On a very busy day for Pittsburgh Pirates birthdays, we have eight players and a manager to cover. Before we get into the former players, current pitcher Wil Crowe turns 27 years old today.
Dots Miller, infielder for the 1909-13 Pirates. He played just one season of minor league ball before becoming the starting second baseman for the 1909 Pirates. Prior to that he played for a strong amateur team in his hometown of Kearny, NJ. He began the 1908 season with Easton of the Atlantic League at 21 years old, but he made such a great impression early that the Pirates acquired him within three months of his pro debut. He was signed sight unseen, with owner Barney Dreyfuss receiving a strong recommendation that led to his signing. The Pirates signed him on July 7, 1908 when he reported to the team, and he spent about three weeks with the club before being sent to McKeesport of the Ohio-Pennsylvania League, where he hit .306 in 43 games. On the day his signing was announced, it was noted that he would likely be farmed out after the Pirates got a look at him. Miller was brought into Spring Training in 1909 to compete for a bench job and he ended up impressing so much that he won the starting second base job over veteran Ed Abbaticchio. Miller had a chance to play regularly due to Honus Wagner deciding to get ready for the season while at home in Pittsburgh playing/coaching basketball. Wagner didn’t join the team until right before Opening Day, and by that time, Miller had the nickname “Honus the Second” by some of the local scribes. Miller had a 4.6 WAR season in 1909 at 22 years old, hitting .279 in 151 games, with 47 extra-base hits and 87 RBIs. He ranked third in the league in RBIs, third in doubles (31) and fourth with 13 triples. He was also third in extra-base hits. In the World Series, he hit .250 with four RBIs, two runs scored and three stolen bases.
Miller dealt with injuries in 1910, leading to a down season in which he hit .227 and was limited to 120 games. In 1911, he bounced back with a .268 average, 76 RBIs and 82 runs scored in 137 games. By 1912, he was back among the league leaders in multiple categories. He was also moved over to first base, despite strong defensive metrics at his original spot. Miller hit .275 with 86 RBIs, 33 doubles and 12 triples. He ranked top ten in the league in RBIs, doubles and triples for the second season in each category. During the 1913 season, Miller finished fourth in the league with 90 RBIs and fourth with 243 total bases. He was also second in the league with 20 triples. All three marks would end up as career bests. He finished eighth in the National League MVP voting.
Despite the big season at first base in 1913, the Pirates made a trade to acquire first baseman Ed Konetchy from the St Louis Cardinals. He was a favorite of owner Barney Dreyfuss, who tried to acquire him multiple times in the past. The trade turned out to be a disaster. Not only did Miller outplay Konetchy in 1914, Konetchy bailed on the Pirates after one season to play in the newly-formed Federal League. The trade was even more one-sided, as the Pirates gave up another four players, included starting right fielder Chief Wilson and pitcher Hank Robinson, while receiving two other marginal talents in return, one of which being Mike Mowrey, who was cut by the Pirates before the 1914 season ended. Miller won (or lost if you’re the Pirates) the trade on his own, finishing fifth in the MVP voting in 1914. He batted .290 with 41 extra-base hits, 88 RBIs and 67 runs scored in 155 games. His 4.1 WAR that season was the second best of his career behind his rookie season. He was sixth in the league in hits, eighth in total bases, fifth in doubles, eighth in triples and fourth in RBIs. The Pirates went from a 1913 record of 78-71, to 69-85 after the deal. The Cardinals went from a 51-win team to an 81-win team in one season, bolstered by the infusion of talent from the Pirates.
