Ed McKean

  • Card series: Beginnings: 1880's
  • City: Cleveland
  • Team: Spiders
  • League: National League

Edwin John McKean (1864-1919) was Cleveland’s shortstop throughout their major league existence in the 19th century. He began with the Blues (Forest Cities) in 1887 and remained with the club as it became the Spiders. The Robisons transferred their players to their St Louis team in 1899 where McKean finished his MLB tenure as a Perfecto. Baseball’s official guides list Ed’s year of birth as 1864 but biographer Rich Blevins makes the case that McKean may have been but a callow youth when he debuted with American Association Blues. Blevins presents evidence that McKean was born in 1869, making him a mere 17 as a big-league rookie. He had come up with the Youngstowns in 1884 and got his first professional hit off Cannon Ball Bill Stemmyer. He and “Stem” would be teammates with the Spiders in ‘88. McKean was a fine hitter, compiling a .302 BA over his 13 years in the majors. His career OBP was .364.

  • Career offensive stats rank McKean with the greats of his era: he is one of only four 19th century players to have 2000 hits, 1000 runs, 1000 RBI, and 300 stolen bases
  • Steady and durable, he always had 500+ at-bats

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