A brilliant defensive outfielder from 1888 to 1906, Hugh Duffy also hit the ball with authority, showing remarkable power for his diminutive stature. He assembled a string of 10 straight .300 or higher seasons, and in 1894, he batted .438 while leading the National League in doubles (50) and home runs (18). Duffy's stellar all-around play helped Boston to four pennants during his nine-year tenure with the club. He was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1945.
I completed this sketch card in June 2012.
10 random facts about Hugh Duffy:
- He was a textile mill worker who had taken up baseball as a semipro.
- Duffy entered the National League with the Chicago White Stockings (now known as the Cubs) in 1888 after receiving an offer of $2,000 from the club.
- In 1894 Duffy had one of the greatest seasons in baseball history, leading the league with 18 home runs, with 145 RBI and a .440 batting average- the era's version of the Triple Crown.
- Duffy's .440 average in 1894 is still the Major League single season batting average record.
- While with the Boston Beaneaters, he and teammate Tommy McCarthy were known as the "Heavenly Twins".
- Duffy finished his career in 1906 with 106 home runs which was, at the time, one of the highest career totals in the game.
- He managed 4 different Major League teams on an intermittent basis from 1901 to 1922.
- He coached the Harvard University varsity and freshman baseball squads from 1917 through 1919.
- He later became a scout for the Boston Red Sox from 1924 to 1953- a position he essentially held until his death.
- On June 18, 1894, Duffy reached base safely three times in one inning, a record that has yet to be bested.