YEAR IN REVIEW : 1914 Federal League

Off the field...

The United States finally completed the construction of the Panama Canal. The fifty-one mile long waterway ran across the Isthmus of Panama, connecting the Atlantic (by way of the Caribbean Sea) and Pacific oceans. After the United States acquired territory in the Caribbean and in the Pacific as a result of the Spanish-American War (1899), U.S. control over a man-made canal seemed imperative. In 1912, "The Panama Canal Act" was passed (exempting tolls from American cargo ships engaged in coastwise trade) igniting a protest by Great Britain that was eventually repealed in 1914 through the efforts of President Woodrow Wilson.

In the American League...

Cleveland Indians shortstop Ray Chapman stumbled his way into an unwanted record on June 20 th after committing four errors in the fifth inning during a 7-1 loss to the New York Yankees at League Park II.

During the second game of an August doubleheader in Washington, Detroit Tigers pitcher Hooks Dauss combined with four Senators aces to hit a record seven batters for a Major League mark that remained unmatched until the 1971 season.

In September, New York Yankees shortstop Roger Peckinpaugh replaced Frank Chance to become the club's all-time youngest skipper (twenty-three), and the seventh in its twelve-year existence. He later went on to win nine of seventeen games and eventually managed Cleveland in 1928.

In the National League...

On June 9 th at the Baker Bowl, Pittsburgh Pirate legend Honus Wagner joined Cap Anson as the only other member of the "3,000 Hit Club". Wagner collected the game-winning double off the Philadelphia Phillies' Erskine Mayer in the ninth-inning of his two-thousand three-hundred thirty second game.

Pittsburgh and New York went head-to-head for a twenty-one innings on July 17 th before Larry Doyle's two-run home run sealed a 3-1 Giants victory over the Pirates. The Forbes Field marathon set a Major League mark as the longest "non-walk game" in the history of organized baseball.

Brooklyn Dodgers first baseman Jake Daubert tied a Major League mark on August 15 th after recording four sacrifice bunts in the second game of a doubleheader sweep against the Philadelphia Phillies (8-4, 13-5). Daubert had also placed two sacrifice bunts in the first game after an ankle injury impeded his ability to run.

In the Federal League...

1914 debuted the short-lived Federal League after John T. Powers of Chicago convinced a group of entrepreneurs that the growing popularity of baseball could support a third major league. Eight teams entered the inaugural season with clubs based in Brooklyn, Chicago, St. Louis and Pittsburgh as well as Baltimore, Kansas City, Buffalo and Indianapolis which had been the home for AAA teams. All eight cities constructed brand new ballparks including the Chicago Whales who played in what would eventually be known as Wrigley Field.

To effectively compete, the owners lured eighty-one former Major League players (eighteen of which were active) and one-hundred forty Minor League players (twenty-five of which were active) into the Federal League Baseball Company, Inc.

On May 6 th , Pittsburgh Rebel Ed Lennox collected the only Federal League cycle during a 10-4 win over the Kansas City Packers.

Around the League...

A joint committee representing both the American and National Leagues voted that a "runner touched or held by a coach while rounding third base was officially out" and that "coaches could now assist other members of their team, not just the base runners". Pitchers were also allowed to stand on the rubber (vs. standing behind the rubber until ready to pitch) and base runners were no longer permitted to run on an infield fly. A motion to eliminate the intentional walk was also rejected along with an attempt to legalize Sunday baseball in Massachusetts.

In April, the twenty-five player limit was suspended in both the American and National Leagues. With uncertainty over who has signed with what teams, it was almost impossible to verify how many players could be on any club's roster at any one time.

On April 22 nd , a nineteen year-old pitcher named Babe Ruth made his debut in the International League with a six-hit, 6-0 win for Baltimore over Buffalo. The second batter he faced was Joe McCarthy, the manager he would later play for as a New York Yankee.

Baseball Almanac Top Quote

"I believe that man (James A. - the Federal League President) Gilmore not only can convince a millionaire that the moon is made of green cheese, but can induce him to invest money in a cheese factory on the moon." - National League President John Tener

1914 Federal League Player Review

Hitting Statistics League Leaderboard

Chicago
81
Indianapolis
.370
Indianapolis
44
Indianapolis
211
Chicago
16
Indianapolis
.447
Indianapolis
107
Indianapolis
120
Brooklyn
.556
Indianapolis
75
Indianapolis
305
Indianapolis
15
Brooklyn

1914 Federal League Pitcher Review

Pitching Statistics League Leaderboard

Chicago
34
Chicago
1.58
Indianapolis
49
Chicago
Buffalo
6
Indianapolis
9
Indianapolis
236
Buffalo
.778
Chicago
29

1914 Federal League

Team Standings

Indianapolis Hoosiers 88 65 .575 0
Chicago Whales 87 67 .565
Baltimore Terrapins 84 70 .545
Buffalo Buffeds 80 71 .530 7
Brooklyn Tip-Tops 77 77 .500 11½
Kansas City Packers 67 84 .444 20
Pittsburgh Rebels 64 86 .427 22½
St. Louis Terriers 62 89 .411 25

1914 Federal League Team Review

Hitting Statistics League Leaderboard

Chicago
520
Indianapolis
.285
Indianapolis
230
Indianapolis
1,474
Chicago
52
Indianapolis
.349
Indianapolis
762
Indianapolis
.383
Indianapolis
273
Indianapolis
90
Pittsburgh

1914 Federal League Team Review

Pitching Statistics League Leaderboard

Indianapolis
104
Chicago
2.44
Fewest Hits Allowed
Chicago
1,204
Fewest Home Runs Allowed
Indianapolis
29
Fewest Walks Allowed
Baltimore
392
Buffalo
16
Chicago
17
Baltimore
732
Seasonal Events: All-Star Game | World Series
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Miscellaneous: A.L. Leaderboard | N.L. Leaderboard
Retirements | Rookies List
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baseball almanac fast facts

Did you know that a Chicago newspaper broke a story in early 1914 describing secret meetings between the Federal League president and Ty Cobb ? Attempts were made to sign The Georgia Peach to a five-year $75,000 contract, but Cobb declined and remained with the Detroit Tigers.

Future members of the National Baseball Hall of Fame who participated in the Federal League during 1914 included Mordecai Brown , Bill McKechnie , Edd Roush , Joe Tinker and John Montgomery Ward .

When the first Federal League Opening Day game was played on April 13, 1914, many fans were turned away due to ballpark restrictions. Many of those "rejected" fans literally crossed the street where they were able to watch an exhibition game at Orioles Park between the International League Orioles, who had a hometown phenom on the mound named Babe Ruth , and the National League Giants .

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