Miller played four seasons in St Louis before serving during WWI. In 1915, he .264 with 72 RBIs and 73 runs scored in 150 games. During the 1916 season, he batted .238 in 143 games, while seeing playing time at first base, second base and shortstop, plus brief time at third base in center field. He was considered to be one of the best utility players at this time. In 1917, Miller hit .248 in 148 games, with 45 RBIs and 61 runs scored. He enlisted in the Marines prior to the 1918 season and missed the entire year. He returned in 1919 for one more season with the Cardinals, hitting .231 in 101 games, then played his last two years with the Philadelphia Phillies after they purchased his contract in January of 1920. He hit .294 in 98 games in 1920, while seeing time at all four infield spots. He batted .297 in 84 games during his final season in the majors. He would pass away due to tuberculosis in 1923 at age 37, after managing two seasons in the minors with San Francisco of the Pacific Coast League. Miller finished his big league career with a .263 average in 1,589 games, with 108 triples, 177 stolen bases, 714 RBIs and 711 runs scored. While with the Pirates, he batted .266 in 710 games, with 389 RBIs and 347 runs scored.
Miller got the nickname “Dots” as a small child due to his thick German accent. He would say “That’s mine” when he grabbed things, but the “That’s” came out as “Dots”. His teammates in Pittsburgh learned of the nickname during his first trip to Philadelphia as a player, when all of his friends and family showed up. There’s an old story of unknown origin that claims he got the nickname from Honus Wagner’s German accent, when he supposedly said told a reporter who asked about the whereabouts of Miller “Dots (that’s) Miller”. There in no truth to that story, but it has been passed around for years as being true. Wagner wasn’t even with the team during Spring Training in 1909 when it supposedly happened. Miller’s first name was John, though he was often called “Jack” during his playing days. His nephew Jack Tighe managed the Detroit Tigers during the 1957-58 seasons, and he also played 11 years of minor league ball.
Waite Hoyt, Hall of Fame pitcher for the Pirates from 1933 until 1937. Hoyt made the Hall of Fame on the strength of one of the teams he played for, that being the New York Yankees from 1921-30, when he had a 157-98 record. Over the rest of his career, posting a ERA just slightly higher than his New York days, he had a career record of 80-84, including the 35-31 mark he compiled with the Pirates. His ERA during his five years in Pittsburgh stood at 3.08, forty points below his number with the Yankees.
Hoyt debuted in pro ball at 16 years old in 1916, pitching 71 innings total for two different teams from the Eastern League. He actually signed with the New York Giants at 15 years old, but didn’t debut until the next season. In 1917, he spent most of the year one step from the majors with Montreal of the International League, where he had a 7-17 record, despite a 2.51 ERA in 215 innings. He split the 1918 season between Newark of the International League and Nashville of the Southern Association, where he had a 5-10 record and pitched 137 innings. In between stops, he made one relief appearance for the Giants in July, throwing a shutout inning in his big league debut. He was part of a large trade to a minor league team in Rochester after the 1918 season, in which the Giants gave up cash and five players in exchange for catching prospect Earl Smith, who later played for the Pirates. In 1919, Hoyt spent the season with the Boston Red Sox, where he went 4-6, 3.25 in 106.1 innings. He went 6-6, 4.38 in 121.1 innings in 1920, making 11 starts and 11 relief appearances. After the 1920 season, he was part of an eight-player trade between the Red Sox and Yankees.
In 1921, Hoyt went 19-13, 3.09 in 282.1 innings for the Yankees, helping them to the World Series, where he won two of his three starts. In 1922, he had a 19-12, 3.43 record in 265 innings, once again leading the team to the World Series, where he lost his only start, despite allowed one earned run in eight innings. In 1923, the Yankees won the American League pennant for a third straight season and he had a 17-9, 3.02 record in 238.2 innings. The won their first World Series title that year, though Hoyt got hit hard in his only start. All three of those World Series matchups were against the Giants. The Yankees missed the playoffs in 1924, but Hoyt still had an 18-13, 3.79 record in 247 innings. He made 32 starts and 14 relief appearances. In 1925, he had an 11-14, 4.00 record, as the Yankees slipped that year with Babe Ruth missing time. They were back in the postseason in 1926, helped along by Hoyt, who had a 16-12, 3.85 record in 217.2 innings.
