Bill James ranked Radbourn as the 45th greatest pitcher of all-time.

It is speculated Radbourn might be the namesake of the charley horse, a painful leg cramp not unlike that from which he suffered.[12]

See also


  1. ^ Achorn 2010, p. 19
  2. ^ McKenna, Brian. "Old Hoss Radbourn". The Society for American Baseball Research Biography Project. The Society for American Baseball Research. Retrieved October 1, 2011.
  3. ^ Achorn 2010, p. 22
  4. ^ Kahn, pp. 55–62
  5. ^ "Old Hoss Radbourn Stats". Retrieved April 20, 2019.
  6. ^ Under modern rules, a team that is unable to field nine players would have to forfeit the game, but a substitution would be allowed.
  7. ^ "1883 Providence Grays – Statmaster Pitching Results". Retrieved July 4, 2011.
  8. ^ Kahn, pp. 68–70
  9. ^ Jazayerli, Rany (March 2, 2004). "A Brief History of Pitcher Usage". Baseball Prospectus Basics. Baseball Prospectus. Retrieved October 20, 2016.
  10. ^ "1884 World Series - Providence Grays over New York Metropolitans (3-0)". Retrieved May 10, 2019.
  11. ^ "Radbourn, Charles". National Baseball Hall of Fame Museum.
  12. ^ Quinion, Michael (2011). "Charley horse". World Wide Words. Retrieved June 17, 2011.
  • Achorn, Edward (2010). Fifty-nine in '84: Old Hoss Radbourn, Barehanded Baseball, and the Greatest Season a Pitcher Ever Had. Smithsonian Books. ISBN 978-0-06-182586-6.
  • Kahn, Roger (2000). The Head Game. New York: Harcourt. ISBN 0-15-100441-2.

External links

Preceded by
Larry Corcoran
No-hitter pitcher
July 25, 1883
Succeeded by
Hugh Daily
Preceded by
Tommy Bond
National League Pitching Triple Crown
Succeeded by
Tim Keefe
1881 Providence Grays season

The Providence Grays finished the 1881 season in second place in the National League for a second straight season. However, management strife and sagging attendance hurt the team's bottom line and they occasionally had trouble meeting payroll.

1882 Providence Grays season

The Providence Grays hired veteran manager Harry Wright to guide the team in 1882 and the team seemed to improve. They held first place until September 17, but then suffered a losing streak that dropped the team into second place.

After the season ended, they played a three-game postseason series against the Boston Red Caps for the "Championship of New England." Providence won the series, two games to one, thanks to shutouts pitched by John Montgomery Ward and Hoss Radbourn.

1883 Providence Grays season

The Providence Grays finished the 1883 season in third place after a hard-fought four-way battle for the National League pennant.

1883 in baseball

The following are the baseball events of the year 1883 throughout the world.

1884 in baseball

The following are the baseball events of the year 1884 throughout the world.

1885 Providence Grays season

After the team's success in 1884, things went downhill for the 1885 Providence Grays. The team dropped in the standings, finishing 30 games back in fourth place and attendance fell drastically. After the season, the club's directors sold all the remaining players to the Boston Beaneaters and folded the team.

1902 in baseball

The following are the baseball events of the year 1902 throughout the world.

Baseball Magazine

Baseball Magazine is a now-defunct baseball magazine, the first monthly baseball magazine published in the United States. The magazine was founded by Boston sportswriter Jake Morse prior to the 1908 season. It continued publishing through 1957. The magazine was based in Boston.Morse stated that his mission in starting Baseball Magazine was to "fill the need of a monthly organ filled with the highest thought surrounding the game, well edited, well printed, and filled with first class illustrations."

