Joe Tinker, Johnny Evers and Frank Chance formed the defensive core of the most formidable team in big league baseball, leading the Chicago Cubs to four National League pennants and two World Series championships from 1906 to 1910. In his book “Tinker to Evers to Chance,” author David Rapp takes a rare look at one of baseball’s first dynasties in action.

Speaker Biography: Author David Rapp spent more than 20 years at Congressional Quarterly serving as editor and senior vice president. A former board member of the National Press Foundation, Rapp has worked as a newspaper beat reporter in Memphis, Cincinnati and Pittsburgh.

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>> Susan Reyburn: Okay
are we ready to roll? All right. Hello and thank you
all for coming. I'm Susan Reyburn, Curator
of Baseball Americana, an exhibition currently running
here in the Jefferson Building and continuing through
July of 2019. If you haven't had
a chance to check it out yet, I hope you will soon. Perhaps even this afternoon after you've gotten your new
Tinker to Evers to Chance book, had it signed by the
author and it's available for purchase behind you
in the entryway there. So today as we close
out our 3-part series on new baseball publications
and prepare to watch the Los Angeles Dodgers
win their third World Series, win their first World
Series in 30 years, the library is delighted
to have with us David Rapp, author of Tinker to Evers
to Chance: The Chicago Cubs and the Dawn of Modern America. David spent more than 20 years at Congressional
Quarterly serving as editor and senior vice president. He's a former board member of
the National Press Foundation and he mastered his craft as a hard-boiled newspaper
beat reporter in Memphis, Cincinnati and Pittsburgh. As the book's title
suggests, there's more here than the makings of a story
double play trio made immortal in 1910 through the
poetic musings of New York newspaper
columnist Franklin Pierce Adams. In addition to seeing what
made the threesome tick and the dynamics of the Cubs
early 20th Century dynasty, the book illumines for us the
City of Chicago in the years after it grabbed the
world's attention as host of the World Columbian
Exposition. This is a fascinating read
whether you are a baseball fan who likes history on the
side or a history buff who likes a large
helping of baseball. After the talk there will
be time for questions. So ladies and gentlemen,
David Rapp. [ Applause ] >> David Rapp: Thank you. I've lost the, let's
try this again here. That'll work. These are the saddest
of possible words, Tinker to Evers to Chance. A trio of bear cubs
and freer than birds, Tinker and Evers and Chance. Ruthlessly pricking our gonfalon
bubble making a giant hit into a double. Words that are heavy
with nothing but trouble. Tinker to Evers to Chance. So that's the way most of us
know about these three guys is through this poem that Susan
mentioned written in 1910 by a newspaper columnist in
New York, who actually is from Chicago and was
a lifelong Cubs fan. And that's also obviously
the top, the reason I wrote
the book was to find out a little bit
more about them. As Susan said, I'm a journalist
by training and profession. I'm not, I'm going to
have to back off here. I worked at Congressional Corley and Roll Call [phonetic]
for 30 years. I started out as a sports
writer for my hometown newspaper in Evansville, Indiana, and
went on and have been trying to cover sports ever since. I got sidetracked into
politics for about 40 years and I tell you this
is a lot more fun, but I've also been
a Chicago Cubs fan since I was 10 years old. My dad got his PhD in
University of Wisconsin over the course of 13 summers. So I took the family up
there every year and we lived across the hall the
first year from a lawyer, law student from Chicago,
who brainwashed me right then and told me I needed
to be rooting for Ernie Banks not Mickey
Mantle or any of the things that all the other kids were. Little did I realize that
my passion and loyalty of the Cubs would never
be requited through most of my lifetime until
just 2 years ago, but that's what got me into
this topic to begin with. These 3 guys, Joe Tinker, Johnny
Evers or Evers as they say it up in Troy, New York, where
he's from, and Frank Chance where the shortstop,
second baseman and first baseman player/manager
of the Chicago Cubs from 1903 to 1912 was there
period of time. They're immortalized by Frank
Adams, Franklin P. Adams, who was a member of
the, a charter member of the Algonquin Roundtable,
which included people like Robert Benchley
and Dorothy Parker, but at the time 1910 he was
just a, wrote a humor column for the New York Evening
Standard and included a lot of poetry and things like
that including his own, and the story goes that he had
finished up his column one day and was on his way up to catch
a ballgame in the Polo Grounds where the American League
Highlanders were playing. And he got a call from the
composing room just as he was about to leave saying his
column was 8 lines short. So he had to come up with
8 lines and there was on his desk a newspaper from
about the game the day before in Chicago between the Cubs
and the Giants and deep down, the Cubs had won the
game 4 to 2 with the help of a rally killing play
in the 7th inning and deep down the box score he saw
it said double play Tinker to Evers to Chance. And so that led to this little
piece of doggerel he produced, which turned out to be probably
the second most famous poem about baseball after Casey
and the Bat, Casey at the Bat. And caused a sensation, a
viral media sensation of 1910. The newspapers would reprint
it all over the country and then sports editors would
write their own versions of it from there and then he'd
reprint those and it went on all summer long, but
became quite a sensation. A couple things about it you
may know it as baseball lexicon. This is actually a scan
of the original version from the Evening
Standard in 1910. A librarian friend of mine, Jack Bales down at Mary
Washington University, found for us. Adams renamed it
Baseball Lexicon shortly after it came out. And then I'm sure
you're wondering about this phrase,
our gonfalon bubble. Anybody know what a gonfalon is? It's a, a banner,
medieval Italian banner or pennant especially one with
