Bid McPhee

From BR Bullpen

Bid McPhee.jpg

John Alexander McPhee

  • Bats Right, Throws Right
  • Height 5' 8", Weight 152 lb.

Inducted into Hall of Fame in 2000

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Biographical Information[edit]

"The glove business has gone a little too far. True, hot-hit balls do sting a little at the opening of the season, but after you get used to it, there is no trouble on that score." - Bid McPhee, on playing barehanded

"Nobody . . . pulled off the plays that McPhee did . . . second basemen may come and second basemen may go, but it will take a Corker to eclipse "King Bid's" great work afield." - from Sporting Life, June 24, 1911

Bid McPhee was a Hall of Fame second baseman best known as the last player to play the field without a fielder's glove. McPhee broke into the majors in 1882 with the American Association's Cincinnati Red Stockings. He stayed with the Red Stockings, who moved to the National League and changed their name to the Reds in 1890, for his entire career. If the National Association is considered to be a major league, McPhee was the only 19th Century Hall of Famer to play his entire major league career for the same team.

McPhee was a good but not outstanding hitter, with an average batting average and power and above average on-base skill, and an excellent baserunner, with more than 500 stolen bases. His exact stolen base total is unknown because stolen bases were not an official statistic for his entire career. He was better known as an outstanding fielder who routinely led the league in fielding percentage despite his refusal to wear a glove. When he finally gave in and started wearing a glove (in 1896), he set a new record for fielding percentage that lasted for more than 20 years.

"Old timers remember him as 'King Bid', one of the most graceful men who ever guarded the keystone of the diamond. McPhee made hard plays look as easy as falling off a log and he was about the last to don a glove in action." - Sporting Life, August 31, 1912

Shortly after retiring as a player in 1899, McPhee rejoined the Reds as a manager, albeit without much success. He led the team to a last place finish in 1901 and was replaced as manager with a record of 27-37 in 1902. He also scouted for the Reds.

A SABR publication indicates that McPhee was a bookkeeper by trade and loved to go hunting. In the winter after 1887 he played barnstorming games in California.

The San Francisco Call newspaper dated August 11, 1907 reports that McPhee "is successful business man in Cincinnati". See here for the newspaper.

McPhee died in 1943. He was cremated and his ashes were placed in the mausoleum at Cypress View Memorial Gardens in San Diego, California.

McPhee was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2000 as a selection of the Veterans Committee. He was inducted into the Cincinnati Reds Hall of Fame in 2002.

Some or all content from this article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Bid McPhee". Some of the content is not from Wikipedia.

Famous Last[edit]

Last player to take the field without a glove

Notable Achievements[edit]

  • AA Triple Leader (1887)
  • AA Home Runs Leader (1886)
  • 100 Runs Scored Seasons: 10 (1884, 1886, 1887 & 1889-1895)
  • 50 Stolen Bases Seasons: 4 (1887-1890)
  • Baseball Hall of Fame: Class of 2000

Preceded by
Bob Allen
Cincinnati Reds Manager
Succeeded by
Joe Kelley

Year-By-Year Managerial Record[edit]

Year Team League Record Finish Organization Playoffs Notes
1901 Cincinnati Reds National League 52-87 8th Cincinnati Reds
1902 Cincinnati Reds National League 27-37 -- Cincinnati Reds Replaced by Frank Bancroft on July 11

Records Held[edit]

  • Putouts, second baseman, career, 6552
  • Putouts, second baseman, season, 529, 1886
  • Triple plays, career, 9 (tied)
  • Triple plays, second baseman, career, 9

Further Reading[edit]

  • David L. Fleitz: "Bid McPhee", in Ghosts in the Gallery at Cooperstown: Sixteen Little-Known Members of the Hall of Fame, McFarland, Jefferson, NC, 2004, pp. 216-228. ISBN 978-0-7864-1749-0

Related Sites[edit]