The magazine also strove to provide human interest stories about baseball stars, such as Ty Cobb and Christy Mathewson. F.C. Lane became the magazine's editor in 1911 and remained in that post until 1937. One of Lane's first issues was devoted to Cobb, including stories about him and a Q&A session with him. Morse had previously devoted issues to Cy Young in 1908, shortly after baseball commemorated Cy Young Day, and to Addie Joss in 1911, shortly after Joss' death. Despite the magazine's reverence for Young and Mathewson, in 1909 Morse wrote an article in Baseball Magazine proclaiming former Providence Grays pitcher Charles Radbourn to be "the greatest pitcher who ever lived." Another famous article from the magazine's early days described how difficult it was to be a catcher in baseball's early days.During the 1920s the magazine complained about players being paid to act as baseball writers.

Boston Reds (1890–1891) all-time roster

The Boston Reds were a Major League Baseball franchise that played in the Players' League (PL) in 1890, and one season in the American Association (AA) in 1891. In both seasons, the Reds were their league's champion, making them the second team to win back-to-back championships in two different leagues. The first franchise to accomplish this feat was the Brooklyn Bridegrooms, who won the AA championship in 1889 and the National League (NL) championship in 1890. The Reds played their home games at the Congress Street Grounds.The Reds were an instant success on the field and in the public's opinion. The team signed several top-level players, and they played in a larger, more comfortable and modern ballpark than the Boston Beaneaters, the popular and well established cross-town rival. Player signings that first year included future Hall of Famers King Kelly, Dan Brouthers, and Charles Radbourn, along with other veterans such as Hardy Richardson, Matt Kilroy, Harry Stovey, and Tom Brown. The PL ended after one season, leaving most of its teams without a league.After the dissolution of the PL, the AA voted to allow the Reds into the new combined league. This was based on the condition that all players be returned to their former clubs via the reserve clause. Although the team's on-field captain, Kelly, became the player-manager for a new AA club, the Cincinnati Kelly's Killers, the Reds stayed intact by keeping several of their top players. Of the club's key players from the previous year's team, Brouthers, Richardson, and Brown were retained. To fill the void of the departing players, the team brought in future Hall of Famers Hugh Duffy and Clark Griffith, along with solid veterans Paul Radford, Charlie Buffinton, and George Haddock. When the 1891 season ended, the AA folded as well, leaving the NL as the sole major league, and the Reds were bought out by the surviving NL clubs.

Charlie Buffinton

Charles (Charlie) G. Buffinton (born Buffington) (June 14, 1861 – September 23, 1907), was an American right-handed pitcher in Major League Baseball from 1882 to 1892. One of the workhorse pitchers of the 1880s, he won 20 games seven times and his 1,700 career strikeouts are the ninth-highest total of the 19th century.

List of Atlanta Braves team records

The Atlanta Braves are a Major League Baseball (MLB) franchise based in Atlanta. The Braves formed in 1876 as the Boston Red Stockings. After moving to Milwaukee for 12 years, the Braves relocated to Atlanta in 1966. Through 2010, the Braves have played 20,053 games, winning 9,945, losing 9,954, and tying 154, for a winning percentage of approximately .500. This list documents the superlative records and accomplishments of team members during their tenures in MLB.

Hank Aaron holds the most franchise records as of the end of the 2010 season, with ten, including most career hits, doubles, and the best career on-base plus slugging percentage. Aaron also held the career home runs record from April 8, 1974 until August 8, 2007. He is followed by Hugh Duffy, who holds eight records, including best single-season batting average and the best single-season slugging percentage record.Four Braves players currently hold Major League Baseball records. Duffy holds the best single-season batting average record, accumulating an average of .440 in 1890. Bob Horner and Bobby Lowe are tied with 13 others for the most home runs in a game, with four, which they recorded on May 30, 1890, and July 6, 1986, respectively. Red Barrett, a Brave for six years, holds the record for fewest pitches by a single pitcher in a complete game, with 58, which he achieved on August 10, 1944.

