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Roger Connor

First Base
  • Series: 1880s: Loving Paupers
  • City: New York
  • Team: Giants
  • League: National League
  • Hall: National Baseball Hall of Fame

Roger Connor (1857-1931) was the home run king of the 19th century, clouting 138 in his 18-year career. His record stood for 23 years after his retirement, until Babe Ruth surpassed him in 1921. Connor anchored first-base for five teams, winning pennants twice with the Giants. His flair for the dramatic was never more evident than when he struck the first-ever major league grand slam with his team down by three with two outs in the ninth. Born in Connecticut, Roger played for local clubs until joining the Troy Trojans in 1880. That NY hamlet witnessed five future Hall of Famers on their squad with Connor playing alongside Dan Brouthers, Buck Ewing, Tim Keefe and Mickey Welch. After moving to the Gothams, the 6’3” Connor inspired owner Jim Mutrie to proclaim the team “my giants!” and a new identity was born.

  • Much more than a slugger, Connor won the NL batting title in 1885 and consistently hit .300+ while exhibiting remarkable speed for a big man (still fifth all-time in triples)
  • Connor lived to see Ruth claim his HR title. It was thought at the time, however, that Connor had hit 131 HRS and Ruth's record was celebrated at 132. Writing for SABR in 1975, John tattersall discovered that Connor had actually hit 138 HRs.
  • Jay Jaffe's JAWS system ranks Connor as the 5th greatest 1st baseman of all-time, just behind Cap Anson and just ahead of Jeff Bagwell
  • Beloved by fans and the baseball press, he had a particularly strong advocate for the Hall in fellow legend, umpire Bill Klem
  • Elected to Hall of Fame: 1976

Auction History


Old Judge Pose: 88-3

1873 Boston Red Stockings Team Cab

  • Series: 1873 Boston Red Stockings Team Cab
  • City: Boston
  • Team: Red Stockings (NAPBBP)
  • League: National Association (NAPBBP)
  • Hall: National Baseball Hall of Fame

Description under construction.





























Auction History

Cristóbal Torriente

  • Series: Diamond Heads '15
  • City: Havana
  • Team: Leones
  • League: Cuban National League
  • Hall: Cuban Baseball Hall of Fame, National Baseball Hall of Fame

Cristobal Torriente (1893-1938) had the Babe Ruth build (stocky with spindly, slightly bowed legs) and, more than that, he had a Ruthian swat. He punched his ticket to the Hall of Fame by starring in Cuba and America’s Negro Leagues. In 1920 he was dubbed the “Black Babe Ruth” during an off-season exhibition against Torriente’s Almendares club versus the New York Giants who brought the Babe along. Per his Cooperstown plaque, Cristobal outhit and out-homered the Sultan of Swat over the nine game series, earning a nickname for the ages. Like the best Cuban players, Torriente had been playing at home and in the States for black franchises since 1913. He soon caught the attention of J. L. Wilkinson who signed him for the “All Nations” squad for several years. He helped lead the Chicago American Giants to the first three pennants in the Negro League. The left-handed batter (the Ruth parallels just kept coming) not only hit for power but was often around .400. Fleet of foot (sorry Babe) Torriente was a marvel in the outfield despite his physique and he had a great arm. A rival manager, C.I. Taylor, once remarked “If I see Torriente walking up the other side of the street, I would say, ‘There walks a ballclub.’” He averaged .344 over a long career in black baseball and set the Cuban Winter Leagues record at .350 overall.

  • Sadly there was another way in which Torriente patterned himself after Ruth. He loved the nightlife and frequently over-indulged which led to fights with umpires and management. His alcoholism took a dire toll, plunging the slugger into poverty where he fell victim to tuberculosis and an all-too-early death at 44
  • The Cuban Hall of Fame was inaugurated a few weeks after Cooperstown’s. Torriente was among the initial class of ten in 1939
  • Elected to Hall of Fame: 2006

Auction History

Edd Roush

  • Series: Diamond Heads '15
  • City: Indianapolis
  • Team: Hoosiers (FL)
  • League: Federal League
  • Hall: National Baseball Hall of Fame

Edd J. Roush (1893-1988) was an Indiana farm boy who knew his own mind. He built a Hall of Fame career on doing things his way. Spring training? Not for Edd, he stayed in shape. Use a bat heavier than any other player? Why not? His farm-bred arm strength allowed him to hit the ball wherever he chose with the weight of the bat doing most of the work. Stand still in the box awaiting the pitch? Not for Edd. He'd move his feet after the ball left the pitcher's hand, positioning himself according to his read. Endure management's miserly ways? No, Edd would hold out every year for a fairer contract. He'd skip to pirate leagues (the Federals) if necessary to find a better salary, something he had done as a school-boy player in Hoosier country and continued throughout his long and storied major league tenure. It took a few years in the bigs and a curious impatience by renowned manager John McGraw to get Edd to Cincinnati and the stage on which he would set records. Twice he edged out Rogers Hornsby for batting titles. He led the Reds to the Series championship in 1919, only to have that accomplishment tarnished by scandal. There is little doubt he was right in asserting that his club was better than Chicago's and really won it fair and square. During his twelve years with the Reds, Roush's batting average was .331. He never struck out more than 25 times in a season. He was fast on the bases and a terror in center, regarded as perhaps the premier defender of the Dead Ball era with Tris Speaker the competition.

  • McGraw sent young Edd from the Giants to Cincy in 1916 along with two other future Hall-of-Famers: Bill McKechnie and Christy Mathewson. Matty was tickled to get a manager position and Edd and Bill were thrilled to get out from under the tough taskmaster McGraw
  • When Edd threw out the ball at the last game played at Crosley Field, Joe Morgan said Roush was “the best of us all.”
  • Elected to Hall of Fame: 1962

Auction History

Hugh Duffy

  • Series: Beginnings: 1880's
  • City: Chicago
  • Team: White Stockings
  • League: National League
  • Hall: National Baseball Hall of Fame

Hugh Duffy (1866-1954) is as much a baseball institution as the Hall of Fame that enshrines him. For 68 years he devoted himself to the game he loved and excelled at as few ever have. In 1894 he set the all-time mark with a .440 average while winning the triple crown. He made HOF pitchers look like batting practice coaches: .586 against John Clarkson, .650 vs Cy Young. Amos Rusie was the exception, holding Duffy to a mere .333. So diminutive Cap Anson nearly dismissed him (“We already have a bat boy”), Hugh hustled his way to becoming the only player to hit .300 in four leagues and let the power follow his form (“hit ‘em up the middle”) winning two HR titles. Duffy went on to coach, manage, scout and mentor for a half-century after hanging up his spikes. He was still hitting fungoes eight years after his induction into Cooperstown and delighted in pupil Ted Williams’ success as he sought in vain to eclipse Duffy’s record in 1941.

  • Playing career spanned 19 years, primarily in Chicago, Boston and Philadelphia
  • Played center field for the Beaneaters next to his “Heavenly Twin,” Tommy McCarthy in right, leading Boston to a pair of pennants
  • Elected to Hall of Fame: 1945

Auction History