Most baseball fans know the 1927 Yankees, the team famously called Muderer’s Row for their strong offense. Hoyt was a big part of that team on the pitching side, going 22-7, 2.63 in 256.1 innings. He won his only start in the postseason against the Pirates that year. In 1928, he went 23-7, 3.36 in 273 innings, which led to a tenth place finish in the MVP voting. He also won both of his World Series starts. That season was a real turning point in his career. He set a personal best with those 23 wins at 28 years old, then never approached that number again. He had just 82 wins left in his career, despite hanging around another ten seasons. In 1929, he went 10-9, 4.24 in 201.2 innings. The Yankees sent him to the Detroit Tigers in a five-player trade early in 1930. He finished that season 11-10, 4.71 in 183.1 innings. The Tigers put him on waivers in the middle of 1931, where he joined the Philadelphia A’s and helped them to the postseason. He finished the year 13-13, 4.97, which better results after the trade. He lost his only World Series start, which was the final one of his career. Hoyt had a 1.83 ERA in 83.2 innings in the World Series.
Hoyt was released by A’s in February of 1932, then signed with the Brooklyn Dodgers. He was there until early June, where he was released again after posting a 7.76 ERA in 26.2 innings. The Giants came calling some after and he went 5-7, 3.42 in 12 starts and six relief outings to finish out the season. Despite decent results, he was released again. Hoyt was signed by the Pirates in January of 1933 and was used mostly in relief during his first season in Pittsburgh. He went 5-7, 2.92 in 117 innings, making eight starts and 28 relief appearances. In 1934, he was used in the same role, just pitching more often. That would be his best season since he won 23 games six years earlier. Hoyt was 15-6, 2.93 in 190.2 innings, making 17 starts and 23 relief appearances. In 1935, he had a 7-11, 3.40 record in 11 starts and 28 relief outings, throwing a total of 164 innings. He began to slow down the next year, but still pitched well with a 2.70 ERA in 116.2 innings. His ERA that season was the lowest among all Pirates pitchers, on a staff that included some strong pitchers like Cy Blanton, Mace Brown, Bill Swift and Red Lucas. Hoyt started off slow in 1937, then was sold to the Brooklyn Dodgers in June. He pitched well there over the rest of the 1937 season, finishing with a 8-9, 3.42 record in 195 innings. He ended up lasting six games in 1938 before being released, which ended his big league career. He finished with a 237-182, 3.59 record in 3,762.1 innings over 674 games, 425 as a starter. He was a career .198 hitter in 1,287 at-bats, with 26 doubles, 11 triples and 100 RBIs, though he never connected on a home run.
Frankie Frisch, Hall of Fame second baseman, who managed the Pirates from 1940 until 1946. Frisch played 19 seasons in the majors, retiring in 1937. He spent his first eight season with the New York Giants, where he played exactly 1,000 games. The next 11 years were spent with the St Louis Cardinals, where he played another 1,311 games. He hit .316 with 2,880 hits, 1,532 runs scored, 419 stolen bases and 1,244 RBIs. He was the National League MVP in 1931 and received MVP votes in nine different seasons. When the All-Star game came along in 1933, he was the starting second baseman in the first two years, then he was the manager in the 1935 game. He was a part of four World Series winning teams as a player and one of those as a player/manager. He played on a total of eight pennant winning teams.
Frisch took over the Pirates in 1940 after they went 68-85 in Pie Traynor’s final season at the helm. Frisch already had six seasons of managerial experience, going 458-354 with the St Louis Cardinals, who he led to the World Series title in 1934. The Pirates improved to 78-76 during Frisch’s first season. In 1941, they improved again, going 81-73. Like every big league team, the Pirates were hit hard with players being lost due to WWII service. Frisch managed the Pirates through that entire period. He saw the record drop to 66-81 in 1942, before rebounding to 84-70 in 1943. The Pirates had a strong season in 1944, finishing second for the National League pennant. Their 90-63 record that season was the best mark that they had between World Series appearances in 1927 and 1960. They dropped down to 82-72 in 1945, then they had a 62-89 record in 1946 when Frisch stepped aside before the final three games. He had a winning record in five of his seven seasons in Pittsburgh, finishing second once and fourth four times. His managerial career wrapped up with a stint with the Chicago Cubs from the middle of 1949 through the middle of 1951. He went 1,138-1,078 overall in 16 years of managing in the big leagues. He was elected to the Hall of Fame as a player in 1947.
