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Roger Bresnahan
St. Louis (NL)
Hall of Fame Inductee - 1945
1909,10,11,12: Manager: St. Louis Cardinals
1903 .350 BA (#4 NL)

Full Name: Roger Philip "The Duke Of Tralee" Bresnahan
Bats: Right Throws: Right
Height: 5-9 Weight: 200 lbs.
Born: Jun 11, 1879 in Toledo, OH
Major League Debut: Aug 27, 1897
Died: Dec 04, 1944 in Toledo, OH

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CAREER STATISTICS - BATTING TOTALS

BATTING
YR
1897
1900
1901
1902
1902
1903
1904
1905
1906
1907
1908
1909
1910
1911
1912
1913
1914
1915
TM
Was
Chi
Bal
Bal
NY
NY
NY
NY
NY
NY
NY
StL
StL
StL
StL
Chi
Chi
Chi
LG
NL
NL
AL
AL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
POS
P
C
C
3B
OF
OF
OF
C
C
C
C
C
C
C
C
C
C
C
G
6
2
86
65
51
113
109
104
124
110
140
72
88
81
48
69
101
77
AB
16
2
295
235
178
406
402
331
405
328
449
234
234
227
108
162
248
221
R
1
0
40
30
16
87
81
58
69
57
70
27
35
22
8
20
42
19
H
6
0
79
64
51
142
114
100
114
83
127
57
65
63
36
37
69
45
2B
0
0
9
8
9
30
22
18
22
9
25
4
15
17
7
5
10
8
3B
0
0
9
6
3
8
7
3
4
7
3
1
3
8
2
2
4
1
HR
0
0
1
4
1
4
5
0
0
4
1
0
0
3
1
1
0
1
RBI
3
0
32
34
22
55
33
46
43
38
54
23
27
41
15
21
24
19
TB
6
0
109
96
69
200
165
124
144
118
161
63
86
105
50
49
87
58
BB
1
0
23
21
16
61
58
50
81
61
83
46
55
45
14
21
49
29
IBB
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
Totals G
1446
AB
4481
R
682
H
1252
2B
218
3B
71
HR
26
RBI
530
TB
1690
BB
714
IBB
0


BATTING BASERUNNING PERCENTAGES
YR
1897
1900
1901
1902
1902
1903
1904
1905
1906
1907
1908
1909
1910
1911
1912
1913
1914
1915
TM
Was
Chi
Bal
Bal
NY
NY
NY
NY
NY
NY
NY
StL
StL
StL
StL
Chi
Chi
Chi
LG
NL
NL
AL
AL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
K
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
17
19
9
11
20
23
HBP
0
0
1
2
2
7
5
11
15
6
6
1
2
3
2
2
2
0
SH
0
0
4
4
6
12
3
7
5
6
24
7
8
6
0
4
12
4
SF
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
GDP
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
SB
0
0
10
12
6
34
13
11
25
15
14
11
13
4
4
7
14
19
CS
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
3
SB%
-.---
-.---
1.000
1.000
1.000
1.000
1.000
1.000
1.000
1.000
1.000
1.000
1.000
1.000
1.000
1.000
1.000
.864
AVG
.375
.000
.268
.272
.287
.350
.284
.302
.281
.253
.283
.244
.278
.278
.333
.228
.278
.204
OBP
.412
.000
.323
.337
.352
.443
.381
.411
.419
.380
.401
.370
.419
.404
.419
.324
.401
.296
SLG
.375
.000
.369
.409
.388
.493
.410
.375
.356
.360
.359
.269
.368
.463
.463
.302
.351
.262
AB/HR
--.-
--.-
295.0
58.8
178.0
101.5
80.4
--.-
--.-
82.0
449.0
--.-
--.-
75.7
108.0
162.0
--.-
221.0
AB/K
--.-
--.-
--.-
--.-
--.-
--.-
--.-
--.-
--.-
--.-
--.-
--.-
13.8
11.9
12.0
14.7
12.4
9.6
Totals K
99
HBP
67
SH
112
SF
0
GDP
0
SB
212
CS
3
SB%
.986
BAVG
.279
OBP
.386
SLG
.377
AB/HR
172.3
AB/K
45.3