List of Boston and Milwaukee Braves Opening Day starting pitchers

The Braves are a Major League Baseball team that was originally based in Boston. They moved to Milwaukee in 1953 before moving to their current home, Atlanta in 1966. They played in the National League since its formation in 1876. At various points in the history in Boston, they were known as the Beaneaters, the Doves, the Rustlers and the Bees. During the 20th century until their move to Milwaukee, they played their home games primarily at two home ball parks – South End Grounds until 1914, and Braves Field from 1915 through 1952. They also played some home games at Fenway Park in 1914 and 1915, including Opening Day of 1915. Their home ball park in Milwaukee was County Stadium. The first game of the new baseball season for a team is played on Opening Day, and being named the Opening Day starter is an honor, which is often given to the player who is expected to lead the pitching staff that season, though there are various strategic reasons why a team's best pitcher might not start on Opening Day.The Braves used 40 different Opening Day starting pitchers in their 80 National League seasons they played prior to moving to Atlanta. The Braves won 46 of those games against 42 losses in those Opening Day starts. They also played two tie games.Warren Spahn had the most Opening Day starts for the Boston and Milwaukee Braves with ten between 1952 and 1964. Kid Nichols made six Opening Day starts between 1893 and 1901. Jim Whitney (1881–1885) and John Clarkson (1888–1892) each had five Opening Day starts. Tommy Bond (1877–1880), Vic Willis (1900–1904), Dick Rudolph (1915–1917, 1919), Al Javery (1942–1945) and Johnny Sain (1946–1949) each made four Opening Day starts. Irv Young (1906–1908), Bob Smith (1927–1929) and Ed Brandt (1932, 1934, 1935) each had three such starts. Other pitchers with multiple Opening Day starts for the Boston and Milwaukee Braves were Charles Radbourn, Jack Stivetts, Hub Perdue, Joe Oeschger, Joe Genewich, Danny MacFayden and Lew Burdette.

Prior to moving to Atlanta, the Braves played in the World Series four times. The played in the World Series as the Boston Braves in 1914 and 1948, and as the Milwaukee Braves in 1957 and 1959. They won the World Series in 1914 and 1957. Their Opening Day starting pitchers in World Series years were Lefty Tyler in 1914, Sain in 1948, and Spahn in 1957 and 1958. They lost their Opening Day game in 1914, 1948 and 1958, and won in 1957. In addition, the franchise won the National League championship eight times during the 19th century, prior to the existence of the modern World Series. Nichols was the team's Opening Day starting pitcher in three of those season, Clarkson and Bond in two of those seasons each, and Whitney was the Opening Day starting pitcher in one such season.

Jesse Barnes made an Opening Day start for the Braves against the New York Giants in 1925, after having made an Opening Day start for the Giants against the Braves in 1920. Spahn is the only pitcher to make an Opening Day start for both the Boston Braves and the Milwaukee Braves. Tony Cloninger, who made the last Opening Day start for the Milwaukee Braves in 1965 and the first for the Atlanta Braves in 1966, is the only pitcher to make an Opening Day start for both the Milwaukee and Atlanta Braves.

List of Major League Baseball career batters faced leaders

In baseball statistics, Batters Faced (BF), also known as Total Batters Faced (TBF), is the number of batters who made a plate appearance before the pitcher in a game or in a season.

Cy Young is the all-time leader, facing 29,565 batters in his career. Young is the only player to face more than 26,000 career batters. Pud Galvin is second having faced 25,415 batters, and is the only other player to have faced more than 25,000 batters. A total of 17 players have faced over 20,000 batters in their careers, with all but two (Bobby Mathews and Roger Clemens) being in the Baseball Hall of Fame.

List of Major League Baseball career wild pitches leaders

In baseball, a wild pitch (abbreviated WP) is charged against a pitcher when his pitch is too high, too short, or too wide of home plate for the catcher to control with ordinary effort, thereby allowing a baserunner, perhaps even the batter-runner on an uncaught third strike, to advance. A wild pitch usually passes the catcher behind home plate, often allowing runners on base an easy chance to advance while the catcher chases the ball down. Sometimes the catcher may block a pitch, and the ball may be nearby, but the catcher has trouble finding the ball, allowing runners to advance.

