Cristóbal Torriente

Cristóbal Torriente (November 16, 1893 – April 11, 1938) was a Cuban outfielder in Negro league baseball with the Cuban Stars, All Nations, Chicago American Giants, Kansas City Monarchs and Detroit Stars. He played from 1912 to 1932. Torriente was elected into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 2006.

Cristobal Torriente
Cristobal Torriente
Born: November 16, 1893
Cienfuegos, Cuba
Died: April 11, 1938 (aged 44)
New York City,
United States
Batted: Left Threw: Left
Negro leagues debut
1912, for the Habana Baseball Club
Last appearance
1932, for the Cleveland Cubs
Career highlights and awards
Negro league baseball
  • Lifetime batting average: .331
  • Batting titles in 1920 and 1923

Cuban Winter League Baseball

  • All time career batting average record: .352
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

Cuban League career

1919 Club Almendares
1919-1920 Club Almendares

A native of Cienfuegos, Cuba, Torriente played in his homeland from 1913–1927 and holds the record for the highest career batting average in Cuban winter league history (.352). He earned two batting titles and hit as high as .402. In 1920, his team, Almendares, played a nine-game series against the New York Giants. The Giants added Babe Ruth for this tour of Cuba. Torriente outhit Ruth in most categories and Almendares beat the Giants, five games to four. Along with Martín Dihigo and José Méndez, Torriente is considered one of the greatest baseball players from Cuba. He was one of the first class of inductees of the Cuban Baseball Hall of Fame in 1939.

Negro league career

Torriente played much of the summer of 1915 and 1916 for the "Western" Cuban Stars team until an argument arose with the St. Louis manager in 1916. He tracked down former teammate and friend José Méndez and was hired by J. L. Wilkinson to play for his All Nations just before a big series with C. I. Taylor's Indianapolis ABCs and Rube Foster's Chicago American Giants.[1] Torriente would play several years for both teams.

Chicago American Giants 1919
1919 Chicago American Giants

Torriente played on the great Chicago American Giants teams of 1918–1925. Torriente led the American Giants to Negro National League pennants from 1920 to 1922 while batting .411, .338, and .342 for these seasons. He won the batting title in 1920 and in 1923 with a .412 average. Torriente was traded to the Kansas City Monarchs in 1926 and led the team with a .381 batting average. He retired from the Negro leagues with a career .331 average.

Torriente was primarily a pull hitter, though he could hit with power to all fields. He had a stocky and slightly bowlegged build, but was known for deceptive power and a strong, accurate arm from center field. Indianapolis ABC's manager C.I. Taylor stated, "If I see Torriente walking up the other side of the street, I would say, 'There walks a ballclub.'" In the 2001 book The New Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract, Bill James ranked Torriente as the 67th greatest baseball player ever. Torriente was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2006.

Personal life

Torriente was notorious for his love of the nightlife and this caused him disputes with team management throughout his career. Torriente was sent to the bench in front of 8,000 spectators in 1915 after he "kicked to an Umpire." He put on his street clothes and sat on the bench, then Umpire Goekle sent him to the bleachers, and sent an officer of the law after him.[4] Again on August 23, 1915, Torriente kicked Umpire Kelly after Kelly called him out when Torriente attempted to steal third base. A fight with Crawford during the game spilled out onto the street after the game, and the two men attacked each other with paving stones left out when street workers were repairing a water main. Rube Foster broke up the fight.[5]

In 1923, he was sent out of the game in the third inning after objecting to Umpire Gholson's call at second base. He reportedly used "awful" language, then threw dirt on the Umpire's "newly creased trousers."[2] His temper caused him to walk off the Monarchs in 1926 after a dispute involving a stolen diamond ring.

In 1918, 24 year-old Torriente registered with the WWI draft. He lists his current occupation as "Not Working" and currently living at 3448 Wabash Avenue in Chicago, Illinois. He lists himself as a Cuban citizen and his closest living relative as his mother, Mrs. Felipa Torriente of Havana, Cuba.[6]

After baseball, Torriente lived for a short time in Ybor City, Florida and faded into obscurity. He died in New York City at age 44, after a long battle with alcoholism and tuberculosis.


  1. ^ a b c "All Nations Tackle the American Giants" Chicago Defender, September 23, 1916, Page 5
  2. ^ a b "Beckwith's Home Run Didn't Win Against Mendez" Chicago Defender, National Edition, May 5, 1923, Page 10
  3. ^ "Stars Even Series With Republics" Detroit Free Press, July 17, 1920, Page 12, Column 5
  4. ^ "The Cuban Stars Take Series From American Giants." Indianapolis Freeman, Saturday July 17, 1915, Page 4, Columns 4 to 6
  5. ^ "Monday's Game" Indianapolis Freeman, Indianapolis, Indiana, Saturday, August 28, 1915, Page 4, Column 4
  6. ^ "WWI Draft Registration Card for Cristóbal Torriente" Local Board Division 4, Chicago, Illinois, September 12, 1918

External links

1893 in baseball

The following are the baseball events of the year 1893 throughout the world.