WORLD SERIES STATISTICS - BATTING TOTALS

BATTING PERCENTAGES
YR
1905
TM
NY
LG
NL
G
5
AB
16
R
3
H
5
2B
2
3B
0
HR
0
RBI
1
TB
7
BB
4
K
0
SB
1
BAVG
.313
SLG
.438
AB/HR
--.-
AB/K
--.-
Totals G
5
AB
16
R
3
H
5
2B
2
3B
0
HR
0
RBI
1
TB
7
BB
4
K
0
SB
1
AVG
.313
SLG
.438
AB/HR
--.-
AB/K
--.-


CAREER FIELDING STATISTICS
YEAR TEAM LG POS G Ch PO A E DP FPCT
1897
1897
1900
1901
1901
1901
1901
1901
1902
1902
1902
1902
1902
1902
1902
1902
1903
1903
1903
1903
1904
1904
1904
1904
1904
1905
1905
1906
1906
1907
1907
1907
1907
1908
1909
1909
1909
1910
1910
1910
1911
1911
1912
1913
1914
1914
1914
1915
Was
Was
ChN
Bal
Bal
Bal
Bal
Bal
Bal
Bal
Bal
NYG
NYG
NYG
NYG
NYG
NYG
NYG
NYG
NYG
NYG
NYG
NYG
NYG
NYG
NYG
NYG
NYG
NYG
NYG
NYG
NYG
NYG
NYG
StL
StL
StL
StL
StL
StL
StL
StL
StL
ChN
ChN
ChN
ChN
ChN
NL
NL
NL
AL
AL
AL
AL
AL
AL
AL
AL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
NL
OF
P
C
2B
P
3B
OF
C
OF
C
3B
3B
SS
1B
C
OF
3B
C
1B
OF
3B
2B
SS
1B
OF
OF
C
OF
C
3B
OF
1B
C
C
3B
2B
C
P
OF
C
2B
C
C
C
OF
2B
C
C
1
6
1
2
2
4
8
69
15
22
30
1
4
4
16
27
4
11
13
84
1
1
4
10
93
8
87
40
82
1
2
6
95
139
1
9
59
1
2
77
2
77
28
58
1
14
85
68
0
9
0
12
3
5
12
285
34
94
100
0
22
46
112
37
18
62
117
170
2
1
14
96
173
12
625
80
546
6
7
63
585
809
6
38
301
3
1
411
6
439
192
271
1
30
489
448
0
2
0
9
0
2
9
199
26
67
33
0
9
41
85
29
3
46
101
150
0
0
7
83
151
11
492
71
407
1
5
58
483
657
2
11
211
0
1
295
2
323
138
194
1
11
365
345
0
7
0
2
2
3
1
63
3
22
55
0
9
3
22
6
12
11
9
14
0
1
7
8
14
1
114
6
125
3
2
2
94
140
2
25
78
3
0
100
3
102
49
67
0
18
113
95
0
0
0
1
1
0
2
23
5
5
12
0
4
2
5
2
3
5
7
6
2
0
0
5
8
0
19
3
14
2
0
3
8
12
2
2
12
0
0
16
1
14
5
10
0
1
11
8
0
0
0
1
0
0
0
3
0
0
4
0
2
1
4
1
0
1
4
6
0
0
4
0
9
0
15
2
6
0
0
1
11
12
0
6
3
1
0
11
0
9
4
2
0
0
6
9
-.---
1.000
-.---
0.917
0.667
1.000
0.833
0.919
0.853
0.947
0.880
-.---
0.818
0.957
0.955
0.946
0.833
0.919
0.940
0.965
0.000
1.000
1.000
0.948
0.954
1.000
0.970
0.963
0.974
0.667
1.000
0.952
0.986
0.985
0.667
0.947
0.960
1.000
1.000
0.961
0.833
0.968
0.974
0.963
1.000
0.967
0.978
0.982
Totals G
1375
Ch
6793
PO
5136
A
1416
E
241
DP
138
FPCT
0.965