Tony Mullane is the all-time leader in wild pitches with 343 career. Mullane is also the only player to throw more than 300 career wild pitches.

List of Providence Grays Opening Day starting pitchers

The Providence Grays were a Major League Baseball team that was based in Providence, Rhode Island and played in the National League from 1878 through 1885. The Grays used four Opening Day starting pitchers in their eight years as a Major League Baseball franchise. The first game of the new baseball season for a team is played on Opening Day, and being named the Opening Day starter is an honor that is often given to the player who is expected to lead the pitching staff that season, though there are various strategic reasons why a team's best pitcher might not start on Opening Day. The Grays had a record of five wins and three losses in their Opening Day games.

The first game in Providence Grays history was played on May 1, 1878 against the Boston Red Caps (now known as the Atlanta Braves). Fred Corey was the Opening Day starting pitcher in that game, which the Grays lost by a score of 1–0. The Grays' last Opening Day game was played on May 2, 1885 against the Philadelphia Phillies. Charles Radbourn was the Grays' Opening Day starting pitcher in that game, which the Grays won by a score of 8–2.Four pitchers made Opening Day starts for the Grays. Baseball Hall of Famer Monte Ward made four Opening Day starts in the Grays' eight seasons. Radbourne, also a Baseball Hall of Famer, made two Opening Day starts for the Grays. Thus, in six of the Grays' eight seasons (75%), the Grays' Opening Day starting pitcher was a Baseball Hall of Famer. Corey and Charlie Sweeney each made one Opening Day start for the Grays.In their history, the Grays won two National League championships, in 1879 and in 1884. In 1884, the Grays went on to win the 19th century version of the World Series. In both years, the Grays' Opening Day opponent was the Cleveland Blues. In 1879, Ward was the Grays' Opening Day starting pitcher, in a game the Grays won by a score of 15–4. In 1884, Radbourn – who was the Grays' Opening Day starting pitcher in both 1883 and 1885 – started 73 of the Grays 114 games. However, the Grays Opening Day starting pitcher in 1884 was Sweeney, not Radbourn. The Grays lost their Opening Day game that year by a score of 2–1.

Providence Grays

The Providence Grays were a Major League Baseball team based in Providence, Rhode Island who played in the National League from 1878 until 1885. The Grays played at the Messer Street Grounds in the Olneyville neighborhood. The team won the National League title twice, in 1879 and 1884. Following the 1884 season, they won the first World Series over the New York Metropolitans of the American Association. The team folded after the 1885 season.