streamers hung from a cross bar as you're going into battle. And so if you look at that
ruthlessly pricking our gonfalon bubble means our pennant
fever essentially. So these are the 3 guys, Tinker,
Evers and Chance and I want to talk a little bit about them but also what I think is
a marvelous way of looking at baseball at the time
and how baseball became our national pastime. For most of the time up until
they played it was the phrase used most often for baseball
was the national game and that was a product of
its history and it's kind of way it evolved
from different games. It was a Massachusetts
game, a New York game and was pretty much
during the Civil War that the rules coalesced
around one game. So somebody from Troy, New York,
like Johnny Evers or Kansas City like Joe Tinker or Fresno,
California, like Frank Chance, could all play the same
game if one showed up and they'd be playing the same
game 9 innings, 9 men to a side, 4 balls, 3 strikes, you know,
all the rules we know today but what happened in
this first [inaudible] of the 20th Century was
that baseball transformed into something completely
different and that's what I'll talk
a little bit about today. So first of all let
me talk a little bit about Joe Tinker,
the short stop. As I said, he's from
Kansas City. Actually he was born
in Muscotah, Kansas, Atchison County, just west of
Kansas City, to an unwed mother. He was actually one
of a, a pair of twins but his twin sister died or who knows what
happened very early on. He didn't have any
memory of her. It was some talk that he
had an Italian father. You can kind of tell from
his looks he has that kind of swarthy Mediterranean
good looking, he's actually the most
popular player of the 3. He was a real crowd pleaser in
his day and he ended up going on into vaudeville as
a vaudevillian actor in uniform during
his playing days. So he made a lot of
money in the winters, in the off season [inaudible]. Anyway his mother moved to Kansas City was essentially
shunned out of Muscotah, moved to Kansas City when he
was 3 or 4 years old and hooked up with an itinerant butcher and
short-order cook named Tinker. And they lived in Kansas
City through this childhood. Johnny Evers or Evers as I
said Evers himself said it's pronounced Evers in Troy but everyone else
pronounces it Evers. So you can do it either way
as far as he was concerned. Specifically he's
from south Troy, which was the Irish/American
enclave of Troy and his nickname
was the human crab. For one reason because he
played second base side to side like a crab moving
sideways but also because as one reporter
says he's just a jangled up bundle of nerves. Always barking at the umpire,
constantly haranguing anybody on the other team or the umpire. Frank Chance, who played next
to him at first base, once said, told Tinker he says I wish
I played in the outfield so I wouldn't have to listen
to Evers all day long. But he also had an
amazing baseball IQ and became famous for it. He went to bed with the
rule book every night and so he was a spindly little
kid, you know, he was 5 feet 5, 120 pounds or something
when he started playing. Very different from Frank
Chance who was a big, one of the biggest players of
his day at 6 feet, 190 pounds. Again, he's from
Fresno, California. He was an amateur boxer. When he was growing
up, he played football, he was a mountaineer,
anything he could do in terms of proving his physical
prowess he was willing to do. His nickname out in
California was Husk for tough as a corn husk, but Chicago
sports writers eventually would refer to him as the
perilous leader because he was a man
totally in charge. So what we've got here is
kind of a map of America in these 3 guys from
Troy in Upstate New York to Kansas City to Fresno. As you can see, this is a
demographic map from 1890. The country kind of ends around
Kansas City and then picks up again on the West
Coast at that time. So America was essentially
a composite of very distinct
regional cultures and each of these men reflected that
especially when they came to Chicago together in 1903. Evers was a product of a
classic Irish stem family. This is a family photo. He's the young boy in the middle
in the back row he was about 14. His father was an iron monger. His grandfather was an
immigrant came across in 1840s as a penniless immigrant
from Ireland. John Evers, Sr got a job
at the iron works in Troy. Troy was probably the biggest
iron center of the country in the middle of
the 19th Century. And eventually got hooked up with the Democratic
political machine. Became quite a successful
political operative. His father was actually the,
became president and chairman of the school board
even though he sent all of his kids to parochial
schools. Kansas City at the time was a
boom town on the west thanks to railroads and the stockyards that they had and
things like that. In fact, it was such a boom town
it was considered too crowded for its own good. Families wouldn't move there
because there was just no space to run around and
we'll talk a little bit about that in a minute too. And then Frank Chance
each of his parents came across to California on the
Oregon Trail as children. The young boy there in the
middle is about the age of William Chance
when he came across and as this shows they
came across on foot. It was 2000 miles. Those wagons weren't for people. The wagons was for their stuff. And it was an obviously arduous
ordeal through mountains, desert and snow storms
in the upper mountains. Dennis Chance, Frank's
grandfather, was part of a party that came over in one of the
first 1846 and they were just about a week or two
ahead of the Donner Party as they crossed the
Sierra Nevadas. So, it was, it was essentially
the defining moment of that, not just that family but
that state and the culture that was developing
out in California through the second
half of the century. So baseball as I said was
still a formative sport. There was many different
games and rules. The Civil War helped
foster this national game. This is a picture of a prisoner
of war camp in North Carolina where union soldiers
were playing baseball. Then they all came
back home after the war and started developing the game
pretty much as we know it today. the 1880s is when professional
baseball really took off. The National League
