Spike Shannon

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William Porter Shannon

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Biographical Information[edit]

Outfielder Spike Shannon starred with the St. Paul Saints in the early American Association, hitting .344 with 471 at-bats and stole 41 bases in 1902. He repeated his base-stealing prowess the following season by replicating his 41 steals, hitting .308 and leading the league in runs scored with 132.

For the 1904 season, Shannon joined the St. Louis Cardinals, becoming a big leaguer at the age of 26. With 34 swipes with St. Louis, Shannon proved his cunning on the base paths, likely the origin of his unique moniker.

Shannon returned to the American Association after five successful seasons in the majors. As a workhorse with the Kansas City Blues in 1909, his performance was a shadow of its earlier majesty, hitting .210 in 162 games/601 at-bats. The following year he picked things up considerably, hitting .246 in 169 games with a weighty 620 at-bats.

All told in his American Association career, Shannon appeared in 638 games, with 2,389 at bats, scoring 437 runs with 641 hits. His 57 doubles and 25 triples further testify to his fleet feet, underscored by 156 stolen bases. The garden fielder's .268 career batting average belied a solid career in pro ball.

After his playing career ended, Shannon became an umpire in the Federal League in 1914 and 1915, working a total of 177 games. According to a New York Times article, in his final game on August 7, 1915 in Newark, Shannon and his partner Jim Johnstone had to be rescued from fans storming on the field after a Newark loss to Indianapolis.

Notable Achievements[edit]

  • NL At Bats Leader (1907)
  • NL Runs Leader (1907)
  • NL Singles Leader (1906)
  • 100 Runs Seasons: 1 (1907)

Related Sites[edit]