• A
  • B
  • C
  • D
  • E
  • F
  • G
  • H
  • I
  • J
  • K
  • L
  • M
  • N
  • O
  • P
  • Q
  • R
  • S
  • T
  • U
  • V
  • W
  • X
  • Y
  • Z

George Bradley

Third Base
  • Series: Beginnings: 1880's
  • City: Sioux City
  • Team: Corn Huskers
  • League: Western Association

George Washington Bradley (1852-1931) groomed for the major leagues with the vaunted Easton, PA club, known as the top amateur squad of the day. He signed with the NA’s St. Louis Brown Stockings in 1875 with a number of teammates. “Grin” (for what may have been his mesmerizing smirk that befuddled batters) hurled a shut-out in his second start against the White Stockings, a feat that came to be known as “Chicagoing” for years after. That promising beginning was completely overshadowed the following year as Bradley led St. Louis to a second-place finish in the new National League. George pitched all but four innings of the ‘76 season and his record and the team’s were identical: 45-19. He led the league in ERA at 1.23. He threw 16 shut-outs. He scored the first NL no-hitter. No one has since exceeded the shut-out record (only Grover Cleveland Alexander tied it). After that remarkable year Grin became a vagabond. He logged 16 cities over the next dozen years. He never came close to such heights on the mound and played infield as much as he pitched. He was a superb-fielding third baseman.

  • A former manager, Frank Bancroft, cast a shadow over Bradley’s career-year. Grin was said to have found a way to access the game ball and smash it with a vise, yielding a malleable sphere to befuddle batters even more than the evil smile

Auction History

Frenchy Genins

  • Series: Beginnings: 1880's
  • City: Sioux City
  • Team: Corn Huskers
  • League: Western Association

C. Frank Genins (1866-1922) had a modest career as a utility fielder for three major league clubs in the 1890s. Frenchy had started out getting paid to play ball with the Omaha Omahogs of the Western League in 1887, en route to a total of 16 years in the minors. He concluded his playing days with the Racine Belles of the Wisconsin-Illinois League in 1909, having also managed in his latter seasons for three teams. Whether in the farm leagues or the bigs, Genins was consistently mediocre at the plate. His MLB average was .226. His most plate appearances came with Sioux City in 1894 where Frenchy had his best output, batting .374 with seven home runs. He exceeded .300 a couple other times so he had some decent seasons along the way. Genins’ stints in the majors were with his hometown Browns in ‘92 (one game?), the Reds for a longer trial that year, the Pirates in ‘95 and with Cleveland’s Blues in 1901. Frenchy had a respectable season in Pittsburgh, hitting .250, playing seven positions, and was the only outfielder to spell the team’s beloved trio of Mike Smith, Patsy Donovan and Jake Stenzel.

  • Frenchy has five known poses in the Old Judge series and all five come in a curious variant: Genins is oftentimes misspelled as "Genius." The editors of the Photographic Baseball Cards of Goodwin & Co. conclude that the misspelling is an error, but I am inclined to disagree. Considering the amount of intentional humor interspersed throughout the Old Judge canon, the fact that the misspelling is prevalent across Frenchy's entries, and perhaps most tellingly that one must only flip an "n" upside down in Genins to turn Frenchy into a "Genius" - and I am inclined to believe that this misspelling was indeed purposeful at the hands of the Goodwin pranksters. 

Auction History

Joe Crotty

  • Series: Beginnings: 1880's
  • City: Sioux City
  • Team: Corn Huskers
  • League: Western Association

Joseph P. Crotty (1860-1926) was a catcher in two leagues: the American and Union Associations. He was in these organizations with 4 clubs from 1882 to 1886. Before, during and after these years in the “major leagues,” Crotty floated among numerous minor league franchises including the Sioux City Corn Huskers in whose uniform he appeared in the Old Judge series for 1889. A journeyman receiver, Crotty had a typically anemic batting average (.170 in MLB) but fared 100 points higher when in the lower echelons. His career did allow him to see the country: as far east as Syracuse, south to Jackson and west to Helena. Joe’s initial year, 1882, was also a year of firsts for his two clubs. He began in Louisville with the new Eclipse squad and then was picked up by Chris von der Ahe’s St. Louis Brown Stockings. This enabled him to be present at the creation of the Cardinals as the controversial owner brought the team into the American Association.

  • Joe’s other ML clubs were the Cincinnati Outlaw Reds and the NY Metropolitans
  • The Reds played in the UA’s only season, 1884, affording Crotty another chance to make a kind of history

Auction History