Dan Miceli, reliever for the 1993-96 Pirates. He was originally signed by the Kansas City Royals as an amateur free agent in 1990, coming over to the Pirates at the 1993 trading deadline, along with Jon Lieber, in exchange for Stan Belinda. Miceli debuted in pro ball at 19 years old in 1990, with a 3.91 ERA in 53 innings in the Gulf Coast League. He spent the 1991 season in short-season ball as well, putting up a 2.14 ERA in 25 relief appearances. In 1992 he moved up to the Class-A Midwest League, where he had a 1.93 ERA in 23.1 innings, which led to a promotion to Double-A. He was just as good as the higher level, putting up a 1.91 ERA in 37.2 innings. Before joining the Pirates, he had a 6-4, 4.60 record in 58.2 innings over 40 relief appearances in Double-A. He remained at the same level with the Pirates, putting up a 5.11 ERA in 12.1 innings. Miceli came to the majors that September and stuck around for another three seasons, despite never pitching with any success.
Miceli had a 5.06 ERA in nine appearances during his first cup of coffee in the majors. In 1994, he had a 5.93 ERA in 27.1 innings over 28 outings with the Pirates. He pitched well in Triple-A that year, posting a 1.88 ERA in 24 innings. In 1995, he was used often by the Pirates in the closer role, picking up 21 saves, but he also had a 4.66 ERA in 58 innings over 58 appearances. The next year the Pirates tried him as a starter briefly and he wound up with a 2-10, 5.78 record in nine starts and 35 relief outings, throwing a total of 85.2 innings. After the season ended, he was dealt to the Detroit Tigers for pitcher Clint Sodowsky. Miceli went on to pitcher 14 seasons in the majors, seeing time with ten different teams. In his only season in Detroit, he had a 5.01 ERA in 82.2 innings over 71 appearances. He was traded to the San Diego Padres before the 1998 season and had his best year with them during that first season. He went 10-5, 3.22 in 72.2 innings over 67 appearances. In 1999, Miceli had a 4-5, 4.66 record in 68.2 innings over 66 games. He was traded to the Florida Marlins prior to the 2000 season. He had a decent first year in Florida, going 6-4, 4.25 in 45 games, but a slow start in 2001 led to him being released in June. He finished the year with the Colorado Rockies, combining to go 2-5, 4.80 in 45 innings, with much better results with the Rockies.
Miceli signed a free agent deal with the Texas Rangers in 2002, but he was released after struggling through nine early season games. He didn’t play again until 2003 when he split the season between the Rockies, New York Yankees, Houston Astros and Cleveland Indians. He had a 3.20 ERA in 57 games that year, with his most time coming in Houston. He remained with the Astros for all of 2004, going 6-6, 3.59 in 77.2 innings over 74 outings. He joined the Rockies for a third time in May of 2005 as a free agent signing. He had a 5.89 ERA in 18.1 innings, then spent part of the season pitching in Japan. Miceli’s big league career wrapped up with a 3.94 ERA in 32 innings for the 2006 Tampa Bay Devil Rays. He attempted a comeback in 2009, pitching in independent ball. He finished with a 43-52, 4.48 record in 700.2 innings over 631 games, with 39 saves. For the Pirates, Miceli was 8-15, 5.41 in 176.1 innings over 139 games. He played more games for the Pirates than he did with any of his other nine teams.
