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View Full Version : Birdie Cree had a solid 1911 season


Chuck9788
08-23-2018, 06:03 PM
Cree was a small man (5 ft 6 in and 150 pounds).

In 1911, Birdie had an extraordinary season with 22 triples 48 stolen bases and a .348 batting average.


Many various injuries (including in 1910 when Cree was hit in the head by a Walter Johnson fastball in which he was knocked unconscious and carried from the field) as well as a badly broken wrist from a wild Buck O'Brien pitch in 1912 (this happened when he was hitting .332 after 50 games) helped prematurly derail his career. Cree left the sport with a .292 career batting average in 8 seasons.

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/9/92/Birdie_Cree_baseball_card.jpg/220px-Birdie_Cree_baseball_card.jpg

mets1
08-23-2018, 07:57 PM
While Cree had an excellent year in 1911, it's worth noting that batting averages were unusually high that year. In 1910, AL batters hit just .243, which was typical of the Dead Ball Era. But in 1911, when a better cork was put inside the ball, the batting average for AL hitters shot up to .273, with Cobb and Shoeless Joe batting over .400. From 1912 to 1917, AL batting averages plummeted as pitchers developed new ways to tamper with the ball. A better ball was introduced in 1919 or 1920, and spitballs were banned for new pitchers, which led to extraordinarily high batting averages. The ball was dejuiced in 1931, which resulted in lower batting averages.

ValKehl
08-23-2018, 10:47 PM
Now is the time to de-juice the ball again! (right, Steve?)

Mark
08-24-2018, 10:21 AM
While Cree had an excellent year in 1911, it's worth noting that batting averages were unusually high that year. In 1910, AL batters hit just .243, which was typical of the Dead Ball Era. But in 1911, when a better cork was put inside the ball, the batting average for AL hitters shot up to .273, with Cobb and Shoeless Joe batting over .400. From 1912 to 1917, AL batting averages plummeted as pitchers developed new ways to tamper with the ball. A better ball was introduced in 1919 or 1920, and spitballs were banned for new pitchers, which led to extraordinarily high batting averages. The ball was dejuiced in 1931, which resulted in lower batting averages.

All this is true, but the fact remains that Cree had an excellent year in 1911.

rholmes
08-24-2018, 11:58 AM
Slightly OT, but I have a 1910 OAL ball signed/inscribed by umpire Billy Evans to an actress who lived in Washington DC (Edith Luckett, aka Nancy Reagan's mother). There is a faint inked date next to the 1910 stamp that, best I can tell, reads 4/22...the date Walter Johnson hit Birdie Cree, NY vs Washington, at Washington. Billy Evans was the home plate umpire. Zero chance of ever knowing for sure, but still fascinating to entertain the idea that this was the ball that did the deed.

https://preview.ibb.co/fYjKJU/1910_Evans_AL_sm_2.jpg (https://ibb.co/e09myU)

RCMcKenzie
08-26-2018, 12:24 AM
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