was founded in 1876. The 1880s were a free-wheeling, fun for fun sake kind
of time for baseball. It was personified by this
guy Mike King Kelly who played for the Chicago White Stockings
and then eventually for Boston. It was free spirited,
lots of showmanship, lots of gamesmanship,
but it was all in fun and everybody sort
of took it that way. This is a classic
painting that hung on a lot of barroom walls called
Slide, Kelly, Slide. He was the Babe Ruth of his day. In fact, some people said he
was more popular in his day than Babe Ruth was in his. Hard for us to believe
but this was a witness who saw both men play. In the meantime,
baseball was kind of developing also
regional interests. This is a picture of
the old Troy Haymakers. Troy was just a baseball mad
town and all the Evers, brothers and uncles and cousins everybody
played baseball in Troy. And Kansas City as I said was
very crowded, overcrowded place, but the city fathers realized
that and remarkably started one of the first of the City
Beautiful Movements that came across the United States
and hired a protege of Frederick Long Olmsted to
come and design a whole system of parks and boulevards that
still exist in the city today. So this is where Joe Tinker
grew up playing baseball was in these kind of parks. There was also a center for an
organization called the Society of Christian Endeavor. It was a youth Christian
organization, ecumenical. It was developed to
try to get boys back into the church frankly and
one of the things that emerged out of that was because kind
of Victorian protestant society of the 19th Century
discouraged child's play and emphasized hard work
and applying yourself. The YMCA and the Christian
Endeavor groups started promoting something they
called muscular Christianity, which was encouraging people
to get out and exercise and develop their bodies
as well as their spirit. And so this became kind of the
cultural turning point for a lot of young boys in particular
and Kansas City was one of the places that
was happening. And then California in the
1880s was obviously still very rural place. There was barely a Los
Angeles at the time. The center of activity was San
Francisco and the Bay Area, but every town was, had its own
baseball, amateur baseball team. And they started developing
a routine what they called Sunday baseball. They'd take one day off a week and 2 towns would challenge
each other and play baseball. So baseball was really much more
of an amateur sport until 1900s when the Pacific Coast League
really got off the ground. Professional baseball never
really did before then. Frank Chance was one of the
early kids who got involved. This is a picture of the
Fresno Expositors named after the newspaper
that sponsored them. Frank is the 12-year old lying on the bottom left
on the floor there. He was the youngest player on
the team and they would, again, they would go around challenging
kids from other leagues but the newspaper bought
them these fancy uniforms. So, these are the 3 young
men as the century turned from 1890s to the 2000s. Each bringing with them
kind of their own reason for getting involved
in baseball, which was not necessarily
what young men were supposed to do at the time. For Tinker I think it
was very much a desire for middle class acceptance,
acceptability rising from the kind of lower rungs of
the social order he grew up in. He saw baseball as a way to
get that kind of acceptance. Johnny Evers it was,
there was an expression in south Troy called south
Troy against the world. And there was a strong
Irish/Catholic sense of grievance against the
Anglo-Saxon overlords from England as well as
in the United States. This was, again, the period where the No Irish Need Apply
signs were hung on shop walls. So baseball, the Irish were
incredible baseball players. In fact, they almost
took over the game. In the 1890s, there was 4 or
5 Irish players on every team at the time and I go into the
book a little bit why I think that is, but part of it
is because they realized that was one way they could beat
the protestant Anglos they were up against. For Chance I think it
was for him a question of proving himself
worthy of his parents and grandparent's legacy. There wasn't a way
to cross the country like the Oregon Trail was
but sports in particular and baseball ultimately
became a way for him and baseball competition to
prove himself on the field. There was only one problem at the time the 1890s
professional baseball had turned really sour. It was no longer
fun and carefree. In fact, it was dirty
and mean and vicious. One woman writer would
later call it the rough and tumble game played by
9 rowdies for the benefit of a crowd of hoodlums. And not surprisingly
not too many women and children would show
up for these things. In fact, even the kids
games these were cartoons from several papers printed
called The Usual Windup, which is how baseball games
would end up at the time. So there was essentially 3
reasons baseball was turning sour in the 1890s,
professional baseball. I don't know if you've heard
of these words, hoodlumism, which is essentially the idea of
dirty baseball anyway, cheating, anything you could do to get a
competitive edge whether it's spiking your opponent
to, the trick was to, because there was
only one umpire. If an umpire was
looking the other way, you could round a base and miss
third base by 10 or 20 feet as you were heading home. Anything you could
do to get away, but it was also very
foul mouthed, which is what billingskate
[phonetic] means. That's essentially cursing,
swearing, vulgarity. It got so bad that the National
League had to issue an edict against this kind of language
and they printed a memo, which I can't read to
you in mixed company, but I put it in the book. And just put memo saying these
are the words you cannot say on the field. And by penalty of suspension
from the game for life. Of course no one
would suspend anybody for life for a curse word. So it was honored in the breach. So anyway that was [inaudible]. And then there was this
called syndicate baseball, which the National League
would try to monopoly in the 1890s essentially adopted
the practice of the owners of encouraging each other
to buy minority stakes in the other's franchises. And so toward the end of
the season if one team that you were part of was winning the
