Cooperstown Chronicles – Pete Browning

May 2, 2008

Photo courtesy of TSN Archives/Icon SMI

I’ve decided to profile Pete Browning.  Here are my findings.

The Numbers
1183 Games
4820 At Bats
.341 Batting Average (13th All-time)
954 Runs
1646 Hits
295 Doubles
85 Triples
46 Home Runs
659 RBI
466 Walks 
258 Stolen Bases


Top Ten Finishes
Batting Average – Nine Times -All in Top 3 (Led league in 1882, 1885 & 1890)
On-Base % - Nine Times (Led league in 1882 & 1885)
Slugging % – Nine Times (Led league in 1882)
OPS -Nine Times (Led league in 1882 & 1885)
Games – Once (Led league in 1885)
At-Bats – Once
Runs – Five Times
Hits - Seven Times (Led league in 1885)
Doubles – Eight Times (Led league in 1890)
Triples – Twice
Home Runs – Three Times
RBI – Three Times
Walks – Once
Stolen Bases – Once

Pete Browning played for the Louisville Eclipse/Colonels, Cleveland Infants, Pittsburgh Pirates, Cincinnati Reds, St. Louis Browns, and the Brooklyn Grooms.  He was in the top ten virtually every season he played in most of the offensive categories.  He had some incredible seasons.  In 1887 he hit .402 with 137 Runs, 220 Hits, 35 Doubles, 16 Triples, 118 RBI, and 103 Stolen Bases.  His nickname was Gladiator and he was considered the original “Louisville Slugger” as he was the first player to purchase a bat.  He suffered from mastoiditis, which causes hearing loss and terrible head pain, yet he fought through it to become one of the best hitters in the game.  He turned to booze to deal with the pain.  His famous line was “I can’t hit the ball until I hit the bottle”.  He was an unbelievable talent who overcame a long of adversity (some of it self-inflicited) to become one of the very best hitters the game has seen.  He belongs in the Hall of Fame.

If you want to read more on the “Lousville Slugger”, head over here.

BR Bullpen

Past Chronicles
Bert Byleven
Andre Dawson
Dale Murphy
Mark McGwire
Bobby Matthews
Tommy John
Buck O’Neill & Minnie Minoso
Jim Rice
Ted Simmons
Lee Smith
Jack Morris
Al Oliver
Steve Garvey
Jim Kaat
Pete Ro$e
Shoeless Joe Jackson
Dave Concepcion
Lou Whitaker
Alan Trammell
Ron Santo
Ron Guidry
Gil Hodges
Dave Parker
Tony Mullane
Keith Hernandez
Don Mattingly
Dwight Evans
Ralph Houk (Manager)
Jimmie Dykes (Player/Manager)
Charlie Grimm (Player/Manager)
Billy Martin (Player/Manager)
Harold Baines
Gene Mauch (Manager)
Whitey Herzog (Manager)
Tom Kelly (Manager)
Joe Carter
Rusty Staub
Gary Gaetti
Jimmy Ryan
George Van Haltren
Roger Maris
Lance Parrish
Mo Vaughn
Mark Grace
Dennis Martinez
Chuck Finley
Fred McGriff
Wes Parker
Steve Finley
Orlando Cepeda*
Albert Belle
Willie Randolph
Graig Nettles
Luis Gonzalez
Lefty O’Doul
Rocky Colavito
Boog Powell
Jerry Koosman
Mike Cuellar
Edgar Martinez
Brooks Robinson*
Roberto Alomar
Dave Stieb
John Franco
Maury Wills
Sherry Magee
Phil Rizzuto*
Orel Hershiser
Frank Viola
David Cone
Dwight Gooden
Tim Raines
Bernie Williams
Barry Larkin

* signifies actual Hall of Famers

Posted by | Categories: Cooperstown Chronicles, MLB |
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2 Responses so far | Have Your Say!

  1. Larry Novak
    May 2nd, 2008 at 4:33 pm #

    By the case you have brought, I cannot believe that he is not in!

  2. Ryan Lester
    May 2nd, 2008 at 7:29 pm #

    No doubt. I hate that about the HOF. There are guys like this who got screwed because they didn’t play in the right league. It was so unorganized back then. What’s the big deal?

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