Thursday, April 27, 2006

Eddie Ainsmith

A journeyman ballplayer, Edward Wilbur Ainsmith was a good defensive catcher who had surprising speed, but was weak with the bat. Ainsmith played in over 1,000 games in the big leagues for 15 seasons with five different clubs, including two games with the Brooklyn Robins in 1923.

A native of Cambridge, Massachusetts, "Dorf" as he was known to his teammates, was only 18 years old when he broke into the big leagues with the Washington Senators on August 9, 1910. He played for the Senators for nine seasons, serving primarily as Hall of Famer Walter "Big Train" Johnson's personal catcher. In 1913, Ainsmith pilfered 17 bases in just 84 games, including stealing three bases in one inning on June 26, 1913.

Ainsmith went on to play for the Detroit Tigers, St. Louis Cardinals, Brooklyn Dodgers and New York Giants. His best season was in 1922 when, as a member of the Cardinals, he batted .293, 61 points higher than his career batting average, while smashing 13 home runs and driving in 59 runs, all career highs.


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