other team was losing, you'd trade the good players
on the losing team immediately to the better team and give
yourself a competitive edge. Sports writer saw through that. They're the ones who came up with this term
syndicate baseball, but some of the fans
I mean attendance in National League games was
really plummeting particularly compared to other sports that
were emerging in the gay 90s. Bicycling, big, huge craze
for bicycling in the 1890s and bicycle competitions. Another thing called
pedestrianism. I don't know if anybody
has heard of that, but these are walking races
sometimes very absurd walking races like weeks long
or things like that, but people would show up,
hundreds and thousands of people would show
up for these things. So baseball had a problem and
it was personified by this guy, John Mugsy McGraw, who
was the third baseman for the Baltimore Orioles. He was the one famous for
grabbing the runner's belt as he rounded third
base and keeping him from running into home. In fact, McGraw is,
then he became manager of the New York Giants
in the 1900s. And his name McGrawism became
synonymous with dirty baseball and that's what the sports
writers used to call it. Fortunately, there was a
visionary out in the Midwest by the name of Ban Johnson,
Byron Bancroft Johnson. He was the president
of the Western League, a minor league at the time. He saw an opportunity and so he
renamed his league the American League, moved the headquarters
to Chicago, set up franchises in Boston and Philadelphia
and New York right up against the National
League teams, which had been prohibited
before then with the agreement that had operated between
the major and minor leagues. And promoted what he
called clean baseball that people could not be
afraid to bring their wives and children to the game, where
the umpires had the rule of law and he would back them up. There would be none of the
cheating, cursing and dirty play that characterized
the National League. And lo and behold the American
League teams started outdrawing National League teams or outdrawing National
League teams. The White Sox, which had
set up in the Southside of Chicago was outdrawing
the Colts as they were called in the National League. So, essentially Johnson declared
war on the National League and the National League
sued for peace and they came up with what's called the
National Agreement of 1903 or the two leagues agreed
to abide by the same rules of recruiting and payments
and things like that and then the NL itself had
to respond with its own kind of discipline, interdiscipline,
and fortunately in Chicago they found a guy
named Frank Sealey [phonetic] who had been the manager,
very successful manager of the Boston Bean
Eaters in the early 1890s and had brought Sealey in
to manage the Colts in 1902 and he's very cerebral,
soft spoken leader. He never played baseball
himself unlike McGraw, but he did manage very
successful teams in the Midwest, and he also had a secret weapon,
which is his wife, May Sealey. This is a feature story
from the Chicago Tribune where they featured
her as the wife of Chicago's manager
is a real baseball fan. She was an Irish
immigrant herself, came over when she was 18. Very free spirited as I
said rabid baseball fan, she was a horsewoman
in her own right. She's also I discovered what
I think is the first female sports writer. She went out with the Colts to California during spring
training in 1903 and got hired by a couple of newspapers in
Chicago to send back dispatches of how the team is doing. These were unsigned, but you
could definitely tell just from the tone and kind of sunny
disposition she was not the grizzled sports writers
of the day. She was sending back signs of
hope for Colts fans to Chicago. So together the Sealey's
kind of spearheaded a revival of baseball in Chicago
from 1903 through 1905. The Colts started
gradually going up, moving up the standings. In 1905, it looked like
they might even get close to winning the pennant but then
Sealey's own health problems caught up to him and
he became very ill and was ultimately diagnosed
as tuberculosis and he had to leave the team
and the city and go out to Denver to
try to get better. And so they turned the
team over to Frank Chance as player/manager on an interim
basis that year and then he took over in 1906 and 1906
was the big turning point in Chicago baseball
for two reasons. One, the Colts now
being called the Cubs, which is the term
France Chance preferred. Went on to win 116
games that season. The Boston Red Sox this year
won 108, which is as much as anybody has won
in a long time. One hundred and sixteen
is still a record. The Seattle Mariners tied
it in 2001 in 162 games. This was in 153 I think the
Cubs played that year or 152. So they were a juggernaut,
but across town down to Southside
the White Sox known as the hitless wonders back then because they had an anemic
offense actually won the pennant on the last day of the season. And so the two Chicago
teams were going to meet in the World Series. First across town
World Series 1906. During that year,
Chance had gone out and decided they needed
a new third basemen, which has become one of
the great trivia questions in baseball who was the fourth
member of the Cubs infield and there are two
right answers to this. One is I don't know. If anybody knows why
that is the right answer? That's Abbott and Costello's
third baseman is I don't know. [Laughter] The other is
Harry Steinfeld was his name. He's a young man from Ft. Worth, Texas, where he was
a bicyclist in the 1890s. He also was, got hooked up with
a black-faced minstrel group that toured Texas, which is
almost like a circus back then but he would play baseball
during his off hours and was discovered
doing that and signed to a minor league contract
and ended up in Detroit. Chance had known about him
and decided he wanted him and so they got him in 1906
and he turned out to be, this is Steinfeld on the left,
the best hitter on the team and then the Cubs also had
one of the great pitchers of all time Mordecai Peter
Centennial Brown was his name from Nyesville, Indiana. He had a nickname also 3 Finger
because as a boy when he was about 5 years old he was
in a farming accident and his hand got mauled by a
kind of chopper and so he only, this is what his
pitching hand looked like. It enabled him to