Tom Foley, infielder for the 1993-94 Pirates. He spent his entire 13-year career in the National League, eight of those seasons with the Montreal Expos. His two years in Pittsburgh were book-ended by his first and second stop in Montreal. Foley split most of his big league time at either shortstop or second base, but he also saw plenty of work between the two corner infield spots. He was originally drafted by the Cincinnati Reds in the seventh round in 1977 out of high school. Just 17 years old at the time, he hit .254 in 59 games for Billings of the Pioneer League. In 1978, Foley played for Shelby of the Western Carolinas League, where he hit .231, with a .610 OPS in 124 games. He moved up to Tampa of the Florida State League in 1979 and hit .229 in 125 games, with a .580 OPS. Despite the poor hitting stats, he was in Double-A in 1980 and showed some improvements, hitting .249 with 24 extra-base hits and 47 walks in 131 games. By 1981 he was in Triple-A Indianapolis for the first of two seasons. Foley hit .233 with six homers and 27 RBIs in 103 games in 1981, followed by a .269 average in 129 games in 1982, setting minor league highs with 20 doubles, nine triples and eight homers.
Foley debuted in the majors in 1983, making the Opening Day roster as a backup infielder. He hit .204 with a .563 OPS in 68 games that rookie year, seeing most of his time at shortstop. He played much more often in 1984, batting .253 with five homers and 27 RBIs in 106 games. That was followed by a .196 average in 43 games in 1985 before he was traded to the Philadelphia Phillies in a five-player deal in early August. He hit .266 in 46 games for the 1985 Phillies, then batted .295 in 39 games for the 1986 Phillies before they traded him in late July to the Expos. He batted .257 in 64 games for Montreal, playing all around the infield. In 1987 he hit .293 in 106 games, while posting a career best .754 OPS. He never reached the .700 mark in any other season. Foley played a career high 127 games in 1988 and reached 100 base hits (exactly 100 that year) for the only time in his career. He hit .265 with five homers and a career high 43 RBIs. In 1989, he played 122 games, hitting .229 with seven homers and 39 RBIs, while setting a high with his 45 walks. He was back down to a bench role in 1990, when he hit .213 in 73 games, followed by a .208 average in 86 games in 1991. In 1992 for the Expos, he hit just .174 in 72 games, leading to his release as soon as the season ended. He didn’t hit a single homer during the 1990-92 seasons.
The Pirates signed Foley two months after he was released by Montreal. He was used mainly at second base in 1993, getting exactly four starts at each of the other three infield spots. In 86 games that season, he hit .253 with 22 RBIs and 18 runs scored in 211 plate appearances. He again played all four infield spots in 1994, although he didn’t make any starts at first base. He hit .236 in 59 games during that strike-shortened season, driving in 15 runs and scoring 13 times. He was released in October and finished his career the next year with the Expos, batting .208 in 11 early season games. He also saw a short stint in Triple-A that year. In 1,108 Major League games over 13 seasons, Foley hit .244 with 32 homers, 32 steals, 248 runs scored and 263 RBIs.
Pete Naton, catcher for the 1953 Pirates. He was signed by the Pirates right out of the College of Holy Cross in June of 1953. He is one of 75 Major League players to attend that school, although only six have began their Major League career after Naton debuted. He went right from college to the Pirates and played two games (one as a starter) before being sent to the minors. The Pirates signed him on June 12th after outbidding 13 other big league teams for his services by signing him to a $4,000 bonus. He went 0-for-3 as a starter in his big league debut on June 16th, then pinch-hit three days later. On June 25th he was optioned to Toronto of the International League. He played just one game in Toronto and 39 for Charleston of the South Atlantic League before returning to the Pirates. He was recalled in September for four more games, three of them as a starter. He hit .167 with one RBI and two walks. He went to Spring Training with the Pirates in 1954 trying to compete for a backup catching job, but he was cut on April 5th. Naton then went to the lower minors in 1954, where he hit .288 with 16 homers for Class-B Burlington-Graham of the Carolina League. He split the next two seasons between the Pirates affiliates in Hollywood (Pacific Coast League) and New Orleans (Southern Association), where he never approached his 1954 hitting numbers. He was actually released outright to Hollywood on November 19, 1954, so he wasn’t technically with the Pirates anymore, though playing with their affiliates would have given them first chance to bring him back. He batted .246 with seven homers in 81 games in 1955, followed by a .227 average and eight homers in 75 games in 1956. Most of 1957 was spent with Hollywood, where he hit .232 with five homers in 52 games. Naton stayed in the Pirates system until 1958 before retiring, never making it back to the majors. His final season was spent with Salt Lake City of the Pacific Coast League, where he hit .202 with four homers in 69 games.