1938 in baseball

The following are the baseball events of the year 1938 throughout the world.

2006 Baseball Hall of Fame balloting

Elections to the Baseball Hall of Fame for 2006 proceeded in keeping with rules enacted in 2001, augmented by a special election; the result was the largest class of inductees (18) in the Hall's history, including the first woman elected. The Baseball Writers' Association of America (BBWAA) held an election to select from among recent players. The Veterans Committee did not hold an election; the 2001 rules changes provided that elections for players retired over 20 years would be held every other year, with elections of non-players (managers, umpires and executives) held every fourth year. The Committee voted in 2005 on players who were active no later than 1983; there was no 2005 election for non-players. Elections in both categories were held in 2007.

On July 26, 2005, the Hall announced that its board of directors had approved a special election to be held in 2006, by the Committee on African-American Baseball, of Negro leagues and pre-Negro leagues candidates.

Induction ceremonies in Cooperstown were held July 30 with Commissioner Bud Selig presiding.

Alejandro Oms

Alejandro Oms (March 13, 1896 – November 5, 1946) was a Cuban center fielder in Negro league baseball and Latin American baseball, most notably with the Cuban Stars (East). Born in Santa Clara, Las Villas, he died at age 51 in Havana.

Oms played winter ball in the Cuban League from 1922 to 1946. He led the league in batting average three times, in 1924/25 (.393), 1928/29 (.432), and 1929/30 (.380), and won the Cuban League's Most Valuable Player Award in 1928/29. He ranks second all-time for career batting average in the Cuban League (behind Cristóbal Torriente) with an average of .345. He was elected to the Cuban Baseball Hall of Fame in 1944.

All Nations

All Nations was a barnstorming professional baseball team that toured the Midwest from 1912 to 1918, and again in 1920 and 1921, and from 1923 to 1925. It derived its name from the fact that its team included players of several nationalities, including blacks and whites, Indians, Hawaiians, Japanese and Latin Americans. The team was founded by the Hopkins Brothers sporting goods stores. One day, however, the team's manager absconde with the daily gate proceeds. J. L. Wilkinson, who played for the team, replaced him as manager, later becoming owner as well. The team was based out of Kansas City and Des Moines.

Under the management of Wilkinson, the All Nations' approach to the game was more serious than that of many teams who followed Abe Saperstein's farcical approach. They did however provide additional entertainment for their audiences, including having a dance band to play before the games and wrestlers like Ben Reeves to perform after their games.Wilkinson transported the team from location to location in a $25,000 Pullman car, which also held portable bleachers which would be set up for the game. He did not pay for rooms for his players, however, instead having them sleep the night before the game in tents they brought with them on the field on which they would play.

Under Wilkinson, the team became "strong enough to give any major league club a nip and tuck battle", according to Sporting Life. It went 3-1 against the Indianapolis ABC's in 1916 and splitting a series with the Chicago American Giants.

The team encountered difficulties during World War I, when it found most of its better players were drafted, and was finally disbanded in 1918. Pitcher John Donaldson managed the All Nations from 1923 to 1924. The All Nations were still owned by J.L. Wilkinson and was used as a traveling team that trained inexperienced players and found talent in the Midwest.

Center fielder

A center fielder, abbreviated CF, is the outfielder in baseball who plays defense in center field – the baseball and softball fielding position between left field and right field. In the numbering system used to record defensive plays, the center fielder is assigned the number 8.

Chicago American Giants

The Chicago American Giants were a Chicago-based Negro league baseball team, owned and managed from 1911 to 1926 by player-manager Andrew "Rube" Foster. From 1910 until the mid-1930s, the American Giants were the most dominant team in black baseball. Charter members of Foster's Negro National League, the American Giants won five pennants in that league, along with another pennant in the 1932 Negro Southern League and a second-half championship in Gus Greenlee's Negro National League in 1934. The team ended in 1956.


Cienfuegos (American Spanish: [sjeɱˈfweɣos]), capital of Cienfuegos Province, is a city on the southern coast of Cuba. It is located about 250 km (160 mi) from Havana and has a population of 150,000. The city is dubbed La Perla del Sur (Pearl of the South). Cienfuegos literally translates to "one hundred fires"—cien meaning "one hundred", fuegos meaning "fires".

Cuban Baseball Hall of Fame

The Cuban Baseball Hall of Fame (Salón de la Fama del Béisbol Cubano) is a hall of fame that honors eminent baseball players from Cuban baseball. Established in 1939 to honor players, managers, and umpires in the pre-revolution Cuban League, by 1961 it had honored 68 players, managers, and umpires whose names are shown on a marble plaque at Havana's Estadio Latinoamericano. After the revolution, however, the Hall of Fame languished for more than 50 years, seldom mentioned or acknowledged and with no new inductees. Following a campaign led by Cuban filmmaker Ian Padrón, a meeting was held on November 7–8, 2014 to reformulate the Hall of Fame and to propose a museum in which it would be housed. The reformulated Hall recognized the original 68 members, and a jury of 25 people selected 10 new inductees—five from the pre-revolution period and five representing for the first time the post-revolution Cuban National Series. The planned site for the new museum is in the José Antonio Echeverría Workers' Social Club (also known as the Vedado Tennis Club).