throw the most bizarre and unhittable curve ball
you could ever image. [Laughter] So he and Christian
Matheson were probably the two greatest pitchers of their era. Mordecai is in the
Hall of Fame now. As I said, Chance
became manager. Here's a picture of
him with Hugh Jennings of the Detroit Tigers. As I said, Chance was
a monster in the field. He probably was the one player
who everyone rallied around. He was kind of like a
platoon sergeant in the war. Everyone was willing to
go into battle with him because he led by example. Anyway something
happened in Chicago that summer nearly everyone in
Chicago is crazy about baseball and this is a picture of
the Westside grand stands where the Cubs played. Instead of getting a few
hundred or a few thousand fans out for an afternoon game,
they were now drawing tens of thousands to the
games particularly when the World Series
came around. In fact, the Tribune
ran a tongue and cheek column here called
the only man in Chicago who doesn't know the
Cubs and Sox are fighting for a world's championship. [Laughter] He's a
butcher with 3 daughters. [Laughter] So what happened is
also part of baseball history. Any Sox fans, White Sox
fans in the audience? [Laughter] You don't
know them, right? Cubs as I said had 116 wins that
season, the Sox had 93 or 94 or something like that. They kind of snuck in and everyone assumed the
Cubs were just going to roll over the Sox in the World
Series except for one man, Hugh Fullerton was the sports
writer for the Chicago Tribune who sat down and he was kind of the first sabermetric
writer in his day. He sort of lined up all the
pros and cons, field conditions, the weather, the attributes of
each team and wrote a column that predicted that the
Sox would win the pennant, the World Series, in 6 games. Well, would have predicted that except his editor
wouldn't print the column. He was afraid everyone in town
would think they were crazy. And what happened? Well, the Sox won the
series in 6 games. The Tribune editor
finally ate crow and ran the column a week
later after the fact, but Hugh Fullerton was,
became later known as the man who sniffed out the
1919 Black Sox scandal. He was played by Studs
Terkel in the movie Eight Men Out if you've seen that one. He didn't look anything
like Studs Terkel. I didn't bring a picture with me but he was very urbane
intellectual. As I said, one of the first
sabermetric sports writers became one of the great
magazine writers of his day. But anyway baseball
was back here and back to such an extent this is
a picture from the Tribune of the corner of Dearborn and
Madison Streets in Chicago and all these people are looking up at the Chicago Tribune
Building that afternoon. I don't have, they don't
have a picture of what was on the Tribune Building
that day, but this is what it was here
in Washington the same thing. It was an electric
scoreboard in which they would by telegraph they would
feed every pitch and play to operators of the scoreboard and they would use
electric lightbulbs to signify the runners
who were on base, the count and every play. So basically you're following
the game in realtime play by play from downtown
Chicago to across the country. These electric scoreboards
became a real thing in this part of the century before
radio came along in 1920s. It wasn't until the 1920s
that the radio took that away. So baseball was I said back. It was even invading
popular culture. Back in those days Tin Pan
Alley produced sheet music because every home had a piano. Again, no radio, no phonographs,
people played their own music so it was a big market for
songs, sing-a-long songs and tunes and things like that. Baseball was never a topic
of those tunes until now. This was one of the first. Cubs on Parade, which was
described as a 2-step march, but this, I love this picture
and that's Frank Chance and the Cub's owner Charles
Murphy in the photograph. So that was 1907 right after
the Cubs won their first World Series. In 1908, a guy named Jack
Norworth was looking around and realized baseball
might be a good topic. He was not a baseball fan
himself, but he wanted to write his, a tune
about baseball and he came up with the lyrics
and signed up a buddy of his named Albert Bontilsand
[phonetic] to do the music. This is the verse. So all these tunes, you
know, before you got to the course they would
have a verse that was kind of half sung, half spoken. Katie Casey was baseball mad. Had the fever and had it bad. Just to root for the hometown
crew every sou, Katie blew. On a Saturday her young
beau called to see if she'd like to go to see a show,
but Miss Kate said no. I'll tell you what you can do. Take me out to the ball game. So that was the hit piece of
music, sheet music in 1908 and spawned a whole raft of
imitators and things like that. Dozens of baseball songs started
coming about, which tells you that this is no longer
just a game for cranks as they called fans
back in the day and bugs, but women, children. In fact, lady's day became
a big thing back then. At the same time that a
craze swept through fashion, American fashion based on
operetta that had opened in London the year
before and now is coming to New York called
the Merry Widow. And this was the
star of the show. I got her name wrong down here,
but this hat became a craze when the show moved to
New York to the extent that every woman middle
class and upper class women in the country wanted
one of these hats and they were very elaborate. This is actually a
modest one by comparison. Some would have fruit, stuffed
birds and things like that. The brims would be, well,
these women started showing up to baseball games
and caused quite a stir for anybody sitting behind
them trying to watch the game. One sports writer says you can
tell a real lady is the one who takes off her
hat at the game. [Laughter] But the Cubs
were now kings of the world. They had won the World
Series in 1907 and 1908. Adopted the Cubs
as their nickname. This is their mascot
at the time. Not all was sweetness
and light, of course. In fact, these 2 guys, Joe
Tinker and Johnny Evers, maintained a feud that they had
started a couple of years before and refused to talk to
each other on field or off. You can kind of tell. They don't really look like they like each other here