Dan Costello, outfielder for the 1914-16 Pirates. He signed with the New York Yankees right out of Mount St Mary’s University in 1913, a school that hasn’t produced a Major League player since 1932. Costello spent three of his four seasons in the majors with the Pirates. He played just two games for New York as a pinch-hitter in 1913, going 1-for-2 with a run scored. They farmed him out to Jersey City of the International League, where he had a short stay before ending up with Poughkeepsie of the New York-New Jersey League. He went back to college over the 1913-14 off-season, and was supposed to report to the Yankees in early July of 1914, but instead he was back in Poughkeepsie, where the team moved to the Atlantic League. He hit .431 in 56 games during the 1914 season, though he was batting .501 through 32 games. For an unknown reason, he was playing under the name “Kelly” while in Poughkeepsie. On August 1, 1914, the Pirates purchased his contract, but he didn’t debut with them that season until September 9th. Barney Dreyfuss went to see him play in Poughkeepsie and completed the deal after watching him hit two triples, a single and steal two bases. Costello played 21 games for the Pirates that year, twenty of those in right field, and he hit .297 with five RBIs. In 1915, he was the backup outfielder, seeing time at all three positions, though most of his time came off of the bench. Costello hit .216 with 11 RBIs, 16 runs scored and seven stolen bases in 71 games. During Spring Training in 1916, he was impressing the Pirates with his play and they planned to reward his hard work with more playing time. He got more at-bats in 1916, but played fewer games. Costello started often in left field early in the year, but he ended up hitting just .239 with eight RBIs in 60 games. The Pirates released him to Toronto of the International League in September. While he initially said he would retire rather than report there, he ended up playing in Toronto during the 1917 season before calling it quits on pro ball. He finished his time in Pittsburgh with a .241 average, no homers, 24 RBIs and 34 runs scored in 152 games.
Doc Johnston, first baseman for the 1915-16 Pirates. He debuted in pro ball at 21 years old in 1909 with the Cincinnati Reds, going hitless in three October games. He then went to the minors for three seasons, splitting 1910 between Chattanooga of the Southern Association and Buffalo of the Eastern League. After batting .219 in 112 games, he moved on to New Orleans of the Southern Association for the 1911-12 seasons. Johnston hit .258 in 130 games in 1911 and .308 in 107 games in 1912. He joined the Cleveland Naps (renamed Indians in 1913) in mid-August and hit .280 with 12 extra-base hits in 43 games. After he hit .244 with no homers and 23 RBIs in 104 games during the 1914 season, the Pirates purchased Johnston from the Cleveland Indians in February of 1915. For the Pirates, he was replacing Ed Konetchy at first base, after the latter jumped to the Pittsburgh team in the Federal League. Doc (first name was Wheeler) hit .265 in 147 games for the 1915 Pirates, driving in 64 runs and scoring 71 times. He finished ninth in the National League in both stolen bases (26) and homers (five), and he was sixth in triples (12). His second season with the team didn’t go so well, hitting .213 with 39 RBIs in 114 games. In 1917, the Pirates went with Honus Wagner at first base and Doc spent the entire year in the minors with Birmingham of the Southern Association.
After hitting .374 in 31 games for Milwaukee of the American Association in 1918, Johnston was back with the Indians by mid-June. He had three good seasons with Cleveland, hitting at least .292 each year from 1919-21. He batted .227 in 74 games after joining the Indians in 1918, then hit .305 with 21 extra-base hits and 21 steals in 102 games in 1919. The next year he batted .292 with 36 extra-base hits, 71 RBIs and 68 runs scored in 147 games. In his final season with the Indians, Johnston hit .297 in 118 games, with 29 extra-base hits, 46 RBIs and 53 runs scored. He was sold to the Philadelphia A’s after the 1921 season and finished his Major League career there in 1922, batting .250 with one homer and 29 RBIs in 71 games. He went on to play four more seasons in the minors, then managed for two years before retiring. In 11 big league seasons, he hit .263 with 14 homers, 381 RBIs, 139 steals and 478 runs scored in 1,056 games. His brother Jimmy Johnston spent 13 years in the majors, mostly playing with Brooklyn.