CAREER STATISTICS - PITCHING TOTALS

HOW MUCH HE PITCHED WHAT HE GAVE UP
YR
1897
1901
1910
TM
Was
Bal
StL
LG
NL
AL
NL
G
6
2
1
GS
5
1
0
CG
3
0
0
GF
1
1
1
IP
41.0
6.0
3.1
BF/9
0
0
43
H
52
10
6
R
21
8
1
ER
18
4
0
HR
1
0
0
SH
0
0
0
BB
10
4
1
Totals G
9
GS
6
CG
3
GF
3
IP
50.1
BF/9
3
H
68
R
30
ER
22
HR
1
SH
0
BB
15


WHAT HE GAVE UP (cont.) THE RESULTS
YR
1897
1901
1910
TM
Was
Bal
StL
LG
NL
AL
NL
HB
3
0
0
IBB
0
0
0
K
12
3
0
WP
0
0
0
BK
0
0
0
BAVG A
-4.000
-2.500
.400
W
4
0
0
L
0
1
0
ShO
1
0
0
Sv
0
0
0
ERA
3.95
6.00
0.00
Totals HB
3
IBB
0
K
15
WP
0
Bk
0
AVG A
-.---
W
4
L
1
ShO
1
Sv
0
ERA
3.93


TEAM ABBREVIATION KEY
YEARS
1897
1900
1901-1902
1902-1908
1909-1912
1913-1915
TM
Was
Chi
Bal
NY
StL
Chi
LG
NL
NL
AL
NL
NL
NL
TEAM NAME
Washington Senators
Chicago Orphans
Baltimore Orioles
New York Giants
St. Louis Cardinals
Chicago Cubs
LEAGUE NAME
National League
National League
American League
National League
National League
National League

The Duke of Tralee called and caught 3 Christy Mathewson shut-outs called by many 'the finest performance of all time' in the 1905 World Series.  He was the most versatile player of his era having played all 9 positions.  He became the first catcher to lead off and hit a stellar .350 in 1903.

Ever the innovator, Roger introduced catcher's shin guards in 1907 and he was the first to experiment with a batting helmet following a severe beaning. He possessed such unusual speed for a catcher that manager John McGraw utilized him as a lead-off man in the Giants batting order.

Roger Bresnahan is the only player to have hit two inside-the-park home runs in a game in both leagues. On May 30, 1902 he hit two IPHR's during a game with Baltimore of the American League. On June 6, 1904 he hit two IPHR's during a game with New York of the National League.


During the course of his 17-year career, Roger Bresnahan was considered baseball's greatest catcher, and in 1945 he became the second catcher elected to the Hall of Fame.

While he is best remembered as a catcher, Bresnahan could play anywhere on the diamond; he actually served behind the plate for only 974 games, about two-thirds of all the games in which he appeared. He was a hard-driving leader and a fair hitter, finishing with a .279 career average; he also had a knack for baiting and intimidating umpires.

Although he was born and raised in Toledo, Ohio, Bresnahan was nicknamed "the Duke of Tralee," as his family originally came from Tralee, County Kerry, Ireland. Bresnahan debuted as a pitcher in semipro ball in Ohio and first appeared in the majors in 1897 with Washington's National League team. He went 4-0 and pitched a shutout, but when he demanded a raise, he was allowed to drift back to the minors. In 1900 he appeared in two games for the Orphans, and in 1901 he found his true calling as a catcher when he joined Baltimore of the new American League.

Bresnahan was one of several players who became a close friend of John McGraw. With Christy Mathewson, another friend, it was an attraction of opposites. Roger could have been McGraw's twin: compact, pugnacious, fiercely concentrated on the game, and skilled in all the ways it takes to play it. Temperamental like his manager, he was an unabashed Irish brawler, tough on teammates who did less than their best, tough on opponents, toughest on umpires, whom he baited and bedeviled. He was frequently ejected, fined and suspended, gave headaches to League officials, and engaged in noisy confrontations with at least three club owners. He could play any position on the field.