even though they were, they could wordlessly they were
the best keystone combination in baseball at the time. They had a feud that
lasted now just through their playing
days but even long after. But baseball was like I
said affecting the culture. Feature stories were showing
up not just in sports magazines but in the magazines of
today, which was the Internet of the day because everyone
had their own magazine. Players started turning up as
product spokesmen for things like socks and underwear
and other things like that not just tobacco. As I said, Tinker was recruited
to perform in Vaudeville. In 1909 just after winning
election of the presidency, William Howard Taft took
a tour across the country, a 13,000-mile tour by train. Stopped in Chicago for
a few days and insisted on taking in a baseball game. In fact, they rescheduled
the game for the day he was
available and he showed up at Westside Grounds, this
is a close up of that picture, and just held court all day long
and a couple of things happened. When they showed up, it was
a band kind of roving band of musicians they immediately
started playing the Star Spangled Banner when
he showed up, which was not the National
Anthem at the time. It was just a popular march and the whole crowd stood
up at the same time. And then later on during the
game he decided he wanted to stretch his legs. Obviously he's a big
man about 300 pounds and it was the middle
of the 7th inning. He stood up and everyone in
the field stood up with him. It was the first instance I can
find of the 7th inning stretch. The thing about this the
Cubs I wanted to show this because this shows their
record for the 10 years that the 3 players, Tinker,
Evers and Chance played together in the infield almost unheard of
that 3 players would be together for 10 years, but each of
these ones highlighted here on the right the win totals 116
wins in 1 year, 223 in 2 years, 530 in 5 years, 980 in 10
years, it's still a record. No one, not the Yankees of Babe
Ruth and Lou Gehrig or Mantle and Marris or Jeter and other. Not the big red machine,
the Cincinnati Reds, no team in baseball
history has surpassed any of these win totals, which makes
you realize one reason they're in the Hall of Fame all 3. They were elected
in 1946 together by a veteran's committee. Still controversial
in some cases. A lot of people question if
they have the individual player statistics that merit Hall
of Fame consideration. I argue 2 things. One, I'm not the
only one who argues that the win totals
justifies their existence because they were definitely
the leaders of the team, but what they did for
baseball, what this team did for baseball at the time. In fact, a word used most often
to describe the Chicago Cubs of this era and this is the
Chicago Cubs I'm talking about, the word most used to describe
the cubs was invincible. So these 3 young boys,
again, spent the first decade of the 20th Century
essentially remaking baseball and they did it through
a work ethic of teamwork, relentless pursuit
of excellence. Here's a famous picture
by George Conlin, he's here in the
Library of Congress. Obviously these guys did
not want to be pulled into the dugout and have their
picture taken at the time. They were in the middle of their
practice, but those are the ones that turned into these
incredible baseball cards which we were able to use
for the cover of the book. But, again, I think by the time
they left the scene baseball really was the national
pastime and would continue to be and grow in many different ways
throughout the year, but they, one of the things I
wanted to do was to kind of reclaim the origin
story of the Chicago Cubs because they didn't
quite fit the narrative of the past 100 years, but I
think they deserve to be now so. Thank you very much. I'll be happy to
answer any questions. [ Applause ] Anybody have any
questions or comments? Sir? [ Inaudible ] What was the reasons
they didn't win? Well, strangely the White
Sox started hitting. They didn't expect that. The White Sox had a very good
pitching core a couple of Hall of Famers, and the weather was, it was a lousy weather
situation. So there's one reason. If you go through each game and,
well, White Sox won, Cubs won, White Sox won, Cubs won
and the White Sox won too. It was a strange kind of
sequence that no one expected to happen, but that's what
happens in 7-game series as every baseball fan knows. Sometimes the best teams
don't actually come out. >> So what's the story
about the feud between? >> David Rapp: The feud
between, I think it was over, I think I pieced it together. So, I think it goes back to,
well, I think it goes back to when Evers first showed
up in 1902 he was brought down from Troy in September of
1902 in an all-night train ride and fitted out with a uniform that was 10 sizes
too big for him. Went out and had a, it
was a double header, Labor Day double header,
and had a terrible outing, but because he was
the rookie the rest of the team was hazing him. So they made him, they
used to take these omnibus, horse-drawn omnibus to the park. They would dress in the hotel,
take an omnibus to the park and when he came out
to get on the bus, they said there's no room on
the bus you have to sit on top. So he had to sit on
top out to the park and he had a terrible day and
he had to sit back on the top on the way back and
he knew all the guys down below were making
fun of him. Well, one of those
guys was the one who was the rookie before
showed up, Joe Tinker. And so by a couple years
later most of the other people on that team had been reshuffled
and Sealey had brought in all kinds of other people,
but Tinker was still there and then in 1905 the Cubs were
on their way to Cincinnati by train and stopped
off in Bedford, Indiana, for an exhibition game with
the local minor league team because one of their
pitchers was from Bedford. And the town pulled
out all the stops and actually had 5 handsome
cabs for all the players, to take all the players to
the ball park and the last, both Tinker and Evers were
kind of late getting dressed and Evers came down first and
saw the last cab there hopped on and said take me to the
ball park and left Tinker to walk the mile on the hot
dusty road to the ball park. So they were warming
up before the game and Tinker took the ball and
about the distance from me to you threw it as hard as he
