Al Reach

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  • Card series: Athletic of Philadelphia: 1874
  • City: Philadelphia
  • Team: Athletics (NAPBBP)
  • League: National Association (NAPBBP)

This cabinet is currently on the drawing board and is coming soon.

Alfred James Reach (1840-1928) “served baseball with distinction as player, organizer, club owner and provider of the equipment to attain the highest possible skill in the game,” per his own Reach’s Official Base Ball Guide upon his death. “A good man, of the kindest impulses, his name will last as long as we have baseball” expressed the legacy of one of the great men of the early era of America’s game. The London-born, Brooklyn-raised Reach joked that he made the gloves he eschewed in the beginnings of the game in which he starred for the Brooklyn Eckfords and Philadelphia Athletics. He also made the AL’s balls while owning the NL Phillies franchise. A genius for marketing equipment and a lifelong love of the game made him one of the most influential figures of baseball’s first half-century.

  • Began play in the amateur era and was a stalwart of the NABBP, first with the Brooklyn Eckfords from 1861-1864, then with the old Athletics of Philadelphia, from 1865-1870
  • Made the transition with the Athletics from the NABBP to the NAPBBP in 1871, helping the team win the first professional baseball pennant that year
  • Retired from play with the demise of the NAPBBP after the 1875 season
  • Founded the NL’s Philadelphia club in 1883, still going strong today as the Philadelphia Phillies
  • Built the first modern ballpark in 1887, then rebuilt it with steel after a fire in ‘94
  • Al’s brother Bob Reach was an MLB shortstop for 3 games, 1872-1873
  • Was the 80th player to debut in MLB