1900 – First Year as Cardinals

Now equipped with a new name (the First Year as Cardinals) and eight teams, the Cardinals begin their long, rich history in the National League. Four teams (Louisville, Cleveland, Baltimore, Washington) have been contracted and all of their players were sold to other teams.

New Players and Manager Brought In

A few players the Cardinals brought were player-manager John McGraw along with infielder Bill Keister and catcher Wilbert Robinson. McGraw and Robinson wanted more money and decided to hold out.

They finally signed on May 12th. In his first game, McGraw gets four hits in five at-bats on offense but makes a crucial error to cost the Cardinals the game. Robinson gets three hits in four at-bats including a double and a home run.

Cardinals Finish 5th in 1900

The Cardinals finished the season (19th total) in fifth place 19 games behind Brooklyn. As a team, they scored 744 runs and allowed 748 runs.

Jesse Burkett led the offense with 15 triples and 203 hits while batting .363 for the season. Mike Donlin had 10 homers as a part-time player and John McGraw walked 85 times with a .344 batting average along with getting hit by a pitch 37 times.

Second Baseman Bill Keister knocked in 72 RBI’s and 35 yr-old Patsy Donovan hit .316 and stole 45 bases on the year.  Cy Young (real name Denton True Young) won 19 games and lost 19 while allowing 337 hits for the season. He posted a 3.00 ERA in 35 starts with 115 strikeouts. He was given the nickname Cy which was short for cyclone which in turn was a reference to his fastball.

Cowboy Jones compiled a 13-19 record with a 3.57 ERA. This became the last year for Robinson and Young with the Cardinals as they joined the American League the next season.

Manager LeBeau Starts the 1900 Season

Patsy LeBeau (11 yrs- 726-583) was the manager for the Cardinals which eventually became his last of 11 seasons as a major league skipper. He left mid-season with a 42-50 record. Owner Frank Robison wanted third baseman John McGraw to be the next manager and he refused. Robison turned to his chief of concessions, Louie Heilbroner, and named him manager.

Heilbroner had no knowledge of baseball (in fact was in charge of concessions at the park) and was not a strong presence of authority as he stood 4’9” tall. Heilbroner turned to McGraw and he ran the show. Everyone on the team knew that and was fine with the arrangement. Heilbroner finished with a 23-25 record.

Trades in 1900

May 23, 1900: The Boston Beaneaters purchased Nig Cuppy from the St. Louis Cardinals.

May 22, 1900: The Pittsburgh Pirates purchased Jack O’Connor from the St. Louis Cardinals for $2,000.

May 15, 1900: The Brooklyn Superbas purchased Lave Cross from the St. Louis Cardinals for $3,000. (Date given is approximate. Exact date is uncertain.)

April, 1900: The Detroit Tigers purchased Dick Harley from the St. Louis Cardinals.

March 10, 1900: The St. Louis Cardinals purchased Bill Keister from the Brooklyn Superbas for $19,000.

March 9, 1900: The Brooklyn Superbas purchased Gus Weyhing from the St. Louis Cardinals for $500.

March 9, 1900: The St. Louis Cardinals purchased Dan McGann from the Washington Senators for $5,000.

March, 1900: The Chicago Orphans purchased Cupid Childs from the St. Louis Cardinals.

January, 1900: The St. Louis Cardinals purchased Patsy Donovan from the Pittsburgh Pirates for $1,000


The primary starting lineup for the 1900 Cardinals

  • Catcher- Lou Crider
  • 1B- Dan McCann
  • 2B- Bill Keister
  • SS- Bobby Wallace
  • 3B John McGraw
  • OF- Jesse Burkett
  • OF- Emmet Hedrick
  • OF- Patsy Donovan
  • SP- Cy Young
  • SP- Cowboy Jones
  • SP- Jack Powell
  • SP- Wille Sudhoff
  • SP- Jim Hughey

Here are the statistical leaders in the National League for the year 1900

  • Honus Wagner (PIT) batted .341
  • Herman Long (BOS) hit 12 home runs
  • Elmer Flick (PHI) had 110 RBI’s
  • Joe McGinnity (BRO) won 28 games
  • Rube Waddell (PIT) ERA leader with 2.37
  • Noodles Hahn (CIN) finished with 132 K’s

FINAL Standing in National League

  • Brooklyn Superbas 82-54
  • Pittsburgh Pirates 79-60  4.5GB
  • Philadelphia Phillies 75-63 8GB
  • Boston Beaneaters 66-72 17GB
  • St. Louis Cardinals 65-75  19GB
  • Chicago Orphans  65-75  19GB
  • Cincinnati Reds  62-77  21.5GB
  • New York Giants 60-79  23GB

Here are some interesting games from 1900

  1. The highest scoring game in Opening Day history occurred on April 19th when the Boston Beaneaters scored 9 runs in the ninth inning to tie the game.
  2. Philadelphia was ahead 16-4 at one time in this game. Phillies win in 10-innings 19-17.
  3. Chicago wins 4-3 as Jimmy Ryan hits his 20th career leadoff home run against Noodles Hahn and the Cincinnati Reds on May 5th.
  4. In Philadelphia on July 4th, about 1,000 fans celebrate the holiday by firing their pistols into the air. No injuries were reported. Chicago won this game 4-3.
  5. Kid Nichols gets his 300th win on July 7th for Boston.
  6. Noodles Hahn, of the Philadelphia Phillies,  pitches a no-hitter against the Cincinnati Reds and wins 4-0 on July 12th.
  7. The next day, July 13th, Phillies third baseman Harry Wolverton has 3 triples in the 23-8 rout of the Pittsburgh Pirates.