Abner Dalrymple, left fielder for the 1887-88 Pittsburgh Alleghenys and the first batter in Pittsburgh National League history. He was a star outfielder in the 1880’s for the Chicago White Stockings (Cubs), but by the time the Alleghenys got him in 1887, he was clearly on the downside of his career. Dalrymple led the NL in at-bats four times between 1880-85, led the league in runs and hits in 1880, home runs in 1885 and he batted over .300 for times. Those .300 averages included a high of .354 in 1878 as a rookie for the Milwaukee Grays, where he scored 52 runs in 61 games (60-game schedule that year, with one tie makeup game). Dalrymple was awarded the National League batting title that rookie season, but later research showed that he actually fell four points behind Paul Hines, who ended up winning the Triple Crown, long before that was actually a thing. In 1879, he joined Chicago at 21 years old and hit .291 with 47 runs scored in 71 games. The next year he batted .330 with 25 doubles and 12 triples, while leading the league with 91 runs scored and 126 hits in 86 games.
Dalrymple played 82 games in 1881, hitting .323 with 27 extra-base hits and 72 runs scored. In 1882, he hit .295 with 25 doubles, 11 triples and 96 runs scored in 84 games. He continued his run-per-game average over the next three seasons in Chicago, including 1884 when they went to an expanded schedule, playing over 100 games for the first time. Dalrymple hit .298 with 30 extra-base hits and 78 runs scored in 80 games in 1883. In 1884, Chicago’s field changed the ground rules, where a ball hit over the right field fence was now a homer. Even during deadball times, the field was short and doubles were plentiful but homers became plentiful instead during the 1884 season. Dalrymple batted .309 with 22 homers, 69 RBIs and 111 runs scored in 111 games. They moved to a new park in 1885 and he hit .274 with 22 doubles, 12 triples, 11 homers, 61 RBIs and 109 runs scored in 113 games.
Dalrymple saw a slide in his production during his final season in Chicago and Pittsburgh purchased him in November of 1886 after he hit .233 in 82 games. The Alleghenys had moved from the American Association to the NL over the off-season and on April 30, 1887, Dalrymple led off against his old team and helped Pittsburgh to a 6-2 win. He never regained his batting form from years earlier, finishing that first season hitting .212 in 92 games, with 45 runs scored and 29 stolen bases. Dalrymple was never strong defensively. Early in his career he led the NL in errors three times, but by the time he reached Pittsburgh, he was an average fielder. In 1888, he played 57 games for the Alleghenys, hitting .220 with 19 runs scored. He was released on September 13th with 26 games remaining on the schedule. He went to the minors in 1889 and played for another seven seasons before retiring. It was said that poor eyesight hurt him later in his career, though supposedly he was hurt by a rule change that said batters could no longer call for high or low pitches. Supposedly, he could only hit the low pitches, so pitchers knew once that rule was abolished (1885) that he couldn’t hit high strikes.
Dalrymple actually played Major League ball again in 1891 under odd circumstances by today’s standards. That year the American Association had a team from Cincinnati that folded near the end of the season and the league needed a team to take their spot to finish out the schedule. They chose the Milwaukee Brewers of the Western League, and Dalrymple just happened to be on that team, hitting .340 at the time. When the team moved to the AA for the last month, he went with them and hit .311 with 22 RBIs in 32 games. The American Association played their last season at the Major League level in 1891 and Dalrymple moved on to Spokane of the Pacific Northwest League. Over his final three seasons in pro ball (1893-95), he played four four different teams. His career stats in the majors over 12 seasons shows a .288 average, 217 doubles,81 triples, 43 homers, 407 RBIs and 817 runs scored in 951 games. He collected 1,202 hits during that time. With the Alleghenys, he hit .215 in 149 games, with 64 runs scored.