Emil Geiss

Pitcher
  • Series: 1880s: Loving Paupers
  • City: Chicago
  • Team: White Stockings
  • League: National League

Emil Geiss (1865-1911) emigrated from his birthplace, Villmar Germany, to Chicago. The youngster began his experience in professional baseball out in Colorado with the Pueblo Pastimes of the CO State League in 1885. The scanty records for minor league play in those days record Emil started two games, finished them both and went 1-1. There is no data for Geiss’ activities the following year, but one might suppose he did something somewhere to impress the Chicago White Stockings as the National League power thought fit to sign Emil for the ‘87 season. Whatever Cap Anson’s hopes were, they died aborning as Geiss languished with the team. He got shelled in his one start (11 runs, eight earned) and not only left the major leagues, he left his adopted land. Geiss signed the following two seasons with London Ontario Canada’s Tecumsehs of the International Association and stayed for the 1889 campaign when the Tecumsehs joined the International League. In those two years Geiss was 21-21 . But for his sole outing in Chicago, he would have completed his pro tenure with a symmetrical record of 22-22.

  • There is no doubt Emil belonged in the pitcher’s box as his hitting gave no indication he could perform anywhere else. He never cracked the .200 mark and was one for 12 with the White Stockings. His three errors in his brief time in the majors suggest it wasn’t just his bat that would be a detriment to longevity at that level
  • The reason Geiss had twelve at bats in Chicago is that Anson put him at first base and second base in two other appearances
  • Emil’s older brother Bill also saw major league duty, playing two seasons. He debuted with Baltimore in the American Association in 1882 and then joined the Detroit Wolverines of the NL in ‘84

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