Washington had him first as an 18-year-old pitcher who shut out the Browns, 3-0, on six hits in his major-league debut. His repertoire was dazzling. The papers credited him with "a speedy shoot, outcurve, inshoot, drop ball." Roger won three more games that season, but the Senators let him go the next spring when he insisted on more money than they would pay. The Cubs brought him up after two years in the high minors, played him for two innings, and lost him to McGraw's Orioles in 1901. Rapped hard in two outings, he was tried at second, third, the outfield, and when Wilbert Robinson was hurt, behind the plate. He played well wherever they put him, but catching was his forte. When McGraw departed the American League for the Giants at mid-year, Bresnahan made the leap with him. The Giants had Jack Warner and Frank Bowerman as their catchers, so Roger became the centerfielder. The season was a romp. Despite his hefty build, he was fast and agile enough not only to cover the outfield expanse, but to bat leadoff. He played 116 games, got 142 hits and batted a handsome .350, his career high and a mere .005 behind Honus Wagner.

By 1905 Bresnahan was the Giants' first-string catcher. Some say Mathewson urged McGraw to make the move, although Mac had known Roger's capabilities for years and could have figured it for himself, particularly now that he had acquired Turkey Mike Donlin for the outfield. Roger had another good year, hitting .302 and catching 87 games. He caught all five Series games against the Athletics, which meant Matty's three shutouts, Joe McGinnity's one, and Joe's shutout loss to Chief Bender. He also hit a sparkling .313.

Perhaps his most notable contributions to the game were in protective equipment. In 1905, after being hospitalized for a head injury from a beaning, he experimented with a batting helmet manufactured by the A.J. Reach Company. It was like the leather football helmet of the period sliced vertically: one half for covering the left side of a righthanded batter's head, the other for the lefty hitter. Although beanballs were frequent, the idea did not find favor. Two years later he devised catcher's shin guards. The first ones, evidently modeled after a cricketer's leg pads, were large and bulky, with a knee flap that came up to the thigh. They were greeted with ridicule and protest, but soon caught on. By 1909 they had more utilitarian shape and size, and were in general use. About 1908 he improved the flimsy wire catcher's mask with leather-bound rolls of padding to absorb the shock of foul-tips.

In winter that year, McGraw traded his friend to St. Louis. Roger had caught 139 games during the season, but he was 29 and slowing down. McGraw could afford to let him go. He had the young Chief Meyers on deck and the Cardinals eager to make a deal. Long a lackluster club and a cellar-dweller for two years, its owners thought a manager like the fiery Duke of Tralee might energize the players. To get him they gave up three of their few talents: Red Murray, a first-rate outfielder, Bugs Raymond, an eccentric but effective pitcher, and an experienced backup catcher, Admiral Schlei, acquired from Cincinnati.

Manager Bresnahan acquired some good players and got them above .500 and in fifth place by 1911. The Cardinals' owner, Mrs. Schuyler Britton, who had recently inherited the club on the death of her uncle, Stanley Robison, was pleased with the improvement and rewarded Roger with a five-year contract at $10,000 per year, plus a percentage of the profits, if any. During the disappointing sixth-place season of 1912, however, Mrs. Britton, like owners before and since, second-guessed her manager publicly. Roger blistered her ears with some choice dugout repartee and was fired forthwith. Roger demanded to be paid as manager and player for the remaining four years of his contract. The Cardinals, unable to clear waivers for a trade, finally sold him to the Cubs. He backstopped Jimmy Archer in 1913, managed Chicago to a fourth-place finish in 1915, all the while continuing his contract fight with the Cardinals. He finally won a $20,000 settlement. His playing career ended in 1916.

After leaving the major leagues he managed, and for a while he owned Toledo of the American Association. In 1921 he and Jim Thorpe were granted a National Football League franchise, but the team never got off the drawing board. He was owner-manager of his hometown Toledo Mud Hens through 1923, then coached McGraw's Giants (1925-28) and Tigers (1930- 31).

At the age of 64, Bresnahan once again donned the tools of ignorance and caught for Walter Johnson in an exhibition to raise money for war bonds. Bresnahan died in Toledo in 1944 and was elected to the Hall of Fame posthumously in 1945.