Charles Sebastian “Red” Dooin
Born: June 12, 1879 - Cincinnati, OH
Died: May 14, 1952 - Rochester, NY
Career BA: .240
Managerial Record: 392–370
Philadelphia Phillies NL (1902–1909; player-manager: 1910–1914)
Cincinnati Reds NL (1915)
New York Giants NL (1915, 1916)
Because of his slight build he wasn’t taken seriously as a catcher at first, but Charles “Red” Dooin eventually enjoyed a stellar career as a Major League catcher. After attending Xavier University, Dooin worked as a tailor while playing the Minor League circuit in the late 1890s and finally got into the big leagues in 1902 with the Phillies. Although he was very small in stature, Dooin proved to be tough at the plate and was not afraid to mix it up with base sliders. Unfortunately, this resulted in a broken ankle in 1910 and a broken leg in 1911. When he was not injured, the feisty redhead was a steady, competent catcher who excelled at working with pitchers. Offensively, he was a marginal hitter, although he did manage to bat .328 in 1911 for the Phils with 247 at-bats.
Dooin took over as skipper of the Phillies in 1910. As player-manager, he led them to second place in 1913, and had an overall winning record north of .500. He is credited with developing future Hall of Fame pitcher Grover Cleveland Alexander, who had a fantastic rookie year in 1911. One of the early innovators of the game, Dooin was the first to wear lightweight, paper-mache shin guards under his stockings to prevent his legs from being slashed by spikes. Although Roger Bresnahan is credited with the invention, Dooin maintained that Bresnahan learned of the idea when he slid into home and collided with Dooin’s reinforced stockings. Bresnahan developed the idea into padded shin guards worn over his stockings that he removed when not catching, whereas Dooin wore his shin guards throughout the game.
After injuries put an end to his career Dooin became a successful businessman, only to lose everything when the stock market crashed. In the offseason as a player, Dooin sang and acted in vaudeville. After his business ventures failed, his baritone voice came to the rescue and he enjoyed a lucrative career in vaudeville and on the radio. Player, manager, inventor, entertainer...Red Dooin was a very interesting guy.
– Tom and Ellen Zappala, The Cracker Jack Collection: Baseball's Prized Players. For more information on their book and/or to order a copy at a special PSA discount, visit http://crackerjackplayers.com/PSA_order.html
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