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Frank Schulte

  • Series: Diamond Heads '15
  • City: Chicago
  • Team: Cubs
  • League: National League

Frank M. Schulte (1882-1949) played for his local minor league franchise, the New York State League’s Syracuse Stars, for three years before being discovered by the National League’s Chicago club, who bought his contract and brought him up at the end of the 1904 season. The team was being called the “Cubs” by sportswriters, a name that wouldn’t be official until 1907. By any name, “Wildfire” Schulte made a big impact. He was a solid-hitting outfielder who became a mainstay in West Side Park's outfield as the Cubs won four pennants and two World Series during his long tenure. Frank must have really liked the play “Wildfire” he once saw in Mississippi: He named his racehorse after the play and would earn the sobriquet for himself by teammates who clearly appreciated his spirit.

Schulte’s above average hitting (career 115 OPS+) was reliable, but he proved particularly clutch in the post-season, where he averaged .321 across 21 World Series' contests. Such fortuitous timing would further Schulte's legacy in yet another remarkable achievement: his spectacular campaign of 1911 just-so-happened to coincide with the inaugural presentation of the Chalmers Award; essentially MLB's very first MVP award, which was gifted to the "most important and useful player to the club and to the league." The prior season, Hugh Chalmers decided to spark car sales for his automotive company by offering a new model to the players with the highest batting averages in each league. The ensuing fiasco involving Ty Cobb and Nap Lajoie prompted Chalmers to revise the award in 1911 to be gifted to the leagues' “MVPs” and Schulte's career year-for-the-ages couldn't have been better timed.

Schulte’s 1911 MVP Award season:

  • 154 games, 105 runs, 173 hits, 30 doubles, 21 triples, league-leading 21 HR, 107 RBI, 23 stolen bases, league-leading .534 slugging, league-leading OPS+ 156, league-leading 308 total bases
  • With the performance, Schulte became the first person in MLB history to have 20 or more doubles, triples, home runs and stolen bases in the same season
  • Schulte's achievement would stand unmatched for 46 years, until Willie Mays duplicated the feat in 1957


  • Schulte earned his nickname by a ferocious approach to base running that saw him steal home 22 times
  • Famed shortstop Joe Tinker’s Chicago career spanned Wildfire’s and Schulte inspired Tinker to speculate that no “quainter or more original character ever existed in the National Pastime.” One eccentricity was Schulte’s penchant for scouring the sidewalks looking for hairpins, auguring success at the plate.
  • Another testimony to Frank’s batting prowess was his thirteen-game hit streak during his four World Series appearances, which still ranks him fourth all-time, tied with Harry Hooper and Derek Jeter
  • Schulte closed out his time in Chicago with the 1916 season. He spent the next three years with three teams and went on to play in the International League and Pacific Coast League through 1922 before retiring to live in Oakland, CA


For a brief but wonderful account of the history of the Chalmers Award, including a review of the events of 1910 surrounding the controversy between Ty Cobb & Nap Lajoie, check out this Ars Longa guest blog post by Van Nightingale: Did They Get it Right?



  • This card is not included in the 100-card Diamond Heads '15 base set.
  • This card is one of the rewards you receive for completing the Ars Longa Clubhouse Challenge: Chalmers Awards Winners
  • This card is exclusive to that challenge, is gifted freely to winners of the challenge, and is neither bartered nor sold otherwise by Ars Longa.
  • This is one of two such Diamond Heads '15 Clubhouse Challenge reward cards. The other is Franklin Pierce Adams.

Auction History

Hippo Vaughn

  • Series: Diamond Heads '15
  • City: Chicago
  • Team: Cubs
  • League: National League

James Leslie Vaughn (1888-1966) threw to his catcher for an easy out in the tenth inning of a game against Cincinnati one cold afternoon in Chicago. The catcher stood with his hands at his side, the ball bounced off his chest protector and Hippo’s no-hit bid ended, along with the ballgame. The opposing pitcher, Fred Toney, recorded three more outs to get his own no-hitter. Vaughn’s response after such a curious debacle?: “…I wasn’t sore, I’s just lost another ballgame, that’s all.” Clearly Vaughn shed any disappointment as he went out the next season and led the Cubs and the league, winning the “triple crown” for pitchers. Hippo was one of the premier hurlers in baseball over a six year span but his loss to the Reds in the game’s only “double-no-hitter” will forever leave an indelible mark.

  • Recorded five 20-win seasons en route to 178 career victories
  • Pitched for NY 1908-12, Washington in 1912 and the Cubs from 1913-1921
  • No one knows how this strong 6’4” 215 lb workhorse acquired the unflattering nickname

Auction History

Hank O’Day

  • Series: Diamond Heads '15
  • City: Chicago
  • Team: Cubs
  • League: National League
  • Hall: National Baseball Hall of Fame

“The Reverend” (1859-1935). O’Day was a pitcher & occasional position player over 7 ML seasons for 5 teams. Hank then umpired for 30 years, interrupting his tenure twice: to manage the Cincinnati Reds in 1912 and the Chicago Cubs in 1914.

  • Member of ’89 Champion Giants
  • Umpired 10 World Series
  • Officiated Merkle’s Boner
  • Called 4 no-hitters in 4 decades
  • Only person to play, manage & umpire in NL
  • Elected to Hall of Fame: 2013

Auction History

Roger Bresnahan

  • Series: Diamond Heads '15
  • City: Chicago
  • Team: Cubs
  • League: National League
  • Hall: National Baseball Hall of Fame

Roger Bresnahan (1879-1944) played every position but came into his own as a lead-off-hitting catcher and battery mate to Christy Mathewson for John McGraw’s Giants. Innovation took guts in a rowdy era and he had the fortitude to introduce shin guards, batting helmets and padded masks over the protests of other clubs and the pelting of irate fans (who didn’t have to catch Mathewson.)

  • Batted .350 in 1903, trailing only Honus Wagner’s .355 and Fred Clarke’s .351
  • Elected to Hall of Fame the year after his death: 1945

Auction History

Heinie Zimmerman

Third Base
  • Series: Pilgrims
  • City: Chicago
  • Team: Cubs
  • League: National League

Henry Zimmerman (1887-1969) found it tough to break into the Tinker/Evers/Chance infield in Chicago, but once Johnny Evers went out with an injury in 1910, Zimmerman’s bat proved too valuable to deny. Another loss at third in 1912 opened further opportunities for the talented New Yorker. Recent research supports the restoration of Heinie’s career-year Triple Crown, long withheld due to the era’s dodgy stats for RBI, coupled with an even dodgier reputation for a player eventually banned from the game on testimony of John McGraw. Always a lightning rod, The Great Zimbasked in celebrity and lived large. Parlaying the “strongest pair of hands and arms…ever seen on a human being” he swung with blithe disregard for the strike zone. Leaving the Cubs for his hometown Giants in 1916 proved fateful. Branded the goat of the ‘17 Series, Zim never overcame suspicions of shady dealings, resulting in a 1921 banishment by Judge Landis.

  • Career .295 average, with 58 HRs and 796 RBI
  • Played for the last Cub championship in 1908 and three other pennant-winners
  • For decades Honus Wagner’s 102 RBI had been deemed to exceed Heinie’s 99 until SABR’s exhaustive study validated 104

Auction History


T201 Mecca Canvas: Nap Rucker