Cuban League

The Cuban League was one of the earliest and longest lasting professional baseball leagues outside the United States, operating in Cuba from 1878 to 1961. The schedule usually operated during the winter months, so the league was sometimes known as the "Cuban Winter League." It was always a small league, generally 3 to 5 teams, and was centered in Havana, though it sometimes included teams from outlying cities such as Matanzas or Santa Clara. The league became racially integrated in 1900, and during the first half of the 20th century the Cuban League was a premier venue for black and white players to meet. Many great black Northern American players competed in Cuba alongside native black and white Cuban stars such as José Méndez, Cristóbal Torriente, Adolfo Luque, and Martín Dihigo. After 1947, the Cuban League entered into an agreement with Major League Baseball and was used for player development. Following the 1959 Cuban Revolution, however, tensions rose with the new Communist government, and in March 1961 the government decreed the abolition of professional baseball.

Cuban Stars (West)

The Cuban Stars were a team of Cuban professional baseball players that competed in the United States Negro leagues from 1907 to 1932. The team was also sometimes known as the Cuban Stars of Havana, Stars of Cuba, Cuban All-Stars, Havana Reds, Almendares Blues or simply as the Cubans. For one season, 1921, the team played home games in Cincinnati, Ohio and was known as the Cincinnati Cubans.

José Rodríguez (infielder)

José Rodríguez (February 23, 1894 – January 21, 1953), nicknamed "Joseíto" or "El Hombre Goma" in Spanish and "Joe" in English, was a Cuban infielder who played in Major League Baseball from 1916 to 1918 and in the Cuban League from 1914 to 1939. In the majors, he played for the New York Giants and was primarily a second baseman, while in the Cuban League and the U.S. minor leagues he mostly played first base. A defensive specialist, according to Roberto González Echevarría, Rodríguez "was considered the best defensive first baseman in Cuba" of his time. He was also a long-time manager in the Cuban League and managed for one season in the minors. He was inducted into the Cuban Baseball Hall of Fame in 1951.Rodríguez was born in Havana in 1894. His younger brother Oscar also became a baseball player and manager in the Cuban League and the minor leagues and joined José as a member of the Cuban Baseball Hall of Fame in 1960.

Kansas City Monarchs

The Kansas City Monarchs were the longest-running franchise in the history of baseball's Negro Leagues. Operating in Kansas City, Missouri and owned by J. L. Wilkinson, they were charter members of the Negro National League from 1920 to 1930. J. L. Wilkinson was the first Caucasian owner at the time of the establishment of the team. In 1930, the Monarchs became the first professional baseball team to use a portable lighting system which was transported from game to game in trucks to play games at night, five years before any major league team did. The Monarchs won ten league championships before integration, and triumphed in the first Negro League World Series in 1924. The Monarchs had only one season in which they did not have a winning record. After sending more players to the major leagues than any other Negro League franchise, the team was finally disbanded in 1965.

List of Cubans

This is a list of notable and well-known Cubans, ordered alphabetically by first name within each category.

List of Negro league baseball players

This list comprises players who have appeared in Negro league baseball.

List of Negro league baseball players (S–Z)

This list consists of players who have appeared in Negro league baseball.

List of Negro league baseball players (A–D)

List of Negro league baseball players (E–L)

List of Negro league baseball players (M–R)

List of Negro league baseball players (S–Z)

Player inducted as a member of the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum

Pete Hill

John Preston "Pete" Hill (October 12, 1882 – November 19, 1951) was an American outfielder and manager in baseball's Negro leagues from 1899 to 1925. He played for the Philadelphia Giants, Leland Giants, Chicago American Giants, Detroit Stars, Milwaukee Bears, and Baltimore Black Sox. Hill starred for teams owned by Negro league executive Rube Foster for much of his playing career.

He was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2006.


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

Celso Golmayo Torriente (1879–1924), Cuban–Spanish chess master

Cosme de la Torriente y Peraza (1872–1956), Cuban soldier, politician, lawyer and statesman

Cristóbal Torriente (1893–1938), Cuban baseball player

Dario de Urra Torriente (born 1939), Cuban diplomat

Idel Torriente (born 1986), Cuban amateur boxer

Manuel Golmayo Torriente (1883–1973), Cuban-Spanish chess master

Pablo de la Torriente Brau (1901–1936), Cuban writer, journalist and soldier

Veterans Committee
Committee on
African-American Baseball
J. G. Taylor Spink Award
Ford C. Frick Award
First basemen
Second basemen
Third basemen
Designated hitters
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