could at Evers and Evers used to show his hand how mangled
it was because of that. Within a few seconds they
were on the ground brawling. Well, the pitcher, I forgot his
name, for Bedford, turns around and sees his teammates and runs
over and tries to break them up and they kind of pull
him down into the melee. So the 3000 fans and the fans
see their local hometown hero getting beat up and they
all rushed to the scene. [Laughter] Order is
restored after all of this, they play the game as
if nothing had happened, the fight gets mentioned
in the newspapers all over the country,
but not the reason. It was Hugh Fullerton
again a year later who described this cab incident
as the cause which started it, but and I think that actually
goes back because the Irish, you know, have long memories,
you know, never forgive, never forget, and it
was almost 3 years that Evers was finally able
to get his revenge on Tinker with that cab incident, but
they basically had said, look, you know, we can't play
together if we're going to talk to each other so we just
won't talk to each other. Oddly Tinker said they were
the first to defend the other in any fight against another
player on another team. It says we're Cubs first,
individuals second, you know, they had the team
ethic [inaudible]. And, in fact, it was Chance who
probably kept them, you know, because when Chance was hurt
at the end of the 1912 season and had to leave the team, they
named Evers interim manager, which was the last thing Tinker
wanted and there were a couple of fights in the dugout
that players had to break up the 2 guys and Tinker
finally left and jumped leagues to the new Federal League
to get away from Evers. They reconciled back in the
1930s, but it was a long time. [ Inaudible ] Okay, so Chance was the first
one who had to leave in 1912. He had brain surgery. Another thing about
him being touch as a corn husk he never
dodged a bullet or a baseball and it was actually this side. He got hit in the head a
lot of times to the extent that he lost his hearing
and so he had left. He actually came back a year or
so later and managed the Yankees or the Highlanders they
were called at the time. It was before Babe
Ruth joined the team so they were a lousy team
and they didn't do much. He ended up in, back
in California and helped really get the
Pacific Coast League going as vice president and management
of the teams and he died young. He was in his 50
years old or something like that when he died. Tinker as I said jumped leagues
to the new Federal League, which the Chicago
Whales [phonetic] played in a new park called Weeghman
Park on the Northside, which Weeghman as the owner
of the league of the Whales, the league only lasted a year but Weeghman then bought
the Cubs and moved them up to Weeghman Park and then
he eventually sold the park and the team to Wrigley,
William Wrigley and it's been Wrigley
Field ever since. And so he played rough
and Tinker jumped around for a few years, managed
some, never successfully, and he ended up in Florida as a real estate speculator
during the Florida real estate boom and won and lost and won and lost a fortune a
couple of times there. Johnny Evers had an
interesting kind of second act. He got sold to the
Boston Braves in 1914 and was given a $40,000 salary. The highest paid player
in baseball at the time. The Boston Braves were
in last place in August. Evers was the captain of the
team and they're now known as the Miracle Braves
because they ended up winning the pennant and
the World Series that year. Definitely behind Johnny. He ended up going
back and managed for the Cubs a bit,
for the White Sox. He jumped around and ended up
living out his days in Troy, New York, as owner
of a shoe store. That's his things. Sir? [ Inaudible ] No, never. Yeah. They're not known as
a double play combination. That's the odd thing,
but one reason is because very few
runners got to first against their pitching core. They didn't have that many
opportunities for double plays, but yeah that one that [inaudible] is one
Franklin Adams picked up on and made a thing, yeah. [ Inaudible ] Frank Chance is the best
player of the 3 definitely. Johnny Evers I think was,
again, showing what he did in Boston I think proved it that he was probably the best
on-field captain any team could have, but Tinker, Tinker
was probably the hardest one to justify based
on his statistics. Although I do want to point out that Christian
Matheson [phonetic], again the best pitcher
of his day along with three-fingered
Brown, on the first page of his autobiography, first
page said I could never get Joe Tinker out. He had to get that out
of the way right away. Tinker hit like 400
against Christian Matheson. He was one of the
clutch hitters especially in that 1907-1908 seasons
they won the World Series. [ Inaudible ] So, yeah. So the, I didn't get
into that so I'm glad you asked. So the Cubs had won the pennant
in 1906, dethroning the Giants who had been the world champions
from 1905 and McGraw's Giants, they lost the World Series,
in 1907 they came back with a vengeance and won the
pennant and the World Series against the Detroit
Tigers in 4 games. I think one was a
rain out so 5 games, but and then 1908 there was
a pennant race of all time and it was actually a
great book about just that one season called Crazy
08 if anybody is interested, but it's the Giants, the
Cubs and the Pirates, Honus Wagner's Pirates, were
in a pennant race until, the 3 of them until literally
the last day of the season. There was one game in
particular it's famous for what's been known as one of
the great baseball [inaudible] of all time Merkle's Boner. A young kid named Fred Merkle
was on first base in the bottom of the ninth inning with a
runner on third base as well and the Giants hit a single
up the middle, clean single into center field that scored
the run from third base to win the game and 2
weeks before the end of the season everyone thought
would be propel the Giants to the pennant. But Johnny Evers who had been
studying the rule book as I said at night in bed had tried,
the habit was at the time if something like that
happened the runner at first base wouldn't go
to second, touch second, he would just run to the
dugout or in that case into the outfield club house
and that's what Merkle did. It was a big game,
