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Go Back Forums > Net54baseball Main Forum - WWII & Older Baseball Cards > Net54baseball Vintage (WWII & Older) Baseball Cards & New Member Introductions

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Old 03-10-2004, 12:22 PM
Archive Archive is offline
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 58,359
Default Who wants to read a short story about the Syracuse Stars!

Posted By: John(z28jd)

Heres a brief summary of the team i wrote awhile back but never did anything with.I dont even remember if this was finished or not but why not share it with everyone(its not the best but you get what you pay for)....

The very brief history of the National League in Syracuse started back in 1879 with the addition of the Stars as they were known,and was a rocky relationship to begin with.For starters,the team did not want to cooperate with the NL's policy of charging 50 cents a game for tickets(75 for cushioned seats which was a good chuck of change back then).
The Stars previously were an independant team ,very successful members of the International Association and were recruited by the NL because they were one of the best teams at the time not in the NL already.The Stars and Buffalo would replace the teams from Milwaukee and Indianapolis while Troy and Cleveland also got new teams to make the NL an 8 team league again for the first time since 1876.
Debuting on May 1st the Stars played their home games at Newell Park,except on sundays because of local city ordinance which disallowed sunday baseball,the team played at a field not suitable for baseball in the nearby town of Geddes,NY at Lakeside Park.
The players included Harry McCormick who was the team star of the day compiling 142 wins the 3 previous seasons but against major league hitting his teammates were unable to provide enough offense(hitting just .237 as a team and finishing just percentage points ahead of the Cleveland Blues who had the worst average in the league) to help him and despite his 2.99 era and 49 complete games he finished with just a 18-33 record.McCormick went on to play 3 more seasons in the NL,having a more respectable record of 23-25 in 49 games the rest of the way.Fielding also hurt this team,commiting nearly 400 errors during the season.The team also was very young,averaging just 24 years of age.
The teams leading hitter, 21 year old second baseman,Jack Farrell hit .303 (.036 higher than any other regular)before finishing the season with Providence.He went on to have a long major league career spent mostly with Providence.
Going into the seaon,only 4 opening day players had prior major league experience.
Mike Dorgan who appeared for St Louis in 1877,played every position for the Stars and also was 1 of 3 managers to guide the club that year stepping aside 43 games into the year with a 17-26 record(the team went just 5-22 the rest of the way)Dorgan also pitched 2 games,with no record.
Billy Holbert,who appeared with Louisville and Milwaukee, hit just .201 on the season as the starting catcher,just 7 points below his 12 year career average of .208 . Holbert took over as manager for Dorgan for one game,a losing effort,which was his only ML managing appearance.
John McGuiness who batted 294 in 12 games at 1stbase for the Stars appeared in just 1 game for the 1876 NY Mutuals and later played for Philadelphia of the Union Asociation.
George Creamer who hit just .217 in 15 games mostly at 2nd base(also played sparingly at ss/of)had appeared with the Milwaukee Greys the previous season as a teammate of Billy Holbert.He played 5 more years,finishing up with Pittsburgh of the AA.
Other players included Blondie Purcell, pitcher/outfielder who had a 4-15 record and led the team with 25 rbi's batting .260 also went on to have a long career,playing 11 more seasons.In 1887 he drove in 90 runs and stole 88 bases while playing a league leading 140 games for Baltimore of the AA
Starting 1st baseman Hicks Carpenter,who also played 3rd base and some outfield,and later went on to be a decent 3rd baseman in the majors batted just .203 for the team.He played 11 more seasons,including 1882 when he led the league in hits and rbi's while playing for Cincinnati of the American Association.
Jimmy Macullar known as Little Mac,who played shortstop and outfield had the uneviable task of finishing the season as manager finishing just 5-21 while hitting just .211 in the process.He played another 5 mediocre years in the AA,finishing with just a 208 average and had 2 years of 68 errors at short.
Mike Mansell played 67 games in the outfield,just 21 years old he hit 215 and hit one of just 5 homers for the stars,mccormick,dorgan,richmond and farrell hit the others making them tied for franchise all-time lead in homers.Those 5 homers ranked them 4th in the league.Boston with 20 homers led the league,led by Charley Jones with 9.Mansell went on to play 4 more seasons in the NL and AA,finishing with a 239 lifetime average
Tom "Brick"Mansell who came over from the Troy team appeared in just 1 game for the Stars,hitting a single in 4 at-bats while playing flawless outfield.His only other ML exp. came in 83-84 and he played for 6 teams in his brief career.Mike Mansell(younger) and Tom were brothers
John Richmond appeared as a shortstop and outfielder(2 games caught)He batted 213 in 62 games and played 6 more seasons(for 5 different teams) finishing with a .238 average over 440 games.He played part of one season in the defunct National Association in 1875 but did not appear in the NL till 1879.

John "Kick"Kelly hit just .111 in 10 games,8 at catcher,2 in OF,played only 6 more games in his career,all for Troy in 1879.He was the opening day catcher
Jack Allen who batted .188 in 11 games(8 at 3rdbase where he made 10 errors,and 3 in the OF) finished up his ML career later that season with the Cleveland Blues.
Red Woodhead who batted just .160 in 34 games all at 3rd base,where he made 27 errors and had just 2 rbis in 131 at-bats.Woodhead did appear in 1 game in the National Association before the start of the NL(1871)He died just 2 years after he career ended with the Stars.

George Adams,who joined the team on June 14th went 3-14 with 3 singles while playing 1stbase/outfield and lasted just 4 games with the team.That would be his only ML experience.
Charles Osterhout who had 0 hits in 8 at-bats joined the team shortly after Adams left but lasted just 2 games and would also never play in the majors again.He appeared in one game at catcher and on in the outfield
Frank Decker,C/1B/OF went 1-10 in 3 games and later appeared in 2 games for St.L of the AA in 1882.He joined Syracuse on June 25th after Ousterhout left.

Some interesting notes on the season include Harry McCormick hits a HR in the first and then makes it stand up by beating Boston's Tommy Bond 1-0. This will be the only time in ML history that a pitcher wins his own 1-0 game with first-inning HR

An unusual base-path occurrence is the feature in Syracuse. The Star runner from 2B, Mike Dorgan, passes the man from 3B, Hick Carpenter, and crosses the plate before Carpenter is tagged out. There is as yet no specific rule about passing preceding runners, but the umpire calls both men out. The Stars beat Boston 6-5.

The team finally,after falling $2,500 in debt were disbanded by its president Hamilton S White on Sept,11 of that year and forfeited the rest of its games finishing their NL life with just a 22-48 record.The Stars folded after winning their final game. Having played Troy only 6 times, the official NL standings are adjusted so that only the first 6 games of the total each team played versus Syracuse would count. This adds a game to Providence's lead.They would be replaced in the NL by the Worchester Ruby Legs to start the 1880 season.

There was a Syracuse team that also went by the name Stars in the American Association in 1890,but their stay was brief too,lasting just one full season.

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