YEAR IN REVIEW : 1884 Union Association

Off the field...

Amusement Park promoter La Marcus Thompson built America's first modern roller coaster at Coney Island; Brooklyn, New York called "The Gravity Pleasure Switchback Railway". The groundbreaking ride incorporated a flat steel track nailed onto several layers of wooden planks. Two forty-five foot towers were then connected with ramp that allowed the ride to reach a top speed of six miles per hour. The train cars had to be manually towed to the top of the hills at the beginning of both tracks and the patrons were required to get out at the end of the first track and climb stairs to the second hill to board the train again for a return trip. Despite the inconveniences, at only five cents per ride, the ticket profits repaid Thompson's original investment in less than three weeks.

In the National League...

The National League expanded its schedule to one-hundred twelve games.

A rivalry was born in the "Big Apple" as the New York Giants and Brooklyn Trolley-Dodgers met for the first time in an exhibition game on April 18 th .

On June 27 th , Larry Corcoran of the Chicago White Stockings became the first pitcher in Major League history with three career no-hitters after blanking the Providence Grays 6-0.

In the American Association...

Decades before Jackie Robinson "officially" broke baseball's color barrier, Moses Fleetwood Walker played forty-six Major League games for the American Association's Toledo Blue Stockings.

Despite hitting .263, Walker tallied thirty-seven errors, which led to his early release.

Thirty-one year-old rookie Sam Kimber (Brooklyn Trolley-Dodgers) tossed an eleven-inning, no-hitter against the Toledo Blue Stockings on October 4 th . Unfortunately, darkness came before someone could score and the game was called at a 0-0 tie.

In the Union Association...

Outfielder Harry Wheeler became the only player ever to appear with five separate teams during the same season. Wheelers 1884 resume included five games with the St. Louis Browns (in the American Association) then on to the Union Association's Kansas City Unions (twenty games), Chicago Browns (seventeen games), Pittsburgh Stoogies (seventeen games) and Baltimore Monumentals (seventeen games).

Philadelphia Keystones catcher Jack Clements became the first player ever to wear a chest protector in a Major League game. Roger Bresnahan would later popularize the device.

Baseball Almanac Top Quote

"It isn't so long ago that a great American President - Abraham Lincoln - freed negro slaves. Now we have leagues which practice a reserve clause which holds athletic young men in perpetual bondage." - Henry V. Lucas

1884 Union Association Player Review

Hitting Statistics League Leaderboard

Baltimore
37
St. Louis
.412
St. Louis
40
St. Louis
185
St. Louis
13
St. Louis
.448
Data Not Kept
n/a
n/a
n/a
St. Louis
160
St. Louis
.621
St. Louis
279
Cincinnati
12

1884 Union Association Pitcher Review

Pitching Statistics League Leaderboard

Baltimore
58
Cincinnati
2.69
Baltimore
62
St. Louis
4
Cincinnati
7
Chicago
483
Washington
Cincinnati
.875
Baltimore
40

1884 Union Association

Team Standings

St. Louis Maroons 94 19 1 .832 0
Cincinnati Outlaw Reds 69 36 0 .657 21
Baltimore Monumentals 58 47 1 .552 32
Boston Unions 58 51 2 .532 34
Milwaukee Grays 8 4 0 .667 35½
St. Paul White Caps 2 6 1 .250 39½
Chicago/Pittsburgh Browns/Stogies 41 50 2 .451 42
Altoona Unions 6 19 0 .240 44
Wilmington Quicksteps 2 16 0 .111 44½
Washington Nationals 47 65 2 .313 46½
Philadelphia Keystones 21 46 0 .313 50
Kansas City Unions 16 63 3 .203 61

1884 Union Association Team Review

Hitting Statistics League Leaderboard

St. Louis
181
St. Louis
.292
St. Louis
259
St. Louis
1,251
St. Louis
32
St. Louis
.321
St. Louis
887
St. Louis
.394
Cincinnati
63

1884 Union Association Team Review

Pitching Statistics League Leaderboard

St. Louis
104
St. Louis
1.96
Fewest Hits Allowed
Chicago
743
Pittsburgh
Fewest Home Runs Allowed
St. Louis
9
Fewest Walks Allowed
Cincinnati
90
St. Louis
6
Cincinnati
11
Boston
753
Seasonal Events: All-Star Game | World Series
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baseball almanac fast facts

Did you know that the reserve rule they so badly objected too essentially limited a ballplayer's income by making him the sole property of his club?

Every single historic Union Associate team - which existed this one and only season in their history - is included up above, every player, every game, every score, all just a single click away.

There were two Union Associate No Hitters tossed during their short existance (1884 only). The first was by Dick Burns , August 26, 1884 and the second by Ed Cushman , September 28, 1884.

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