Providence Grays all-time roster

The Providence Grays were a Major League Baseball franchise based in Providence, Rhode Island from 1878 to 1885. During the team's eight seasons in the National League (NL), which then comprised eight teams, they finished third place or higher in the final standings seven times, and won the league championship in both 1879 and 1884. Providence played their home games at the Messer Street Grounds, which was located in the Olneyville neighborhood of Providence. The Grays were officially organized on January 16, 1878 by Benjamin Douglas, who became the team's general manager. Henry Root was hired as the team president‚ and Tom Carey was initially hired to be the on-field captain, whose duties were similar to the modern-day manager. On January 21, 1878, Providence applied for membership in the NL, and was officially approved on February 6. On April 10, Root took over ownership of the team, fired Douglas for incompetence and insubordination, and hired Tom York to replace Carey as captain.Providence was successful in signing several star players for their inaugural season: Paul Hines had played the previous four seasons with the Chicago White Stockings; Tom Carey was signed after the Hartford Dark Blues folded; Doug Allison was the catcher for the 1869 Cincinnati Red Stockings, who had an 84-game winning streak from 1869 to 1870; and John Montgomery Ward, who was playing his first season in the major leagues. Ward had a win–loss record of 22–13 and Hines led the league in home runs, runs batted in (RBIs), and batting average as the Grays finished in third place among the six teams in the NL for the 1878 season, with a record of 33 wins, 27 losses, and 2 ties. The Grays won the NL championship in 1879, placing first among the league's eight teams with Ward winning 47 games as their starting pitcher, and the leadership of George Wright, who played second base and also managed. The team had a strong hitting line-up with Hines' league leading .357 batting average, as well as new additions Jim O'Rourke and Joe Start, who both had batting averages over .300. William Edward White, a Brown University player who played one game for the Grays on June 21, 1879, may have been the first African-American to play at the major league level; according to Peter Morris of the Society for American Baseball Research, the evidence for White is strong, but not conclusive. If this claim is true, then White pre-dated both Moses Fleetwood Walker and his brother Weldy Walker, who both played for the 1884 Toledo Blue Stockings of the American Association (AA). In 1880, the Grays finished in second place among the eight NL teams, with Ward winning 39 games. On June 17 of that year, Ward pitched the second perfect game in major league history.For the 1881 season, the Grays signed pitcher Charles Radbourn, who split the starting duties with Ward over the next two seasons. Radbourn won 25 games in 1881 and 33 more in 1882, while Ward won 18 and 19 respectively. In 1882, the Grays hired Harry Wright to be their manager, who brought back his brother George to play shortstop. They placed second in the NL standings, behind the White Stockings, for the third straight season. In 1883, the team dropped to third place, though Radbourn was credited with 48 victories and on July 25, he threw a no-hitter. Harry Wright left the team before the 1884 season, and was replaced by Frank Bancroft. On June 7, 1884, pitcher Charlie Sweeney struck out 19 batters in a nine-inning game, the unofficial record that stood until Roger Clemens surpassed that total with 20 in a game on April 29, 1986. On July 22, manager Brancroft wanted to replace Sweeney in the line-up with right fielder and alternate pitcher Cyclone Miller, but Sweeney refused the move and left the game. He was suspended without pay, but quit the team instead and signed to play for the St. Louis Maroons of the Union Association (UA). Without any other viable long-term pitching options, this result forced Radbourn to pitch nearly every game for the remainder of the season. Not only did Radbourn finish with 59 victories, an all-time record, but he also led the league in many pitching categories including strikeouts and earned run average, winning the triple crown. His leadership on the field led the team to their second and last NL championship; later besting the New York Metropolitans 3 games to zero in the 1884 World Series. The Grays' final season was in 1885, a season in which they finished at their lowest position in the standings in their history, as well as having their worst winning percentage. Following the 1885 season, the owner of the Boston Beaneaters, Arthur Soden bought the team and its players for $6000.


Radbourn is a surname. Notable people with the surname include:

Charles Radbourn (1854-1897), American baseball player

George Radbourn (1856-1904), American baseball player

Shutouts in baseball

In Major League Baseball, a shutout (denoted statistically as ShO or SHO) refers to the act by which a single pitcher pitches a complete game and does not allow the opposing team to score a run. If two or more pitchers combine to complete this act, no pitcher is awarded a shutout, although the team itself can be said to have "shut out" the opposing team.

The ultimate single achievement among pitchers is a perfect game, which has been accomplished 23 times in over 135 years, most recently by Félix Hernández of the Seattle Mariners on August 15, 2012. By definition, a perfect game is counted as a shutout. A no-hitter completed by one pitcher is also a shutout unless the opposing team manages to score through a series of errors, base on balls, catcher's interferences, dropped third strikes, or hit batsmen. The all-time career leader in shutouts is Walter Johnson, who pitched for the Washington Senators from 1907–1927. He accumulated 110 shutouts, which is 20 more than the second place leader, Pete Alexander. The most shutouts recorded in one season was 16, which was a feat accomplished by both Pete Alexander (1916) and George Bradley (1876). These records are considered among the most secure records in baseball, because pitchers today rarely earn more than one or two shutouts per season with a heavy emphasis on pitch count and relief pitching. Complete games themselves have also become rare among starting pitchers.

The current leader among active players for career shutouts is Clayton Kershaw, who has thrown 15.

Major League Baseball pitchers who have won the Triple Crown
Veterans Committee
First basemen
Second basemen
Third basemen
Designated hitters
Executives /

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