Frank Selee

  • Card series: Pioneer Portraits II: 1875-1899
  • City: Boston
  • Team: Beaneaters
  • League: National League
  • Hall: National Baseball Hall of Fame

Frank Gibson Selee (1859-1909) was on the way to becoming the greatest baseball manager of all time when tuberculosis drove him out of the game he had mastered. For sixteen years, 1890-1905, Selee molded teams that found ways to win. He placed players on the field like a chess grandmaster, using their talents in ways they didn’t even recognize in themselves. He treated his players fairly and as men, not cogs in a machine. And they responded to him, setting records for games won. Frank’s Beaneaters won five titles. He went out to Chicago and rebuilt a floundering squad, recruiting the likes of Mordecai Brown and carefully putting together the pieces of a legendary infield. Illness forced him to pass the baton to Frank Chance, but it is clear that Chicago’s four pennants were a testament to Selee’s managerial acumen.

  • Frank’s genius was in organizing men to get the best results from them. His players hit for power unlike any until the Babe’s Yankees yet also innovated many of the finesse plays: hit and run, hitting behind the runner, double-plays
  • A dozen of Selee’s charges would precede him into Cooperstown
  • Elected to Hall of Fame: 1999

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