Bobby Wallace was a bit of a baseball 'renaissance man', playing for 24 seasons before serving as a manager, umpire and scout. Wallace made his major league debut in 1894 as a starting pitcher with the now-defunct Cleveland Spiders. After going 12–14 in 1895, he began seeing time in the outfield as well as on the mound. In 1897, Wallace's transition to an everyday player was completed as he became the team's full-time third baseman, batting .335 and driving in 112 runs. Over his career, he compiled 2,309 hits and 1,121 RBI. He was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1953 by the Veteran's Committee.
I completed this sketch card in July 2012.
10 random facts about Bobby Wallace:
- He was born on November 4, 1873 in Pittsburgh, PA.
- Aside from pitcher, outfielder and third baseman, Wallace played shortstop after moving to the St. Louis Perfectos (now known as the Cardinals) in 1899; he would become most famous for playing this position.
- He played his final game at the age of 44 years an 312 days, making him the oldest shortstop to play in a regular-season Major League game until Omar Vizquel surpassed him in 2012.
- He was usually recognized as the American League's top defensive shortstop from 1902 to 1911.
- He served as the St. Louis Browns' player-manager in 1911 and 1912.
- His last season as a Major League regular came in 1912.
- Near the end of his playing career in 1915, Wallace served a stint as an American League umpire.
- Aside from managing the Browns, he was the skipper of the Cincinnati Reds during the 1937 season.
- As a manager, he compiled 62 wins and 154 losses for a .287 winning percentage.
- To this day, Wallace holds the record for the longest career by a player who never played in a World Series.