Skyrocket Smith

From BR Bullpen

Skyrocket Smith.jpg

Samuel J. Smith

  • Bats Right, Throws Unknown
  • Height 6' 2", Weight 170 lb.

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Biographical Information[edit]

Samuel J. "Skyrocket" Smith hit well in his one season in the majors, by virtue of his ability to draw walks and hit for some power. He was the regular first baseman for the Louisville Colonels in 1888, hitting .238/.349/.335 in 58 games for the team at age 25. The league that year hit .238 but with lower OBP and SLG than Smith had.

Smith was in only 58 of the team's 139 games, but it was enough to lead the team in appearances at first base. Three other players also had at least 23 games at the position that year.

Born in St. Louis, MO in 1863, Smith was playing in the minors by age 21.

The Great Encyclopedia of Nineteenth Century Major League Baseball has a photo of the 1888 Colonels including Smith. He looks tall and slender, and sports a handlebar moustache like some of the other players.

He is the only major leaguer through 2011 with the nickname Skyrocket. Sporting Life, however, called him Sam.

"Sam Smith, our much-heralded first baseman, is also in town. . . In appearance Smith is all that has been promised. He is more than six feet high, is powerfully built, and looks as if he ought to hit the ball almost, if not quite, as well as Pete Browning does. - Sporting Life's Louisville correspondent, in the March 28, 1888 issue

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