thousands of fans, he sees the winning run score
and the fans start pouring onto the field, his Giants
teammates are running out of the dugout toward
the right field club house to get away from the fans
so Merkle just turned around halfway between
first and second and hightailed it with them. Johnny Evers saw this, called
for the ball from center field, the ball comes flying in misses
him completely and hits Tinker in the back and falls into
the middle of the infield. Well, the fans are streaming
on him and the first base coach of the Giants, Joe McGinnity
was one of the great pitchers but this day was coaching first
base sees all this happening and kind of sizes up what Evers
is up to and runs on the field and grabs the ball and tries
to throw it into the stands, but Joe Tinker has got
a bear hug around him so he can't throw it
very far and it lands over by the Cubs dugout
where there's also a bag of balls and things like that. Everyone races to that
ball, a fan picks it up and holds it aloft and one of
the Cubs pitchers says give me that ball and he said no. So he just bopped him over
the head and the ball dropped and he grabbed it and threw it
back to Evers who was standing on second base at this time and
there was actually 2 umpires for this game not
necessarily a usual thing, but one of them had been, Hank
O'Day was the home plate umpire, had seen the same play, Evers pulled the same play 2
weeks before in Pittsburgh. Oh, he didn't see it. That was what Hank O'Day claimed
he didn't see the ball being tagged before the runner got
there so he disallowed it but the Cubs put up such a stink
about it and protested the game that Evers, O'Day finally said,
well, you're probably right. If it happens again,
I'd call him out. So, 2 weeks later in New
York it happened again but here's the thing New
York fans have complained about this forever because
it was the custom not to touch second base, it's a
technicality, it's a force out, the run doesn't score. Well, O'Day admitted
and I found a piece, an interview he gave
to the Tribune. He hardly ever talked
about this thing, but he actually managed the Cubs
in 1914 I think it was a year after Evers and he's still
living in Evers' shadow and never liked him as you
can imagine no umpire would like Johnny Evers. So he was giving and
he was basically trying to downplay Evers' role in
the Merkle's Boner play. It wasn't Evers he says
it was Sully Hoffman out in center field who
recognized what was happening and threw the ball in,
but then he said, well, and besides it didn't matter. He says I called it interference
because McKinney ran onto the field before
the play was over and that's what he ruled and,
therefore, the play was dead, And it was the bottom of
the 9th and it was darkness so they called the game
because of darkness. And any Cubs fans, older
Cub's fans like me remember if you call a game because
of darkness in Chicago, the Cubs didn't have
lights until 1988, you have to replay
the entire game. You don't just pick it
up where it left off. So the National League
finally ruled that the game was suspended
because of darkness is a tie and would be replayed at the
end of the season if necessary and it was necessary just like
these last, this last week and the Cubs won that game
pretty easily although there was, they figured it was in the [inaudible] Grounds
250,000 people showed up for that game both in the park, on
the roof of the stadium but also on Cogan's Bluff overlooking
the stadium it was one of the biggest gatherings of
humanity in history up until that point, but that's what
decided the 1908 season was that one play. I think one more question? [ Inaudible ] I can't, I should know that but
I can't, but none of them were over 300 for instance. I would say I think Chance ended
up, well, I did look this up. If you look at Chance's numbers
from the 5 years they won in 1906, his on-base percentage which is what everyone
looks at today, right? So it's hits, walks
and hit by pitches. Frank Chance was hit 90
times during those 5 years. [Laughter] Which pushes his
on-base average up to 480 or something like that. So that was him but the
other 2 were more like 260, 280 hitters essentially
in that range, yeah. One more. [ Inaudible ] It was a sports writer. So back in those days team
didn't necessarily own their nicknames. It was not like today where
they're brand trademarks. The sports writers gave
them nicknames and there's so many newspapers that
each paper used to come up with its own nickname for the
team just to distinguish itself. So, the White Stockings, which is what the original
National League franchise was called, kind of lost
that moniker when they were rebuilding
under Cap Ansen in the 1890s and reporters started calling
them the Colts, Ansen's Colts because they were all young
kids he had gathered together, but then when Ansen left he
was kind of the patriarch of Chicago baseball
and he played until he was 48 years old one
paper started calling them the Orphans. And then they started writing
some other minor league teams and one paper called
them the Remnants. But Sealey came in and he liked
Colts so he encouraged that, but 1906 one paper called
them the Giant Killers. That was the nickname
the whole season long, but again when Sealey
started bringing in a bunch of young kids, this is what he
was he was a great talent scout, including kids like Evers and
Tinker 20 years old at the time, one sports writer from the Daily
News said it looked like a bunch of cubbies on the field and
that was essentially the start of that craze and then Chance
made it known that he liked it and then Murphy, Charles
Murphy I didn't get into the new owner was a big
promoter type and he's the one that came up with the mascot of
the bear and things like that. So and then I think the end of
the story is the football team, NFL football team, which emerged
in the 30s and 40s, wanted to, and they played in
Wrigley Field, couldn't use the word Cubs,
but they latched on to Bears. I think that's the story. I'll be happy to stick around
and answer any other questions, but I think we have to, and
then I'll be happy to sign books that are for sale right
out here in the lobby if anyone would like, but thank
you all very much for coming. [ Applause ]

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